Warrant Service Leads to Additional Charges

By Will Johnson
Messenger Reporter

 HOUSTON COUNTY – Deputies from the Houston County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) were dispatched to a residence located on at 12256 Stat Highway 287 S in Pennington on the afternoon of April 20 in reference to a warrant service investigation.

The warrant pertained to Anderson County resident 40-year-old Stacy Lynn Branch. The complainant had advised the HCSO Branch was currently at the residence in Pennington and stated it was known she warrants out for her arrest.

According to a probable cause affidavit, Investigator Larenzo Simpson and Deputy Detric Murray responded to the dispatch and when they arrived they made contact with Branch.

Branch was identified by her Texas Driver’s License and also vocally stated she was Branch. She was then advised that she had outstanding warrants for her arrest and was to be placed into custody and transported to jail,” the affidavit indicated.

After being informed of her arrest, Branch requested to get an item out of her purse, located in a bedroom closet.

“For officer safety, Deputy Murray followed and observed Branch digging around in her purse, remove an item from the purse, quickly place it in her mouth and swallow it. Deputy Murray, at this time, believed Branch to be tampering with or destroying evidence and placed Branch into handcuffs,” the affidavit stated.

Asked what she placed in her mouth, the affidavit reported Branch said it was a pain pill. She was read her rights which she waved. Branch informed the law enforcement officials she had additional narcotics in her purse including methamphetamine and Ativan, an anti-anxiety drug, along with several needles.

During a search of her purse, a detectable amount of methamphetamine, a used red straw containing methamphetamine and 19 Ativan pills were discovered, the affidavit stated.

Branch was arrested and transported to the Houston County Jail where she was booked into custody on the warrant along with three other charges. These charges were: possession of a controlled substance, penalty group one, less than one gram; possession of a controlled substance penalty group thee, less than 28 grams; and possession of drug paraphernalia.

The possession of a controlled substance, penalty group one is considered as a state jail felony.

According to Section 12.35 of the Texas Penal Code, “An individual adjudged guilty of a state jail felony shall be punished by confinement in a state jail for any term of not more than two years or less than 180 days. In addition to confinement, an individual adjudged guilty of a state jail felony may be punished by a fine not to exceed $10,000.”

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at [email protected].

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