Man, woman arrested on drug charges

BELPRE – Two people early Saturday morning were charged with drug offenses by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Task Force and the Belpre Police Department.

The arrests occurred around 2:15 a.m. at 705 Elm St., Belpre, after an undercover operative purchased 5 grams of crack cocaine, the sheriff’s department reported. Two 17-year-old juveniles were present during the transaction and witnessed the sale of crack cocaine, the department said.

During the arrests, officers recovered their money and numerous pills, a crack pipe that tested positive for crack cocaine and a small amount of marijuana, the department said.

Kenneth A. Stephens, 25, 370 10th St., Parkersburg, was charged with trafficking in crack cocaine, a third-degree felony, in an amount greater than 5 grams in the presence of a juvenile, the department said. Stephens has previous arrests for felony theft and domestic battery and violence, the department said.

Keri Ann LaFatch, 34, 705 Elm St., Belpre, was arrested for possession of cocaine and drug paraphernalia, fifth degree felonies, the department said. She admitted to owning the crack pipe, the department said.

LaFatch also was held on an outstanding warrant from Athens County for possession of cocaine, the department said. She has prior arrests for possession of a controlled substance, theft, writing bad checks, fleeing and eluding a police officer and contempt of court, the department said.

LaFatch and Stephens were taken to the Washington County Jail and incarcerated in lieu of bond pending an appearance in Marietta Municipal Court on Monday. Additional charges may be filed concerning the pills after they are identified and tested, the department said.