The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

March 4, 2014

Shoplifter faces drug charges

Staff Writer

JEFFERSON — A man who took a watch from an Ashtabula Township store Friday night is looking at a different kind of time after drugs were found in his getaway vehicle, according to the Ashtabula County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies are seeking four drug charges against the 27-year-old Ashtabula man, including two felony-level charges for possession of heroin and cocaine, deputies said.

The incident began around 8:30 p.m. Friday, when deputies were dispatched to the Kmart store in Ashtabula Township for a report of a man who took a wristwatch and fled in a vehicle. Deputies quickly intercepted the vehicle on Route 20, and the suspect — matching a description provided by store personnel — was a passenger, according to a report. The man eventually admitted taking the item, deputies said.

After it was learned the driver had a suspended license and couldn’t get back behind the wheel, a tow truck was summoned to haul away the vehicle. A routine search of the car prior to the tow turned up quantities of marijuana, cocaine and heroin underneath the front passenger seat. The man denied the drugs were his, but later the driver told deputies the man placed the items under the seat when the vehicle was pulled over.

The driver also said the man sells drugs, deputies said. An investigation is continuing, according to a report.