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Wednesday drug arrests in Bridgeport, St. C.

By ROBERT A. DEFRANK

Times Leader Staff Writer

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — Four people were arrested for suspected drug activity in a pair of controlled buys conducted by the Belmont County Major Crimes Unit Wednesday.

On Wednesday evening at the Starfire Express filling station in Bridgeport undercover officers reportedly conducted a controlled drug buy of crack cocaine for $500. In addition to the drugs, more than $1,500 was seized.

Terry Lynn Blair, 36, of Cleveland, is facing charges of possession of drugs and trafficking in drugs, felonies of the fourth degree. His bond was set at $10,000 and he will appear in Belmont County Northern Division Court.

Sheriff David Lucas said Blair was the subject of a year-long investigation and law enforcement will seek additional drug-related felony charges for alleged crimes in Belmont County. He added that Blair was arrested for drug-related activity in Martins Ferry in 2016.

“This is a person who has been arrested before under previous drug charges, and this is just another really good investigation,” Lucas said. “(Wednesday) it was decided to go ahead and make the buy-bust. … This started out in different places in Bridgeport and ended up in the Starfire where he was arrested without incident.”

Lucas said the Bridgeport and Wheeling Police Departments assisted in this investigation.

In a separate matter, three other individuals were also arrested in the late morning Wednesday in the Dairy Queen. Lucas said drug buys are often subject to last-minute changes by the suspects.

“They change it all the time,” Lucas said. “The officer’s don’t get to pick where it’s at. Like the Dairy Queen, that wasn’t our spot, we didn’t pick it, but we had to stop it because what went on.”

Daniel Littleton, 24, of Martins Ferry, was arrested for complicity to trafficking in drugs, a felony of the third degree. His bond was set at $10,000. Jada Jewell, 36, of Wheeling was arrested for obstruction of justice and possession of drug abused instruments, misdemeanors of the second degree, and tampering with evidence, a felony of the third degree. Her bond was set at $11,500. Austin Lee Troy, 22, of Martins Ferry, was arrested for trafficking in drugs, a felony of the third degree. His bond was set at $10,000. All are currently held at the Belmont County Jail. They will appear in Belmont County Western Division Court.

Lucas said suspected methamphetamines were seized. Authorities are in the process of weighing the substance.

Lucas said the arrests were the result of a two-month investigation.

“A lot of meth was taken off the street,” Lucas said.

In addition, Lucas commended the Belmont County Criminal Interdiction Unit of three K-9 officers. He noted that from Jan. 1 to May 14, they have executed 30 warrants, and their arrests have resulted in 52 felony arrests felony and four persons charged with a misdemeanor. Lucas said the arrests were drug-related.

The Interdiction Unit is tasked with proactively patrolling and looking for suspicious behavior.

“That just shows you how aggressive the criminal interdiction team is. They’re out there looking and stopping and arresting,” Lucas said. “Everybody is working together as a team to make arrests and get the drugs off the streets.”

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