By: Marie Scarci December 21, 2022
Tooele County, Utah - A routine traffic stop on Interstate 80 has had major implications for an unexpected driver. Matthew Hatcher, of Springfield Illinois, now faces felony charges after the Utah Highway Patrol noticed his vehicle was not up to code.
A routine traffic stop in Utah resulted in the uncovering of a large haul of drugs, as indicated by an alert from a trusty K-9. The officer had reason to be suspicious and proceeded with their investigation which uncovered the cache aboard their vehicle.
In a shocking discovery, police unveiled large garbage bags filled with cannabis and other cannabis products. Careful inspection of the vehicle revealed a whopping total of over 300 pounds of cannabis as well as over 700 THC vape cartridges plus 4.5 pounds of edibles. Even more astonishing was that officers also found 330 grams worth of concentrated THC resin.
The 42-year-old man has been charged with four offenses, the most serious of which is possession of over 100 pounds, a second-degree felony, and intent to distribute, a third-degree felony. He also faces minor infractions for improper vehicle equipment such as not having mud flaps or faulty automobile parts.
Despite cannabis being legal for recreational use in many states, it is still illegal within Utah. Possession of up to 454 grams could lead individuals to face a misdemeanor charge including jail time and fines - with anything over this amount punishable as a felony, according to the National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).
Those found guilty of possessing more than 454 grams will be liable for fines reaching up to $13,600 as well prison sentences that extend between one and fifteen years.
On Monday, Hatcher faced charges in 3rd District Court for allegedly possessing over 100 pounds of marijuana - a felony offense. The individual was also charged with possession and intent to distribute drug paraphernalia, standing as a class A misdemeanor.