Cops: Fayette County man pulled over 7th time for driving on suspended license also accused of child endangerment
A Uniontown man cited for seventh time Friday for driving on a suspended license was also accused by state police of driving under the influence of a controlled substance and two counts of child endangerment when police discovered a baggie of suspected marijuana inside his car.
James P. Smith III, 38, was pulled over about 8 a.m. along the 100 block of Connellsville Street in Uniontown for an unspecified equipment violation and Trooper Adam Kezmarsky reported in an affidavit of probable cause “Smith immediately became very argumentative” when he could not provide proof of insurance or a registration card.
Kezmarsky said troopers could immediately smell a strong odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle and he had an 11-month old girl and 10-year-old boy inside the vehicle. Police said they confiscated a bag containing a small amount of marijuana and marijuana smoking pipes from the vehicle.
Troopers said in documents that Smith exited his car, “screaming and yelling obscenities,” and refused repeated requests to return to his car. Police allege that the toddler was not properly secured in her car seat.
On-line court documents indicate Smith has been cited multiple times since 2014 for driving on a suspended license by state police and Uniontown Police. Court records indicate the suspensions stem from failure to pay numerous traffic fines.
Smith was arraigned before District Judge Michael Metros on charges of driving under the influence of alcohol, possession of a controlled substance, possession of a small amount of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, disorderly conduct, improper sunscreening, driving on a suspended license and several other traffic offenses.
Metros ordered Smith held in the Fayette County Prison after he failed to post $15,000 bail. However, on-line court records indicate he was released late Friday afternoon after the bail was posted by a bail bondsman.
A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled Dec. 12 before Metros.
Paul Peirce is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul at 724-850-2860, [email protected] or via Twitter @ppeirce_trib.