A Whitley County Sheriff’s Department investigation into a report about a local resident advertising marijuana for sale on social media has resulted in the seizure of over 900 pills and $22,000, and the indictment of three people.
On Monday, the Whitley County Grand Jury indicted Victoria Irwin, 36, her son, Frankie Irwin, 20, and Cassandra White, 19, on charges of first-degree degree trafficking in a controlled substance (Oxycodone and Oxymorphone), third-degree trafficking in a controlled substance greater than 120 dosage units (Xanax), and trafficking in marijuana under eight ounces.
On April 2, Deputy Jonas Saunders received information about the marijuana being advertised on social media, and was able to determine the location of the residence, according to a sheriff’ department release.
Saunders and Deputy Joe Prewitt went to an R.D. Rains Road residence to investigate, which resulted in enough information being obtained to get a search warrant for a Crisp Court residence, the release stated.
In the Crisp Court residence, police found juveniles, multiple items of drug paraphernalia and marijuana, and while searching the residence, Saunders, Prewitt, Deputy Jason Strunk, Williamsburg Police Sgt. Brandon White and Officer Cody Jeffries located a large safe, the release stated.
Victoria Irwin, the homeowner, told police that she did not know the combination to the safe, the release stated.
According to her arrest warrant, the Winchester gun safe was located in Victoria Irwin’s bedroom.
During the investigation, Frankie Irwin arrived, and told police that he did not know the safe’s combination but that it contained a firearm, the release stated.
Frankie Irwin also told police that the safe was his property, according to his arrest warrant.
On April 3, Saunders charged Victoria Irwin with endangering the welfare of a minor and possession of drug paraphernalia, and Frankie Irwin with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
In addition, Saunders charged White with trafficking in marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and endangering the welfare of a minor.
All three were released from jail the same day on surety bonds.
While executing the search warrant at the Irwin residence, sheriff’s deputies seized the safe and delivered it to the sheriff’s department on a rollback wrecker.
Deputies obtained an additional search warrant for the safe, and upon opening it found five different zip lock bags with 913 yellow pills believed to be Xanax 2 mg. Also recovered from inside the safe was $22,465.54 and several empty, clear baggies, according to arrest warrants for Frankie and Victoria Irwin.
On April 5, Saunders obtained arrest warrants for all three on charges of third-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.
According to a district court docket on April 9, the arrest warrants were converted to criminal summons on that day for Victoria and Frankie Irwin, who pleaded not guilty to the charges.
According to the release, the arrest warrant was also converted to a criminal summons for White.
Saunders is continuing the investigation.
Victoria Irwin’s attorney, Paul Croley, entered a not guilty plea on her behalf Monday morning in Whitley Circuit Court following her indictment. Judge Paul Winchester allowed her to remain free on whatever bond she had previously posted in district court.
Frankie Irwin’s attorney, Adam Howard, entered a not guilty plea on his behalf Monday afternoon in Whitley Circuit Court, and Howard asked that Frankie Irwin be released on his own recognizance, which means he wouldn’t have to post any kind of bond.
Commonwealth’s Attorney Allen Trimble noted this was a serious case involving almost 1,000 pills and over $20,000 cash, and asked that Frankie Irwin be arrested on the new charges. Saunders, the investigating officer, was in the courtroom at the time.
Howard noted that this isn’t something that is normally done when someone shows up for court voluntarily after being indicted.
Winchester noted that some kind of bond needed to be posted and set a $10,000 surety bond for Frankie Irwin, and gave him until Wednesday to go to the jail and be processed in connection to the charges in the indictment, and post the surety or signature bond.
Being processed at the jail involves having his fingerprints taken, and being photographed.
Winchester set a May 7 pretrial conference for both Victoria and Frankie Irwin. A bench warrant was issued for White’s arrest in connection with the indictment.
Howard noted during the hearing Monday afternoon that his client wasn’t involved with the marijuana advertisement on social media.
“We’ll take care of that at the suppression hearing,” Howard said during the hearing.