Fight over foods stamps for pot leads to shooting

Fight over foods stamps for pot leads to shooting
Jamall Dammitt Balentine (Source: Independence Co. Sheriff's Office via Vinelink)

BATESVILLE, AR (KAIT) - Independence County sheriff's deputies arrested two people and are searching for a third after a fight over food stamps led to one man being shot.

His girlfriend, 22-year-old Alize Jordai Brown, told deputies Balentine was shot following a verbal altercation with 22-year-old Allen Drayton Jr. over food stamps.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Drayton told Detective Zachary Rawlins he purchases marijuana from Balentine with his food stamp card.

"Drayton advised that this type of payment has taken place for a period of time with Jamall," Rawlins stated.

Prior to the shooting, Drayton told the investigator he had given Balentine a food stamp card with $300 on it in exchange for $100 worth of marijuana.

Because he didn't want Balentine using the entire amount instead of just the $100, Drayton said he had the card shut off.

"Allen stated that Jamall became mad and wanted his money back which led to the altercation," Rawlins stated in the court documents.

In a separate interview, Balentine reportedly admitted that he had used Drayton's food stamp card.

Rawlins obtained transaction statements from the Department of Human Services for the card that Drayton had given Balentine. From these statements, the detective obtained video from the Batesville Walmart store.

"From the 10th of December 2017 to the 14th of January 2018, Jamall Balentine and Alize Brown can be seen using the food stamp card on 7 different transactions along with using a second food stamp card belonging to them on one occasion," Rawlins reported.

On Thursday, Feb. 22, a judge found probable cause to charge all three suspects and issued a bench warrant for their arrests.

Balentine and Brown are both being held in the Independence County Jail on suspicion of five felony counts of illegal presentation of food coupons or vouchers for payment and three misdemeanor counts of the same charges.

Drayton is wanted on four felony counts of trafficking in illegal food coupons or vouchers and three misdemeanor counts of the same charges.

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