Local woman charged after destroying car, police find half pound of drugs

A local woman who allegedly destroyed her car early Tuesday while driving while intoxicated has been arrested on felony charges after Hot Springs Police reportedly found more than half a pound of marijuana in her vehicle.

Laurann Michelle Tichnel, 35, who lists a Twinklestar Trail address, was arrested shortly before 3:30 a.m. and charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, marijuana, for the purpose of delivering, punishable by up to 3:30 a.m. up to 10 years in prison, and driving while intoxicated, first offense and possession of drug paraphernalia, both offenses punishable by up to one year in prison.

Tichnel, who has no criminal history, was being held on $ 5,500 bail and is scheduled to appear in Garland County District Court today.

According to the probable cause affidavit, shortly after 3 a.m., HSPD Officer Tyler Barrett and Officers 1st Class Wes Smith and Jason Greene responded at the corner of Quapaw Avenue and Orange Street where a Mitsubishi Red Lancer had collided with an electric pole.

Officers contacted the driver, identified as Tichnel, and noted that she had blood injections, watery eyes, slurred speech and a smell of intoxicants on her breath and on her person. They also noted an “extremely strong” smell of marijuana coming from the vehicle and many empty and full beer cans prominently inside the car.

Tichnel reportedly had difficulty walking after getting out of his car and “had to use the car for stability”. Officers attempted to perform field sobriety tests, but Tichnel was reportedly uncooperative and had to stop several times and “consistently instructed how to stand” during two of the tests.

“Due to Tichnel’s actions and her inability to complete a single test,” she was arrested for DWI. At that point, she reportedly made a comment about drinking and “recently leaving the bar”.

During a search of his vehicle, officers reportedly found a backpack containing five individual bags of marijuana “which appeared to be packaged for sale”, a total of 227.4 grams or more than half a pound. She also had a glass jar with a scoop of marijuana hashish, about 3 grams, a small container of THC wax, and a digital scale with residue.

Once in prison, Tichnel underwent a breathalyzer test which recorded his blood alcohol level at 0.182%, more than double the legal limit. Tichnel reportedly told officers that the hash ball and wax “sell for $ 60.”

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