ST GEORGE — Officers arrested a St. George man Sunday night for drug possession with the intent to distribute after they discovered large amounts of marijuana and alleged drug distribution materials in his home.
At approximately 11:05 p.m., St. George Police officers were called to an apartment located on 2720 East in St. George after receiving a noise complaint, Officer Joseph Watson wrote in a probable cause statement supporting the arrest. Loud music could be heard coming from the apartment.
At the front door, Watson made contact with 26-year-old Leon Wade and could smell marijuana coming from inside, according to the statement. When asked, Wade denied officers consent to search the residence.
Because Wade did not provide consent for a search, Watson obtained a search warrant, which gave him permission to enter the premises. Once inside, Watson located drugs and several drug-related items in Wade’s bedroom.
“Under his bed I located a glass jar with a leafy substance,” Watson said in the statement. “In a back pack, I located an additional three empty jars with the same green leafy substance.”
Watson also discovered a shoebox containing a scale, several packaging bags and more of the green, plant-like substance.
Watson also found several hundred dollars cash in a drawer.
“All the bills were in smaller denominations,” he said in the statement.
In cases such as this, when a person does not consent for a search, officers can now request a search warrant electronically by using an e-warrant system, St. George Police Sgt. Sam Despain said. Rather than leaving the scene and physically seeking out a judge to obtain a search warrant, officers can request one while remaining on the scene.
Officers can use the e-warrant system by writing up the search warrant request using the computers located in their vehicles, Despain said. The documents are then instantly sent to a judge to review and approve, if it is deemed appropriate.
“It’s a great system because it saves a lot of time and it makes things run a lot more efficiently when it comes to obtaining search warrants,” Despain said. “So, in this case, it was used exactly as it was designed.”
Wade was arrested and booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility. He is charged with once second-degree felony for possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute and once class A misdemeanor for possession of drug paraphernalia.
Because the apartment was located within 1,000 feet of Pine View High School, the drug charges against Wade were enhanced by one degree.
His bail is set at $13,900 cash or bond.
Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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