Two booked on drug charges

A man and a woman were arrested on drug charges Monday with both claiming ownership of narcotics found in the car.

A Ruston Police officer stopped a car on Mills Avenue for a traffic violation about 10:00 p.m. Saturday night. While speaking to passenger Paula Baker, 51, of Castor, an officer noticed her extreme nervousness and suspected impairment by a substance other than alcohol. When asked if she had anything illegal in the purse beside her, Baker reportedly said there might be pills in the purse. She opened the purse to show the officer who saw a small bag of suspected marijuana and a prescription bottle with the label removed.

When she was arrested, Baker said he had more narcotics on her body and produced two bags of suspect methamphetamines. She claimed the drugs belonged to her and the driver, Donovan Lard, 47, also of Castor.

Lard, the driver of the vehicle, however, claimed sole ownership of all the pills and marijuana.

Five types of pills were identified in the purse. Both Lard and Baker were booked for three counts of possession of Schedule III controlled substances, possession of a Schedule II controlled substance, possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance, possession of marijuana, and possession of methamphetamine.

Bail amounts were not available at press time.

This information has been provided by a law enforcement agency as public information. Persons named or shown in photographs or video as suspects in a criminal investigation, or arrested and charged with a crime, have not been convicted of any criminal offense and are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.