Area residents arrested on drug charges

Two area men are in jail on drug and other charges after trying to evade and resist police after a traffic stop.

Steven R. Elliott, 53, 222 Smith St. in Columbus, and Ethan E. Spray, 21, 8870 W. County Road 400N in Scipio, both were arrested Saturday evening, according to an Indiana State Police news release.

Spray is facing two preliminary Level 6 felony charges: possession of methamphetamine and obstruction of justice.

Also, Spray is facing misdemeanor charges of possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting law enforcement.

Elliott was arrested on preliminary charges of possession of methamphetamine as a Level 6 felony, and resisting law enforcement as a Class A misdemeanor.

Shortly after 5 p.m. Saturday, Indiana State Police Trooper Robert Hutson pulled over a vehicle driven by Spray near the intersection of 13th Street and McClure Road, the news release said.

After Hutson became suspicious of possible criminal activity, Spray attempted to run away, but with the help of three other officers who arrived on the scene, the Scipio resident eventually was taken him into custody, the release said.

Elliott initially resisted as he was being approached by the officers, but the passenger also was eventually arrested, the news release said.

While both men were carrying methamphetamine, a search also showed Spray also was in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, the Indiana State Police said.

This is the second time in just over a month that police have taken Spray into custody for alleged drug offenses. On Feb. 25, a probable cause affidavit was filed against the Scipio man that charged him with possession of methamphetamine as a Level 6 felony and possession of paraphernalia as a Class C misdemeanor for an offense that occurred a week before last Christmas, according to court records.

Spray is scheduled to appear for an initial hearing April 8 before Bartholomew Superior Court 2 Judge Kitty Coriden on the earlier charges.  

If convicted, Spray could face up almost eight years behind bars and be ordered to pay fines of up to $26,500.   

Convictions on both counts against Elliott would carry a maximum six years, with potential fines up to $15,000.   

Bond for Spray is set at $76,000 surety or $7,600 cash. For Elliott, the bond is $62,500 surety or $6,250 cash.  

As of Monday, both men were still being held at the Bartholomew County Jail, jail officials said.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.