Arrest sought in La. drug case

Published 12:13 am Thursday, February 12, 2015

NATCHEZ — An arrest warrant has been issued on a Natchez man who allegedly was carrying two pounds of marijuana in the same vehicle as an off-duty Natchez Police Department officer.

A warrant was issued Feb. 2 for Deshawn Griggs of Natchez for felony possession of schedule I narcotics with intent to distribute and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Concordia Parish Narcotics task Force Agent John Cowan said he was traveling behind a Chevy Monte Carlo on U.S. 84 in Vidalia near Walmart at approximately 10 p.m. Jan. 25 when the vehicle stopped and Griggs got out of the vehicle and began walking away.

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Cowan initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle and made contact with Griggs as he continued to walk away from the vehicle.

After patting down Griggs, Cowan said he recovered a small quantity of marijuana.

“After a brief conversation I had with the subject, he produced two bricks — approximately 1 pound a piece — from his backpack,” Cowan said.

Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy David Hedrick said members of the task force attempted to work with Griggs to uncover the supplier of the marijuana because the narcotics were sealed and packaged in a unique way.

“The marijuana was packaged so tightly, we knew wherever it came from it was professionally done,” Hedrick said.

No arrests were made on the scene, Hedrick said, but a warrant was issued for Griggs’ arrest Feb. 2 after attempts to find the supplier were unsuccessful. Cowan said further charges on Griggs or others in the vehicle were not expected.

Cowan and Hedrick declined to release the names of the other people in the vehicle saying doing so could potentially open the department to a possible lawsuit for defamation of character.

Sources close to the situation, however, reported that NPD officer Melvin Davis was in the vehicle with Griggs.

No charges were filed against Davis as of Wednesday evening.

Natchez Police Chief Danny White confirmed that an officer was involved in the incident, but declined to release the officer’s name since no charges were filed.

White said the officer approached him shortly after the incident and walked him through what happened.

“He told me that he was just giving a ride to this individual and that he wasn’t aware there was marijuana in the car,” White said. “He came to me immediately, and I asked him to take some days off while we looked into it.”

White said he spoke with CPSO officials who confirmed the officer’s account of the situation.

The officer was off work Jan. 30, 31 and Feb. 1, but White said the time off was not a suspension.

“He came to me immediately to let me know what happened and since there were no charges filed, there was no need for suspension or anything like that,” White said. “Basically we wanted to see the outcome of the investigation and that no charges were going to be filed.”