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Domestic dispute ends with arrests
Trinity Standard -
TRINITY – What apparently began as a domestic dispute between a couple ended last week with both parties in jail on drug possession charges. According to Trinity Police Chief Steve Jones, on Thursday, Feb. 3, officers were called to a residence on Spruce Street off Israel Otis in southwest Trinity. Thomas Hill, 43, and Amber McGowan, 26, were arrested at the scene by Sgt. John Raiford. Both were charged with the state jail felony of possession of a controlled substance and with misdemeanor assault/family violence. Both were being held under bonds totaling $9,000. “The officers were responding to a ‘disturbance’ reported at the residence and it turned out to be a boyfriend/girlfriend situation,” he said. The police chief said the investigation indicated it was a case of mutual assault, with both suspects sustaining injuries. “At one point, the male suspect locked himself in his room and the female suspect apparently took a baseball bat and tried to knock down the door,” he said. When police arrived, Jones said the two being accusing each other of assault and at one point, the woman accused the man of dealing drugs and told officers where to find his “stash.” Jones said two rocks of crack cocaine were recovered where the woman said the drugs were located. The man denied that the drugs were his and told investigators that since the woman knew where they were located, they must be hers. Additional charges against Hill also were pending after officers found two rifles and a shotgun at the residence. Jones said Hill is a convicted sex offender and by law is not allowed to possess firearms. “We will be talking to the district attorney about filing a charge of felon in possession of a firearm as well as a charge of failing to register by a sex offender,” Jones said. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Public Sex Offender Registry website, Hill was convicted in 2005 of sexual assault of a child and sexual assault. The first case involved a 15-year-old female and the second concerned a 29-year-old victim. To access the DPS website, go to www.txdps.state.tx.us/ and follow the links to the Sex Offender Registry. In other activity last week, Rex Shelby, 46, of Trinity was charged with felony tampering with physical evidence and state jail felony possession of a controlled substance. The police chief said the incident began when Sgt. Randy Wheeler stopped a vehicle on FM 230 near the city limits for a traffic offense. Jones soon joined Wheeler at the scene and while the sergeant was speaking with the driver, Jones went to the passenger side and began talking with Shelby. “He appeared very nervous and it soon became apparent that he had something in his mouth,” Jones said. When Jones asked the suspect to open his mouth, he refused and a brief struggle ensued as officers attempted to stop the man from swallowing. The police chief said they were able to recover crack cocaine from the man’s mouth and he was arrested on the tampering charge, which is a third degree felony and carries a stiffer punishment than the state jail felony possession complaint.