By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
A wheelchair-bound Atmore man, sought as a shoplifting suspect, also wound up with a felony drug charge after he was found to be in possession of a small amount of synthetic marijuana.
Atmore Police Department Capt. John Stallworth reported that city police were called July 22 to Dollar General on South Main Street.
The store manager reported that a man in a wheelchair was spotted concealing items under his leg.
After viewing store surveillance video and identifying the suspect as 41-year-old James Allen Williamson, police began a search for him. They didn’t have to look far.
Williamson was located across the street from the store. He was still in possession of the items stolen from Dollar General and was charged with fourth-degree (misdemeanor) theft of property. The stolen items were returned to the store.
As Williamson was being checked for weapons, officers found a foil cigar package with a small amount of “a green, leafy substance believed to be marijuana” inside it. He told police the substance, which later tested positive as Spice, was “THC that he bought at a gas station.”
Although Williamson was arrested July 22, he remained in the city lockup until July 26 before a bed opened for him in the Escambia County Detention Center. He remained in the county facility this week, under $25,000 bond on one count each of possession of a controlled substance and fourth-degree theft of property.
Ironically, if Williamson had been in possession of actual marijuana, he would have been charged with a misdemeanor. Possession of any amount of synthetic marijuana is a felony in Alabama.