WASHINGTON CITY – Many would argue having drugs in your possession is simply not smart, while most would argue inattentive driving is not a good thing, but doing both at once, especially when there’s a cop behind you, increases your chance of getting into trouble – arrested – as two women found out Friday.
Washington County Task Force Detective Matt Schuman was traveling east on Buena Vista Boulevard in Washington when he noticed the vehicle in front of him swerve off the roadway into the dirt and then swerve back onto the road, according to a probable cause statement written by Schuman in support of the arrests.
Schuman pulled over driver Amanda Joe Parry, of St. George, on a traffic stop after seeing her swerving.
Parry admitted to driving off the roadway but said it was because she hadn’t slept for a while and had been traveling from Las Vegas, Schuman said in the statement. When Schuman asked for her license and proof of insurance, Parry told him her license was denied and she could not prove her insurance.
While talking with Parry, Schuman recognized the front seat passenger in the vehicle as Tori Anne Chidester, of St. George, and was aware she had three outstanding warrants for her arrest. The warrants carried a cash-only bail of $8,500.
While Drug Task Force Detective Ty Dove placed Chidester under arrest for her warrants, she admitted to having drugs in her bra, the statement said.
Schuman placed Parry under arrest for driving on a suspended license and no proof of insurance.
“I asked (Parry) if she had anything on her and she stated, ‘No,’” Schuman wrote in the statement. “I informed (Parry) if she takes any contraband into the jail she will receive additional charges. (Parry) said she understood.”
Parry’s vehicle was impounded and during an inventory of the vehicle detectives located marijuana, syringes and three used pipes with residue, according to the statement of probable cause.
Parry and Chidester were both booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility.
During the booking process at the jail, Parry admitted to having items in her bra, the statement said. Deputies recovered three baggies of a crystal substance that tested positive for methamphetamine and one baggy with a leafy substance that tested positive for marijuana.
Parry was charged with a second-degree felony for drug possession with the intent to distribute, three class B misdemeanors for no proof of insurance and possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia, and two class C misdemeanors for driving on a suspended license and failure to stay in one lane.
Judge Jeffrey Wilcox, of the 5th District Court, ordered $16,900 bail for Parry’s release pending trial.
Parry was found indigent by the court during her initial court appearance Monday and will be represented by court-appointed attorney Michael Lastowski. She is scheduled to make her next court appearance on May 11.
Chidester was charged with a third-degree felony for possession of heroin.
Wilcox ordered $5,000 bail on the drug possession charge for Chidester’s release pending trial.
Chidester was found indigent by the court during her initial court appearance Monday and will be represented by court-appointed attorney Douglas Terry. She is scheduled to make her next court appearance on May 11.
Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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