A West Van Lear man and East Point woman were arrested Wednesday after Johnson County Sheriff’s deputies searching for the suspect in a drive-by shooting discovered more than 250 dosage units of what was believed to be gabapentin, according to court documents.

The citation said that a warrant was issued for the arrest of Charles Blankenship, 27, of West Van Lear, after he allegedly became embroiled in a verbal exchange with his girlfriend’s family at a residence on Little Lick Fork in East Point. The warrant said Blankenship returned to his vehicle before firing live rounds from the vehicle and, “toward the direction of the residence and 11 people, ages one to adulthood, showing extreme indifference to the lives of the individuals.”

When JCSO Deputy James Tabor located Blankenship to serve the warrant at a residence on Davis Branch, he said, a pill bottle containing approximately 270 gabapentin (neurontin) dosage units was found “laying under a dresser right by (Blankenship),” alongside two “packaged yellowish oval pills,” found near the air mattress Blankenship was laying on, the citation said.

According to the citation, Blankenship told Tabor that his girlfriend, Tiona Creekmore, 26, of East Point, was laying in bed with him prior to Tabor’s arrival and “must have walked out.” The citation said Creekmore was found hiding in the back seat of a four-door Nissan vehicle belonging to the pair in the driveway.

A search incident to the arrests yielded 77 dollars, a glass pipe, the suspected gabapentin, the yellow pills and a black and white Hi-Point 9 mm firearm “with skull graphics,” which the court documents said was laying unsecured under the couch and to which Blankenship, a convicted felon, had unfettered access.

Blankenship was lodged in the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center on charges including first-degree wanton endangerment, third-degree and first-offense trafficking in a controlled substance (greater than 120 dosage units, unspecified substance), possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a handgun by a convicted felon and illegal possession of a legend drug.

Creekmore was charged with third-degree and first-offense trafficking in a controlled substance (greater than 120 dosage units, unspecified substance), possession of drug paraphernalia and illegal possession of a legend drug.

Blankenship remained lodged in the BSRDC as of presstime Friday, while Creekmore was released Thursday. Blankenship was set for arraignment Friday in the wanton endangerment case and a preliminary hearing for the drug trafficking case was set for Nov. 13. No court dates had yet been set in Creekmore’s case.

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