LISBON - The Columbiana County Drug Task Force was busy this week, serving search warrants at homes in East Liverpool, East Palestine, Center Township and Wellsville.
On Thursday, the DTF with the assistance of city police raided two homes in East Palestine, at 279 Park Ave. and 104 E. North Ave.
According to East Palestine police Chief Kevin Dickey, the first warrant at the Park Avenue home led to the seizure of prescription drugs and drug paraphernalia, consisting of smoking pipes, measuring scales, a grinding device and a straw with residue.
A resident of that home, Desiree L. Ingledue, 20, Park Avenue, East Palestine, appeared on Friday in Columbiana County Municipal Court, charged with obstructing official business for allegedly attempting to stop members of the DTF from searching her home with a warrant. She pleaded not guilty and a Sept. 25 pretrial was set.
At the East North Avenue home, agents and police seized a marijuana plant, prescription bottles containing pills and drug paraphernalia consisting of several smoking devices, rolling papers, a measuring scale, grinding device, a mirror with drug residue, hydroponic growing lights and a grow box used to cultivate marijuana plants.
The DTF also raided another home on Thursday on Rose Drive in Center Township just outside Lisbon, according to a release issued by DTF Director Brian McLaughlin. This raid were conducted with the assistance of the county sheriff's office.
According to McLaughlin, between the Center Township raid and the two East Palestine raids, authorities found $2,700-plus in cash, a marijuana grow operation, marijuana, suspected heroin and suspected MDMA (Ecstasy), and drug paraphernalia.
On Friday, the DTF searched the residence of Gary Lovett and Kayla Mrosko on Fourth Street in East Liverpool and the residence of Steven Boggs, 30, on 14th Street in Wellsville. East Liverpool police assisted on the raid in their city.
Two guns were confiscated at the East Liverpool home. The rental property is owned by Dennis and Sue Giambroni of Drury Lane, according to the county auditor's web site.
At the Wellsville home, approximately $850 in cash, 20 grams of cocaine, 24 grams of marijuana and digital scales were found.
McLaughlin said the cases remain under investigation and charges are expected to be filed.
Dickey noted this is the third time a drug-related search warrant had been executed in East Palestine in the last month with agents from the DTF and East Palestine police executing a search warrant at 385 Park Ave. on July 25. During that raid, authorities seized 9.5 grams of heroin, 2.5 grams of cocaine, four grams of marijuana, four percocet tablets, $567 and drug paraphernalia, consisting of hypodermic syringes, a spoon with drug residue and several pipes used to smoke crack cocaine.
"These latest warrants are a result of months of investigation and the combined efforts of the Columbiana County Drug Task Force, East Palestine Police Department and the Columbiana County Prosecutor's Office and demonstrate our unyielding commitment to the residents of East Palestine and Columbiana County to combat the illegal drug problem that faces our community," Dickey said in a written statement on Friday.