COLUMBUS – Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers filed felony drug charges against a Cleveland man after a traffic stop in Richland County. During the traffic stop, troopers seized approximately 1,500 suspected fentanyl pills worth $45,000, a hand gun and two AR-15 pistols.
On February 9, at 4:04 p.m., troopers attempted to stop a 2021 Dodge Ram pickup with Kentucky registration for a following too close violation on Interstate 71 when a short pursuit ensued. The pursuit ended in a single vehicle crash and the driver was taken into custody. An administrative inventory of the vehicle was conducted and the suspected fentanyl pills were located on the rear floorboard and three guns were found in a large portable speaker box.
The driver, Rafael Martinez, 38, Cleveland, was incarcerated in the Richland County Jail and charged with weapons under disability, a third-degree felony; possession of drugs, a first and third-degree felony; and failure to comply, a fourth-degree felony.
If convicted, the driver could face up to 18 years in prison and up to a $45,000 fine.