New Castle Trooper Offers Couple a Ride, Takes Them Directly to Jail

If you’re wanted on warrants and need a ride somewhere, common sense would say don’t accept a lift from a state trooper.

However, some people… they don’t think their situation all the way through. For your consideration, here’s the story of two people who really should have reconsidered their ride situation and maybe should have stayed home.

The Set Up

22-year-old Gerald T. Hammond III and 27-year-old Marissa Shelton have had their run-ins with the law in Indiana. Hammond had outstanding felony warrants for escape, possession of methamphetamine, and possession of a syringe, as well as a number of minor warrants for possession of paraphernalia, visiting a common nuisance and criminal mischief.

Not that Shelton was any slouch in the warrant department either. She had outstanding warrants for felony possession of a syringe and “A” misdemeanor OWI with endangering a person. On Thursday, March 7, the couple decided to head out and bring with them a syringe and some methamphetamine.

Think before You Get Take the Ride

While the couple were walking, they encountered Trooper Thomas Ratliff, a good guy at heart. March 7 was a cold evening and, when he saw Hammond and Shelton walking alongside the road, he decided to offer the folks a ride.

Hammond briefly weighed his options and decided that they would most definitely like a ride. But to make sure that Trooper Ratliff didn’t catch on, he gave a fake name. Meanwhile, Ratliff recognized both Hammond and Shelton and knew that they both had outstanding warrants.

Instead of heading towards their intended destination, Hammond and Shelton got a free ride to the Henry County Jail, where they were processed on not only their previous warrants, but two more charges of a Level 6 felony possession of a syringe, and possession of methamphetamine.


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