Here are a few of the criminal law stories that have recently occurred around the state of Alabama:
- Last Thursday, Trussville police arrested a 61-year-old Birmingham man attempting to impersonate an officer. Willie Lee Toney was driving a vehicle with law enforcement marking – and equipped with blue and red flashing – when an officer stopped him in the parking lot of the First Commercial Bank on South Chalkville Road. Police noted that the vehicle was registered to “someone who was wanted by the U.S. Marshals for having outstanding arrest warrants.” Toney told the officers he was law enforcement and was armed. He walked towards the officers while reaching towards his waistband and a struggle between the parties ensued, eventually leading to Toney’s arrest. Two Trussville officers received minor injuries in the struggle. The gun was a .45 caliber with most of the serial filed off, and Toney had several replicas of law enforcement badges in his car and on his person. Toney is being held on bonds totaling $33,300 and has charges of impersonating a police officer, possession of a pistol by a violent felon, possessing a firearm with an altered identification and resisting arrest.
- Around 3 a.m. this past Monday, a man and two women were arrested outside of Kilby Correctional Facility in Montgomery County. Christopher Martin Wilson (a 28-year-old recently released convict), 21-year-old Shiane Bambinelli and 21-year-old Kelsey Smith have been accused of trying to smuggle drugs into the prison. Officers spotted Wilson right outside the prison perimeter and dispatched a tracking dog with Wilson eventually surrendering. Officers then went after a suspicious vehicle leaving the property. After a Montgomery officer pulled over the vehicle, Wilson and Bambinelli – both carrying methamphetamines – were taken into custody. Smith was eventually taken into custody as well. Smith faces charges of conspiracy to commit a controlled substance crime. Wilson and Bambinelli are both charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance and conspiracy to commit a controlled substance crime while Wilson also has a charge of promoting contraband. He was released from the DOC two months ago after serving a five-year sentence for unlawful distribution of a controlled substance in Fayette County.
- A 43-year-old Albertville woman who showed up at Boaz Municipal Court last Thursday was arrested and taken to jail in the same building for suspected drug activity soon after the court was adjourned. Police were given a tip regarding the woman’s vehicle and deployed a K-9 to do an open-air sniff. Boaz police said they found meth, marijuana, anxiety medicine and syringes in Christi Dewanna Peppers’ car. Police were not sure of Peppers’ circumstances or reasons for being in court that day, but according to Deputy Chief Josh Gaskin, she was “known in the narcotics world.” Peppers is held in the Boaz City Jail on charges of distributing meth, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and illegal possession of prescription drugs.
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