Officer Finds Marijuana, Scale and Other Drug-Related Items During Traffic Stop for Expired Tag
Arrestee claimed the only reason he had the scale was so that he didn’t get ripped off when buying marijuana.
An expired tag recently led to the arrest of two Buford men on various drug-related charges.
On Jan. 16, a Gwinnett County Police officer stopped a silver Subaru on Nelson Brogdon Boulevard after noticing the vehicle’s tag had expired in October of 2010.
As the officer approached the vehicle, the driver, identified as Kamron Russell, age 20, rolled down his window.
“From several feet away, I immediately smelled a pungent, musty odor that I recognized as marijuana,” the officer wrote in the report. “I could smell both the sweet, raw smell of fresh marijuana as well as the burnt, musty smell of burnt marijuana.”
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When told the reason for the traffic stop, Russell said the car was his brother’s and he did not know the registration was expired. As he was looking in the glove box for the registration information, the officer noticed a bottle of “Blunt Power” air freshener in the glove box.
“I also noticed that the ashtray was full of loose tobacco, indicative of someone dumping out a cigar’s tobacco in order to refill its wrapper with marijuana,” the report stated.
The officer then noticed a piece of green, leafy material on the passenger seat and asked the passenger, 19-year-old Kyle Eubanks, what it was. Eubanks initially said it was lint, but admitted it was a marijuana stem when the officer asked to see it.
Both Russell and Eubanks denied having any marijuana in the vehicle, but admitted smoking it earlier in the evening at a friend’s house. Due to the strong odor of marijuana and the presence of a marijuana stem, the officer instructed the men to step out of the car.
While patting Russell down for weapons, the officer found a digital scale in Russell’s coat pocket. When asked why he had a scale, Russell reportedly said he kept it with him so that he doesn’t get “ripped off” when buying marijuana. In another pocket, the officer found three white plastic bundles containing a green, leafy material believed to be marijuana, a glass pipe of the type commonly used to smoke marijuana, a glass jar containing smoked marijuana cigarettes and $111 in cash. Russell admitted having a knife in his pants pocket, which the officer also retrieved.
Eubanks had currency in three different places on his person totaling $488.20. Eubanks had no marijuana on his person, but the officer noted, “Every time he opened his mouth to speak, I was overwhelmed by the stench of marijuana on his breath. I could also smell it on his clothes and in his hair.”
Inside the vehicle, the officer found a fixed handled knife in a sheath and multiple packages and wrappers for cigarillos and cigars, which, according to the police report, are commonly used to smoke marijuana. The officer also located a broken hookah pipe.
Another officer asked Russell if he had a cell phone. Russell said he did and gave the officer permission to look at it. On the phone, the officer allegedly found a text message discussing the purchase of Russell’s “3 Gs” and the fact that Russell wanted $100 for it. When asked what that meant, Russell reportedly replied, “It means I’m [expletive deleted].”
Both Russell and Eubanks were placed under arrest. Russell was booked into the jail on charges of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, expired tag and two counts of possessing a knife during the commission of a felony. Eubanks was booked on a charge of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute.
Russell was released from jail on Jan. 31 on a $6,252 bond. Eubanks was released from jail on Jan. 29 on a $5,700 bond.