Pot bust at Wood fairgrounds

MINERAL WELLS – The scent of marijuana led officers to a bust of 1,440 grams of marijuana and over $15,000 early Wednesday at the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition in Mineral Wells, officials said.

Patrick Edward Reithoffer IV, 21, of 17829 Bridle Lane, Jupiter, Fla., was arrested on one felony count of possession with intent to deliver, said Lt. Greg Collins, coordinator for the Parkersburg Violent Crime and Narcotics Task Force.

Reithoffer was arraigned before a Wood County magistrate on his felony count on Wednesday and held on a $50,000 bond, Collins said.

Officers with the Parkersburg Violent Crime and Narcotics Task Force recovered 1,440 grams, approximately 50 ounces, of suspected marijuana and $15,661 in cash inside Reithoffer’s camper at the campground area of the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition, Collins said.

The marijuana has an estimated street value of $9,000, Collins said.

Shortly after midnight Wednesday morning, Wood County sheriff’s deputies began investigating a smell they suspected was marijuana. The deputies smelled the marijuana while patrolling the carnival area of the Wood County Fairground, Collins said.

According to reports, deputies tracked the smell to Reithoffer’s camper near the carnival area, Collins said. Deputy C.B. Six spoke to Reithoffer about the smell and questioned him, Collins said.

Reithoffer cooperated with the investigation, providing deputies with a small amount of suspected marijuana to the deputies from inside the camper, Collins said.

Shortly after Riethoffer was arrested, a search of his person allegedly revealed two additional bags filled with suspected marijuana. Reithoffer was taken to the Wood County Sheriff’s Office for processing. Deputies discovered digital scales and other drug paraphernalia inside the camper, lying in plain sight, Collins said. At this point, the Parkersburg Narcotics Task Force was summoned to take over the investigation, Collins said.

The 50 grams of marijuana and $15,661 in cash were discovered in the camper and a truck after the Parkersburg Violent Crime and Narcotics Task Force obtained a warrant for searching the two locations, Collins said.

Officers seized the 2006 35-foot fifth-wheel recreational vehicle that Reithoffer was located in and the 2007 Dodge quad cab pickup truck as part of the investigation, Collins said.