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Posted: July 16, 2010 12:30 a.m.

Search for stolen SUV sends seven to slammer

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Cedric Hill

Several people were arrested at a home in Nelson Heights Saturday afternoon after drugs were found in a home where a stolen vehicle that officers from the Covington Police Department were searching for was parked.

Officers were searching the area for a stolen Ford Explorer when they noticed a vehicle matching the description at a home on Puckett Street. Officers ran the tag number on the SUV, and it came back stolen earlier.

When approaching the home, one officer went to the front door and the other to the back door to ensure suspects did not escape before they could be questioned about the stolen SUV.

The officer that approached the front door reported that he could hear loud music and several people talking just inside the door. While he was standing at the front door, it was allegedly opened by 21-year-old Courtnay Jamil Wise, who was exiting the residence. With the door opened, the officer could reportedly see several people sitting or standing in the living room area of the home.

When Wise noticed the officer, he allegedly backed up into the residence and started to shut the door. The officer stuck his foot in the door to keep this from happening, drew his service weapon, and ordered everyone inside the residence to show him their hands.

One of the men in the living room, 27-year-old Travin Montez Davis, allegedly began walking to the rear of the home despite several commands by the officer not to do so. He reportedly said that he was getting the homeowner, 28-year-old Cedric Dante Hill, from the back room. He also allegedly asked the officer what the problem was.

While dealing with the people in the front room, the officer heard his fellow CPD officer give commands from the back of the residence for someone to "stop moving" and "get to the ground."

According to reports, two men, Travin and 22-year-old Terrance Jerrell Benton, had opened the back door of the home and attempted to run out. Neither seemed inclined to get on the ground, but the sight of the officer’s service revolver reportedly had them both cooperating to an extent, reports indicate.

Travin allegedly kept trying to get up off the ground, but the officer was able to kick his arms out from under him at one point. The officer who was handling the front of the house came to the back to help, and both Travin and Benton were placed in handcuffs and the officer who had come from the front of the house went back. Although he had told all the suspects to stay put, when he arrived back in the living room, it was empty.

The officer noticed the front door was wide open, and when he looked in the front yard, he saw his suspects all walking toward the street/getting into a vehicle. They were all ushered into the yard where they were detained.

During this time, the officer in the front saw the officer from the back chasing a handcuffed Travin, yelling at him to stop running. While running, Travin was reportedly swinging his elbows back and forth, striking the officer in the chest. The officer deployed his Taser and was able to get Travin to the ground. While escorting him to a patrol car, Travin was still attempted to get loose from the officer, however. Noticing the large number of people detained in the front, Travin was set next to a tree and the other officer was asked to go to the back of the residence and check on Benson, who had been left cuffed and alone when Travin allegedly fled.

When the officer got to the backyard he reportedly saw Benson attempting to flee and noted in his report that Benson had "almost made it over a fence." The officer deployed his Teaser at that point and was able to stop Benson.

The officer in charge of Travin searched him and allegedly located two large wads of cash, totaling $2,465, made up of mostly small denominations. Travin reportedly told the officer that he was unsure how much he had exactly and, also, that he did not work. Travin was walked to the patrol vehicle, and during that time he continued to attempt to pull away from the officer, according to reports.

When back-up officers arrived, the residence was searched. Officers allegedly found marijuana on a television stand in the living room; there was also a strong odor of burnt marijuana inside the house, according to reports.

Found in plain view in the main bedroom inside an open dresser drawer was a pill bottle with suspected crack cocaine inside, and there was a small plastic bag containing a white powder residue, believed to be cocaine. On top of the dresser was suspected marijuana, a digital scale and clear plastic bags, along with several empty bags with suspected marijuana residue inside.

Inside the dresser officers also reportedly located a box of .22 caliber bullets. Officers knew at least three of the subjects inside the home were convicted felons and prohibited from having firearms. They began to search for a gun and during that search reportedly located a bag underneath the bed containing $2,190 in counterfeit money.

When confronted with the illegal drugs and counterfeit money, no one in the group admitted ownership. They also said they had no idea whom the vehicle belonged to. Mail in one of the bedrooms of the house was in the name of Hill, but no one in the home could or would tell officers who rented the house or where they were. Since no one claimed ownership but all had an equal access to the home, they were all placed under arrest and transported to the Newton County Detention Center.

Travin Davis was charged with violation of probation (original charge obstruction), possession of cocaine with intent, possession of marijuana less than one ounce, theft by receiving and obstruction.

Hill, Kwnae Shaunthraill Davis, 24, Wise, 19-year-old Tiffany Tyonne Boswell and 26-year-old Shannon Yvette Jackson were charged with possession of cocaine with intent, possession of marijuana less than one ounce, theft by receiving and obstruction.

Benton was charged with violation of probation (original charge forgery), possession of cocaine with intent, possession of marijuana less than one ounce, theft by receiving and obstruction.

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