David Watson, Coral Murphy charged with drug offenses after chase

David Gordon Watson, 37, is charged in district court in Minot after he allegedly took off from a traffic stop Sunday, led police on a chase and only stopped the vehicle when he hit a spike strip.

He is charged with a Class C felony charge of fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle and Class C felony possession of drug paraphernalia.

His passenger, Coral Karrington Murphy, 26, who is reportedly four months pregnant and admits to daily heroin use, was also charged with Class C felony possession of drug paraphernalia after officers found drug paraphernalia in the vehicle.

Both Watson and Murphy are already facing pending charges in another case in district court for allegedly dealing narcotics in the Minot area in April 2019.

According to a probable cause affidavit filed with the court in the latest case, a Ward County deputy spotted Watson’s tan 2002 GMC Sierra stopped in the middle of the road at 37th Street SE off 43rd Avenue. The GMC Sierra was towing a trailer behind the vehicle. Watson had been outside but got in the driver’s side of the vehicle and closed the door behind him when he spotted Deputy Nicholas Van Pelt. Van Pelt asked Watson his name and, when Watson identified himself, Van Pelt confirmed he had an active warrant out for his arrest for disobedience of a judicial order. Watson’s passenger, Murphy, had three active warrants out for arrest on violations of probation and violation of a judicial order.

Van Pelt asked Watson to get out of the vehicle and Watson refused and drove away. Van Pelt activated his lights and siren but Watson didn’t stop and drove the truck and trailer to 54th Avenue SE and west onto U.S. Highway 83 South. Another deputy came to help and deployed spike strips near Mindt Construction. Watson swerved to avoid the spike strips but hit the strips with the vehicle’s two front tires and both tires went flat.

Watson then kept driving on the two flat tires and the trailer still attached. He drove to 37th Avenue SE and Main Street in Minot, where he did stop the vehicle. Van Pelt ordered Watson out of the vehicle at gun point. Both Watson and Murphy were taken into custody. The vehicle was searched. Inside Murphy’s purse Van Pelt found a clear plastic tube with brown residue and drug paraphernalia in the center console within reach of Watson. They also found cash on both Watson and Murphy totaling $2,874.

Murphy made an initial appearance in court on Thursday before Judge Todd Cresap on the new charge of Class C felony possession of drug paraphernalia and on petitions to revoke her probation in a 2018 child neglect case and other charges.

Murphy had received a suspended sentence and two years of supervised probation last year for leaving her toddler son alone in a room at the Days Inn in Minot for up to an hour on Aug. 11, 2018. There was also methamphetamine and methamphetamine paraphernalia in the room within reach of the boy and the boy was dirty, smelled of urine and had long fingernails. A clerk heard him crying and scratching at the door.

According to the affidavit in the latest case, Murphy is currently four months pregnant and admitted that she uses heroin on a daily basis. A prosecutor said in court on Thursday that Murphy had admitted to her probation officer that she has used methamphetamine. The probation officer told the prosecutor that he is concerned for Murphy’s safety because she has overdosed and been revived several times and he feels she is at risk of dying. Judge Cresap set bond for Murphy at $10,000 cash or corporate surety.

Watson made an initial appearance on the latest charges against him on Tuesday before Cresap. A preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for Feb. 27.


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