A state police investigator told a Carroll County Circuit Court jury yesterday that he found cocaine in a "secret compartment" of a black leather jacket belonging to Diane L. Wisner.
The investigator, Tfc. Robert Heuisler, was the prosecution's first witness as Wisner, 34, went to trial on eight drug charges.
Testimony was scheduled to continue today in Carroll County Circuit Court in the case against Wisner, of the 3500 block of Littlestown Pike in Union Mills.
Trooper Heuisler said he also searched Wisner's purse the day of her arrest in January and found cocaine in a plastic vial labeled, "Lifesavers Holes."
Wisner and her brother, Jay Drew Boyd of the same address, were arrested as they drove south on Littlestown Pike near Turkeyfoot Road. Mr. Boyd is awaiting trial.
Wisner is charged with two counts of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, two counts of cocaine possession, two counts of possession of paraphernalia and two counts of maintaining a common nuisance.
Yesterday, Trooper Heuisler said police had gotten a tip from a confidential informant that Wisner would be driving on Littlestown Pike, carrying drugs.
"It had been an ongoing investigation," he said. State police stopped the car and drug-sniffing dogs reacted to it, he said. Police subsequently searched the car.
The trooper said one of the first things he found in the car was a Coors Light beer can.
"It had been converted into a smoking pipe for crack cocaine," he said.
Assistant Carroll State's Attorney Barton F. Walker III asked Trooper Heuisler to show the can to the jury, and explain how he could tell it was used for smoking crack.
The trooper held up the bent can, and showed the jury what he said were ventilation holes as he explained how crack smokers use the cans.
In Wisner's black leather jacket, the trooper said, he saw a "secret compartment" that another officer had discovered.
The compartment, in the lining of the jacket, contained 2.1 grams of cocaine in packets of about one-half gram each.
The jury also passed the jacket around to examine the lining.
In the purse, Trooper Heuisler said, was another 1.6 grams of cocaine in the Lifesavers vial, as well as a book of telephone numbers, a note pad and checkbook.
Wisner's lawyer, Stephen P. Bourexis, objected often as the jacket and purse and their contents were presented to the jury.
But Judge Francis M. Arnold in nearly all cases allowed Trooper Heuisler to continue answering Mr. Walker's questions and pull out evidence.
Wisner has been serving a two-year sentence in the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women in Jessup since her October conviction on cocaine distribution charges. Her January arrest came three days before she was sent to prison in the earlier case, which stemmed from an incident in May 1992.