Drug Arrest Made Near Elementary School

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Three Payson residents were arrested on various drug charges Thursday afternoon after officers from the Payson Police Department and Gila County Narcotics Task Force served a search warrant.

Payson Police Commander Don Engler said authorities started to watch the home on 609 S. Oak St., which is located within 200 feet of the Julia Randall Elementary playground, after being informed a man they were looking for was staying at the residence.

On Nov. 2, the PPD served a search warrant in Pine at a home where Oscar Villarreal, 48, was staying.

Engler said Villarreal was not at the Pine location, but had left behind incriminating evidence.

"Ever since he left that residence he has been on the run," the police commander said. "We had been watching the home for some time after being informed he was there."

Villarreal was arrested Thursday for possession of marijuana, possession of dangerous drugs for sale, two counts involving misconduct involving weapons, possession of a narcotic drug, possession of drug paraphernalia and committing a drug offense in a drug-free school zone. He also had two misdemeanor warrants out for his arrest.

The home is located behind Julia Randall Elementary School.

Under Arizona's drug-free zone law, defendants convicted of possessing or selling drugs within 1,000 feet of a school face enhanced jail sentences.

Engler also said additional charges will be filed against Villarreal involving the Pine search warrant.

Dallas Hall, 44, who lived at the Oak residence, was arrested for possession of dangerous drugs for sale, possession of dangerous drugs, committing a drug offense in a drug-free school zone, two counts of misconduct involving weapons, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Paula Weddel, 43, was arrested for possession of dangerous drugs for sale, possession of dangerous drugs, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and committing a drug offense in a drug-free school zone.

Weddel also had four warrants out for her arrest, one of which was for a felony, Engler said.

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