Traffic stop leads to local man’s arrest


BUCKHANNON — One Buckhannon man is facing multiple charges after being arrested in the Hodgesville area on Thursday, June 9.

According to Court documentation, Upshur County Sheriff’s Deputy Tanner Collins observed a silver Chevrolet Equinox coming from Teter Road towards Route 20 on Thursday. As the driver went past the Deputy, he allegedly looked away quickly and continued to do so while driving. However, before breaking eye contact, Deputy Collins was able to identify to driver as Clinton Scot Howes, age 42, from previous encounters. Deputy Collins also knew, from the prior encounters, that Howes did not possess a driver’s license. So, Collins engaged his lights and sirens and began a traffic stop on Hackers Creek Road. Upon obtaining the driver’s information, the Upshur County Communications Center informed the deputy that Howes’ license was currently suspended, with two prior infractions of Driving while License Suspended.

The criminal complaint state that Deputy Collins asked Howes to step out of the vehicle and asked if there was anything illegal on his person or in the vehicle. Howes allegedly began looking back at the vehicle for a moment before returning back to Deputy Collins. Howes allegedly admitted to having marijuana behind some newspaper inside the vehicle. After asking the passenger, Jeremy Swiger to step out of the vehicle, Swiger allegedly told Deputy Collins that he had a bowl in his pocket. Both Howes and Swiger allegedly stated that they were smoking, just prior to being pulled over.

Upon searching the vehicle, a clear bag was recovered, with the contents of a green leafy substance, consistent with marijuana, and a small baggie in the center console that contained multiple buds of a green leafy substance, consistent with marijuana. Howes allegedly stated that the marijuana was his.

After a field sobriety test, Howes showed signs of impairment, with them being eyelid tremors, body tremors, circular sway during the performed test, constricted pupils, lack of convergence in the right eye, he started walking too soon on the walk and turn test, improper turn, raised his arms when not instructed to and had the incorrect number of steps while missing the tip of his nose.

Howes is currently being held at Tygart Valley Regional Jail on misdemeanor offences of Possession of a Controlled Substance, DUI of a Controlled Substance and Driving while License Suspended. Howes’ bond was set at $10,000 cash or surety.

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