Two Columbus women arrested following a traffic stop on U.S. 35 in Gallia County last month have been arraigned on first degree felony aggravated trafficking and possession of drugs, as well as second degree felony hidden compartment in a vehicle.
According to the original complaint filed in the Gallipolis Municipal Court, a trooper with the Ohio State Highway Patrol observed a rear license plate obstruction on the 2006 Honda Civic driven by Erica Mix, 27, Columbus. While attempting to “catch up” to the vehicle, the vehicle allegedly traveled outside of its lane and the trooper initiated a traffic stop. According to the factual statement, upon speaking with Erica Mix and passenger, Michelle Mix, 49, Columbus, who is reportedly Erica’s mother, the Troopers received different stories “as to the events of the day and purpose of their travel”.
Upon receiving consent to search, Chief Josh Davies with the Rio Grande Police Department and his narcotics K9 were requested to the scene, where the K9 allegedly gave “a positive identification to narcotic odor on the vehicle.” Upon a search of the vehicle, a large package of methamphetamine with a field weight of 453 grams was allegedly discovered hidden behind a compartment in the center console. The package, according to a release from the Ohio State Highway Patrol, was worth $43,000.
Erica and Michelle Mix were both taken into custody. They waived their rights to a preliminary hearing in the Gallipolis Municipal Court and their cases were bound over to the Gallia County Grand Jury for further consideration for indictment. Bond was set at $500,000, 10 percent.
Each were subsequently indicted by the Gallia County Grand Jury in May. During their individual arraignments, they pleaded not guilty to the charges before Gallia County Court of Common Pleas Judge Margaret Evans. Bond was set for Erica Mix at $500,000, 10% and for Michelle Mix, $250,000, 10%. Jury trial is scheduled for both for July 16, 2018 and, as of press time, they remained in custody in the Gallia County Jail.