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With the Fourth of July Holiday traffic in full swing, troopers are out on the highways looking for aggressive and impaired drivers. L

ast night just before 6:30 p.m. Trooper Ray Otter was out patrolling on I-70 eastbound in Henry County when he noticed a Dodge Challenger in the right lane that was following the vehicle in front of it too closely.

Trooper Otter stopped the Challenger in the area of the 132-mile marker and made contact with the driver, Janice Taylor, age 32 of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota.

Taylor, who said she was traveling from California to Maryland, seemed unusually nervous, so Otter called for assistance. 

Cambridge City Police Officer Matt Smarrelli responded to the 132-mile marker with his K9 partner “Barry.”

Officer Smarrelli led his K9 around the outside of the Challenger, and the dog alerted to the presence of contraband in the vehicle. Trooper Justin Beamon was nearby and also came to assist. 

Further investigation by the officers turned up 34 individual packages of suspected marijuana each weighing approximately one pound.

The approximate street value of the drug would be an estimated $70,000.

Taylor was arrested and lodged in the Henry County Jail charged with Level 5 Felony Dealing Marijuana.

To help ensure the safety of all motorists during this 4th of July Holiday Period, the Indiana StatePolice will be participating in Operation C.A.R.E., Combined Accident Reduction Effort, and DUIEP, or Driving Under the Influence Enforcement Project.

Both of these are federally funded programs that will allow extra troopers to patrol Hoosier highways during the holiday period.

The Pendleton District covers the eight counties of Delaware, Madison, and Randolph; Henry, Wayne, Union, Rush and Fayette counties. 

Motorists are encouraged to report suspected impaired drivers by calling 9-1-1. Give a vehicle description, location, and direction of travel.

Never follow an impaired driver.