Marietta man with loaded gun arrested by Belpre police

From local reports

BELPRE — The Belpre Police Department arrrested a Marietta man early Tuesday morning following a traffic stop which resulted in the recovery of a loaded handgun from his vehicle.

Curtis M. Benson, of 4665 Warren Chapel Road, Marietta, was arrested Tuesday on charges of operating a vehicle while impaired, improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle (fifth-degree felony), resisting arrest, obstructing official business and carrying a loaded concealed weapon (fourth-degree felony).

Benson was also cited for a headlights at night violation. He was taken to the Washington County Jail to await his court appearance without further incident.

According to a press release from the Belpre Police Department, Sgt. Tyler Heddleston conducted a traffic stop about 2 a.m. Tuesday on a pickup truck for only having one headlight at the Shell gas station at 604 Main St. in Belpre. Patrolman Jesse Whittington and his K-9 partner Broski arrived on scene to assist.

Broski performed an exterior sniff around the vehicle and made a positive indication for contraband on the driver door area, the press release said. Whittington had the driver step out of the vehicle and advised him to step back to Heddleston’s patrol vehicle, which he refused. Whittington again advised the driver to step back with Heddleston.

The press release said the driver turned around and tried to reach back into the vehicle. Officers told the driver not to reach back into the vehicle. The driver became irate and started yelling that officers could not search the vehicle. Whittington explained that K-9 Broski made a positive indication on the vehicle for contraband.

The driver was advised multiple times to not try reaching back into the vehicle. A struggle ensued as the driver began pulling away from officers trying to free his hands and reach back into the vehicle, the press release said. The driver was taken to the ground where officers were able to gain control of and handcuff him.

A search of the vehicle was conducted. Whittington recovered a fully loaded .357 magnum revolver in a holster directly behind the middle console in the open, on the back seat within reach of the driver seat, the press release said.