Middletown couple arrested on drug charges while child in car - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Middletown couple arrested on drug charges while child in backseat

Middletown -

Middletown police arrested two alleged heroin dealers and seized more than 40 grams of narcotics during a routine traffic stop while their child was in the vehicle Sunday. 

During a motor vehicle stop, police noticed Wanda Lee Sampel's car brake light was out and pulled her over. Inside the car was a bag full of heroin, police said.

Sampel, 36, said it was a product known as Herbalife, which is used for weight loss. However, police tested several times and determined it to be heroin.

Police seized 42.2 grams of heroin from the vehicle.

Inside, the vehicle was Leal R. Pickering, 58, and their child, police said.

Pickering and Sampel were charged with possession with intent to sell, distribution of a controlled substance less than 1500 from school, possession controlled substance and risk of injury to a minor. Sampel was also charged with operation of motor vehicle when registration or license suspended, failure to have stop lamps/turn signals and device obstructing windshield.

Both were being held on $150,000 bond and expected to appear in Superior Court in Middletown on Monday.

Police said they have previously received anonymous tips about Pickering and Sampel selling heroin out of the third floor unit at 44 Rome Ave.

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