Off-duty Cameron Parish sheriff's deputy arrested on drug charges.

Off-duty Cameron Parish sheriff's deputy arrested on drug charges.
(Source: Louisiana State Police) Troopers found 18 pounds of marijuana in a duffel bag in Nothnagel's vehicle.
(Source: Louisiana State Police) Troopers found 18 pounds of marijuana in a duffel bag in Nothnagel's vehicle.

SULPHUR, LA (KPLC) - State Police arrested an off-duty Cameron Parish sheriff's deputy on drug and other charges.

Sgt. James Anderson, Troop D spokesman, said 28-year-old Derek Nothnagel of Lake Charles was pulled over June 2 in a private vehicle for a traffic violation along I-10 eastbound in Sulphur.

A search of the vehicle revealed 18 pounds of marijuana in a duffel bag. A passenger in the vehicle was questioned and released.

Nothnagel was arrested on charges of  possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, use and sale of drug paraphernalia, improper lane usage, following too closely and expired inspection decal. He was booked into the Calcasieu Parish Correctional Center. His bond was set at more than $27,000.

Anderson said the investigation continues and additional charges are possible.

Cameron Sheriff Ron Johnson said Wednesday that his office "takes a hard line approach on drugs" and as a result, Nothnagel has been terminated.

"I will not tolerate one of my employees being involved or associated with illegal narcotics," he said. "Mr. Nothnagel had no prior arrest record, and had served our country as a member of the National Guard. Unfortunately, Mr. Nothnagel did not display these traits last night."

Johnson added that he hopes Nothnagel "will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

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