Four arrests bring felony charges for defendants in Maries County

By: 
Laura Schiermeier
Staff Writer

VIENNA — Four persons were arrested and charged with drug crimes and other charges recently in Maries County. 

In a drug bust over the weekend by officers of the Maries County Sheriff’s Office and an officer from the Lake Area Narcotics Enforcement Group (LANAG), the officers executed a search warrant at the residence of Robert Burke at 407 East 5th Street in Belle at about 10 p.m. on May 31, 2019. In a probable cause statement by LANEG officer Patrick Boatman, the officer stated he found what is alleged to be heroine, marijuana, and various drug paraphernalia. Burke told him he’d been using heroine since his junior year in high school. 

Maries County Prosecuting Attorney Anthony “Tony” Skouby filed charges against Robert Burke, 24, of Belle, who is charged with the class D felony of possession of a controlled substance, and the class D misdemeanors of possession of marijuana and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. Maries County Associate Judge Kerry Rowden said he will not set bond until Burke is furloughed into a 30-day in-patient treatment program. Once he completes this he will give him an own recognizance bond.

On June 1 at about 4:30 p.m. on Highway 42 near the Highway T, a Maries County Sheriff’s Deputy stopped a westbound Pontiac G6 that was not displaying a front license plate. The driver was stopped and the license plate actually belonged to a Jeep passenger vehicle. The driver was unable to provide proof of insurance and also refused to grant consent to search. The deputy had the vehicle removed from he highway and conducted an inventory search and found what he observed to be loose syringes inside a black bag, two plastic bags containing a white crystal substance, red and clear capsules, and other paraphernalia. 

Anna Johnson, 38, of St. Louis, was arrested and she has been charged with the class D felony of possession of a controlled substance. Also, she is charged with the class B misdemeanor of failure to register motor vehicle, and the class D misdemeanors of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and owner operated motor vehicle without maintaining financial responsibility-first offense. At her first court appearance this week, Johnson told Associate Judge Kerry Rowden she already is in an out-patient treatment program. Judge Rowden said he will not set bond until she tests negative on a drug screen. He wants her entered into an in-patient treatment program.

On May 31, 2019, a sheriff’s deputy observed a white truck traveling northbound on Highway 63 south at a high rate of speed. Radar confirmed it was traveling 96 mph in a posted 65 mph speed limit zone. The truck was stopped south of Vichy after nearly striking another vehicle. The officer detected a strong odor of intoxicants on the man and also bloodshot, watery and glassy eyes. He conducted a field sobriety test and gave Franklin Bridges, 38, of Rolla, a preliminary breath test. In a breath test, Bridges tested at .120 breath alcohol content. 

Bridges is charged in Maries County with the class E felony of operating a motor vehicle without a valid license—third and subsequent offense, and the class A misdemeanor of Bac—prior offender, and the class B misdemeanors of operated a motor vehicle in a careless and imprudent manner and exceeded the posted speed limit by 26 mph or more. Bridges told the judge he can’t post bond but he is employed. Judge Rowden set the bond at $5,000, which is the minimum he can set it on a felony charge. If he can’t post bond at his case review, then he can apply for a public defender to represent him.

In another incident, a Maries County Sheriff’s Deputy arrested Kevin Jones, 32, of Fulton, on June 2 at 12:51 a.m. when he was a passenger in a Kia vehicle with inoperable brake lights that was stopped on MCR 412. The officer called in a K9 for deployment which alerted on the Kia. The officer found suspected methamphetamine weighing 5.83 grams. Jones was arrested and has been charged with the class D felony of possession of a controlled substance, and the class A misdemeanor of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. He will apply for a public defender to represent him.

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