Traffic stop leads to arrest, charges

Tuesday, January 3, 2017
Timothy S. Zuel
Courtesy photo Clay County Justice Center

Failure to signal a lane change is what reportedly led to the arrest of Brazil man last week on drug charges.

Timothy S. Zuel, 43, was charged in Clay Superior Court Dec. 30 on a felony alleging possession of methamphetamine, and misdemeanors of possession of synthetic drug or synthetic drug lookalike substance, possession of paraphernalia and operating a vehicle with a schedule I or II controlled substance or its metabolite in the body.

The charges stem from a traffic stop by a Clay County Sheriff’s Department deputy on Dec. 27 at 9:15 p.m. in the westbound lane of U.S. 40 near the intersection of CR 235 West.

Information in the affidavit for probable cause reports the deputy discovered Zuel to be unsteady, was mumbling and had red, watery eyes while talking to him.

Zuel was taken into custody and later transported to St. Vincent Clay Hospital where he agreed to take a chemical test, which determined he had meth in his system.

On Tuesday, Zuel appeared in court by video conference from the Clay County Justice Center to plead not guilty. Matthew Effner was appointed as public defender and pre-trial conference scheduled for Feb. 27, with a jury trial set for May 8.

Zuel remains in custody with a cash bond of $7,000, no 10 percent allowed, awaiting further court proceedings.

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