Drugs found in plain sight, man arrested

Very late Monday night, while responding to a report of a suspicious vehicle in the driveway of a residence southwest of Franklinton, Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office Patrol Sergeant Michael Thomas encountered a man sleeping in the vehicle.

As he approached the vehicle, Sgt. Thomas observed a quantity of what appeared to be marijuana and crack cocaine in plain view on the front seat. He woke the passenger, identified as Shawn Thomas, 37, a resident of a nearby mobile home park southwest of Franklinton.

After placing the driver under arrest, Sgt. Thomas discovered a large amount of cash, a canister of pepper spray and a cell phone in a trouser pocket. Then, while searching the vehicle, Sgt. Thomas recovered the bag of marijuana and the crack cocaine along with heroin and methamphetamine which was hidden under a hand towel.

The arrest occurred very late at night and officers think Shawn Thomas simply pulled into the wrong driveway and fell asleep.

Shawn Thomas was transported to the Washington Parish Jail and booked at 2:40 a.m.Tuesday on charges of possession with intent to distribute marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin. This was not his first incarceration in Washington Parish. In 2010, Thomas was jailed on charges of aggravated assault, criminal trespass and being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. He was arrested again three months later for possession with intent to distribute illegal drugs and a traffic offense. In 2015, he was arrested for several counts of possession of illegal drugs, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of illegal drugs with a weapon present, being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, traffic offenses and being a fugitive from another jurisdiction. He was arrested again in 2017 on a felony charge of failure to appear in court.

“Sgt. Thomas exemplifies the excellence of our officers,” stated Sheriff Randy Seal. “Our deputies are constantly on the lookout for criminal violators, and in this case, Sgt. Thomas got a career criminal and a drug dealer out of our community. The arrest record of Shawn Thomas indicates he has no respect for either the laws of the State of Louisiana or for his fellow parish residents. Good job, Sgt. Thomas!”

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