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Thursday, Apr. 28, 2016

Traffic arrests keep law enforcement officials busy

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Justin R. Sims
Some drivers traveling throughout Clay County kept local law enforcement busy Tuesday night into early Wednesday morning.

Members of the Brazil City Police Department were the first to initiate an unusual traffic stop.

Shortly after 11 p.m., Patrolman Jeremy Mace, with assistance from Patrolman Todd Stemm, stopped a vehicle driven by Justin R. Sims, 20, Greencastle, near the intersection of National Avenue and Hoosier Street. Mace reported seeing Sims throw a lit cigarette from his vehicle, which officials confirm is a violation of Indiana law.

During questioning, Mace discovered Sims and an unidentified passenger in the vehicle both had their drivers licenses previously suspended. Because neither person was able to drive, officials reported the vehicle had to be impounded.

According to information provided by the BCPD, as one officer was preparing the paperwork to cite Sims for two traffic infractions, the other officer began to process the contents of the vehicle before it was impounded. An undisclosed amount of marijuana was discovered in a jacket allegedly belonging to Sims.

Sims, who was initially going to be released by officers with a summons to appear in court for the two infractions, was taken into custody and booked into the Clay County Justice Center on a preliminary D felony charge of possession of marijuana.

Jail officials confirmed Sims remains incarcerated on a $5,000 cash bond (no 10 percent allowed) awaiting formal arraignment per the court calendar.

Sgt. Dennis Archer confirmed the passenger was let go.

Michael R. Lowry
Meanwhile, shortly after 1 a.m., a small convoy of four vehicles caught the attention of members of the Clay County Sheriff's Department on patrol as part of the Operation Pullover program.

Patrol Sgt./K-9 Handler Josh Clarke and Reserve Deputy Nick Workman were traveling east on United States 40 near County Road 500 West when they spotted the vehicles. Clarke reported seeing the two vehicles in the back of the line allegedly driving erratically, following too closely and swerving all over the roadway.

When initiating his cruiser's lights, Clarke said the two vehicles did not stop and turned north on Private Road 400 West.

"They both stopped a short distance later," Clarke said, adding the two drivers admitted they were coming home from celebrating St. Patrick's Day at a tavern.

During the investigation, the officers requested Cindy Huntsman-Blackwell, 52, Bryan, Texas, and Michael R. Lowry, 37, Brazil, participate in alcohol/chemical testing. Lowry cooperated fully and submitted to testing at St. Vincent Clay Hospital, but the results are not available due to the ongoing investigation.

However, Clarke reported that Huntsman-Blackwell allegedly refused to cooperate with any requests made by the officers.

Both suspects were detained without further incident and transported to the Clay County Justice Center were they were initially booked on preliminary charges of resisting law enforcement and operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

After officers allegedly discovered a handgun, narcotics and paraphernalia during the investigation, additional charges of possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of marijuana (under 30 grams) were added to Lowry's preliminary charges.

Bonding out Wednesday, Lowry is awaiting formal arraignment per the court calendar.

Jail officials confirmed that Huntsman-Blackwell remains incarcerated on a $7,000 cash bond (no 10 percent allowed) awaiting formal arraignment per the court calendar.

Cindy Huntsman-Blackwell
Officials confirmed the three cases have been turned over to the Clay County Prosecutor's Office for review.

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Brazil and Clay County police are the best! Agree?

-- Posted by Dagnabbit on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 9:33 AM


-- Posted by nhs_babe_2011 on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 10:14 AM

I'm sure my comment will be removed as usual, but "definantly"?

-- Posted by bsmom on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 11:30 AM

great job

-- Posted by 2dogbob on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 11:39 AM

Drugs??? ....someone in Clay County in the posession of drugs? That is difficult to believe ;)

-- Posted by I. M. Lee Thall, Esq. on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 3:26 PM

"Mace reported seeing Sims throw a lit cigarette from his vehicle, which officials confirm is a violation of Indiana law."

The majority of arrests made in Brazil/Clay County involve drugs. Real drugs. And they are worried about someone throwing a cigarette out of a veh. window? That ranks right up there with murder. How about getting your priorities in order?

-- Posted by I. M. Lee Thall, Esq. on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 3:32 PM

Why is it relevant that Mr. Lowry had a legal handgun in his possession?

By the way, this is not really worthy of a story in the newspaper. It should be a blurb at best. It wasn't some fantastic drug bust. They happened to catch a couple of people with a little weed. Whoopee!

-- Posted by bsmom on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 4:01 PM

Lee Thall, how do you think drug arrest are made? The majority of arrest are made when Police stop people for traffic violations which leads to finding people in possession of drugs. Serial Killer Ted Bundy was caught when Police stopped him for a minor traffic violation. This is just one example of billions.

-- Posted by bucklin on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 4:09 PM

Lee Thall,

Let's see, one person has a legal gun plus illegal drugs while driving intoxicated in a group of drunks trying to find their way home (including an out of state drunk driver who was going God knows where), another person who illegally throws a lit cigarette out of a car while in possession of illegal drugs and you're upset it made the paper.

I don't care if the gun is legal. The guy who had it apparently doesn't care about being LEGAL or he wouldn't have POT or be DRIVING DRUNK.

The person who threw the cigarette out the window doesn't care what he could potentially catch on fire. This time of year, doing something like that is PLAIN STUPID. Firefighters are running all over the place putting out brush fires, and yes some of them are because of cigarettes. That is why it is illegal!

Truth is correct, most criminal activity is discovered when a person slips up and does something dumb. I would say everyone's priorities were right except the ones with their pictures on the front page and you!

If these yahoos are this dumb, then put them on the front page. And yes IF I'M EVER THIS DUMB OR ANY MEMBER OF MY FAMILY, put our pictures up there along with the rest! If we can't figure out the right thing to do, then maybe our fellow brothers and sisters in the community can help us stay on the right track! At least that's the way it used to be!

Then again, I'm getting old!

-- Posted by Cy on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 5:08 PM


I'm sorry that our ideology is so distant.

Weed, whoopee! i don't understand how you can be so "so what" about it?

Marijuana is illegal to possess or consume and whether you like it or not it has the potential to destroy lives.

Whether you agree to its legality or not, it is a fact that it is illegal NOW. Wrong is wrong, period.

As mothers, we should be able to expect our children to grow up in a safe world. Drugs, including your harmless little weed, make it a very scary place as long as people are willing to commit crimes to get it or possess it. Not to mention the bad things that can happen while under the influence.

-- Posted by Cy on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 5:17 PM

Thanks guys for doing your job and a good job at that. Keep up the good work!!!!!!!!!!!!

Grateful citizen

-- Posted by Tracy Jones on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 8:40 PM

TruthIsOurSword it appears that just about every traffic stop in Brazil/Clay County leads to a drug arrest. That should make you proud of your City & County. Maybe you need to sharpen that sword.

-- Posted by I. M. Lee Thall, Esq. on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 9:24 PM

I know weed is illegal. I don't smoke weed. I don't hang out with anyone who does. I'm just saying, it's not a big enough deal that it should be a front page story.

I agree that it is not smart to drive drunk or carry weed, but this was not some major drug bust. I don't feel any safer since this arrest was made. If you really find weed to be that "scary", then you must be frightened all the time.

And these people, I'm sure, deserved to be arrested, but really, big deal. I'm sure there were far more dangerous criminals on the road that night.

And if you want to put it in the paper, fine, but is all the hoopla over it really necessary? I know it's a small town, but there must be more important things to report.

What's next? Pictures of people who got speeding tickets? Uh oh, somebody rolled through a four-way stop at 2 mph, call Ivy Jackson!

-- Posted by bsmom on Thu, Mar 19, 2009, at 11:01 PM

So looks like nothing has changed ~ some complain that law enforcement officers don't make arrests; others complain when they do. Illegal is illegal is illegal ~ stop complaining & let our fine officers do their job ~

-- Posted by karebabe on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 9:07 AM

I don't think there's any question that the police did their jobs on these arrests. I just don't think it's some huge story that deserves front page. I know people love to gossip, I enjoy getting on here and seeing who's been arrested. I'm just saying it's not a front page story and it's nothing to over-congratulate authorities about.

They pulled over some people who were swerving and someone who threw out a cig. Great! Should we congratulate cashiers at Wal-Mart every time they check out a customer or bankers each time they complete a transaction? It's their job. These people did nothing newsworthy. The police did nothing outstanding... they just pulled over drunk people on St. Patrick's Day. Who didn't know they'd be out there? The police did what they're supposed to do, but no one went beyond the call of duty to capture hardened criminals. These are regular people who were unnecessarily embarrassed. Yes, their own fault, but again, big deal! The Brazil Times is getting carried away with these stories.

Just like today, the Times published a big picture and story about a fender bender. What's the point of that. Interesting? No. Embarrassing to those involved? Likely. Ridiculous to put on the front page? Yes.

-- Posted by bsmom on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 10:02 AM


You state that Walmart cashiers and police officers are just doing their jobs and don't need patted on the back for doing that. While I agree in principal, everyone deserves a moment of recognition for a job well done, including Walmart cashiers.

Did it ever occur to you the reporter was doing that too, her job!

She is supposed to write informational and interesting stories for the readers of the paper. She did that or people wouldn't be on here commenting about it, including you, or talking about it in the grocery lines.

As for the fender bender story, its more about how silly crimes are then to be embarrassing. Look at the guys picture in that story, he really doesn't seemed too bothered about being arrested in the least bit! And I would hazard a bet that the accident victim's family feel a little different about the "fender bender" than you do!

I say well job to everyone.

-- Posted by Cy on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 11:04 AM

It is not a reporter's job to make a big deal out of every little story that comes along. You're right, stories should be informational and interesting. This story wasn't. And I don't think it is something everyone needs to discuss. I wouldn't be commenting if I didn't think it was so totally insane for this to be portrayed as a major accomplishment by the police.

And sure people deserve a pat on the back every now and then, but like I said, not every time they do what they're supposed to do.

How can you tell by someone's mugshot that they didn't mind being arrested? Who doesn't mind being arrested? Should he have tears streaming down his face to prove his shame? He doesn't look happy in the picture.

I was in an accident, not my fault, and had minor injuries, yet neither I nor my family would have expected or enjoyed it being on the front page. That's stupid.

If they wanted to write a story, fine, but splash it all over the front page? Unnecessary and ridiculous. Do you see this in any other newspaper? What if the Tribune Star or Indianapolis Star put every incident on the front page, complete with mug shots?

-- Posted by bsmom on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 1:20 PM


Reporters write stories for a newspaper, and in this town there is a lot of weird things to write about. I'm sure lots of things don't make it to the paper at all! You might not have found this story interesting, but many in the community have found it interesting and in a strange way funny ... like a dumb criminal story that you would see in numerous print, television and internet media.

I also don't think reporters have any input on where a story is placed or what importance it has in a newspaper. They just do their jobs, much like the rest us poor tired Joes of the world do.

I've taken the paper for many years and there have been times when the coverage was absolutely terrible. In recent years, the paper has become so much better and it is thanks to the current Times staff.

As far as not being like the Tribune or the Indy star, we are a small community with a small town newspaper. Small town stuff happens here and sometimes its not newsworthy compared to big city newspapers, but its interesting to the people that live in this community!

If anything, I think we should be grateful for the newspaper for letting us know what is happening around us. I think it is important to know that even the mundane things of life sometimes are connected to crime. That shows how easily it creeps into our lives. We may not be Mayberry USA, but I'm proud of my community even with all the weirdness.

-- Posted by Cy on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 3:04 PM

But this wasn't an amusing "dumb criminal" story. It was a couple of routine stops that happened to result in the police finding a paltry amount of drugs. But again, that's not the point I'm making.

In addition, had you read my comments rather than jumping to various defenses, you would know that I am not attacking Ivy Jackson for writing the story. I just think it's awful to put these people's mugshots on the front page and make a big deal out of a few routine arrests.

And the coverage, in my opinion, is no better or worse than it ever has been. There are constant errors in grammar and butchering of the English language throughout the Times, just as there always have been, not to mention the obvious questionable judgement that goes into the stories.

The only good reason to put this story on the front page is to gossip about a couple of people who made mistakes. Why not change the name to the Brazil Enquirer if this is the kind of thing we're focussing on now?

-- Posted by bsmom on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 3:37 PM

bsmom: "There are constant errors in grammar and butchering of the English language throughout the Times, just as there always have been, not to mention the obvious questionable judgement that goes into the stories....Why not change the name to the Brazil Enquirer if this is the kind of thing we're focussing on now?"

Might this be the pot calling the kettle black????

-- Posted by Bigpappy on Fri, Mar 20, 2009, at 9:40 PM

If you think I made errors in my grammar, spelling, or the English language, please enlighten me, BigPappy, because I didn't.

Also, had I done so, you should realize that comments on a website are not held to quite the same standard as a published newspaper. These people are supposed to be professional writers, and clearly they're not, but at least the editor should be.

-- Posted by bsmom on Sat, Mar 21, 2009, at 7:35 AM


It's unfortunate that you believe your posts to be free of errors. Each one contains errors. Sorry! My point is simply this: Before you point your finger at others, you should be sure you are perfect. (Check out your post in response to nhs_babe_2011, Mar 19 at 11:30AM)

-- Posted by Bigpappy on Sat, Mar 21, 2009, at 10:21 PM

Please do not mention that there are drugs in Clay County, it upsets brono921.

-- Posted by I. M. Lee Thall, Esq. on Sun, Mar 22, 2009, at 12:48 PM

Bigpappy, are you serious? That's what you came up with as my error?

Please read what nhs_babe_2011 typed... It says "I DEFINANTLY AGREE!!!!!!!!!" and I was pointing out that it says "definantly" rather than "definitely."


Now I challenge you to find an actual error.

-- Posted by bsmom on Sun, Mar 22, 2009, at 1:37 PM

Challenge accepted! How do you spell "focussing"??? Check it out. Also, while you're at it, why not check for the run on sentences? Even your last post contains one. So, you know what they say about people living in glass houses. Your first post was to point out that nhs babe should have used definitely instead of what she typed. Why not get a life, be less critical of others, and let the Times reporters report the news as they see fit?

-- Posted by Bigpappy on Sun, Mar 22, 2009, at 2:26 PM

slow news week?

-- Posted by tbdldam on Sun, Mar 22, 2009, at 4:32 PM

Yes, tbdldam, it must have been a slow news week if this article made the front page.

As for you Bigpappy, here's part of the entry for the word "focus" from Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary:

"Main Entry: focus

Function: verb

Inflected Form(s): fo·cused also fo·cussed; fo·cus·ing also fo·cus·sing"

To borrow a phrase from you, "check it out."

Also, you're quite wrong about there being a run-on sentence in that post. I used something called an ellipsis. Each sentence had a subject and a verb with nothing out of place.

Also, aren't you being awfully critical of me?Maybe you should take some of your own advice, or you could try to make me look stupid again. Of course, that hasn't worked very well for you so far.

-- Posted by bsmom on Sun, Mar 22, 2009, at 5:53 PM

Small violations like these are used all the time for traffic stops, it is nothing unusual. BSmom, no traffic stop or arrest is routine, one stop as a result of a small infraction may result in a bunch of dumb drunk adults or a suspended driver with marijuana, but next time it may be a wanted criminal with a warrant that could be carrying an illegal weapon; you never know.

The convoy of drunks may not seem like a big deal from this perspective, but what if that drunken convoy would have smashed into your family while driving home that night; then you may view this incident from a different perspective..

-- Posted by Propria Persona on Mon, Mar 23, 2009, at 8:47 AM

I know, I know. People keep arguing with me about this and I have acknowledged many times that these people should have been pulled over and that they should have been arrested.

Of course I don't think people should drive around drunk with drugs in the car, which I have stated several times. My issue here is NOT with the police.

I know "it may be a wanted criminal with a warrant that could be carrying an illegal weapon," but in this case it wasn't.

Also, if it really was a "caravan" of 4 drunks, what happened to the other 2 drunks? Maybe they were the big criminals and the police missed them. One of them might have had a body in the trunk. Now that's a front page story!

-- Posted by bsmom on Mon, Mar 23, 2009, at 9:01 AM

Unfortunetly it is difficult for a police officer to stop 2 vehicles, let alone all 4 that were traveling together.

-- Posted by Propria Persona on Mon, Mar 23, 2009, at 2:21 PM

Duh! It was kind of a joke, if you couldn't tell. And AGAIN, I think the police officer did his job as he was supposed to.

By the way, how DID 1 police car stop those 2 cars at once? Because they were already at their destination, perhaps? And NOT really part of a 4-car caravan?

-- Posted by bsmom on Mon, Mar 23, 2009, at 3:46 PM

I can't believe alll the childish behavior on here. Legal or illegal, I'd favor someoneone on pot any day over alcohol. I don't care if people want to smoke their crack pipes or what they do, but people have to be responsible so many people let their kids do with out and are out doing stupid crap that affects others, that's when it becomes problematic. I don't even think there should be such a thing a a bar or tavern personally- if you want to do anything risky- stay HOME!!!

-- Posted by ape1 on Mon, Mar 23, 2009, at 9:23 PM

They were coming back from a bar.

Both were drunk.

I think the Clay County Sheriff's Department did this guy a favor.

O.V.W.I -

2500.00 & suspended license

Impund fee's -


Not getting something that doesn't wash off -


-- Posted by IIVIIy Name Is on Tue, Mar 24, 2009, at 4:10 AM

I've written so many posts because people keep singling me out to argue with me when they haven't even gotten the point.

Yes, I do think this article was written to make it look like the police are doing something about the drug problem. Thank you for further proving my point!

And how was the person in front supposed to know he was being pulled over too? If I see a cop trying to pull over the guy behind me, I'm not likely to stop.

And before anyone starts, I don't drive drunk! And I don't smoke weed! And I don't think people should be allowed to do either!

-- Posted by bsmom on Tue, Mar 24, 2009, at 8:10 AM

By the way, I agree with 1*35 totally! Finally someone on here is making some sense!

Also, some of you will be very upset to know, I saw some arrests in the public record for marijuana and there are no stories on the front page about these people! Shocking!!!!!

-- Posted by bsmom on Tue, Mar 24, 2009, at 8:36 AM

bsmom ~

What you are not understanding is that these types of arrests are all good ~ keeps someone from getting killed by a drunk driver (in this article ~ two DWI) & hopefully can keep a young man from using again ~ we need to be thankful for all of our hard working law officers pulling over these drivers ~ truthinsword is absolutely correct ~ not all arrests are "BIG" as you seem to want ~ but the small arrests still count for taking drugs & drunks off the roads in Clay County & they are all news worthy.

-- Posted by karebabe on Wed, Mar 25, 2009, at 8:42 AM


I have noticed that Lee hasn't stepped up to the plate on any articles with his "drug-free community" ~ maybe he's decided to pick on another county for a change ~

Love all of your comments ~

-- Posted by karebabe on Wed, Mar 25, 2009, at 8:44 AM

OMG!!!!! How many times do I need to say I think these people deserved to be pulled over and arrested?????

And I hope it will be a wake-up call to all those involved.

I don't think all arrests should be "big"!!!!! I just think it should be something a little more exciting than this to make the front page. And if this goes on the front page, why doesn't every arrest?

-- Posted by bsmom on Wed, Mar 25, 2009, at 8:46 AM