By Pat Pratt
A Worden man is facing felony drug and weapons charges following a traffic stop by Troy Police that netted more than 20 grams of cocaine and methamphetamine.
Madison County court records show Joshua L. Latham, 28, is charged with possession with intent to deliver cocaine, possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine, unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, as well as an earlier warrant for armed violence.
Troy Police Officer Alex Reish wrote in an incident report that he was monitoring traffic Nov. 25 on Interstate 55 when he saw a Dodge Journey SUV following a tractor-trailer too closely. As the vehicle passed the police cruiser, it slowed its speed and deviated from its lane of travel, Reish wrote.
Reish stopped the vehicle near the 18 mile marker on Interstate 55. He wrote he knew the driver from past warrant checks and that Latham’s driver’s license was revoked.
As Reish explained the reason for the stop, Latham began to breath heavily and looked down toward the floorboard, according to the report. Asked if he had a weapon, Latham shook his head no and again looked at the floorboard.
Reish wrote he could see Latham’s carotid artery pulsing and him visibly sweating. ‘
“Latham put his hands on the wheel and looked forward,” the report states. “I asked Latham if he could turn off the vehicle. He asked if he could go home, and I told him he could not.”
After police confiscated the vehicle keys and another officer arrived on the scene, Latham allegedly admitted he had a weapon. Police found a loaded .22 caliber revolver under the driver’s seat.
A prior felony conviction of possession of a defaced firearm prohibits Latham from possessing a gun.
Latham allegedly admitted he had cocaine in his underwear and gave officers a bag containing a white powder, later shown to weigh 8.9 grams, according to the report. He was placed in handcuffs and put inside the back of a police cruiser.
Police conducted a search of the vehicle Latham was driving and found another bag in the center console containing about 11.4 grams of a white crystalline substance believed to be methamphetamine. Hashish was also discovered in the console.
Latham was taken to the Troy Police station, where he posted bond on the active warrant and was released pending lab results of the alleged drugs. He was formally charged Dec. 13 and bond was set at $250,000. He was arrested on the charges Dec. 16 by U.S. Marshals.
No attorney is listed for Latham in court records. He is scheduled to appear before Circuit Judge Tim Berkley for a preliminary hearing at 9 a.m. Jan. 6 in Madison County court.