Three individuals have been charged with multiple drug offenses following a Sunday night traffic stop on Interstate 71 near State Route 435 in Fayette County.
A Fayette County Sheriff’s Office deputy, Caleb Conn, stopped a 2003 GMC Envoy heading northbound on I-71 for speeding at about 10:43 p.m., according to Sheriff Vernon Stanforth. When Conn made contact with the driver, identified as Taja R. Cox, he reportedly smelled a “strong odor of burnt marijuana inside the vehicle.”
During the deputy’s investigation, he learned a loaded handgun was concealed in the center console of the vehicle, Stanforth said. Deputy Conn retrieved the handgun and while doing so, located several small bags containing a substance believed to be cocaine, according to reports.
The driver and two passengers were arrested at the scene and were then incarcerated in the Fayette County Jail in lieu of bond.
Cox, 35, of Cincinnati, was charged with aggravated trafficking in drugs, a first-degree felony; possession of drugs; a first-degree felony; and improperly handling a firearm in a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony.
Verland Jones, 29, of Cincinnati, was charged with aggravated trafficking in drugs, a first-degree felony, and possession of drugs, a first-degree felony.
Shacretta Williams, 39, of Cincinnati, was charged with aggravated trafficking in drugs, a first-degree felony, and possession of drugs, a first-degree felony.
Reach Ryan Carter at 740-313-0352 or on Twitter @rywica