Verdigris police seize thousands in cash & drugs during two traffic stops a week apart

Posted at 6:34 PM, Mar 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-08 19:34:15-05

VERDIGRIS, Okla. -- Officers at the Verdigris Police Department netted more than 20 pounds of marijuana and $2,000 in cash during a recent traffic stop.

Police said erratic driving made an officer pull over Benjamin Oraham late Saturday night along Route 66. The officer said that Oraham appeared very nervous, so police brought in a K9. Assistant Police Chief Darrin Hester said the dog led them to a trove of drugs and cash in Oraham's car.

"The officers then located over 20 pounds of marijuana and $2,000 in cash in the trunk," Hester said.

The suspect told police he stopped in Verdigris during a cross-country trek from California to Chicago. Police are unsure where the drugs would have ended up, but Hester said his department considers it a success to get them off the streets.

"Although he may live in Chicago," Hester said, "it could have been going to a small town just like we live in."

This bust comes a week after another that Verdigris handled. Police arrested Candius Williams, John Coffman and Brant Ford following a traffic stop and a foot chase. Officers ended up taking in guns, meth and marijuana.

Hester said drug busts happen from time to time given that the town is located along major highways, like I-44 and Route 66, but it's not so common to work two cases back to back. That's why Hester said right now his officers are being extra vigilant.

"We're absolutely watching and looking for you," he said, "and we're going to make an effort to stop the narcotics trafficking in our jurisdiction."

Oraham bonded out of the Rogers County jail Wednesday morning, while Coffman is the only suspect in the other case still behind bars. Williams and Ford already bonded out as well.

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