Local News

Deputies find crack, marijuana, handgun in van

Posted September 21, 2009 7:20 a.m. EDT

— A Halifax County sheriff's deputy arrested two men after finding marijuana, crack cocaine and a loaded handgun in a hidden compartment of a van during a traffic stop Sunday.

Deputy Joe Sealey responded to calls around 4 a.m. reporting a disturbance involving two armed men in the Mimosa Drive area, off U.S. Highway 158. He stopped a van headed toward Roanoke Rapids.

Investigators said that after getting permission to search the van, Sealey discovered a hidden compartment in the rear passenger area. Inside, Sealey said, he found 15 bags of marijuana, 23 wrapped rocks of crack and a loaded 9mm handgun.

Bobby Purnell, 21, of Roanoke Rapids, and Eric Maurice Perry, 28, of Weldon, were both charged with two counts of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance and one count of possession of drug paraphernalia. Perry was also charged with carrying a concealed weapon, and Purnell with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Purnell was given a $8,000 bond, and Perry a $5,000 bond. Both were scheduled to appear in court Nov. 25.

According to state Department of Correction records, Purnell is on probation for a 2006 conviction for assault inflicting serious injury in Halifax County. He also has convictions for trespassing and driving while consuming a controlled beverage underage.

DOC records show that Perry was released in March from probation stemming from a DWI conviction.