Drug Task Force arrests two

MARTINS FERRY – Officers from the Belmont County Drug Task Force, Martins Ferry and Bridgeport police departments made two arrests this week after executing a search warrant at 922 Lincoln Ave., Bridgeport.

Officer Tim Starkey said that the task force also had a warrant for Francis William Thatcher for three counts of drug trafficking. He is also charged with possession of drugs, possession of drug abuse instruments, and child endangerment. Thatcher resides at the residence.

Officers took Latonna Maria Thatcher into custody. She had an outstanding warrant out of Northern Division Court for unpaid fines for child endangerment. She is also charged with possession of marijuana and child endangerment.

Francis Thatcher was not at home when the warrant was served. Officers contacted the Wheeling police, and he was apprehended at Wheeling Hospital while taking a juvenile to a doctor’s appointment. He was transported to Northern Regional Jail awaiting extradition back to Ohio. Officers seized marijuana, miscellaneous pills and drug abuse instruments.

This is the task force’s first arrest under the leadership of its new commander, Martins Ferry Police Chief John McFarland.

DeFrank can be reached at rdefrank@timesleaderonline.com.