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Ocala

Ocala pair behind bars after drugs, gun found in vehicle

Geonte Smith

A pair of 21-year-old Ocala men were arrested after police found drugs and a handgun inside their vehicle during a traffic stop.

Cory Cohen was charged with possession of a handgun by a convicted felon, possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia. Cohen was a passenger in a vehicle driven by Geonte L. Smith, who was charged with resisting an officer with violence.

While on routine patrol Jan. 29, an Ocala Police officer observed a gold Chevy traveling east on NW 10th Street. The officer paced the vehicle at approximately 54 mph in a 45-mph zone and initiated the traffic stop. Smith told the officer, “I was probably speeding but I wasn’t speeding for long,” and then said he believed the officer was harassing him and the vehicle stop was not legitimate, according to the OPD report.

Cory Cohen

The officer requested a K-9 unit to conduct an open-air drug sniff, but Smith refused multiple requests to turn off the ignition and get out of the vehicle, saying he wasn’t going to do anything until his mother arrived. The officer warned Smith he would be charged with obstruction if he didn’t comply, but he still refused. Smith started locking all of the vehicle’s doors as officers tried to remove him from it, the report said.

After officers finally got the driver’s door opened, Smith lunged away and pushed off all attempts to grab him by his arms. Smith then grabbed the bottom of the officer’s uniform and tried to push him away from the door jam of the vehicle, according to the report.

Smith was eventually removed from the vehicle but refused to be placed in handcuffs. The officer forced him to the ground by pulling down on his left arm with one hand and pushing his head down with the other. Smith was finally placed in handcuffs and secured in the back of the patrol car, the report said.

Meanwhile, the drug dog detected the odor of narcotics during the open-air sniff. A search of the vehicle turned up a small backpack behind the driver’s seat containing five white tablets of Tramadol, a loaded Glock handgun, a mason jar filled with a large amount of marijuana, a secondary loaded Glock magazine, and Cohen’s Florida identification card, according to the report.

Cohen and Smith were arrested and taken to the Marion County Jail. Cohen was released Feb. 1 on $15,000 bond, while Smith is still being held on $2,000 bond. Both will appear in Marion County Court on March 3.

Photos in Ocala, Florida

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