3 arrested following drug incident at local hotel


Three people were charged with multiple drug-related charges following an incident at a local hotel this week.

Urbana Police Chief Matt Lingrell said Urbana Fire Division EMTs and officers from the Urbana Police Division were dispatched Tuesday around 7:32 a.m. to the Urbana Inn and Suites, 1490 E. U.S. Route 36, on the report of an unconscious female in the lobby who had people with her who did not want 911 called.

Officers Mike Cooper, Mike Hughes, Andrew Ervin and Sgt. Dave Reese responded to the call.

Jacqueline F. Altizer was found lying in the lobby on a couch partially unclothed. Lingrell said police learned that prior to their arrival, a friend of Altizer had found her lying in the bushes in front of the hotel undressed from the waist down. They also learned that people with her had been attempting to perform CPR on Altizer before officers arrived on the scene.

Altizer was unconscious and showing signs of opioid use and was struggling to breathe. She was treated by Urbana Fire Medics and transported to Mercy Memorial Hospital for further medical care.

Lingrell said police interviewed several people who had been with Altizer prior to officers arriving. As part of an investigation police have charged the following people:

•Altizer, 30, of 4290 Hamilton Road, Columbus, was charged with possession of cocaine, a fifth degree felony, possession of dangerous drugs, a fifth degree felony, and other drug violations. Lingrell said she was also booked on a probation violation warrant from the Madison County Municipal Court. Altizer was taken to the Tri-County Regional Jail, Mechanicsburg, after she was treated at the hospital and interviewed by police.

•Bradley T. Harris, 23, of 449 E. Euclid Ave., Springfield, was charged with an outstanding warrant out of the Clark County Municipal Court for failure to appear on another charge and for possession of marijuana, a minor misdemeanor. He was taken to the Tri-County Jail.

•Branson C. Wilkinson, 28, of 4790 Hilton Corporate Drive, Columbus, was charged with possession of cocaine, a fifth degree felony, and tampering with evidence, a third degree felony.

According to the Champaign County Municipal Court’s website, all three individuals appeared in court for arraignment hearings Wednesday.

Altizer’s bond was set at $5,000 and the next hearing in her case is scheduled for March 27.

Wilkinson’s bond was set at $10,000 and a preliminary hearing in his case is scheduled for March 28.

Harris pleaded guilty to the possession of marijuana charge and was ordered to pay a $150 fine plus court costs.

All three individuals were in custody at the Tri-County Jail as of Wednesday afternoon according to the jail’s website.

Lingrell noted another adult female was released pending further investigation and police are continuing to investigate this incident and additional charges may be forthcoming.

He added police obtained a court ordered search warrant for Altizer’s room at the hotel and processed the room throughout the day on Tuesday where they recovered items of evidentiary value. Police also impounded a vehicle belonging to Wilkinson as part of their investigation.

Since Jan. 1, Lingrell said Urbana police have responded to 20 reported overdoses including two which resulted in deaths. He said most of the overdose cases have been because of the use of fentanyl.

In 2017 alone, Lingrell said Urbana police have conducted numerous drug investigations including multiple search warrant type cases.

“Year to date, police have filed 142 drug related criminal charges and many more are pending as we await crime lab analysis results,” Lingrell said. “Police have conducted investigations that have led to 26 drug trafficking cases since Jan. 1.”




By Nick Walton

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Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.

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