Two arrested for drugs, other charges

Staff Report

Sarah Blankenship

Sarah Blankenship

Joshua Stillgess

SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP — An Ohio Valley pair was arrested Thursday on charges ranging from illicit narcotics trafficking to failure to register as a sex offender.

Gallia County Sheriff Joe Browning said deputies executed a search warrant Thursday in the 700 series of Bulaville Pike and arrested Sarah A. Blankenship, 32, of Middleport, and Joshua R. Stillgess, 36, of Gallipolis.

Browning said deputies confiscated more than one pound of suspected marijuana, almost $3,000 cash, several firearms and a small amount of suspected crack cocaine. He said Blankenship had a misdemeanor warrant for alleged failure to appear on a traffic charge, adding that she later posted bond on that warrant.

Stillgess was charged with warrants for possession of criminal tools, possession of drugs (cocaine), both prior charges from Champaign County, Ohio. Browning also said Stillgess was wanted for allegedly failing to update his registration as a sex offender. It was not clear from where those charges stem.

During the search, deputies found two children in the home, both of whom were removed from the residence by Gallia County Children’s Services.

“What is particularly troublesome is that children were present at this location,” Browning said.

The sheriff said Thursday’s search is part of an ongoing investigation into drug trafficking in the area and that the case will be referred to the Gallia County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further charges. He added that once the investigation is complete, his office will ask for the “maximum extent of charges possible in the case.”

Browning said people who have more information about this and other cases can call the sheriff office’s tip line at 740-446-6555.

Sarah Blankenship Blankenship

Joshua Stillgess Stillgess

Staff Report