Man arrested on drug trafficking charges

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

Police arrested a Columbiana man in Alabaster on June 6 and charged with drug trafficking after officers said they discovered several types of drugs in the man’s car at a gas station.

Police arrested 20-year-old Justin Michael Knauss and charged him with one count of drug trafficking, one count of unlawful possession of a controlled substance, one count of first-degree possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Lt. Kevin Turner, commander of the Shelby County Drug Enforcement Task Force, said someone called the Alabaster Police Department after they saw Knauss’ vehicle sitting in a gas station parking lot in the 800 block of U.S. 31 for an extended period of time.

Turner said an officer approached Knauss, who was in the vehicle, and “detected the odor of burned marijuana.”

After searching the car, officers allegedly discovered 80 milligrams of Oxycontin, generic valium, “Ecstacy purple transformers,” 316.5 grams of marijuana and 800 milligrams of ibuprofen, according to Alabaster police records.

After officers searched the car, the Drug Enforcement Task Force stepped in to handle the case, said Turner.

Turner said drug trafficking charges come about when a certain amount of drugs are discovered in a person’s possession.

“The prescription medications found in the car are where the trafficking charges came from,” Turner said. “There were more than 4 grams of prescription medications found in the car.”