A man who said he’d walked for hours after having a disagreement with his girlfriend ended up arrested on drug trafficking and immigration charges Tuesday, after a Rowan County Sheriff’s deputy stopped to offer him a ride, according to a press release.
The 30-year-old man, identified as Erick Gabriel Cuevas-Pastrana, was hiking with a backpack stuffed a loaded handgun, 102 grams of methamphetamine, scales and marijuana, said the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office.
He was later discovered to be in the country illegally, department officials said.
Deputies said they found Cuevas-Pastrana “sitting in the grass” along Wetmore Road around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Woodleaf area, after someone called 911 to report a “suspicious person on the side of the road,” said a release.
“Cuevas-Pastrada indicated that he was walking home after having an incident with his girlfriend and that he had walked for seven hours. Deputies offered Cuevas-Pastrana a ride and he agreed,” said a release.
However, Cuevas-Pastrana changed his mind after being told deputies would have to search his bag before allowing him in their patrol car, said a release.
“At this time, deputies discovered that Cuevas-Pastrana had an active child support warrant. Cuevas-Pastrana was arrested and in a search..., they located a loaded .9-millimeter handgun, 102 grams of methamphetamine, scales, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia in the black bag,” said the press release.
Deputies found additional methamphetamine in the pocket of his jacket, officials said. The methamphetamine was valued at around $5,000, officials said.
Cuevas-Pastrana was charged with “trafficking methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, and carrying a concealed weapon,” said a release.
“In a follow up investigation, the Rowan County Detention Center staff screened Cuevas-Pastrana and determined he was a Mexican citizen and in the country illegally. The United States Department of Homeland Security-Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was notified and an immigration detainer placed on Cuevas-Pastrana,” said the press release.