Proctorville drug bust nets crack, cash stash

Published 10:56 pm Saturday, June 27, 2009

Several people are behind bars after drug-related round-ups this week in eastern Lawrence County.

According to information from the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office, investigators with the sheriff’s office and the Lawrence County Drug and Major Crimes Task Force went to a residence on Scott Drive in Proctorville Monday and arrested Nancy K. Ballengee, 43, of Huntington, W.Va., on charges of trafficking crack cocaine, tampering with evidence and complicity to aggravated robbery.

While arresting Ballengee, a man was seen fleeing the Scott Drive house. An investigation into his identity began and the next day, William C. Pannell, 49, of 505 Township Road 1239, Proctorville, was arrested at his residence and charged with trafficking in drugs, tampering with evidence and aggravated robbery. A search of Pannell’s residence allegedly uncovered drug paraphernalia and criminal tools. Both Ballengee and Pannell were taken to the Lawrence County Jail.

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Then on Wednesday, Lawrence County authorities, along with Huntington, W.Va., police and agents from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms arrested two people on federal indictments for trafficking in drugs and conspiracy.

These indictments came after an eight-month investigation into local criminal activity. Those arrested were Jason Belcher, 22, of 134 Private Drive 53, Proctorville, and Leoditus Smith, 33, of Columbus.

Both Belcher and Smith were taken to jails in West Virginia.

A search of Belcher’s residence allegedly uncovered 130 grams of powder cocaine, 46 grams of crack cocaine, 90 grams on uncut heroin, four Ecstacy tablets, various other prescription medications, drug paraphernalia, two guns and $6,800 in cash. The street value of the drug is approximately $60,000.

Belcher’s girlfriend, Samantha Horn, of the same address, was arrested on multiple drug charges and taken to the Lawrence County jail.

On Friday, authorities searched a residence in Chesapeake, and allegedly found a pound of marijuana and a gun. No arrests were made in that search.