Just hours after a judge declared a break in Amy Clampitt’s manslaughter trial Thursday, Clampitt was arrested during a traffic stop in Dadeville, authorities said.
“While running her license it was discovered she had child support warrants from Clay County,” Dadeville police chief David Barbour said.
Law enforcement said a male walked away from the scene.
Fifth Judicial Circuit District Attorney Jeremy Duerr said traces of methamphetamine were found on foil when the vehicle was seized and inventoried.
Clampitt’s attorney Michelle Perez said in her opening statement Wednesday Clampitt has a checkered past with drugs, was in and out of jail and spent some time in prison. But Clampitt and Jimmy Dugan, who died in a January 2017 accident in which both were ejected and Clampitt was severely injured, were cleaning up their lives together, according to Perez.
Clampitt was free on a $20,000 bond for the manslaughter charge before Thursday’s arrest. Duerr said she likely will remain in the Tallapoosa County Jail until her manslaughter trial resumes Monday.
Court records show Clampitt had a divorce proceeding in 2013 and was ordered to pay child support in the amount of $526 each month for three children. She was arrested in November 2016 owing more than $19,000 in back child support. After multiple attempts, Clampitt was back in court on the child support issue in December 2018 then agreed to come back to court in January 2019 but failed to do so. A writ of arrest on child support was issued and reissued May 30.
Clampitt’s manslaughter trial will enter its third day Monday in front of Fifth Judicial Circuit Court Judge Steve Perryman.
The State of Alabama contends Clampitt was driving and trying to avoid a traffic stop in the Eagle Creek area when she and Dugan were ejected while traveling at a high rate of speed at the intersection of Concord Road and Highway 49. Dugan was pronounced dead at the scene and Clampitt was flown to a Columbus, Georgia, hospital for her injuries.
Perez requested a mistrial Thursday based on a diagram provided by traffic homicide investigator and ALEA State Trooper Dan Jackson and his opinion of the accident that ejected Clampitt and Dugan.
“It is wrong,” Perez argued Thursday morning. “The basis of the officer’s testimony is based on this diagram.”
Perez argued Wednesday the scaled drawing was not part of evidence discovery and after further review of the document following Jackson’s testimony she asked for the mistrial then a delay.
Jackson said Wednesday his opinion is Dugan was ejected from the car through the passenger window and Clampitt was driving.
“That comment was so prejudicial to my client,” Perez said in arguing for the mistrial Thursday morning.
With the mistrial motion denied, the state rested its case after hearing from retired Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences pathologist Dr. Alfredo Paredes, who performed an autopsy on Dugan before he retired in August 2017.
“I saw a lot of crushing injuries to the face and top of the skull,” Paredes said from the witness stand. “He did have some scrapes and cuts on his extremities.”
Paredes said every bone in Dugan’s face was broken and Dugan’s brain was partially torn from his spinal cord.
“His face was practically crushed,” Paredes said. “He must have had some sort of tremendous impact to cause this.”
Paredes testified Dugan’s death was “accidental, consistent with a vehicle death.”
Assistant district attorney Kevin Hall asked Paredes if he saw any injuries on Dugan consistent with striking the steering wheel.
“I did not see any,” Paredes said.
Jackson testified Wednesday he did not see any evidence of ejections through the windshield or front of the car.
Paredes also testified Dugan’s toxicology report showed methamphetamine and amphetamines in his system.
While denying the request for a mistrial, Perryman granted a delay to allow Clampitt’s defense time to prepare for opinions based on evidence Jackson presented Wednesday.
Clampitt’s trial continues 9 a.m. Monday at the Tallapoosa County Courthouse in Dadeville.