Indiana State Police Trooper Randel Miller was patrolling I-74 Jan. 23 at about 4 p.m. when he stopped a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu eastbound between the Batesville and Sunman exits for a traffic violation.
“During the course of the traffic stop, Miller became suspicious of criminal activity and called for Trooper Barry Bischoff and his K-9 partner, Gaston, to assist,” reported Sgt. Noel Houze, ISP Versailles District public information officer.
Bischoff walked the dog around the vehicle and Gaston alerted to the odor of drugs within. A subsequent vehicle search revealed two Glock handguns, two bags of suspected marijuana and an undisclosed amount of U.S. currency, Houze said.
The driver, Thomas Watson, 19, Indianapolis, was charged with possession of marijuana with a prior conviction and maintaining a common nuisance, Class D felonies; and possession of a handgun without a permit, a Class A misdemeanor. Passenger Eddie Richardson, 22, Indianapolis, was also charged with marijuana possession, a Class A misdemeanor, and visiting a common nuisance, a Class B misdemeanor.
A 16-year-old male in the vehicle is facing juvenile charges. Both adults were transported to the Ripley County Jail without incident and the teen was released to a parent.
“Persons arrested are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law,” Houze reminded.