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Police reports

Drug tip sends police to parking lot, driver to jail

By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published April 15, 2003

ZEPHYRHILLS -- A Golden Corral employee was arrested in the restaurant's parking lot Saturday night after a police officer found 12 bags of marijuana in his pickup truck, a Zephyrhills police report said.

Officer Ken Keith came to the parking lot at 6855 Gall Blvd. about midnight after an anonymous caller told police there was a man in a green pickup truck who had "a large quantity" of marijuana, the report said.

Joseph John Sokol, 18, of 3025 Allen Road in Zephyrhills was sitting in his green truck outside the restaurant when Keith arrived, the report said. As the officer walked up to the truck, he could see several plastic bags of marijuana inside, the report said.

Altogether Keith seized 12 bags with a total of 50 grams, or about 13/4 ounces, of marijuana, the report said. Sokol told the officer that he bought $200 of marijuana with his paycheck, then planned to resell it to make his truck insurance payment, the report said.

Sokol faces a charge of possession of marijuana. He was taken to the county jail in Land O'Lakes, where he remained Monday in lieu of $2,500 bail.

Teen arrested after stop yields bags of marijuana

LAND O'LAKES -- A traffic stop turned into a drug arrest Sunday evening when a trooper found nine bags of marijuana in the car, a Florida Highway Patrol report said.

Trooper J.T. Gilcher pulled over a blue Dodge pickup truck about 6:30 p.m. on State Road 54 west of Collier Parkway, the report said. As he approached the car, the report said, Gilcher smelled a "strong odor" of burnt marijuana.

The teen in the front passenger seat told Gilcher there was some marijuana under his seat that belonged to the driver, a 17-year-old Land O'Lakes boy, the report said.

Authorities did not release the passenger's name because of his age, and the Times is withholding the driver's name because of his age.

Underneath the seat, Gilcher found a plastic container with nine bags of marijuana, altogether weighing about 19 grams, or about two-thirds of an ounce, the report said.

The 17-year-old driver faces a charge of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of marijuana under 20 grams. He was taken to the county's juvenile detention center.

Woman hit by truck released from hospital

DADE CITY -- A woman injured last week in a collision with a semitrailer truck has been released from St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa, officials said.

Mary Jane Bartlett was treated for a concussion after her pickup truck was broadsided about 3:30 p.m. April 8 by a semitrailer truck on U.S. 301. Bartlett, 42, of 40916 Marx Ave. had just picked up her son from East Pasco Adventist Educational Center.

Charles Bartlett, 14, was critically injured in the collision, according to reports. He was also taken to St. Joseph's Hospital, but at the family's request, the hospital could not provide any information about his condition.

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