Drug bust

Over five and a half pounds of methamphetamine were confiscated after a trooper pulled over a man on I-10 near Port Allen, then was dragged across the highway after the State Police discovered the narcotics in his vehicle. He escaped but was caught later Thursday in Hammond.  

A traffic stop on I-!0 Port Allen led to arrest of a 39-year-old man on murder and drug charges after La. State Police troopers found a large amount of methamphetamine in his vehicle.

Darrell Ray Smith Jr. of Livingston faces numerous charges after troopers stopped him around 3 a.m. Thursday, became suspicious and uncovered almost 3.5 kilos (over five and a half pounds) of the drugs in his 2014 Dodge Ram., according to Troop A spokesperson Taylor J. Scrantz.

“During the course of the traffic stop, troopers became suspicious of criminal activity and requested consent to search the vehicle,” the spokesperson said.

Scrantz said Smith also faces an attempted murder of a police officer and battery on a police officer after dragging a trooper across the highway. 

The attempted murder charge is a felony; the battery charge is a misdemeanor.

“As troopers attempted to place Smith under arrest, he became actively resistant by pushing and kicking the troopers,” Scrantz said, actions leading to an attempt to escape by the suspect.  

“Smith was able to re-enter the Dodge and began to flee the traffic stop with a trooper trapped in the driver side door jamb,” the spokesperson said. “Smith then accelerated and began to drag the trooper across the roadway.”

The trooper eventually broke free and landed on the roadway and sustained minor injuries, Scrantz said. “Smith ultimately escaped the traffic stop in West Baton Rouge.”

Early Thursday evening, Smith was located by officers with the Fugitive Apprehension Unit and arrested him in Hammond. 

Smith is charged with one count each of attempted murder of a police officer, battery on a police officer, aggravated flight from an officer, resisting an officer with force or violence and possession with the intent to distribute Schedule II drugs and improper lane usage.

This case is still under investigation and there may be further charges,” Scrantz said. “There is no further information at this time.”

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