GALLIPOLIS — A total of 750 prescription pills were confiscated by Gallia County Sheriff’s Deputies early on Tuesday morning following a traffic stop on U.S. 35.
The incident occurred at approximately 12:55 a.m. on U.S. 35 after a deputy stopped a vehicle for a speed violation in Gallipolis Township.
The stop was made by a sheriff’s office K-9 unit, and, after the deputy noticed several drug trafficking indicators, the K-9 team located the 750, 30-milligram oxycodone hydrochloride tablets that were bagged and concealed within the vehicle.
Ronnie D. Smith, Jr., 30, Reynoldsburg, Ohio, and Kelly D. Jones, 40, Charleston, W.Va., were arrested as a result of the stop, and both have been charged with first degree felony drug trafficking.
The vehicle, a 1996 Ford Crown Victoria, was towed from the scene, and a forfeiture request has been made.
According to the court’s online docket, Smith was charged in the Gallipolis Municipal Court in early 2008 on charges which include the improper handling of firearms in a vehicle, marijuana possession and attempting to flee or elude.
On August 6, 2008, Smith pleaded guilty to attempting to flee or elude. The other pending charges were dismissed in light of the plea agreement.
He was sentenced to two days in jail, ordered to pay court costs and a $150 fine, had his operator’s license suspended for six months and was ordered to report to probation for a one-year period. In 2009, an additional 10-day jail sentence was handed down after probation violations were filed in this case.
Smith and Jones are scheduled to be arraigned in the Gallipolis Municipal Court on the new drug trafficking charges. Smith is currently being held in the Gallia County Jail, while Jones is incarcerated in the Middleport Jail.
Gallia County Sheriff Joe Browning reported on Tuesday that, in an effort to thwart criminal activity, including drug trafficking in Gallia County, deputies will be out in full force over the Labor Day weekend thanks to an overtime grant recently acquired by the sheriff’s office.
“As the Labor Day weekend approaches, Gallia County deputies will be working federally funded overtime to provide extra patrols in Gallia County’s Townships, not only to promote traffic safety but also to intercept criminal activity such as we have here,” Browning commented.