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Man and woman face charges after officers allegedly find guns and drugs in vehicle

Tony Nixon III, left, and Rebecca Marie Lavatta | Bonneville County Jail
IDAHO FALLS — A 22-year-old Arizona man and a 31-year-old Idaho Falls woman are facing charges after officers allegedly searched a car they were in that had guns and drugs, along with thousands of dollars in cash.
According to an affidavit of probable cause filed by the Idaho Falls Police Department, on Feb. 11, an officer stopped a black BMW in Bonneville County because it was not displaying a front license plate, along with other traffic violations.
The officer talked to both the driver, Rebecca Lavatta, and the passenger Tony Nixon. Lavatta told the officer that she didn’t have any physical identification on her and she had recently purchased the vehicle, so it was not registered or insured, documents said.
“I immediately recognized Rebecca and had previous knowledge that she had an active Bonneville County warrant for her arrest,” the officer wrote in documents.
Nixon did not have any identification on him either. The officer asked him to step out of the vehicle. Another officer responded with his police K9 to conduct an air sniff on the vehicle. The K9 alerted that there was a smell of illegal narcotics.
The officer asked Nixon if there was anything illegal inside his backpack that he had, and he said there wasn’t. He said there was just money, documents said.
The officer found two large bundles of money inside the backpack. Nixon said there was only $7,000 to $8,000 in “change.” The officer counted $12,100. Nixon said he got the money from the businesses he owned, a car wash, and a smoke shop in Arizona.
Lavatta’s vehicle was then searched, and two handguns were found. One of the guns was loaded with four rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber. The other gun had one single round loaded in the chamber.
In the glove compartment, an officer found what appeared to be drug paraphernalia used for methamphetamine. The officer then found a container with a partially burnt and melted white crystalline substance. The substance was tested and was presumptive positive for methamphetamine.
There was another backpack located inside the vehicle in the driver’s seat. There was over $300 found in it. There was a makeup bag, and inside of it was two plastic bags containing a white crystalline substance. The officer recognized the substance to be consistent in appearance with methamphetamine. It was tested and was presumptive positive for methamphetamine, documents said.
Officers seized two phones Nixon had and three phones the Lavatta had for evidence. Officers additionally found $220 that Lavatta had in her clothes.
Lavatta was charged with two felonies, including drug trafficking and unlawful possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. She was given a $35,000 bond and has since posted it. She is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Feb. 22 at 1 p.m. at the Bonneville County courthouse.
As for Nixon, he was charged with felony drug trafficking and misdemeanor possessing drug paraphernalia. He was given a $10,000 bond and has since posted it. He was sent to pretrial supervision. He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on the same day and time as Lavatta.
The post Man and woman face charges after officers allegedly find guns and drugs in vehicle appeared first on East Idaho News.

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