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Drug dog sniffs out $200,000 in heroin

Published: November 12, 1997 12:00 AM

More than $200,000 of heroin was seized by the drug unit from the patrol's Medina post during the stop.

Sgt. Joe Weiland of the Medina post said a westbound car driven by a Cleveland woman was stopped at about 10 a.m. by Trooper Terry Helton at the Portage/Summit County line because it lacked a front license plate.

The trooper became suspicious after talking with the driver and requested one of the patrol's drug-sniffing dogs, which indicated something suspicious was in the car. A subsequent search of the car's trunk turned up a shoebox holding 1.2 pounds of heroin, estimated by the patrol to have a street value of $200,000 or more.

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"This is probably one of the biggest seizures in the state of Ohio as far as heroin. We've had only one other case (this large) for the patrol. You don't get too many this size," said Sgt Weiland.

The woman was identified as Lilybell Ortiz, 26, of West 22nd St., who was traveling with her four-year-old son in a car owned by someone else. She was traveling from the Youngstown area, according to the patrol.

Ortiz was charged with one count of first-degree felony narcotics possession and possession of a stolen cellular telephone. She was taken to the Portage County Jail in Shalersville pending a hearing this morning in Portage County Municipal Court.

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