Drug agents seize 42 ounces of synthetic marijuana
By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Atmore police and Alabama Drug Task Force agents seized more than a kilogram of synthetic marijuana last Thursday (September 9) after an Atmore man with outstanding warrants against him was spotted driving along a city street.
According to a press release issued by city police, Charlton Orlando Jones, 32, tried to elude officers but was eventually taken into custody and the synthetic marijuana confiscated.
Jones remained in the Escambia County Detention Center this week, charged with one count each of trafficking a controlled substance (synthetic cannabis), possession of drug paraphernalia, attempting to elude, and resisting arrest.
The Atmore man was reportedly driving a vehicle near the area of America Drive (off Martin Luther King Avenue) when he was spotted by an officer who recognized him as the subject of the outstanding warrants. When the officer tried to initiate a traffic stop to serve the warrants, Jones sped away.
As the pursuit continued, Jones began to throw items — later identified as Spice — from the car. The suspect eventually entered a private residence off MLK, where he reportedly ran into an air conditioner unit, causing damage to it, and was arrested there.
Drug agents recovered 1,186 grams (roughly 42 ounces or 2.6 pounds) of synthetic marijuana having an estimated street value of $24,000.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Spice was the second-most illegal substance (next to marijuana) used by high school seniors over the past year.
Spice, which is still legal in 40 states, was once readily available in stores across Alabama but was outlawed in the state in 2011. It is generally an herbal mixture that has been treated with chemical additives that give it psychoactive (mind-altering) properties.