GILBERT — The West Virginia State Police (WVSP) and the Gilbert Police Department (GPD) joined forces Sunday evening and conducted a traffic stop at Ned’s Branch Road that quickly yielded more arrests than they originally foreseen happening.
The traffic stop that put the wheels in motion that yielded a total of 5 arrests began when the GPD observed a 2004 Pontiac Grand Am weaving across the center line of Rt. 52 South. Christopher Boren, 30, of Gilbert, was found to have slurred speech and constricted pupils, when approached and questioned by Gilbert Police Chief M. Rasmusson and Sgt. D. Salmons. The defendant failed to complete three sobriety tests administered by the officers. When a sweep of the interior of the vehicle was completed, marijuana was found.
Boren was charged with DUI 2nd offense and possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance (marijuana). He was arraigned before Mingo County Magistrate Dee Sidebottom who set bail at $5,000.
While conducting the vehicle search, the officers were joined by WVSP Trooper J.R. Tupper. Two male subjects were then said to have approached the officers and attempted to speak with the defendant, who by this time, was in custody.
John Belcher of Justice and Steve Whited of Kistler both reportedly had their hands in their pockets while attempting to engage Boren in conversation, and were directed to remove them and to keep their hands in full sight, for the safety of the officers. The request was repeated several times, which raised suspicion about their motives. Trooper Tupper then conducted a “pat-down” of the men, and located a needle and syringe on both, which is said to have contained a blueish-colored residue identified as the drug Roxycotin, 30 mg.
Belcher and Whited were each charged with one count of obstructing an officer and one count of possession of a controlled substance and were placed under arrest. They were arraigned before Chief Magistrate Dallas Toler and were transported to the Southwestern Regional Jail at Holden where they remain incarcerated on a $3,000 bond.
The two final Gilbert arrests occurred after yet another vehicle stopped where the officers were conducting the traffic stop. According to the criminal complaint, a Pontiac G6 containing two individuals approached the scene, and the driver exited the car and began swatting at his clothing and acting in an erratic manner. He was soon identified as Joshua Bailey, 30, of Gilbert, with who the officers were very familiar with because of past criminal behavior.
Bailey relayed to the officers that he had been at a residence known to law enforcement as being a place that sells illegal narcotics, and officers are said to have made a controlled drug buy there in the recent past. The trooper inquired as to who owned the vehicle and were told the passenger, Jennifer Taylor, 31, of McCarr, Ky., was the owner. After asked, Taylor, who is a licensed attorney in the State of Florida, consented to a search of her vehicle.
The trooper opened the driver’s door and could see in the console area a red and white plastic straw cut in half that contained a white powdery residue. Located in the vehicle were two white boxes containing Staxin, 10 mg, with a $50 price tag on the package. Also found were Levitra, 10 mg, both of which are not a controlled substance but are a prescription only medication. The search continued and a black box that contained Flector Patches, Losartan tablets, Lisinopril, Lupin, Skelixal, Tramadol, Hydroxine, Flexiril, Promethazine, Atenololinbar, and Loperamide Hydrocloride tablets, all of which are not narcotics but are illegal to sell to a person except by prescription from a healthcare provider.
Discovered in another section of the vehicle were Zolpidem Tartrate tablets in a bag with a price tag, which are a Schedule IV controlled substance. The officers then found a woman’s purse with Taylor’s identification inside and a pill bottle marked Alprazalam (Xanax) which had been filled on Sept. 17, with 90 listed as the quantity. No Xanax tablets remained, but the bottle contained 2 tablets later identified as aspirin.
A K-9 officer was then called to the scene and after a positive hit on the trunk was made, a search was conducted in which a small change purse was located that contained Hydroxyzine tablets. Most of the medications were in separate plastic baggies with price tags inside.
Taylor and Bailey were placed under arrest on charges of receipt of a prohibited drug (times 17), and conspiracy. Bailey was also charged with driving on a revoked license for reasons other than a DUI.
The duo was arraigned before Mingo County Chief Magistrate Dallas Toler and was transported to the Southwestern Regional Jail at Holden. Taylor was released from custody after meeting the conditions of her bond. Bailey remains incarcerated, pending a preliminary hearing.