Sheriff updates on investigation, search warrant

Staff Report

CLAY TWP. — Gallia County Sheriff Matt Champlin released a statement early Tuesday morning regarding a search warrant which was conducted at a residence on Rocky Run Road in Clay Township as a result of an investigation into the reported trafficking of narcotics.

“On Monday, March 22, 2021, Deputies executed a search warrant on a residence which was the end result of an ongoing investigation into the trafficking of narcotics from the residence,” stated Champlin, who also noted, as a result of the search warrant, reported narcotics and cash were seized, as were other items of evidence.

Champlin further stated: “Our investigative staff, along with our road patrol staff has worked diligently to respond to the ongoing complaints from our citizens regarding this nuisance to our community. I’m very happy to report that two individuals have been taken into custody as a result of today’s hard work by your deputies. Those individuals are Eric W. Barnette, age 52, and Melissa R. Barnette, age 48, both reside at the residence where this search warrant took place. Further investigation regarding the evidence seized from the scene is currently underway and will continue. As this investigation continues, we will be in consultation with Prosecuting Attorney Jason Holdren and his staff to determine the appropriate criminal charges in an effort to hold these individuals accountable for their actions.”

Sheriff Champlin also thanked the community for its support and asked that residents continue to utilize the Gallia Sheriff Office’s tip line, 740-446-6555, to report any suspicious or illegal activity.

Staff Report