4 arrests made at local park
Jason Houston Acting Publisher
The Russellville Police Department made four arrests Wednesday in an attempt to end improper activity at a local park.
Chief Chris Hargett said the arrests resulted from an undercover operation on the east side of Sloss Lake Park on Alabama 24.
Arrested were Steven Ray Chaney, 32, of Primrose Lane in Haleyville; Wendy Yevette Jones, 35, of the same address; Patrick Wayne Vickery, 36, of Highway 237 in Phil Campbell; and Erick Lee Hipps, 31, of Haynes Wilson Road in Russellville.
Chaney and Jones were arrested for public lewdness, Hargett said, after they were found engaging in intercourse in a wooded area near the park. Vickery was charged with second-degree possession of marijuana, and Hipps was charged with public intoxication.
All the charges are misdemeanors, but Hargett said the arrests should send a message.
"The city has put a lot of work and money into that park, cleaning off the bank near the road and doing some landscaping," Hargett said. "We've had a lot of complaints about that side of the park, and we want to do our part in curtailing the activities that the park may currently be known for."
Hargett said his department plans to patrol the area closely.
"It's a public park, and we want to make it so families can go there and not be faced with any type of indecent behavior," Hargett said.
In an unrelated case, a local man was arrested on identity theft charges, Hargett said.
Fidel Sandoval Dominguez, 32, of 124 Stuck St. in Russellville, was charged with first-degree identity theft and criminal impersonation.
Investigators said Dominguez is accused of using the social security number of someone else to obtain economic benefits.
Dominguez was being held in the Russellville City Jail on Wednesday without bail.
In another unrelated case, Russellville Police along with the Franklin County Sheriff's Department arrested two local men on drug charges after a traffic stop.
Officials said Billy Wayne Clark, 27, of 18966 U.S. 43 in Russellville, and Larry Steve Gravitt, 58, of 101 No. 8, Holiday Plaza in Russellville, were arrested. Clark is charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance, a form of methamphetamine known as "ice." Clark also is charged with unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and alias warrants for unlawful possession of a controlled substance.
Gravitt faces charges for unlawful possession of a controlled substance, also Ice, and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.
Law enforcement agents said they found 3-4 grams of Ice and various paraphernalia inside the car driven by the two men.
Both men were in the Franklin County Jail on Wednesday.