Ravenna police raided an apartment for drugs near West Main Elementary

Ravenna Police Department. Ben Wolford/The Portager

Two people are in jail after Ravenna police executed a search warrant at an apartment on the 600 block of West Main Street.

The raid, which occurred at 7 a.m. Aug. 14, followed a month-long drug trafficking investigation, said Ravenna Police Captain Jake Smallfield. The home is separated from West Main Elementary School by a chain-link fence.

“We expedited it because we know that school starts this week and we really wanted to move a drug dealer away from our schools as fast as possible, particularly before it started,” Smallfield said, referring to allegations.

Ravenna police arrested Kalista L. Bixler, 31, and Malcolm T. Jennings, 34, on charges of permitting drug abuse. Smallfield said more arrests and charges involving drug trafficking, permitting drug abuse and corrupting another with drugs in the vicinity of a school may be coming as police conduct additional interviews.

According to the police report, Jennings told police that he and Bixler had been staying in the apartment, which is rented to Vicky Boyd, for about three weeks. (Boyd is currently incarcerated at the Portage County Justice Center on unrelated charges.)

Jennings allegedly told police that he knew a person (whose name was redacted in the report) was selling methamphetamine but said there was nothing illegal in the residence.

Bixler, who was wearing an ankle monitor, allegedly told police she has an upcoming court hearing for operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Police said she told them she knew about drug trafficking and drug use occurring at the West Main Street home, but added that she would put her head down while it was going on.

Boyd confirmed that she is the lessee of the apartment, police said, which she moved into about three months ago. They said she accused Jennings of selling crack cocaine and fentanyl both inside the apartment and elsewhere on the property.

Boyd told police the deals were done in front of everybody in the apartment, but she said Jennings would either ignore or assault her when she confronted him about dealing so close to a school, police said. She allegedly told police that she knew it was wrong but was unable to stop Jennings from continuing his activities.

Police are sending a rock-like substance that “could be crack” and a powder-like substance that could also be contraband to the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation for testing, a process that could take a couple months, Smallfield said.

There were no children at the apartment, and police didn’t find any other dangers, he said.

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Wendy DiAlesandro is a former Record Publishing Co. reporter and contributing writer for The Portager.