Defendent leaves purse containing marijuana with officers

Defendent leaves purse containing marijuana with officers

By Ashley Crutcher
A defendent was charged with possession of marijuana after leaving her purse at the checkpoint during Wednesday’s session of Batesville Municipal Court.
All who attend court go through the check point and officers check purses and bags for weapons.
Lavonzelle Hill, 414 Frederick St., Sardis, left her purse at the check point as Batesville Municipal Court Judge Jay Westfaul called on her to answer for charges of larceny-less than trespass, allowing Assistance Chief Kerry Pittman to catch the sent of marijuana coming from Hill’s purse.
Chief Pitman located a partially smoked marijuana cigarette in Hill’s purse as she addressed the court for her original charge.
Hill advised the court the larceny charges were supposed to have been dropped. Judge Westfaul advised he would have to hear from the affiant, Sheldon Watters.
Hill pleaded not guilty to the charge and the case is set to go to trial April 18. After making her appearance Hill was cited for the possession of marijuana.
Batesville Police Department welcomed Kevin West to the force as Judge Westfaul swore in West during court.
Tiffany Hall, 110 Bradford St., Batesville, was charged with contempt of court for old fines in the amount of $1,832 from July of 2017 for traffic violations.
Hall stated she was experiencing hardships and just recently found a home for herself and her sons and is currently attending school to become a nurse.
Kay Wolfe acted as a character witness for Hall stating, “She’s so precious.”
“I commend you for getting your life in order,” said Judge Westfaul. Hall has been given six months to pay the fine or work out a payment plan with the clerk.
Eric Hollman, 207 Lester St., Batesville, was charged with Felony DUI, no driver’s license, and speeding 61 MPH in a 45 MPH zone. Hollman was originally charged with DUI second and was advised of the ammended charge.
“How did it go from being a DUI second to a DUI third,” asked Hollman. The judge explained that previous DUI charges were noted making the charge the third DUI charge, which is a felony.
Hollman was advised to refrain from drug or alcohol use and the case was bound over to the Panola County Grand Jury.
Isiah D. Gross, 2881 Terza Rd., Batesville, was charged with disorderly conduct- interference with a business. The charge was remanded to the files.
Wayne King, 631 Daugherty St., Coldwater, was charged with embezzlement after allegedly having stole property from Cooley’s Mortuary, where he was employed.
Attorneys worked to reach an agreement and the charge was was remanded to the files for six months. According to King’s attorney, some of the property has been returned.
Allie R. Gadd, 1087 Orwood Rd., Batesville, pleaded guilty to shoplifting. Gadd has 30 days to pay the $1,146 fine.
Brian Merrell, 227 Vance St., Batesville, pleaded guilty to shoplifting. Merrell was also charged with contempt of court for failure to pay old fines from April of 2006 in the amount of $2,388.
Merrell advised the court the fines had not been paid due to his inability to obtain a job after having been charged with a felony.
According to the judge, the state has noticed this struggle for convicted felons to obtain employment.
“You’ve paid your debt to society,” said Judge Westfaul.
New laws, soon to be passed, may assist felons who are re-entering the workforce with obtaining a job.
“Would you like to go on the city work program,” asked the judge. Merrell agreed to join the work program and has 53 days to work to take care of the total fine.
Alicia Owens, 2061 Bell Rd., Courtland, pleaded guilty to shoplfiting. Owens’ brother addressed the court asking that the charges be taken care of today so that he could get her into a rehabillitation facility.
The judge advised Owens the $1,146 fine will be due in 30 days and that she would be released from the Panola County Jail following court.
Chris Ladd, 2053 Seveb Rd, Batesville, had his case sent back from Circuit Court to be held as a misdemeanor.
Ladd pleaded guilty to charges of DUI second and no driver’s license. He has been allotted 30 days to pay the $1,583 fine.
Shaunric Clark, Jr., 107 Goodhaven, was found guilty in absentia of simple assault. Clark paid the $328 fine prior to court.
Joseph Armstead, 4328 Curtis Rd., Batesville, was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance, tampering with physical evidence, disorderly conduct-failure to comply, open container, and running a stop sign.
The case was bound over to the Panola County Grand Jury.
Thomas G. Gant, 207 Draper St., Batesville, was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance, simple possession of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia.
The case was bound over to the Panola County Grand Jury.
Brooklyn Jones, 1695 Ravenwood Ln., Pearl, was charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The case is to be continued.
Mitzi Appleton, 218 Broadway, Batesville, was charged with simple possession of marijuana and simple possession of a controlled substance. The case is to be continued next week.

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