Home Crime RCSO: Pot found in pocket of man driving without license, open container

RCSO: Pot found in pocket of man driving without license, open container

HOFFMAN — A man wanted for failure to appear in court is facing several new charges following a traffic stop this week.

According to a press release from the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, a deputy was patrolling the Hoffman area around 9:10 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 16 when he noticed a truck on U.S. 1 with no operating tail lights.

While the deputy was attempting to catch up with the truck, another vehicle almost ran into it, the press release states.

The deputy flipped on his blue lights and siren in an attempt to conduct a traffic stop, but the driver reportedly took “some time before finally pulling over.”

When he approached the vehicle, the deputy reportedly saw two open beer cans and an open liquor bottle inside.

When asked for his license, the driver reportedly admitted that he didn’t have one and “became agitated and irate toward the deputy” — even more so after stepping out of the truck, allegedly refusing to give his correct name.

The passenger reportedly told the deputy he only knew of the driver’s nickname.

According to the release, the deputy was able to contact a family member of the driver, identified as 39-year-old Jorge Alberto Gutiereez-Cortez, of Hoffman.

The deputy learned that Cortez had outstanding warrants in both Richmond and Moore counties, the release states.

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Cortez was taken into custody and before a magistrate, where he was reportedly served with warrants for failing to appear on charges of driving while impaired and driving while license revoked due to a DWI, as well as a probation violation.

The release states Cortez was also charged with having no operator’s license, giving fictitious information to a law enforcement officer and having an open container of alcohol, and was given an $11,000 secured bond.

While being processed into the Richmond County Jail, a bag of an unspecified amount suspected marijuana was reportedly found in Cortez’s pocket. He was charged with possession of a controlled substance on prison or jail premises and given an additional $10,000 secured bond.

Jail records on Thursday did not show Cortez in custody.

Online court records on Thursday only showed a DWI and civil revocation of his license, with an appearance scheduled for Sept. 1 in Richmond County District Court.

Cortez does not appear to have any previous convictions in North Carolina.

All defendants facing criminal charges are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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