Three men were taken into custody on the evening of Dec. 6 when police allegedly discovered guns, drugs and cash during a vehicle stop. This all took place on Ferndale Avenue in Petersburg, Virginia, at approximately 8:30 p.m. The traffic stop was initiated by Petersburg Police Department detectives. Initial reports do not indicate what may have prompted detectives to pull over the 2018 Lexus that the men were traveling in.
A 31-year-old Virginia man was taken into custody on Dec. 5 when police executed search warrants at his home and place of business. The Collinsville resident has been charged with a felony count of possession with the intent to distribute a Schedule II controlled substance. He was released from custody after posting a $7,500 unsecured bond according to media reports. The searches marked the end of an investigation into cocaine distribution conducted by the Henry County Sheriff's Office, the Virginia State Police and the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.
A 32-year-old singer and former reality television star has been sentenced to 45 months in a federal prison for possessing fentanyl and possessing fentanyl with the intent to distribute. The sentence was announced on Nov. 21 by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Antonella Barba is best known for being among the final 16 contestants on the hit talent show 'American Idol." The New Jersey resident admitted in July to possessing 400 or more grams of the opioid.
On Nov. 21, Virginia authorities arrested four people for alleged drug distribution crimes. The arrests were the culmination of a 12-month investigation by the Virginia State Police Narcotics Task Force.
A major narcotics investigation has led to the indictment of 74 individuals who authorities believe are members of a drug and weapons trafficking organization that distributed illegal firearms and significant quantities of methamphetamine throughout southwest Virginia. Police believe that the organization's reach stretched from bases in Mouth of Wilson and Whitetop in Grayson County to parts of Smyth, Roanoke and Washington counties in Virginia and Alleghany and Ashe counties in North Carolina.
A federal judge recently sentenced a man to 235 months in prison for operating a methamphetamine ring out of a southwest Virginia prison. The 31-year-old defendant is a resident of Georgia.
The 2017 death of a 22-year-old Virginia resident from a fentanyl overdose prompted a narcotics investigation that led to the discovery and seizure of heroin worth $35,000 and the indictment of 16 suspects, according to a press release from the Amherst County Sheriff's Office. Law enforcement has apprehended 12 of the suspects and is actively searching for the other four. The ACSO was assisted in what was named "Operation Ghost Raptor" by the Virginia State Police, the Lynchburg Police Department and the Campbell and Appomattox County Sheriff's Offices. The investigation is said to be ongoing.
A narcotics investigation in Virginia dubbed 'Operation Trap Door" resulted in the apprehension of nine suspects and the seizure of illegal drugs worth about $2.1 million. The Virginia State Police announced the arrests and seizures during an Oct. 16 press conference held at the New River Criminal Justice Training Academy in Dublin. The VSP were assisted in the investigation by local, state and federal law enforcement agencies.
On Oct. 10, a former Virginia Tech basketball player was cleared of a drug charge that was leveled against him in March. He is now playing for Texas Tech.
Virginia State Police troopers took two men into custody on the morning of Oct. 15 after discovering almost 600 pounds of marijuana in the van they were traveling in. The 26-year-old driver of the van and his unidentified male passenger have been charged with drug possession and drug possession with the intent to distribute. A VSP representative said that the drug seizure could be the largest ever recorded in the area.