Routine stop leads to $10K bust

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Simply because he wasn’t wearing his seatbelt, 30-year-old William Ward is awaiting a court date after being caught with cocaine, marijuana, drug paraphernalia and an automatic weapon.

Upon performing a routine traffic stop Thursday night on Alabama Highway 14, Greensboro police chief Claude Hamilton said the scent of marijuana led to the rightful search of Ward’s vehicle.

“One of the officers was patrolling that area and observed the driver of a red, four-door Cadillac not wearing a seatbelt so he pulled him over,” Hamilton said. “However, once he approached the car, the officer smelled marijuana. Apparently they were smoking in the car.”

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Thus, after removing Ward and his passenger, Jermaine Banks, from the vehicle, Greensboro officers completed a thorough search of the automobile.

After looking through the car, police confiscated two small bags of cocaine, a large re-sealable bag with marijuana, scales used to weigh illegal substances, a .40-calibur automatic weapon and approximately $1,095 in cash.

Street value for the drugs, Hamilton said, could range anywhere from $8,000-$10,000. According to Hamilton, Ward was out on parole during the time of the drug bust and must now face the court system once again.

“He now faces charges of trafficking cocaine, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and being a felon in possession of a firearm,” Hamilton said.

Although the charges are known, it is unclear how much time Ward could face if accused of all the crimes.

At the time of press, the passenger of Ward’s car that afternoon had not been arrested on any charges pertaining to this incident.