Two charged with drug, firearm violations following Mitchell Police raid

Cale Carl Bender, 35, and Hailee Rae Flores, 28, both of Mitchell, were both charged with at least four felonies.

(Republic photo Illustration)
(Republic photo Illustration)

Two Mitchell residents were arrested Wednesday night after a search warrant found drugs, guns and stolen property inside a home in the 700 block of South Minnesota Avenue.

The search warrant was executed as part of an ongoing investigation between the Mitchell Police Division and the Sanborn County Sheriff’s Office, according to a press release.

Court documents say that as members of the Mitchell Police Division Emergency Response Unit were preparing to enter the home, a nearby officer witnessed a silver car pull into the driveway.

Officers entered the home just before 9 p.m. Wednesday and located Cale Bender, 35, and Hailee Flores, 28, both of Mitchell, at the property.

An arrest affidavit alleges that officers executing the warrant found approximately $1,400 in cash, multiple glass pipes with burnt residue, packaging materials and a baggie which tested positive for the presence of methamphetamine. They also discovered approximately one-quarter of a pound of marijuana hidden in the ceiling tiles in the living room.


Authorities say they found a hidden compartment in the property, which contained a 12-gauge Winchester shotgun with the serial number filed off, which made it “impossible to read.”

During the search, a set of keys was found on Flores, the affidavit says. Those keys did not unlock the silver vehicle seen arriving earlier, but officers managed to gain access to the car.

Flores’ wallet and ID were found in the backseat of the vehicle, and a safe situated inside a purse was discovered in the trunk. Her keys opened the safe, which court documents say contained $2,000 in cash, over half-pound of methamphetamine, a loaded Smith and Wesson .38 Special revolver, a scale and “prepackaged baggies of methamphetamine for sale.”

Officers used Google Maps to determine that the house was within a 1,000-foot radius of the Abbott House, and therefore was within a drug-free zone.

Bender and Flores were both charged with possession of a firearm with an altered serial number, possession of a controlled substance (meth), possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, and violation of a drug free zone, each of which are felonies. They were both charged with possession of stolen property, a Class 1 misdemeanor, as well.

Flores was also charged with distribution of a controlled substance, another felony.

Court documents say Bender and Flores were both cooperative and sober when they were booked into the Davison County Jail. Magistrate Judge Donna Bucher set preliminary bond at $10,000 for Flores and $5,000 for Bender, additionally requiring both to complete a clean urinalysis test before release and complete urinalysis tests twice a week.

Bender and Flores had their first court appearances Thursday afternoon.

Related Topics: CRIME AND COURTS
A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on regional news that impacts the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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