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September 19, 2021

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Police nab drug trafficking suspect

Following early morning traffic stop

Bluffton police appended a suspect following a vehicle chase in the early morning hours of April 7. As a result, several pounds of suspected marijuana and other items associated with drug trafficking were discovered in the vehicle.

The suspect, who was not identified, was booked into the Allen County Justice Center. His case is pending. It is expected to go to a grand jury next month. Afterward, it will be handled in Allen County Common Pleas Court.

Ryan Burkholder, Bluffton police chief, provided the Icon with the follow account of the incident:

In the early morning hours of Sunday, April 7, Bluffton police attempted to conduct a traffic stop on a vehicle in the area of County Line Road and East Elm Street.

After the first officer activated his overhead blue lights, the vehicle refused to stop, resulting in a short pursuit that ended on Cherry Street.

The initiating officers ordered the driver from the vehicle and waited for additional officers to arrive on the scene before attempting to place the driver in custody.

Soon, a second officer arrived and approached the driver in an attempt to place him in handcuffs. The driver began fighting with officers and resisted arrest.

At this time, the Bluffton police K-9 unit arrived and observed the subject actively resisting arrest and fighting with officers.

The Bluffton police K-9 handler retrieved K-9 Kato from his patrol car and took him to the location of the fight. K-9 Kato’s presence, along with his barking and verbal commands by the officers to the suspect to quit resisting, was enough to convince the suspect to cease fighting.

With the suspect no longer actively engaged in resisting officers, they were able to safely handcuff the suspect and secure him in a police cruiser.

After securing the suspect, officers approached his vehicle and could smell the overpowering and distinct odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle.

A subsequent probable cause search of the vehicle resulted in discovery of approximately 2.8 pounds of suspected marijuana and numerous items associated with drug trafficking, including a weighing scale and multiple individual plastic bags in the vehicle.

The suspect was advised of his Miranda Rights and booked into the Allen County Justice Center on felony drug possession charges, resisting arrest and several other criminal traffic charges.