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Ironic Meth Arrest

A woman reportedly high on meth was arrested outside the Fresno Co. Courthouse while on her way to a drug-related hearing.
Tuesday morning, Fresno County Sheriff's Deputies discovered an old Granny Goose delivery truck filled with cargo that definitely was not chips.

"In the back was a couch, carpet and a variety of other things you would probably only find in the den of a methamphetamine user," said Fresno Co. Sheriff's Deputy Chris Curtice.

Deputies patrolling Courthouse Park noticed the truck parked illegally.   Inside were 47-year old Mark Diamante and 43-year old Raquel Petrochilos.  Diamante was subsequently arrested on an outstanding drug warrant.  Deputies found Petrochilos to be under the influence.

"Apparently Ms. Petrochilos was smoking methamphetamine to get ready for her court appearance," said Curtice.
     
Deputies escorted her to court in time, but to no avail.

"She had actually failed to appear so a warrant had already been issued for her arrest.  She was kept in custody and booked into the Fresno County Jail,” said Curtice.

Petrochilos' plan to stand in front of a judge high came as no surprise to Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer.

“Meth kills brain cells and people on meth don't have the same reasoning ability as other people and that's why you see them do some incredibly stupid things like we saw today,” said Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer.

"I’ve seen people come into court with substances still in their pockets, paraphernalia in their pockets, obviously impaired," said Mark Leanhart of WestCare California.

Mark Leanhart works for WestCare California, a substance abuse treatment center.  He says turning an addict's life around is difficult, but not impossible.

"There's always hope.  Recovery does happen and it's happened for many, many people.  It’s just a matter of if that's what they really want or what they've already experienced has been enough," said Leanhart.

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Fresno, CA

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