BUCKHANNON – An Upshur County woman was arrested on six charges Monday after she allegedly ingested a hallucinogenic drug and called the Upshur County E911 Communication Center claiming aliens were chasing her.
Christina Lynn Raschella, 33, of Buckhannon was arrested Monday, June 4, after two deputies with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department responded to her residence because she called the Comm Center and stated aliens were pursuing her.
Raschella was charged with two counts of obstructing an officer, a misdemeanor; possession of marijuana, a misdemeanor; two counts of battery on an officer, a misdemeanor; and attempted grand larceny, a felony.
According to criminal complaints filed in the Upshur County Magistrate Clerk’s office by investigating officers Deputy Tyler Gordon and Deputy Joseph Barcus with the sheriff’s department, Raschella called into the Comm Center at 12:42 a.m. on Monday morning and stated, “aliens were coming after her.”
Gordon and Barcus were subsequently dispatched to Raschella’s residence on the Binns Road to respond to what the Comm Center deemed an altered mental status call.
When the officers arrived on scene and found Raschella, she “became visibly shaken and began talking about aliens,” Barcus wrote in the complaint. According to Gordon’s report, Raschella later told law enforcement she had ingested an unknown amount of LSD at some point over the weekend.
Raschella allegedly grabbed Gordon by the arms and ran away from her home screaming for help. Raschella was headed toward Route 20, yelling “Help me!” according to the file.
The deputies followed her, and at one point she allegedly attempted to “forcibly enter another residence by pulling on the front door and screaming,” the file says.
Barcus then tried to approach Raschella, but she ran to the driver’s side door of Gordon’s patrol vehicle and tried to climb in.
Gordon’s account notes that he saw Raschella “open the driver’s side door of [his] patrol vehicle and attempt to enter the driver’s seat and flee in the vehicle.”
According to the file, Gordon’s vehicle is a 2019 Ford Police Interceptor valued at $20,000; he also had about $5,000 worth of equipment inside.
“[I] believe the defendant would have stolen the patrol vehicle if not forcibly removed from the doorway of the above stated vehicle,” Gordon wrote.
When the deputies attempted to place Raschella in handcuffs, she began “screaming and resisting by attempting to grab items on [Gordon’s] duty belt and grabbing [Gordon’s] hands as [he] attempted to restrain her,” his report says.
Following a brief struggle, the deputies put Raschella in handcuffs and leg shackles and situated her in the backseat of Gordon’s patrol vehicle. Soon after, the officers heard a loud noise and realized Raschella had kicked the back window of the patrol vehicle.
The file says she didn’t do any damage but notes Raschella failed to comply with officers’ commands even after being placed in restraints.
Raschella was subsequently removed from the vehicle until Sgt. Tom Posey with the Buckhannon Police Department arrived on scene with hobble leg restraints. After those were secured, she was again placed in the backseat of the vehicle.
“During the arrest, the defendant (Raschella) grabbed this officer by the inner leg, grabbed items on each officer’s belt, grabbed both officers’ hands and fingers” while she was being handcuffed, according to Gordon’s account, which also says Raschella scratched him.
“The defendant stated she had consumed an unknown amount of LSD at some point over the weekend,” Gordon wrote.
Raschella reportedly told the deputies she had two young children – but was unsure whether they were inside her residence or somewhere else, so Gordon and Barcus went into her residence. Inside, they allegedly found two glass jars of a green leafy-like substance they believed to be marijuana on the kitchen counter, the file says.
In total, law enforcement found 30.8 grams of what they believed to be marijuana, Barcus noted in his report. No children were located inside the residence.
After transferring Raschella to the sheriff’s department for processing, officers advised her of her Miranda rights, and she said she wanted to confer with an attorney prior to answering questions.
Magistrate Mike Coffman set bail at $75,000, and Raschella is free on bond.
The penalty for a guilty verdict on the attempted grand larceny charge is imprisonment for one to 10 years or, in the discretion of the court, confinement in jail for up to a year and a maximum fine of $2,500.
The penalty for a conviction on each count of obstructing an officer is confinement in jail for up to one year, a fine between $50 and $500 or both. The penalty for battery on an officer is imprisonment for up to one year, a fine of up to $500 or both.
Additionally, the penalty for a guilty verdict on the possession of marijuana charge is confinement in jail for a term not less than 90 days and not more than six months, a fine of not more than $1,000 or both.