The worst dealer, fun with meth and three’s a crowd

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The worst drug dealer 

Unaware that they were about to encounter one of the most inept drug dealers in America, Knoxville Police Department officers responded to a report of an unconscious man in a car at the Mapco on Asheville Highway in the early morning hours of October 13.

When officers arrived, they found a 29-year-old man asleep in the driver’s seat of a Buick Enclave with a handgun next to him in the center console. Officers woke up the man, who showed signs of impairment and was asked to step out of the vehicle. The man briefly resisted and even attempted to put the transmission into “Drive” before officers were able to take him into custody.

In their ensuing search of the vehicle, the officers located two more handguns, various narcotics (including heroin, meth and marijuana), drug paraphernalia, and an amount of U.S. currency “consistent with the sale and delivery of narcotics.

The man also admitted to doing a bunch of his heroin stash earlier in the morning, which is what caused him to pass out in the parking lot of the Mapco. 

The man —who had multiple previous felony convictions and an outstanding warrant out of Davidson County for violation of parole — was arrested on multiple weapons and drug charges, DUI, criminal impersonation, evading arrest and the outstanding warrant among other charges.

And to think that some people don’t believe in happy endings….

FUN WITH METH

It was just after 9 a.m. on October 15 when Knox County officers were sent to the Midway IGA at 7435 Tazewell Pike because a female subject was reportedly acting erratically and cussing at employees. By the time the cops arrived, the 55-year-old woman had moved to a nearby Subway and was busy exercising her First Amendment rights at the top of her lungs.

“She was inside the store sitting at a booth screaming obscenities causing an unreasonable amount of noise preventing other patrons of the store from carrying on with their lawful activities,” said Officer Jacob Martin. “(She) was instructed to exit the store, to which she complied, however she continued to scream and began cursing while dozens of small children were on the playground at 7323 Tazewell Pike (Your Kid-N-Me Daycare Center).”

Enough was soon determined to be enough, and the woman was handcuffed so she could be transported to the County jail. When the cops searched her, however, they found “in her belongings a small baggie with approximately .3 Grams of a white crystal like substance believed to be meth.”

Police are frequently called to check out “suspicious persons” at all hours of the day and night despite the fact that “suspicious” is an entirely subjective description. But sometimes the appellation is entirely appropriate, such as when a woman in South Knoxville spotted an unidentified man clad only in white shorts darting back forth across her lawn on Rogers Lane for no discernible reason about 12:15 p.m. October 16.

It didn’t take Knox County Officer Chad Davenport long to find the suspect after arriving at the woman’s address — the winded, shirtless man was climbing out of a nearby ditch. When asked just what he thought he was doing, he replied that he was only “running through the woods.”

“The arrestee was sweating profusely, was unable to stand still and stated to officers he had not slept in three days,” Davenport said. “The arrestee was unable to tell officers where he was or where he lived.”

The officer continued, saying that “given the circumstances, the arrestee showed signs of being under the influence of methamphetamine…Officers determined he was a danger to himself and was taken into custody without incident.”

Three’s a crowd

Someone at the Weigel’s market at 7420 Tazewell Pike called E-911 just after noon on October 24 because they’d spotted three people unconscious in an SUV in the parking lot. 

When Knox County Officer Wayne Doster arrived, he found a Chevrolet Trailblazer containing three sleeping beauties who were soon identified as a 35-year-old man and two women, aged 34 and 24. The officer noticed a small baggie full of cotton sitting underneath the driver’s side door, demanded that all the occupants step of the vehicle, and then asked if there was anything illegal in the SUV.

“All the occupants stated that there was just drug paraphernalia inside the vehicle, because they used heroin last night,” Doster wrote in his subsequent report on the incident. 

Perhaps they believed they were telling the truth, perhaps not — the effects of heroin on short-term memory are somewhat less than positive. It didn’t matter in the end, however, as Doster said that he swiftly found a baggie with approximately 2.3 grams of “a white powdery substance believed to be heroin … in the back seat of the vehicle within reach of all the occupants.”

All three of the sleepy suspects denied having any knowledge whatsoever of the $300-plus worth of alleged dope, which of course added up to all three of them going straight to jail, the SUV being towed away to an uncertain fate, and the offending baggie vanishing into an evidence locker.

Tales of the Scruffy City is compiled from public records provided on request by the Knoxville Police Department, Knox County Sheriff’s Office, and other government agencies. We do not identify the citizens who appear in these reports in order to protect their privacy. Many of those who appear in police reports are guilty of nothing more than having a bad day, while even those who are formally accused of a crime are innocent until proven guilty. Tales of the Scruffy City is Copyright 2021 by Hard Knox Wire.

J.J. Stambaugh may be reached at jjstambaugh@hardknoxwire.com 

Published on December 10, 2021.