ATWOOD — A Mentone woman was recently arrested on a neglect charge for having marijuana in a vehicle while a child was present.
Crystal Nicole Wert, 33, 6686 N. 825E, Mentone, is charged with neglect of a dependent, a level 6 felony; possession of marijuana, a class B misdemeanor; and possession of paraphernalia, a class C misdemeanor.
On Jan. 4, 2021, an Indiana State Police lieutenant was traveling east on Old Road 30, approaching Atwood. While traveling behind a vehicle, the lieutenant could smell marijuana. When the speed limit was reduced to 35 mph in Atwood, the vehicle continued traveling at 41 mph. The trooper pulled the vehicle over in Atwood.
According to court documents, two women and an infant were in the vehicle. Wert was a passenger in the vehicle; the infant was in Wert’s care. The driver of the vehicle was identified as Courtney L. Rater, Warsaw.
When the trooper informed Rater and Wert he could smell marijuana, the two women stared at the lieutenant and then looked at each other.
Rater told the lieutenant they had been smoking when they were stopped. Wert told the lieutenant there was marijuana in the back seat. The lieutenant found two bags containing a total of 8.9 grams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.
Rater failed two field sobriety tests. A lab test showed Rater had 11-Nor-9 Carboxy THC, a marijuana metabolite, in her blood when she was driving on Jan. 4, 2021. Rater was sentenced on misdemeanor charges for marijuana possession and operating a vehicle with a controlled substance in the body in October 2021. She received an eight-month sentence, all suspended on probation.
For this case, Wert was booked in the Kosciusko County Jail on Jan. 3, 2022, with a $5,250 surety and cash bond.