What began as a simple traffic stop for a seat belt violation has now transpired into drug charges for three people on the Big Island.
On Thursday police stopped a car being driven by 22-year-old Nakalohe Gersaba in North Kohala. After determining that Gersaba was operating a stolen vehicle and that one of his passengers, 36-year-old Rico Echiverri, had an outstanding warrant they arrested the three occupants.
During their investigation into the vehicle, police found 6.4 grams of a "crystalline substance" and paraphernalia commonly associated with meth use.
As a result, all three occupants of the vehicle, including the other female passenger 24-year-old Zerica Bell-Ching of Kapa?au, were charged with promoting dangerous drugs and possession of paraphernalia that Friday.
Gersaba was additionally charged with driving without a license or insurance. Hi bail was set at $37,000 with possible stolen vehicle charges pending.
Echiverri was also charged with contempt of court and violating probation. His bail was set at $135,000.
Bell-Ching's bail was set at $7,000.
All three were held at the cellblock over the weekend.
Seat belt violation stop yields drug charges for Big Island trio
Initial court appearance for three suspects Monday after meth found in stolen carUPDATED 1:50 PM HST Aug 26, 2013
What began as a simple traffic stop for a seat belt violation has now transpired into drug charges for three people on the Big Island.Recommended