gavel and justice scales



A 49-year-old Grants Pass, Oregon, man is charged with two felonies after nearly 25 pounds of marijuana was discovered in his rental car during an investigation of a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 80 Tuesday morning.

In Lincoln County Court Wednesday afternoon, Mark L. Clayton was arraigned on charges of possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute and possession of more than a pound of marijuana.

Judge Joel Jay set Clayton’s bail at $50,000, and a preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 15. Clayton must provide 10% of that amount to be released from the Lincoln County Detention Center.

According to court records, Nebraska State Patrol troopers responded to a crash on I-80 near mile marker 183 at 6 a.m. Tuesday.

Clayton told the troopers he had parked his rented 2019 Kia Sedona on the inside shoulder of the interstate and was outside the vehicle when it was struck from behind by an eastbound pickup truck. The truck then continued across the median and rolled in the north ditch, according to the records. The truck driver was taken to Great Plains Health for his injuries, and Clayton also was taken to the hospital for evaluation.

While searching Clayton’s car, troopers discovered multiple vacuum-sealed bags that contained high-grade marijuana, according to court records. The bags were stored in a backpack, a duffel bag and a large plastic trash bag in the rear cargo area of the vehicle.