NEWBERRY COUNTY — An Irmo man landed in jail after drugs and a weapon were found in his vehicle during a traffic stop on Wednesday.
Matthew Robert Bowers, 29, of 10 Elcock Circle in Irmo, was charged with trafficking crystal meth, possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana, possession of a firearm during a violent crime and driving under suspension.
Bowers was out on bond from a March 2016 arrest by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division for trafficking illegal drugs and unlawful carry of a weapon, Sheriff Lee Foster said.
In addition, Bowers has several convictions for illegal carry of weapons, as well as convictions for illegal drugs, burglary, and attempted robbery, the sheriff said.
Foster said deputies with the Newberry County Sheriff’s Department located more than seven ounces of crystal meth, numerous oxycodone pills, hydrocodone pills, marijuana, and a firearm during a traffic stop around 8 p.m. on I-26 near the 80 mile marker for a speeding violation.
“This is a very large amount of crystal meth that was headed to the streets,” said Foster. “I would like to commend the deputies for their excellent work during this investigation. It is important to have properly trained officers who are able to work and detect criminal activity above the obvious.”
Once the vehicle was stopped, the deputies could smell the odor of marijuana coming from the car.
Bowers was arrested once it was determined his driver’s license was suspended. Deputies found some of the pills on Bowers when he was arrested.
During a search of the vehicle, deputies located more than seven ounces of crystal meth, 88 oxycodone pills, 18 hydrocodone pills, marijuana, and a Ruger .40-caliber pistol.
“This is clearly a dangerous individual who despite repeated arrests continues to sell and use illegal drugs while carrying a weapon,” Foster said. “Subjects such as this are an additional threat because besides poisoning our communities with the drugs, his repeated weapon violations and violent history make it clear that he would use a weapon against an officer or a citizen in the right situation.”
Foster said they planned to ask the judge to deny bond because Bowers was out on bond for a violent drug offense and was arrested on another violent drug offense.