Sheriff

St. Johns County

THE BRIEF – March 25, 2019

DUI: While patrolling in Ponte Vedra along A1A North, shortly after midnight, Deputy A. Ellis observed a Toyota Camry driving in the bike lane, drifting across the roadway and then straddle the center line of A1A. This was also while driving 15 mph below the posted speed limit. After observing this, he initiated a traffic stop and approached the driver. Upon making contact, the deputy noticed signs of possible impairment as the driver’s speech was slurred and mumbled. The deputy also noted the strong smell of Marijuana coming from the drivers clothing and her breath had a chemical like odor. The driver told the deputy she had been at a friend’s house “hanging out.” After explaining to the driver she was exhibiting signs of impairment and the obvious odors, he read her implied consent and asked the driver to submit to field sobriety tests. After performing poorly, the driver was read her rights and asked about possible intoxicant usage. The driver stated she had not consumed any alcohol, but had been around people who were smoking Marijuana that night. She also stated she used to smoke Marijuana and do Heroin. She stated she was currently taking a prescribed medication which she takes multiple times a day. The driver was placed under arrest and asked to submit to a urine test. She replied, “Why, to incriminate myself, you already know what I am on?” The deputy then asked if she meant Marijuana and Heroin and the driver stated, “Figure it out, you’re the policemen”. The driver refused to provide a sample and the driver was booked into the SJC Jail on a charge of DUI.

FELONY DWLS-DRUGS: After stopping a vehicle along CR 210W for traffic violations, Deputy A. Deleo discovered the subject’s driver’s license was suspended, when the driver handed him a recently issued citation from FHP for Driving without a License. The driver stated the Trooper confiscated his driver’s license after issuing him the citation 3 days prior. Upon checking the official status of the license, Deputy Deleo discovered the driver had 5 active suspensions, dating back to 1998. He secured the driver into handcuffs and was placed into an awaiting patrol car. While inventorying the vehicle, 44 Tramadol Hydrochloride pills we found in a non-prescription clear bottle. The driver spontaneously stated that the pills were for his “dog” and his wife works for a veterinarian. The subject but did not have a prescription present for the dog either. The suspect was arrested for Felony DWLS charges as well as possession of a schedule IV drug without a prescription.

STOLEN CAR ARREST: NW District Deputies encountered a car reportedly stolen from Colorado, in the area of SR-16 and Green Acres Road. After confirming the information regarding the cars status, Deputy R. Wallace conducted a traffic stop as the car entered a parking lot. As the deputy ordered the male subject and sole occupant of the car to reveal his hands, the man became verbally confrontational. The man told the deputy “This is an illegal traffic stop”, that he knew his rights and stated “I did nothing wrong.” After being physically removed from the vehicle, the subject made a comment that “I was travelling legally”, a phrase known to law enforcement from a segment of people who follow certain beliefs. When asked if he considered himself a Sovereign Citizen, the subject would not answer. Deputies contacted the car rental manager to inquire as to the facts surrounding the car being entered as stolen. The manager stated the car was rented in February and was due to be returned earlier this month. The manager stated the subject refused to answer their attempts to contact the subject, thus it was reported stolen to their local authorities. The suspects story changed several times regarding the status of the car, including, he was driving to “drop the vehicle off at Enterprise, when he was illegally stopped,” and that “the car is not actually stolen, you made that up.” When asked if he thought the deputies were involved in a conspiracy, he stated “I’ve said too much,” and stopped speaking with deputies. The rental car company indicated they wished to pursue charges in the matter and the suspect was taken to the SJC Jail without further incident.

TV SHOPLIFTING ARREST: SE District Deputy T. McDonnell was dispatched to a retail store located along US 1 South, regarding a subject who had left the store with a 50” television in a shopping cart, and did not paid for the item Upon reviewing surveillance video of the incident, deputies were able to identify the subject in the images and began researching possible locations he may be. Deputies traveled to a residence and located the subject, explaining why they were there. The man stated he would talk with deputies and admitted to the action he had taken. Additionally, the suspect made comments that have deputies investigating similar thefts where he may have been involved. That investigation is active and further charges pending the outcome of that investigation. The property was submitted into evidence and the suspect transported to the SJC Jail.

RECKLESS DRIVING: While patrolling SR-207, Deputy R. Wallace observed a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed. He activated his radar in the vehicle and verified a speed of 106 mph. He immediately turned around on the vehicle and observed the car straddling the center of the roadway and causing other motorists to take evasive action to avoid being hit. Once a the traffic stop was made the driver asked for a Careless Driving ticket rather than a Reckless Driving arrest, stating she had not had a ticket in “a while”. According to the report, a check of her driving record, revealed speeding tickets from January of this year, February of this year, and one for earlier in March of this year, where a crash was apparently involved. The driver was arrested for Willful and Wanton Reckless Driving and booked into the SJC Jail.

STOLEN CAR ARREST: NW District Deputies encountered a stolen car from out of ST. Johns County parked in a parking space near a SR-16 restaurant. Deputies approached the car and discovered 3 individuals inside. Once confronted, the driver exited the car and began running towards SR-16. The subject was contacted and had to be physically restrained as he continued to struggle and escape. The additional subjects remained in the car and complied with orders from the additional deputies on scene. The driver provided a name to deputies, however, he stated he did not wish to make any statements. After a records check on the name he provided, the system revealed no record for that name. When asked again, he stated “You meant my legal name” and provided a different name. The system revealed he was also reported as a missing person from Duval County. One of the other occupants were found in possession of Marijuana. The two were arrested for the above mentioned charges and the third released. The vehicle owner traveled from Duval County and recovered his car.

These are just a few of the 2,892 calls for service deputies responded to last week.

Stay Safe, and have a great week!