Motel bust yields pot, cash

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 24, 2006

AHOSKIE – In the world of law enforcement, sometimes things work out not according to plan.

Such was the case here Saturday where an Ahoskie Police Officer, performing a routine duty by serving a warrant on a subject, came across a stash of marijuana.

James Major, 28, and Stephanie Goddard, 22, both of Ahoskie, were arrested after 23 grams of marijuana was discovered in a room they were sharing at the Tomahawk Motel.

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According to Ahoskie Police Chief Troy Fitzhugh, APD Officer John C. Copeland received a call from Hertford County Sheriff’s Office advising that they had warrants for Major’s arrest. The information passed along by the Sheriff’s Office revealed that Major was in room 237 at the Tomahawk.

Upon arrival, officers Copeland and Alvarado went to room 237 where repeated knocks on the door produced no answer.

That prompted Officer Copeland to check with the front desk clerk where he learned that Goddard had room 237 in her name.

“It was at that time that a phone call from Ms. Goddard came to the front desk,” Fitzhugh said. “She asked officer Copeland if he could make the lady, who was standing outside of the door, leave and if so, they would come out.”

Upon returning to the room, the APD officers asked an unidentified lady to leave the area. Upon her departure, Major opened the door to room and was placed under arrest by Officer Copeland in regards to the Sheriff’s Office warrant.

The APD officers then asked Goddard for consent to search the room, which she obliged, according to Fitzhugh.

After a short search, Officer Copeland located a clear plastic baggy containing green leafy vegetable matter (marijuana) underneath the ice container on the countertop in the bathroom. A small cigar filled with the same substance was also located next to the baggy.

That led to charges of possession with intent to manufacture, sell and deliver marijuana against both Major and Goddard. They were each placed under a $15,000 secured bond and transported to the Hertford County Jail.

“I commend all of the officers involved, but especially Officer Copeland for looking further into the incident and locating the drugs in the room,” Fitzhugh said. “This is good work for the officers who continue to fight against drugs in our community.”