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SAFFORD – On Saturday, around 2:30 in the morning, an officer on patrol around 8th Street and Valley Avenue, observed a vehicle parked outside a residence that has had recent known drug activity. When the plates of the vehicle were ran, it revealed the vehicle’s registration was expired. The vehicle was spotted by another officer a short time later heading east on 7th Street toward Highway 70 and informed the first officer of its whereabouts. The officer caught up to the vehicle turning onto 900 E. Hollywood Road and verified that it was the same vehicle.
When the officer conducted a traffic stop, the driver was identified as Dora Gandarilla. The woman appeared to be nervous by breathing heavily, her hands were shaking and she was stuttering her words. The officer asked if there were any firearms or any sort of illegal drugs inside the vehicle. Gandarilla stated that she is 6 months pregnant and that there were no drugs on her or in her vehicle. She informed the officer that she had not paid a traffic fine and that she needed to “renew her license.” After conducting a records check, dispatch confirmed that her driver’s license was suspended. The officer placed Gandarilla under arrest for driving on a suspended license. Because the vehicle was going to be impounded, the officer began taking inventory and discovered in the center console area a plastic baggie containing a black tar like substance that was recognized as heroin. The woman was placed in handcuffs, and when the officer showed her the heroin, she denied knowledge of the heroin being inside of the vehicle but later told the officer that she knew that the substance was heroin. Gandarilla stated that she used to be a heroin user but is no longer using, and that it must be old. When asked the last time she used, she stated “a month ago.”
Gandarilla was transported and booked for Possession of a Narcotic Drug, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and Driving with a Suspended License. The vehicle was towed from the scene.