By Jessica Bruha
The Norman Transcript
NORMAN — A Noble man faces several charges after the Cleveland County Sheriff’s Department seized nearly $2,500 worth of marijuana last week.
Eric Scott Matthews, 29, was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and carrying weapons Monday in Cleveland County District Court.
According to charges filed, Matthews had previously been convicted of, or pled guilty to, charges in Pontotoc County District Court on Oct. 7, 2005, for two counts of possession of controlled dangerous substance with intent to distribute.
A Cleveland County Deputy Sheriff stopped Matthews’ vehicle around 10 p.m. March 1 along Etowah Road, near Oak Ridge Road, after seeing the vehicle had a middle break light out, according to the affidavit filed with the charges.
“I immediately smelled an odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle. I asked Matthews if there was anything illegal in the vehicle. He stated ‘no,” the affidavit stated.
The deputy then used his canine partner to detect the odor of narcotics, who alerted to the presence of drugs in the vehicle. The canine passively indicated around the driver’s door by sitting, the affidavit stated.
As the deputy searched the vehicle, he found a diaper bag in the back passenger seat containing several plastic baggies containing “a green leafy substance,” the deputy’s report stated. Also in the bag were two purple containers with the a leafy green substance, rolling papers and black digital scales.
The deputy also found a large hunting knife and two collapsible style police batons. In the trunk, the deputy also found a bag containing five individual bricks of marijuana, according to the affidavit.
Matthews was arrested on complaints of unlawful possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, possession of drug paraphernalia, unlawful carry of offensive weapons and no tax stamp.
At the time of the arrest, “Matthews spontaneously uttered, ‘It’s all mine. She had nothing to do with it,” the affidavit stated, referring to the female passenger who was in the vehicle when Matthews was pulled over by the deputy.
According to the affidavit, the deputy read the Miranda Warning to Matthews, who declined to talk to deputies at that time. When the deputy repeated the Miranda Warning to the female passenger, she agreed to speak and said she was unaware of the marijuana inside the vehicle.
Special Judge Michael Tupper set Matthews’ bond at $20,000. Matthews is in custody at the Cleveland County jail.
For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.