Man Jailed for Tortilla Dough That North Carolina Police Mistook for Cocaine

TortillasJoel Burgess writes in Asheville Citizen Times:

Antonio Hernandez Carranza took a wrong turn, and it turned out to be one of the biggest mistakes he’s ever made.

The Carson, Calif., man had driven more than 2,000 miles — three days straight — to see his sister in Johnson City, Tenn.

But instead of reaching the home of his sister, whom he hadn’t seen in nearly a decade, the 45-year-old carpet cleaner found himself in the Buncombe County jail under a $300,000 bond on charges of driving while intoxicated, failing to heed police lights and sirens and possession of 91 pounds of cocaine.

He was released four days later after sheriff’s deputies realized Hernandez, who said he doesn’t drink at all, wasn’t intoxicated and that what was in the back of his truck was exactly what he had said — $400 worth of cheese, shrimp and tortilla and tamale dough meant as a gift to his sister.

Read More: Asheville Citizen Times

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  • derpz

    kindergarten cops exist! 

  • derpz

    kindergarten cops exist! 

  • TennesseeCyberian

    This is my neighborhood.  It’s true, Mexican/Latino individuals are profiled.  As are blacks, of course, and white hippies, white rednecks, and white douchebags.

    For Hernandez, the language barrier probably created numerous difficulties in a place where many cops have a hard enough time with proper English.  Asheville is also piled high with drugs, and therefore swarming with overzealous cops.  It can be a precarious city for anyone sticking out.  The same thing could have happened to some dreadie white kid decked with glass beads.

    The biggest problem in my eyes is that Hernandez was not compensated for a ridiculous mistake on the part of dopey policemen.  If I fuck up and crash into a police car–or just park in the wrong place–you can be damned sure that I would be expected to pay for it.  Yet all-too-often, the police are immune from their own mistakes.  It is frightening that the State has become so powerful, but even more so that the State is so often this stupid.

    We are told that our government-protected rights and liberties require us to be responsible for our actions.  Fair enough, but publicly-funded governmental positions should be held to the same degree of accountability.  Mr. Hernandez deserves a fresh truckload of tamales.

  • JoJoDancer

    This is my neighborhood.  It’s true, Mexican/Latino individuals are profiled.  As are blacks, of course, and white hippies, white rednecks, and white douchebags.

    For Hernandez, the language barrier probably created numerous difficulties in a place where many cops have a hard enough time with proper English.  Asheville is also piled high with drugs, and therefore swarming with overzealous cops.  It can be a precarious city for anyone sticking out.  The same thing could have happened to some dreadie white kid decked with glass beads.

    The biggest problem in my eyes is that Hernandez was not compensated for a ridiculous mistake on the part of dopey policemen.  If I fuck up and crash into a police car–or just park in the wrong place–you can be damned sure that I would be expected to pay for it.  Yet all-too-often, the police are immune from their own mistakes.  It is frightening that the State has become so powerful, but even more so that the State is so often this stupid.

    We are told that our government-protected rights and liberties require us to be responsible for our actions.  Fair enough, but publicly-funded governmental positions should be held to the same degree of accountability.  Mr. Hernandez deserves a fresh truckload of tamales.

  • Mamagriff50

    Anyone with a brain should stay far away from Buncombe County.  

  • Mamagriff50

    Anyone with a brain should stay far away from Buncombe County.  

  • Mamagriff50

    Anyone with a brain should stay far away from Buncombe County.  

  • Mamagriff50

    Anyone with a brain should stay far away from Buncombe County.  

  • chubby

    Cops can say whatever they want to pull you over, I still have on my record that I was pulled over for driving on the wrong side of the road while drunk, when I wasn’t driving on the wrong side of the road and I was not drunk. I just happened to be driving around an Indian bar where the cops like to park across the street and bust people at leisure. Nowadays, just to go to town (Flagstaff AZ), i have to be proactive and discern everything from my appearance to my vehicle’s appearance (they target dirty dusty rez rides), but of course I don’t hang out there anymore nor do I spend more than I need to, I get in and I get the hell out. Flagstaff use to be so beautiful too, with a great abundance of trees, now it is deforested and prone to flooding, all in 20 years, and I am the bad guy…

  • chubby

    Cops can say whatever they want to pull you over, I still have on my record that I was pulled over for driving on the wrong side of the road while drunk, when I wasn’t driving on the wrong side of the road and I was not drunk. I just happened to be driving around an Indian bar where the cops like to park across the street and bust people at leisure. Nowadays, just to go to town (Flagstaff AZ), i have to be proactive and discern everything from my appearance to my vehicle’s appearance (they target dirty dusty rez rides), but of course I don’t hang out there anymore nor do I spend more than I need to, I get in and I get the hell out. Flagstaff use to be so beautiful too, with a great abundance of trees, now it is deforested and prone to flooding, all in 20 years, and I am the bad guy…

  • Anonymous

    C’mon, 4 days to figure out the ”cocaine” was flour? They don’t have any field test kits that every cop in the USA carries? There is either some serious corruption/ profiling going on or this sherrif’s office is dumb as a box of rocks. I think both are probably true….

  • GoodDoktorBad

    C’mon, 4 days to figure out the ”cocaine” was flour? They don’t have any field test kits that every cop in the USA carries? There is either some serious corruption/ profiling going on or this sherrif’s office is dumb as a box of rocks. I think both are probably true….