LAKELAND, FL (December 4, 2019) – As reported in an online news article published by www.theledger.com, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) revealed that a 49-year-old man was arrested on drug charges after calling 911 and filing a false home invasion report. The man allegedly called 911 at 7:46 a.m. on Sunday, December 1, 2019, to report a fake armed home invasion. The man stated that there were armed people at his residence in Lakeland.
Upon arrival, law enforcement officers only found the 49-year-old man at the residence. The man informed the law enforcement officers that the perpetrators ran out of the home’s rear sliding glass door as the officers were entering the home through the front door. However, deputies on the scene indicated that no individuals could be found outside the rear of the house. Additionally, the sliding glass back door was locked from the inside.
While the law enforcement officers were searching the 49-year-old Lakeland man’s home, they discovered an “abundant” amount of marijuana in plain sight throughout the house. The officers obtained a search warrant and seized 25.79 pounds of marijuana, a small amount of cocaine, and more than $130,000 in cash, according to the arrest affidavit. Additional items found in the home included a digital scale and a vacuum sealer.
The 49-year-old man reportedly told the officers that the home invaders had hidden the marijuana and that they forced the man to “snort a small line of cocaine.” According to the Polk County Sheriff, the incident happened in a “nice, quiet neighborhood, and while there was no home invasion this time, drug traffickers who keep large amounts of drugs and money in the house are targets of violent home invasions.”
The man was arrested and charged with multiple drug possession and trafficking charges. Additionally, the police ordered that the man undergo a mental health evaluation under Florida’s Baker Act, given how the man was behaving.
The Severity of Drug Crimes Under Florida Law
Florida’s drug laws mimic those of many other states and the federal system, but some drug charges are more serious than others. The greater the amount of drugs involved in each crime, the more severe the crime is, and the more severe the consequences are if a person is found guilty. All drugs, which are known as controlled substances, are subject to Florida law, and some controlled substances are considered more dangerous than others.
Florida Statute Section 893.13 governs serious drug crimes that are mostly felonies. Examples of common drug crimes individuals face in Florida include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Possession of a Controlled Substance
- Manufacturing a Controlled Substance
- Delivering a Controlled Substance
- Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Sell, Manufacture, or Distribute a Controlled Substance
- Trafficking a Controlled Substance
- Selling a Controlled Substance
Depending on the type of drug in question and the quantity, the crimes range from first-degree misdemeanors, which carry potential jail time of up to one year, to first-degree felonies that carry potential jail time of up to 30 years in prison. In some cases, the felony in question may be a life felony, which leads to a potential life sentence in jail.