Traffic arrest in Orange; police suspect methamphetamine

Traffic arrest in Orange; police suspect methamphetamine

In spite of his attempts to resist police, officers in Orange have arrested one man after a traffic accident in the 4000 block of West Park in Orange on Friday, Feb. 21 at about 6:38 p.m. led them to discover suspected methamphetamine in the man's possession, according to the Orange Police Department.

Officer Kari Mahaffey reported that upon arrival at the scene of the reported auto accident, an officer already at the scene said a white male who was identified by police as 33-year-old Michael Loyed Denmon of Orange, the suspect driver, was acting "strange and withdrawn" after the accident. According to Officer Mahaffey, two officers were trying to get him out of the roadway where traffic was at a standstill. While Mahaffey interviewed the driver of the vehicle reportedly struck by Denmon, she observed two OPD officer on the ground attempting to handcuff Denmon, who was resisting. Mahaffey rushed over to assist, according to her report, and threw herself onto the struggling suspect's legs. As she was holding his legs, Denmon was able to get one free and kicked out at her causing her to fall backward off of his legs, she reported. During the struggle, Denmon allegedly repeated, screaming, that he did not want to die. Eventually, the officers, with assistance from two unknown citizens, were reportedly able to place handcuffs on the man.

Even after officers handcuffed Denmon, Mahaffey reported, he continued to struggle, pushing back toward officers and kicking with his legs. He was patted down and arrested. According to the report, "Denmon was talking talking extremely fast and had a heightened sense of paranoia." One officer observed, based on training and experience, the symptoms are often indicative of methamphetamine abuse.

Denmon was transported to the Orange County Correctional Facility but was refused admittance pending medical evaluation. He was then taken to Baptist Hospital in Orange for jail clearance.

"Denmon was far too combative for Field Sobriety Testing or Intoxilyzer," Mahaffey reported, adding that he conceded to a blood draw. 

Because of his resistance, officer were not able to search Denmon until they were leaving the hospital. Mahaffey reported they discovered two plastic baggies containing "a clear, glass-like substance" believed to be methamphetamine in his front jacket pocket. Denmon was taken to jail for changing lanes when unsafe, resisting arrest and possession of a controlled substance. Toxicology results and possible DWI charges are pending blood results.