BUCKHANNON — One French Creek resident is behind bars following Upshur County Sheriff’s Department response to multiple 911 calls on Wednesday, January 12. Charles Henry Friend II, age 38, is held at Tygart Valley Regional Jail on two separate bonds, totaling $20,000.
According to court documents, Sheriff’s Deputy Tanner Collins received a call from Upshur County Comms Center Wednesday afternoon regarding an impaired driver. The comms center dispatcher explained to Collins that the center received multiple calls stating a male in a Cadillac was allegedly ‘huffing’ something while driving. The callers also reported that the driver was on the move, traveling near Parkway Motor, Marjorie Ann Drive and Jenkins Ford before finally stopping at Buckhannon Walmart Supercenter.
The dispatcher also informed the deputy that the driver had ran off the road into a ditch, before continuing down the road near the new armory on Brushy Fork Road.
The criminal complaint states that Deputy Collins spotted the vehicle when he arrived at Walmart and the driver was present. Collins states in the complaint that the driver, later identified as Friend, made eye contact with the officer and proceeded to drive off. When Collins turned on his emergency blue lights to attempt a stop, the defendant pulled into a parking spot and immediately jumped out of the vehicle.
As the deputy states in the complaint, the defendant looked disheveled as the officer approached him. Collins proceeded to ask general questions, including if the defendant had anything illegal on him. The defendant admitted to having marijuana in his pocket, which the deputy confirmed.
The complaint states that questioning continued until other officers arrived on scene. The other deputies noticed a “duster can” in the passenger area of the vehicle. The inside of the vehicle was covered in vomit, while the outside showed signs of newly acquired damage.
The defendant admitted he “smoked an eighth between last night and this morning,” the criminal complaint stated.
Friend was transported to St. Joseph’s Hospital by the deputy, where he consented to a blood draw. After the procedure was finished, Friend was transported to the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department, where he showed signs of impairment during a walk and turn test.
Friend was charged with driving under the influence (DUI) second and third offense, as well as driving while license revoked for DUI in the third offense. The defendant will remain jailed until bond can be posted.