COVINGTON, Ga. - On Sunday, the Covington Police Department arrested and charged Jasper County residents Stanley Hash and Artessa Ladner with possession of a controlled substance.
CPD Officer Rory Barber responded to a suspicious call at Walgreens, located at the Highway 278 and Elm Street intersection, in reference to a parked vehicle, which had been at the location for several hours, according to the incident report.
"I ran the tag, which returned to a 1997 Ford Explorer to a Stanley Hash," Barber reported. "While watching the vehicle, I observed the female passenger get out of the vehicle and go into the store. My original suspicion was dispelled at that point, and I left the parking lot."
Several hours later, Barber was notified the vehicle was still parked at Walgreens by CPD Sgt. Starr Smith and he decided to return to the business to make contact with the vehicle, according to the report.
"I looked at the GCIC registration once again that I ran earlier, and noticed that it showed that the vehicle did not have valid insurance coverage in the state's system," Barber reported.
As Barber was en route to Walgreens, the vehicle was spotted heading southbound on Elm Street, according to the report. Smith, who was stationed at the four-way intersection of Elm Street and Williams Street, was notified of the approaching vehicle.
Smith and Barber conducted a vehicle traffic stop at the BP gas station, located at the Williams Street and Pace Street intersection, according to the report. Smith made contact with the driver, Hash, and Barber made contact with the passenger, Ladner.
"While speaking with Ladner, I noticed that she appeared very nervous, and she was breathing heavily," Barber reported.
Barber questioned Ladner about the length of time the vehicle had been parked at Walgreens and was told Ladner was "waiting on a prescription," according to the report.
"I then noticed what appeared to be a knife in between her legs," Barber reported. "I asked her if she had any weapons, and she stated that she did not."
Ladner showed Barber a lighter, which was pulled from under her legs; however, Barber was "confident" that he saw a knife, according to the report. He located a small folding pocket knife, from where Ladner was sitting after she was asked to leave the vehicle.
Hash told Barber and Smith "he had insurance, and that he put it on the vehicle the night prior," according to the report. Ladner was given the opportunity to show proof of insurance on her phone; however, she was unsuccessful.
Hash and Ladner were instructed to retrieve their personal belongings from the vehicle as a "next list wrecker was dispatched to impound the vehicle," according to the report.
Barber conducted an inventory search of the vehicle, and Hash protested the search, stating that "he did not want his vehicle searched," according to the report.
"I explained to him the scope of the inventory and instructed him to stand by Sgt. Smith," Barber reported.
Upon searching, Barber found a clear plastic straw, with a white powdery residue, inside the glove box, according to the report. No other illegal items were found.
"A preliminary field test was conducted on the content of the straw, and the test indicated a positive result for methamphetamine," Barber reported.
Hash was handcuffed by Smith, and he stated the straw was "not his," according to the report.
"Ladner began becoming hysterical and angry with Hash," Barber reported. "She stated the the straw was not hers."
Ladner notified Smith of a hidden bag in her bra, which contained a crystal-like substance, according to the report.
Hash was charged with possession of a controlled substance and driving without insurance, according to the report. Ladner was charged with possession of a controlled substance.
Hash and Ladner were transported to the Newton County Jail. The NCSO booking report stated Ladner and Hash both showed signs/history of amphetamine use.