"This is the largest seizure of Methamphetamine during a traffic stop in Clay County this year," Sheriff Mike Heaton told The Brazil Times in an telephone interview Tuesday evening.
Shortly before 3 a.m., Deputy Jerry Siddons observed a car being driven in a manner consistent of that of a driver under the influence and followed it to the Road Ranger Gas Station near S.R. 42.
Once stopped at the station, Siddons watched as three individuals, two male and one female, exited the car and went inside the gas station. Upon returning, the male driver traded positions with the female before the car left the gas station, making a wide u-turn before starting toward the Howard Johnson hotel.
According to a press release from the Clay County Sheriff's Department, Deputy Siddons pulled the 2000 Dodge Intrepid over and found Ginger Leah Locke, 20, of Terre Haute, Shaun Ray Clark, 25, of Brazil, and Joel Allen Childress, 24, of Brazil in the car.
When Locke reached for her driver's license, Siddons noticed a plastic bag containing approximately 3 grams of a crystal substance in plain view. Upon questioning, she claimed the bag was not hers. She also told Siddons that Shaun Ray Clark, who didn't have a valid driver's license, was the previous driver before the stop and that she was told to drive to a hotel to get a room because the police were in the area.
Clark admitted he was driving the vehicle but denied ownership of the crystal substance. He accused the third person in the car, Joel Allen Childress.
A search of Childress found him to be in possession of approximately 75 grams of Methamphetamine.
The three were arrested on various preliminary drug charges and taken to the Clay County Jail as a search warrant was obtained for the vehicle, which is registered to an unidentified fourth person.
Two handguns, a semi-automatic and a revolver, were discovered during the search of the vehicle along with approximately 200 grams of Methamphetamine, digital scales, syrin-ges, a bullet-proof vest and almost $3,000 in cash.
Sheriff Heaton said that a very small amount of Marijuana was also located inside the car but no one had yet been charged with possession of the drug. He also confirmed that charges against the three were amended upon completion of the search warrant.
Shaun Ray Clark's amended charges include Possession of Methamphetamine over 3 grams, a Class A Felony, Possession of a Firearm without a permit and Possession of Methamphetamine with the intent to Deliver.
Joel Allen Childress is charged with Possession of Methamphetamine over 3 grams, a Class A Felony, and Possession of Methamphetamine with the intent to Deliver.
Ginger Leah Locke is charged with Possession of Methamphetamine over 3 grams Class A Felony, Possession of a Firearm without a permit and Possession of Methamphetamine with the Intent to Deliver.
All three remain in the Clay County Jail on a $50,000 bond (10 percent cash) awaiting arraignment.
Assisting in the arrest and the ongoing investigation is Sheriff Mike Heaton, Detective Sgt. Rob Gambill and Reserve Deputy Dale Marrs.