Home Uncategorized Man pleads not guilty to drug, battery allegations

Man pleads not guilty to drug, battery allegations

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NASHVILLE – A local man arrested in mid-May on drug and battery charges entered not guilty pleas to the allegations Wednesday in Howard County Circuit Court.
Lawrence Swift Jr., 36, was ordered to return to court Aug. 5 to face charges of possession of cocaine and methamphetamine as well as third degree domestic battery, all of which are enhanced by the state’s habitual offender designation.
Court documents indicate that the charges against Swift stem from a May 14 incident during which the alleged victim of the battery told police Swift had “punched him in the face” at the Pope St. apartment complex. According to an affidavit of arrest filed by city investigator Larry Marion, the victim “had a cut under his chin, blood coming from his nose and cuts on the inside of his lip.”
That evening, just after 9 p.m., city officers Ty Basiliere, Justin Garner and Greg Parker arrested Swift despite his continued attempts to “try and get under [a] vehicle,” according to the affidavit. After taking the suspect into custody, police allegedly discovered bags of suspected methamphetamine and cocaine weighing in at less than two grams each beneath the vehicle.
Swift has nine prior felony convictions and was wearing an Arkansas Department of Correction ankle monitor at the time of his arrest, according to police, who also say he was convicted of another domestic battery charge in 2011.
In unrelated court news from Wednesday, five other defendants made first appearances on assorted felony charges. Thad and Danita Keith, a husband and wife accused of permitting the abuse of a minor, Bonnie Hulburt, who faces a charge of possession of drug paraphernalia, and Gary Brian Cogburn, a former county deputy accused of possessing a controlled substance with purpose to deliver and manufacturing a controlled substance, were all ordered to return to court June 3 for arraignments.
The fifth defendant, Dontarius Armstrong, also made a first appearance on initial charges of second degree sexual assault, although prosecuting attorney Bryan Chesshir has previously indicated the charge will likely be amended as investigators continue to probe the case.