Picayune police officers work DUI incident that involved child endangerment

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Picayune Police officers worked several drug possession cases recently, one of which involved child endangerment.

Assistant Chief Dustin Moeller said that in one of the cases, officers were dispatched on Sept. 21 at approximately 4:40 p.m. to Interstate 59 North near exit 6 to a reckless driver.

En route, dispatch advised the officers that the suspect’s vehicle had left the roadway multiple times and struck the guardrail. Then dispatch advised the officers that the vehicle had exited the interstate at exit 6 and proceeded north on Highway 43 North.

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Officers saw a vehicle with extensive damage to the driver’s side proceed through the intersection of Highway 43 North and Highway 11. Since the damage was consistent with striking a guardrail, officers conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle at Highway 43 North near Inside Road. The driver was later identified as Wiley Ray Lee II, 43, of 196 Morgan Seal Road, Picayune, Moeller said.

The officers noted Lee appeared to be under the influence due to his slow speech and delayed responses to questions, Moeller said. Officers also observed two small children in the rear seat of the vehicle who were not properly fastened in safety belts.

AAA Ambulance Service was dispatched to the scene because one child complained of a bad headache, Moeller said. Lee consented for the children to be transported to Highland Community Hospital for further evaluation.

After conducting field sobriety tests on Lee, officers conducted a vehicle inventory search. In the search, officers recovered one clear plastic bag containing a brown rock-like substance believed to be heroin, said Moeller. Officers also recovered drug paraphernalia from the vehicle.

Lee was taken into custody where corrections officers at the criminal justice center conducted a search of Lee’s person, finding an additional clear plastic bag containing a brown rock like substance from the inside of Lee’s sock, Moeller said.

Lee was arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance, felony introducing contraband into a correctional facility, DUI first offense and two counts of endangering a child by driving under the influence. Lee was also cited for driving while license suspended, reckless driving and two counts of child restraint violation, Moeller said.

The children were later released to family members.

In a separate incident, two people were arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance: Joshua Jermaine Jones, 36, 806 Herrin Dr., Picayune and Kerri Lee Lynn Brass, 27, 3 Ken’Du Rd., Poplarville.

On Sept. 25 at approximately 11:45 p.m., Picayune Police officers observed the driver of a Toyota van committing a traffic violation on Memorial Boulevard, Moeller said. The officer initiated a traffic stop near Telly Road, but the driver continued traveling east on Memorial Boulevard before turning south on Telly Road.

After multiple attempts to stop the vehicle, including giving the suspect vehicle multiple verbal commands over the PA, the driver finally stopped at the end of Westonia Street, Moeller said.

The officer made contact with the driver, identified as Jones, who was removed from the vehicle. During that time, the officer detected the strong odor of marijuana inside the vehicle, Moeller said.

The passenger, Brass, was asked to exit the vehicle, and officers observed drug paraphernalia and a bag containing a substance believed to be marijuana in her seat, Moeller said.

During a search of her person, officers recovered a small white plastic bag containing a white crystal like substance believed to be methamphetamine.

During a search of the vehicle, officers also recovered multiple bottles of untaxed whiskey.

During booking, Brass was searched and officers recovered a white plastic bag containing five smaller white plastic bags containing a white crystal like substance believed to be crystal meth.

Jones was arrested for possession of a controlled substance felony, possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle, possession of paraphernalia, possession of untaxed whiskey, failure to yield to blue lights and one headlight.

Brass was arrested for possession of a controlled substance felony, possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle, possession of paraphernalia and possession of untaxed whiskey, Moeller said.