[PHOTO CREDIT: Lake County Sheriff’s Office]
[Original Publish Date: 02/19/21]
TAVARES, Florida — A traffic stop for illegally-tinted windows resulted in trafficking amounts of several types of drugs being taken off the streets Friday night.
A Tavares Police officer spotted a white Chevy car southbound on State Road 19 near Birch Boulevard shortly after 9 p.m. with what appeared to be illegal window tint, according to an arrest affidavit. The car was registered to a rental car company, and it is unusual for rental cars to have window tint, the arresting officer noted in the affidavit.
The officer followed the car and observed it swerve to the right side of the road three separate times between Birch Boulevard and County Road 561 and the officer conducted a traffic stop near Lane Park Road; while attempting to stop the car, the driver made “furtive movements” toward the center of the car, the affidavit states.
The arresting officer spoke to all three occupants of the vehicle and told the driver, Derrick Keith Strickland of Lady Lake the reason for the stop. While speaking with Strickland, 31, the arresting officer could smell a strong odor of fresh marijuana, according to the affidavit, and Strickland gave the officer permission to search the car.
Police found five bags of methamphetamine, weighing a total of 691 grams, marijuana in a pouch with the logo “Peanut Butter Breath,” 24 grams of fentanyl, 19 grams of cocaine, 186 whole Alprazolam pills in addition to nine pieces of Alprazolam pills and one MDMA pill, along with a red scale. More than $3,600 was found on Strickland’s person, according to the affidavit.
Strickland was arrested for trafficking in methamphetamine, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, trafficking in fentanyl, possession of marijuana less than 20 grams, possession of MDMA and possession of Alprazolam with intent to distribute. The arresting officer asked Strickland be held on no bond, but his bond was set at $314,000. He remains in the Lake County Jail.
Our Editor-in-Chief, Marilyn M. Aciego, began writing for Lake Legal News in 2010. Born and raised in Lake County, she is a graduate of Umatilla High School and Lake-Sumter State College. She started her journalism career at LSSC, where she was editor of both student publications, The Angler and The Odyssey. Her professional career began at the Daily Commercial in 2004 where she covered cops and courts the majority of her time there until she left in 2009. Currently, along with being Editor-in-Chief of Lake Legal News, she is the Florida bureau chief for an international media organization. She has made more than two dozen appearances on live national television, including Nancy Grace and the Greta Van Susteren show, along with her appearance on Evil Twins. Contact her with breaking news, tips, and feedback by sending an e-mail to 352Tips@gmail.com. You can also contact us on our Facebook page — and make sure you “Like” and “Follow us” there. [PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher]