Sheriff’s Office seizes synthetic pot, cash after crash

Published 8:44 am Wednesday, October 8, 2014

On Sunday, the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office responded to a single vehicle traffic accident at Louisiana Highway 16 and C.C. Road. Reports from the scene indicated the driver was driving in a reckless manner and lost control of the vehicle, which rested on its side off the roadway. The driver was out of the vehicle and was later medically assessed by firefighter first responders. There were no obvious injuries.

Upon arriving at the scene, the Sheriff’s Office lieutenant was advised that witnesses had observed the driver place a black bag in the woods away from the vehicle after the accident. Lt. Tom Anderson searched the immediate wooded area and located the black bag, which contained a significant amount of synthetic marijuana. The driver was then placed under arrest.

Once the wrecker pulled the vehicle to an upright position, Anderson discovered additional synthetic marijuana inside the vehicle. The total amount of synthetic marijuana recovered was 145 grams. In addition, the driver had more than $1,400 on his person.

The driver of the vehicle, John Tate Jr., 46, a resident of 317 20th Ave. in Franklinton, remains in the Washington Parish Jail charged with one count of possession with intent to distribute synthetic marijuana. Bond was set at $30,000.

“Synthetic marijuana is a toxic and dangerous substance. It is often marketed as a safe alternative to marijuana,” Sheriff Randy Seal said. “It is not. It contains herbal mixtures and chemicals that are not safe to consume. I congratulate our fine lieutenant for his good work and our concerned citizens who provided information in this matter. As we continue to work to clean up this parish, we need the help of our honest citizens who are as tired of drug dealers as we are.”