traffic

Deputies ‘ham it up’ for a good cause


SHAWNEE, Okla. – Field deputy David Warta is patrolling the streets of Pottawatomie County to serve and protect.

And, on this day – it’s a different kind of “serve.”
County deputies are pulling over good drivers and blessing them with a holiday ham.
“A lot people are struggling with bills and don’t have the blessings that we have. And, we are fortunate to do this,” said Lt. Jimmy Brewer.
Eighty hams were donated and are being distributed to motorists, like Martha Marler.
“That was on my grocery list. Thank you for your service,” she said.
The flashing red lights in the rear view mirror can cause anxiety.
But, it quickly turns to joy and gratitude.
We were there as Warta surprised some motorists.
“You looked like you could use a ham.”

“I could use a ham.”
“Merry Christmas from the Pottawatomie County Sheriff’s Office”
“Thank you very much.”
Deputies are also distributing gloves and hats to help the homeless survive the bitter winter.

See video from Channel 4

Missing Tecumseh teen, alleged kidnapper found in Washington

A 14-year-old Tecumseh girl, missing since Feb. 2., and the 40-year-old man who reportedly took her, were found in the state of Washington Saturday afternoon during a routine traffic stop.  Lt. J. R. Kidney of the Tecumseh Police Department said that James Joseph Reimer, 40, was arrested during a routine traffic stop by the Washington State Highway Patrol. The Tecumseh teenager, Deborah Kalai Fourzan, 14, was with him at the time and Kidney said he was told the girl was believed to be safe and not harmed.  He said both Fourzan and Reimer, who has turned 41 since he left town with the teen, were taken to the Grays Harbor Sheriff’s Department in Montesano, Wash., about 50 miles from where Reimer was stopped and arrested. The arrest took place near the small town of Hoquiam, Wash., Kidney said, and he was informed by a sergeant with the state’s highway patrol Kidney said that Reimer was arrested and is being held on a $100,000 warrant that was filed in Pottawatomie County by District Attorney Richard Smothermon here on the day the teenager left with Reimer. That warrant specifically accuses Reimer of soliciting sexual conduct or communication with a minor by the use of technology.
Fourzan was last seen about 8 a.m. on Feb. 2 at Tecumseh High School, Kidney has stated.  Kidney said Saturday night that last Thursday he signed kidnapping charges against Reimer and he expects those to be filed by the DA possibly as early as Monday. Although investigators believe Fourzan went willingly with Reimer, because of her age, she can’t do that legally, Kidney said.  The Tecumseh officer said it was his understanding the traffic stop took place about 4 p.m. Washington time which would put it around 6 p.m. in Oklahoma. He said that FBI agents in the state of Washington probably would be headed either Sunday or Monday to the sheriff’s office where the teen and Reimer were being held Saturday night. He said it was his understanding the FBI planned to talk to both the teenager and Reimer.
No charges have been filed against Fourzan for anything, Kidney said Saturday night.  Kidney told the News-Star late Saturday evening he had visited by phone with an FBI agent in Norman who had been in contact with the FBI in Washington state. He said the FBI was investigating to determine if federal charges against Reimer might be warranted.  Reimer reportedly had worked at a convenience store at SH 102 and SH 9, but had not been seen there since Feb. 2. Kidney said the Pottawatomie County sheriff’s office is investigating the theft of several thousand dollars from that store which allegedly occurred on that date as well.  Kidney indicated that extradition of Reimer would be sought. And he said hopefully the teen’s family would be able to pick up her as early as Monday.

Traffic stop drug bust nets thousands in cash

An overnight traffic stop for speeding and the instincts of a deputy resulted in the arrest of two people on drug-related complaints Thursday, along with the seizure of nearly $10,000 in cash.

Pottawatomie County Sheriff’s Capt. Travis Palmer said Deputy Chris Ayers stopped the driver of a 1997 Ford F-150 about 3 a.m. on Gordon Cooper Drive at U.S. 177.  During that stop, the driver’s actions were suspicious, Palmer said, so Deputy Ayers called for the nearest drug dog to conduct a sweep of that pickup. Shawnee Police Officer Steve Hudgins responded with his K-9,   The dog alerted twice on the pickup, Palmer said. The driver was searched and Tecumseh Police Officer Brandy Carnell responded to pat down the female passenger, he said.

Palmer said the female had a bulge on her person upon pat down, which led to her producing a package from her pants with a substance that field-tested positive for cocaine at the scene, Palmer said.

Deputies conducted other tests of items at the scene and found about 2.8 grams of cocaine and three grams of methamphetamine, the captain said, along with a small amount of marijuana. Authorities also found $1,600 in cash.

Arrested at the scene on complaints of possession of controlled substance with intent to distribute were the driver, Jerry L. Tubbs, 31, Shawnee, and Amanda M. Phillips, 20, Shawnee, Palmer said.

Both were taken to the Pottawatomie County Public Safety Center.
During book-in, detention officers found Tubbs had another $8,000 rolled up and concealed in his genital area, Palmer said.

Authorities will attempt to seize those funds through forfeiture and also plan to seize the man’s pickup, Palmer said.
“Deputy Ayers did a good job of recognizing something was going on besides speeding,” he said.

The case reports will be tuned over to the  District Attorneys of office for consideration of any formal charges. Both suspects appeared before a judge Friday for a bond hearing and both remained jailed, each held on $20,000 bond.
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Kim Morava may be reached at 214-3962.