Tallahassee Man Found Guilty of Drug and Weapons Charges
A Tallahassee officer spotted a vehicle speeding on Kissimmee Street and ran the vehicle’s tags. He noted that the owner of the vehicle was driving on a suspended license and proceeded to pull the vehicle over. He noted that the driver was staring at the officer in his rearview mirror and had a bad feeling about the situation, so he called for backup. At that point, the driver of the vehicle sped off in an attempt to elude police, turning off his headlights so he’d be more difficult to spot. The officer followed him. The driver struck a roundabout and then made a right on Lake Bradford Drive. According to the officer, the driver showed a reckless disregard for other drivers and pedestrians. The driver then made a right-hand turn on FAMU Way and proceeded to drive eastbound in the westbound lane when he was blocked by a pedestrian vehicle. The driver stopped and threw the vehicle in reverse nearly striking several police vehicles that had joined the pursuit. The driver continued to attempt to operate the vehicle in reverse with the headlights still not on. He went back onto Lake Bradford Drive and finally stopped at a grocery store. He then got out of the vehicle and attempted to flee on foot while the vehicle was still in reverse.
While fleeing on foot, the suspect attempted to dump a black satchel bag. He was eventually apprehended and found in possession of a firearm. The black satchel bag held a large quantity of synthetic cathinones or bath salts. The defendant is now facing several charges related to the operation of his vehicle, possession of a weapon, and possession of illicit drugs. The police also found other substances that are commonly used to cut drugs indicating that the defendant was a street-level dealer.
Possession of bath salts in Florida
Bath salts are illegal to possess on both the federal and state level. In 2012, Congress passed a law banning the possession, manufacture, and distribution of synthetic cathinone-style drugs in a sweeping legislation known as the Synthetic Drug Abuse Prevention Act. This legislation placed 26 types of synthetic drugs into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. The legislation placed bath salts into the same category as heroin. This means that individuals charged with the possession of bath salts can face the same penalty structure as those who possess heroin, at least when they are charged by the federal government. Trafficking of a Schedule I drug carries a minimum sentence of 5 years in prison and a maximum of 40 years. That’s only for a first offense. A second offense has a maximum penalty of life in prison.
In addition to federal laws, Florida also has penalties for possession of bath salts. It is considered a first-degree misdemeanor to possess less than three grams of bath salts. Possession of more than 3 grams of bath salts is considered a third-degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in state prison.
Talk to a Florida Drug Offense Attorney Today
The Tallahassee drug offense attorneys at Luke Newman, P.A. represent the interests of those charged with drug crimes in Florida. Call our office today to schedule an appointment and we can begin discussing your options immediately.