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All suspects are presumed innocent until determined guilty in court.
Hot Springs Police Sergeant K. Zaner was on patrol last week in the area of Central Avenue near Greenwood Avenue when he allegedly spotted a vehicle traveling at night with no tail lights.
He activated his blue lights and the suspect vehicle stopped in the outside lane on Central Avenue near Trivista. Sgt. Zaner made contact with the driver, Stephanie Aleshia Francis, 28 of Bailey Place in Hot Springs. Ms. Francis allegedly said “I don’t mean to be confrontational, but what is your probable cause for pulling me over?”. During the contact, She allegedly told the officer that she had no driver’s license or proof of insurance and that she currently has a warrant of arrest out for her.
Sgt. Zaner confirmed through the police computer that an active warrant existed for the suspect and that not only has a driver’s license, but it was suspended at the time of the stop. Sgt. Zaner asked Ms. Francis to exit the car. She allegedly refused to exit the car after being asked, told and ordered to do so. She allegedly stated “I’m not getting out of the car”.
Back-up HSPD K-9 Officer Jones opened the passenger side door as Sgt. Zaner opened the driver’s door. The suspect allegedly began yelling and grabbed a purse that was in the front seat. The officers tried to physically remove the fighting suspect from the vehicle when she allegedly reached into her purse. Sgt. Zaner drew his tazer gun and continued to order the suspect to show her hands and exit the vehicle.
The officers were able to physically remove her from the vehicle and handcuff her, but not after she caused minor injury to Sgt. Zaner’s wrist.
Inside the vehicle, officers allegedly located the suspect’s driver’s license, a clear plastic wrap that contained a crystal like substance and a glass meth pipe, several empty syringes and 1 syringe containing 13 ml of a clear liquid substance. Both substances field tested positive for meth.
Ms. Francis was arrested and transported to the Garland County Detention Center for processing. She is charged with Felony Possession Of Meth, Felony Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia, Resisting Arrest, Failure To Comply, Driving On Suspended DL, No Tail Lights No Vehicle Insurance with a bond amount totaling $9,250.