IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — At least 20 stolen cellphones from an Ohio music festival turned up during an I-77 traffic stop, according to NC State Highway Patrol.

Around 10 a.m. Monday, Sept. 25, a state trooper stopped a Dodge Journey van for speeding on I-77 southbound near mile marker 66. Four people were inside the van, and the responding trooper found cause to search the vehicle, Highway Patrol said.

The search uncovered a small amount of marijuana and 152 cell phones. Highway Patrol said 20 phones were later confirmed as stolen. Efforts are still actively being made to identify the owners of the remaining devices and confirm additional thefts, authorities said.

Highway Patrol said the stolen phones have been linked to an open case in Licking County, Ohio, in which numerous people reported thefts of their phones while attending a music festival.  

Iredell County investigators have been in contact with the Licking County Sheriff’s Office in Ohio to offer assistance in their investigation. 

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All four people inside the vehicle, who are from Orlando, Fla., have been arrested and charged with 20 counts each of possession of stolen property. They’ve been identified as:

  • Kimberlin Castellanos, 23
  • Yexon Castellanos, 28
  • Yesica Castellanos, 30

Driver Piter Valenzuela, 29, is also facing marijuana possession charges.