A Florida woman was taken into custody on June 23 for allegedly trafficking meth and heroin. According to the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office, deputies conducted a traffic stop on the 2018 Cadillac XTS that the woman was driving on Interstate 95 near Wildwood.
After the vehicle was stopped, a K-9 deputy was brought to the scene of the traffic stop. Authorities did not say why the initial traffic stop was conducted. The K-9 alerted deputies to the smell of narcotics. During a search of the vehicle, 2.21 pounds of methamphetamine and 170 grams of heroin were seized from the vehicle. Additionally, more than $5,000 in cash was also recovered.
The 32-year-old woman was ultimately charged with multiple drug offenses, including drug trafficking methamphetamine, trafficking heroin and maintaining a vehicle for the use of a drug crime. She was taken to Sumter County Jail where she bonded out on June 25.
Before a vehicle can be pulled over for a traffic stop, there must be probable cause. This probable cause can range from reckless or dangerous driving or even behavior that could indicate impaired driving. If authorities do not have probable cause to pull over a vehicle or they conduct a search without probable cause, however, any evidence found during the stop that may be associated with drug crimes could be considered inadmissible in court. A criminal law attorney may challenge any evidence against the accused person by demonstrating that the authorities did not have probable cause to stop the vehicle. If there was probable cause, the attorney may investigate other defense strategies that could reduce the severity of potential consequences.