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CALEDONIA, WI – Two individuals were arrested Sunday for driving a U-Haul rental without consent of the owner and for possessing paraphernalia used for injecting heroin and smoking crack.

Dwayne Whitelaw, 55, faces two misdemeanor charges for operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent and for possessing drug paraphernalia. Whitelaw has been convicted multiple times for various crimes. If convicted of all charges, he could be fined up to $10,500, jailed for up to 10 months, have their licenses suspended between six months and five years, or all three.

Aubrey Harris-Johnson, 22, was also arrested. However, charges have not been filed with the Racine County District Attorney’s Office.

According to the criminal complaint, an officer came upon a U-Haul on the side of the road on County Trunk Highway K. Whitelaw was outside the truck, waving the officer down and holding a gas can. Whitelaw asked the officer if he could take him to get gas but the officer denied because he had a dog in his squad car. He told Whitelaw he would radio another officer to take him to get gas.

The officer ran the vehicle’s plates and was advised that it was stolen. He went to check the U-Haul’s VIN and asked Whitelaw and Harris-Johnson for the rental agreement, which they did not have. The two said they were moving from Milwaukee to Racine and a friend of theirs, “Leon Spinks,” rented the truck.

Whitelaw and Harris-Johnson were detained by the officer. Upon asking them if they had anything illegal on them, the officer was given a pipe with white residue on it by Harris-Johnson. She said she was holding it for someone but Whitelaw took responsibility for it.

Two other officers searched the U-Haul after the pipe was taken off of Harris-Johnson. The officers located a tin with a metal lid that had burnt residue on it and suspected the lid could have been used to cook heroin. A brown bag with exposed needles and license plates for a different vehicle were also recovered from the U-Haul. The found license plates were also reported as stolen.
Whitelaw took responsibility for all the contraband confiscated from the truck, saying he did not want Harris-Johnson to be charged with their possession.

Officers confiscated Whitelaw’s cell phone and tested it for cocaine residue, which came back positive. Police contacted the truck’s owner, who wished to press charges. The owner noted the truck was rented to “Leon Vaughn” and that Harris-Johnson was a contact on the rental agreement. Harris-Johnson would have thus been aware that the vehicle was not being operated with the consent of the owner.

In court on Monday, Racine County Circuit Court Judge Robert Repishak set a $1,000 signature bond for Whitelaw. He is due back in court at 8:30 a.m. Dec. 3.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.