A Vian man was arrested Jan. 4 and charged with the unlawful possession of a controlled drug to distribute and another charge for possessing drug paraphernalia.
Arland Dewayne Rowell, 51, faces imprisonment for up to five years and a fine of up to $20,000 on the drug possession charge. For the paraphernalia, Rowell faces up to one year in prison.
On Jan. 4 at 8:30 p.m., a Sequoyah County Sheriff’s deputy was on patrol in the county when he saw a white SUV heading east with no working left headlight. As he began following the vehicle, the deputy could see the vehicle had a paper license tag, which prompted him to stop the vehicle.
The vehicle’s occupants, Sandy Taylor, the driver, and Rowell identified themselves. Taylor showed her Oklahoma Driver’s License but Rowell simply stated his name. The deputy then separated the two for further questioning.
The deputy began checking Taylor and Rowell for outstanding warrants. During the search, he became aware that the vehicle had been purchased Dec. 1, 2020, more than 30 days past the time the state allows a person to register a newly purchased vehicle.
When asked why she hadn’t registered the vehicle, Taylor said, “They were closed.”
While talking with Taylor, the deputy noticed that her pupils were extremely large and she tried to avoid making eye contact. Her legs were bouncing uncontrollably and the deputy could hear her grinding her teeth while talking.
Taylor told the deputy that she and Rowell had gone to Marble City to see a friend but did not provide a name. When asked how she knew Rowell, Taylor said they met about a year before but was very reluctant to give that information.
Taylor and Rowell were free of warrants.
The deputy wrote Taylor a citation for failure to register her car. After she signed her citation and moved to leave the patrol car, the deputy asked if she would mind speaking to him. She agreed.
The deputy, who had recognized Rowell from previous interactions with him, told Taylor that Rowell was a known drug user and asked her for consent to search her vehicle for drugs. She agreed.
Now, the deputy’s focus turned to Rowell. While having him exit the vehicle to perform a search, a hypodermic needle could clearly be seen. The plunger of the needle was pulled back and full of a clear, liquid substance. Rowell was detained at that time for officer safety. The clear liquid field-tested positive for methamphetamine.
Both parties denied owning the contraband. Taylor and Rowell were then arrested for possession of CDS (meth) and possession of paraphernalia. Taylor was arrested because the vehicle was in her possession and belonged to her.
After arriving at the Sequoyah County Detention Center, Taylor and Rowell exited the patrol vehicle, but while they were walking into the jail, the deputy saw Rowell reach in the rear of his pants and pull up a large, clear plastic bag and toss it on the ground, which the deputy retrieved.
The bag contained three other clear, plastic, zip-type bags, two of which contained a hard, crystal-like substance, which later field-tested positive for meth.
Laura Brown, KXMX Staff Writer
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