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Martinsburg man faces weapons, drug charges

April 14, 2007|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.VA.-A Martinsburg man was arrested early Friday after police said he appeared to fall asleep behind the wheel of a vehicle at a downtown Martinsburg intersection, then led police on a chase that ended after the vehicle crashed into a light pole.

Salahuddin Muhamm Moore, 27, of Martinsburg, was charged with carrying a concealed weapon for a second time, possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance (methamphetamine) and felon in possession of a firearm, according to Berkeley County Magistrate Court records.

Martinsburg Police Department Patrolman J.E. Darby said in his complaint that about 4 a.m., he saw a Pontiac model car "stationary" for about five seconds despite having a green signal at the intersection of West King Street and Maple Avenue.

"The driver had his head down and appeared to be asleep at the light," Darby said in the complaint.

Moore apparently was stirred from his sleep by the police vehicle, and Darby said he followed Moore, who resumed traveling east on King Street, then turned right onto South Queen Street from a left-turn lane, according to records.

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After unsuccessfully attempting to stop Moore for the apparent violation, Darby said Moore accelerated the vehicle, and the officer chased after him on South Queen Street to the road's entrance ramp to W.Va. 9 east, according to the complaint.

"The vehicle nearly wrecked attempting to get onto the entrance ramp and spun off the left side of the roadway," Darby said in the complaint.

The vehicle then turned around and began speeding northbound on South Queen Street, passing two vehicles in the 600 block, and drove on the wrong side of the road at times, according to the complaint.

At South Queen and Stephen streets, the vehicle struck a light pole, causing it to collapse, according to the complaint.

The vehicle continued north from there, turning left onto West John Street, which is a one-way street, according to the complaint.

Soon after turning onto the street, the vehicle stopped and police caught up with Moore, who Darby said was attempting to get out of the vehicle, according to the complaint.

After using a Taser to detain Moore, a search of the accused resulted in the discovery of 66 pills that later tested positive for methamphetamine, according to the complaint.

Beneath the driver's seat of the vehicle, Darby said police found a 9-mm pistol loaded with a nine-round magazine and a bullet in the chamber. The weapon later was determined to be stolen.

A criminal history review revealed Moore had been convicted of carrying a concealed deadly weapon in 2000 in Ohio, Darby said.

Bond was set at $70,000, according to court records.

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