Adam Cole Tunnell, left, and Victoria Jane Ortegel (HCSO photos)
ROGERSVILLE — Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office deputies seized a small amount of methamphetamine and “clean” urine Tuesday after spotting a known habitual motor offender driving along Highway 11-W.
The HCSO Narcotics Unit was conducting a drug interdiction operation along Highway 11-W Tuesday afternoon when an officer spotted a black 1993 Honda Civic, driven by Adam Cole Tunnell, 28, 114 Center St., Rogersville, traveling west near the intersection of Blevins Road.
The officer knew Tunnell to have a revoked driver’s license and to have been declared as a habitual motor vehicle offender.
Tunnell also allegedly had a license plate from another vehicle on the car he was driving.
Narcotics officers conducted a traffic stop on the Honda and confirmed the driver to be Tunnell.
Tunnell’s female passenger was identified as Victoria Jane Ortegel, 28, 165 Skelton Road, Rogersville.
Narcotics Unit Sgt. Lynn Campbell responded to the scene and deployed K-9 officer Filou to conduct a vehicle sniff of the airspace surrounding the exterior of the vehicle.
“K-9 Filou clearly alerted to the odor of illicit controlled substances on the area of the passenger door,” said Sheriff Ronnie Lawson. “Narcotics officers then spoke with Ms. Ortegel in reference to the K-9 alert, at which time she voluntarily produced a small amount of meth from her person. Ms. Ortegel was also found to be in possession of a small bottle of urine, which she stated she carried to falsify drug screens during probation appointments.”
According to Lawson, further investigation revealed that Tunnell and Ortegel were transporting the meth to another individual waiting to purchase it.
The Narcotics Unit seized the vehicle.
Tunnell was charged with possession of meth with intent to deliver, driving while declared a habitual motor vehicle offender, violation of registration, and violation of financial responsibility.
Ortegel was charged with possession of meth with intent to deliver and possession of urine with intent to falsify a drug screen.
As of Thursday, both remained held in the Hawkins County jail on a $100,000 bond.