CINCINNATI – Cruiser camera video of a state trooper arresting WLW radio personality Lisa Wells on Interstate 75 last month raises new questions about what kind of non-prescribed pills the trooper reported finding in Wells' car.
Wells, 37, was charged with drug possession and driving under impairment.
In the video, a trooper identifies the pills as Adderall and Hydrocodone. Last week, WLW talk-show host Bill Cunningham said the pills were Percocet.
"There's a bunch of loose pills, ma'am, on your seat. What are they?" a trooper asks Wells after pulling her over near Piqua.
"On my seat?" she asks.
"Yep, there's three of them. They're loose pills – all different," the trooper says. "What were they?"
"I don't know," Wells says.
The trooper leaves her alone in the cruiser and walks back to Wells' car. She moans and breathes heavily.
When he comes back, the trooper says he identified one of the pills as Adderall, a stimulant.
"Adderall?" she says, sounding surprised. "I don't have a prescription for that."
Later, after Wells is handcuffed and put under arrest, another trooper identifies one of the pills as Hydrocodone, a narcotic pain medication.
That trooper asks Wells if she can identify any of the pills.
"No," she says.
WLW's program director has said Wells, a defense attorney and part-time fill-in host, would remain off the air until her legal case plays out.
The trooper stopped Wells as she was driving alone on southbound I-75 on Jan. 25, according to official documents. The documents did not name the drug(s).
On the video, the trooper tells Wells she was "all over the road" and says "your story is not quite lining up."
"When I asked you where you were coming from, you said, 'Ask my husband.' But your husband is not in the car with you, OK? Not only is he not in the car with you, you pulled out your cell phone. I'm not sure who you were going to call."
The officer says Wells "hit the accelerator extremely hard, revving the engine" after he pulled her over.
"I don't know if you actually know how to operate your motor vehicle, ma'am," he says. "Does that make sense? You also had a hard time when you were shifting it."
"It's not my car," Wells says.
Wells refuses to take a field sobriety test, reminding the trooper who he's talking to.
"I'm a criminal defense attorney. I'd be an idiot to do a field sobriety test," she says.
But she also expresses concern for what her arrest might do to her career.
"I don't want to get fired from my job," she says.
Wells' only public comment has been a terse statement to WCPO on the phone. "I am not a public figure and you should not be reporting this," she said, then promptly hung up.
Cunningham made a point to say Wells was not on heroin or cocaine.
"In her possession was found Percocet, and I want to get that out there because when you hear about possession of drugs, you might think it's heroin, cocaine, whatever. But it was Percocet, which is a synthetic heroin," Cunningham said during his afternoon show last week.
Percocet is a combination of oxycodone - a narcotic - and acetaminophen and is a high-powered painkiller.
LISTEN to Cunningham's podcast.
Wells' employment with WLW is on hold, according to a statement that Program Director Scott Rinehard issued to WCPO's news partner, WVXU. It said:
"Part-time on-air talent Lisa Wells has currently been off the air on personal leave since January. Currently, listeners can hear Mike Allen on Saturdays from 9-11 a.m. Obviously, we take any type of allegation against an employee seriously. We will be monitoring the situation, but cannot share any further details on employee personal matters for privacy reasons. We will have more information pending final outcome of the charges."
Wells faces four counts of Felony 5 drug possession, one count of first-degree misdemeanor drug possession, operating a vehicle while impaired and failure to drive in marked lanes.
Wells practices law in Ohio and Kentucky and could face sanctions in both states depending on what happens in court.
A former WLW host and retired attorney, Eric Deters, lashed out at Wells in a video on his Facebook page, saying Wells isn't managing her crisis very well.
"You know what she did? She took down her social media. Stupid. Why? What's the rule? You use your Facebook and social media to communicate to your core, to your friends, to your fans, those people who care about you the most," Deters said.
According to his report, the arresting officer said he found pills on the front seat of Wells' car when he stopped her southbound about 90 miles north of Cincinnati.
"When the driver exited, several pills were observed in plain view on the car's seat ... prescription pills were located during a probable cause search," he wrote.
The pills were not prescribed to Wells, the Highway Patrol said.
WCPO reached out to attorneys in the case for more information, but they have not responded.
Wells was stopped at 8:20 p.m. about two-tenths of a mile south of Mile Post 85, according to the report.
Wells, of West Chester, Ohio, has been a regular guest and legal analyst on WLW since 2011, according to her bio on her WLW blog. She also hosted a Saturday morning show and has served as a fill-in host on other shows.
Wells is scheduled for a preliminary hearing in Miami County Municipal Court in Troy, Ohio, on March 3.