A Pike grand jury handed down felony indictments against two people this week in connection with two separate incidents in which they allegedly fled from police.
Marcella Dials, 48, of Mac Pinson Drive, Inez, was indicted for her role in an incident in which she allegedly narrowly missed hitting a Kentucky State Police trooper during a Nov. 22 incident.
According to court documents, on Nov. 22, KSP Post 9 received a call reporting an erratic driver on U.S. 23 traveling southbound. Troopers were able to catch up to the vehicle in Coal Run and attempted to initiate a traffic stop. The citation said Dials ignored the officers’ lights and siren and her vehicle continued on to the Cassidy Boulevard bridge, despite multiple KSP vehicles attempting to stop her.
The citation said Dials drove behind the Lowe’s on Cassidy Boulevard, where she accelerated with multiple store employees in the area, and struck some of the store’s merchandise. The citation said Dials continued to drive out of the store’s parking lot, and onto Fields Way, where she finally stopped after encountering a dead-end.
The citation said Dials’ vehicle came to a stop with a cruiser behind it and one on the driver’s side. The troopers exited their vehicles, the citation said, and attempted to get Dials to exit her vehicle, at which time Dials put her vehicle in reverse and accelerated.
Court documents said that, before Dials’ vehicle came to a stop after striking one of the trooper’s cruisers, she nearly struck Trooper Joseph Coleman, who was forced to jump out of the way.
The citation said that Dials had to be assisted from the vehicle, which was searched after her arrest, leading troopers to find 13 empty single-serve bottles of Fireball whiskey.
Dials, the citation said, refused to submit to field sobriety tests, but submitted to a chemical test after being transported to Pikeville Medical Center. She was lodged in the Pike County Detention Center.
The indictment charges Dials with first-degree wanton endangerment, first-degree fleeing or evading police, first-degree criminal mischief, resisting arrest, third-degree criminal mischief, DUI, possession of an open container of alcohol in a vehicle, reckless driving and a traffic charge.
A Dorton man was also indicted in connection with a chase which allegedly took place over the Thanksgiving weekend.
According to court documents, on Nov. 30, Pikeville Police Officer Daniel Fields observed a vehicle driven by Edward Bentley, 41, of Dorton-Jenkins Highway, pull out of Double Kwik on the South Mayo Trail with only one headlight.
The citation said Fields attempted to stop Bentley, but Bentley refused to stop and continued driving north on U.S. 23, weaving from side to side and crossing the center line.
Bentley, the citation said, then turned onto the bridge leading to the Kentucky Enterprise Industrial Park and continued on the roadway, traveling at 67 mph in a 20 mph zone. The vehicle, Fields wrote, finally stopped and Bentley exited the vehicle and “began to stagger around.” Fields wrote that Bentley was unable to successfully complete field sobriety tests and was placed under arrest. Bentley, the citation said, told the officers that he had run out of gas or he would not have stopped.
The citation said that, during a subsequent search of his vehicle, officers found an open bottle of vodka, which Bentley admitted to drinking. Also, the citation said, the officers found numerous hypodermic needles, small baggies and spoons.
Bentley, documents said, refused to submit to a blood test at Pikeville Medical Center and “passed out” en route to the Pike County Detention Center.
The grand jury indicted Bentley on charges of DUI and first-degree fleeing or evading police.
Other indictments handed down this week included:
• Charles Hall Jr., 36, of Haus Branch, Banner, on charges of first-degree possession of a controlled substance, second-degree possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, public intoxication and possession of marijuana.
• Melinda S. Ball, 38, of Staggerweed Fork, Pikeville, on a charge of first-degree possession of a controlled substance.
• Angelena Phillips, 23, of Newsome Branch, Virgie, on a charge of first-degree possession of a controlled substance.
• Debra T. Maynard, 59, of Hambley Boulevard, on a charge of theft of mail matter.
Editor’s note: An indictment is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.