According to reports, police were given a tip that a man would be leaving the Super 8 Motel on U.S. 23 in Portsmouth, in a green, four-door vehicle, transporting about 25 grams of heroin into the city.
Police responded and located the man, stopping him near 25th Street. The man was identified as Mark Parker, 18, of 1618 Highland Ave., in Portsmouth.
Parker told police there was dope in the glove box, and when police looked, they reportedly found about 22.2 grams of heroin. He told police he picked it up from a man at the Super 8 Motel, and was told he would be paid $700 to hold it for him.
Parker was arrested and charged with possession of drugs and trafficking in drugs.
“Unfortunately, the Super 8 Motel is in the county, so it's not in a location that we ourselves can deal with because it's not in our jurisdiction,” said Investigator Todd Bryant of the Portsmouth Police Department Narcotics Unit. “This arrest took place in the city, and subsequently followed out to the Super 8 Motel.”
Bryant says that because the motel is outside their jurisdiction, Portsmouth Police did work with an investigator from the Scioto County Prosecutor's Office to execute a search warrant at Room 201 of the Super 8 Motel.
Inside the room, police found Joshua Bolden, 25, of 312 Union St., Portsmouth; Brittany Crabtree, 20, of 184 Hall Road, Portsmouth; and William Abrokwa, 51, of 1912 Debroah Court, Columbus.
During a search of the room, police say they also recovered 65 grams of heroin, and less than one gram of cocaine, as well as digital scales and plastic sandwich baggies for packaging and selling drugs. In all, police seized about $52,000 worth of heroin (87 grams), about one gram of cocaine and $2,085 cash.
“I don't know if we've ever seen heroin in this quantity,” said Police Chief Charles Horner.
All three individuals were arrested and charged with trafficking in heroin, possession of heroin, possession of cocaine and possession of criminal tools.
Bryant says it's “common knowledge” that traffickers tend to stay at the Super 8 and Holiday Inn Express, and that both businesses have been very cooperative with police investigations.
“I think they're staying at the Super 8 and Holiday Inn Express, out in Rosemount and even the Wheelersburg area, because things got too hot for them here at the Four Keys and the Royal Inn,” Bryant said. “They quickly realized there was more police presence around those two motels than there were around the Super 8 and Holiday Inn Express, being out in the more rural part of the area.”
Capt. John Murphy, of the Scioto County Sheriff's Office, however, says deputies actively patrol that location and make drug busts in both the Rosemount and Wheelersburg areas. He said a big reason more activity takes place in the county is that it offers more locations than the city.
“In the city, other than the Ramada, what hotels do they have? They really don't have anything there so that's why they're out in the county,” said Murphy.
All four individuals were arraigned in Portsmouth Municipal Court on Thursday morning, where they were held over for preliminary hearing on Nov. 8 at 11 a.m.