NWGA Scanner | January 20th, 2021
According to a Dalton Police Department incident report, on New Year’s Eve, December 31st, 2020, at around 10:26 AM, Officer Hughes responded to Kroger on Walnut Avenue in reference to a suspicious female that was in the store. Once on scene, the officer was flagged down by the complainant and advised to go stop the red Toyota Camry that had just pulled into the parking lot of the Circle K at 1200 North Glenwood Avenue. The complainant advised the female was acting erratically. Officer Hughes reported, “[I] advised the 911 center of my location and the tag number for the vehicle, as [I] exited my vehicle a black female exited the Circle K and walked to the driver’s side of the vehicle. [I] advised the female [I] needed to speak with her about her behavior at the Kroger.” The female advised she had not consumed anything when asked by the officer. The female didn’t have her driver’s license on her and advised her name was Lakilla Hinton. The driver, later identified as Sonya Chantelle Lewis, 50, of Dalton, gave a fake name to the officer. When the officer asked the passenger what the name of the driver was, she advised she did not know her name. She Advised she was just getting a ride, so she didn’t have to walk to Tunnel Hill. The GCIC return for Lewis showed she had two active warrants for her arrest. One was through the Murray County Sheriff’s Office. The other was through the Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office. Both agencies were contacted to see if either had a recent photo of Lewis. Neither agency had a photo of her on file. Officer Hughes Reported, “Based on the information [I] had and not being able to determine if the driver was Lewis [I] decided to arrest the driver for the traffic offenses.” Officer Mefford and Officer Hughes walked up to the vehicle to take the driver into custody. As they walked upon the vehicle Officer, Hughes shouted Sonya the driver turned around suddenly. After a brief pause, she made a comment about her name that the officer could not understand. Officer Hughes advised the driver she was under arrest and needed to step out of the vehicle. Officer Hughes reported, “The driver began asking why and started sinking further into the car as [I] grabbed for her right arm and wrist. [I] was unable to get the driver’s wrist secured with a handcuff while she was sitting in the car, and she was making no effort to get out on her own.” Officer Mefford and Officer Hughes assisted the driver out and onto the ground beside her vehicle. Once on the ground, the driver refused to put her hands behind her back and would not stop kicking at Officer Mefford. During the incident to get Lewis handcuffed, an officer received a cut on the top of his left hand. During the search, the driver had to be held up due to her going limp on purpose, according to the officer. A the Whitfield County Jail, the female provided the name false name and date of birth of the name she had been giving officers. She also signed her jail paperwork with this name. Officer Hughes was later contacted by the jail and advised the fingerprint return for the driver showed her identity to be, in fact, Sonya Chantelle Hinton. Lewis was served with an active warrant from DPD. Officer Hughes went back to Kroger and spoke to the original complainant to get further information as to why he thought they were suspicious. The complainant advised Lewis came into the store and immediately got several plastic grocery bags from a checkout stand. The complainant advised Lewis then filled up the grocery bags with items she had not paid for. The complainant confronted Lewis, who then left the full grocery bags behind and exited the store. He advised Lewis did come back in the store but bought a single item. The complainant then called 911 to have Lewis checked out due to her suspicious behavior. Lewis was charged with misdemeanor shoplifting, first-degree forgery, false statement/writing/concealing facts, misdemeanor willful obstruction of law officers, operating a motor vehicle without a proper tag/decal, giving false information to a law officer, a party to a crime, driving with a suspended/revoked/canceled registration, driving without insurance, driving without a license and driving with a suspended or revoked license.