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Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Woman with history of stashing drug items in her bra back behind bars

Melissa Berg

A woman with a sordid legal past who was once caught with methamphetamine hidden in her bra is back in jail.

A Marion County sheriff’s sergeant stopped a Cadillac Escalade on Monday after watching it run through a stop sign at S.W. 17th Court and County Road 484 and made contact with the driver and the front-seat passenger, 43-year-old Melissa Berg. The sergeant asked the resident of The Villages for her identification and she became “very nervous and could not locate it,” a sheriff’s office report states.

The sergeant noted that Berg’s breathing rate changed and she acted “panicked” as she failed to thoroughly search her purse. The sergeant asked her to step out of the vehicle and she started crying as he questioned her about how she knew the driver and where they were coming from, the report says.

Berg admitted that they were coming from the nearby Microtel, where she had purchased two packages of Suboxone for $10 apiece. After being read her rights, Berg told the sergeant she’s a heroin addict and had last used the drug three days earlier, the report says, adding that she said the Suboxone helps her “cope” with her heroin addiction.

Berg refused to provide any information about who she purchased the Suboxone from, saying she didn’t want to be labeled as a “snitch.” When asked if she had anything else on her or in her purse, she removed her driver’s license and a small blue straw from her bra, saying she used the straw three days earlier to snort heroin, according to the report.

The sergeant searched Berg’s purse and located the two 4mg Suboxone packages, which hadn’t been opened. He also confirmed that Berg didn’t have a prescription for the drug.

Berg, who lives at 2112 Callaway Dr. in The Villages, was transported to the Marion County Jail and charged with possession of a controlled substance without a prescription and possession and/or use of drug equipment. She was being held on $3,000 bond and her next court date hasn’t yet been set, jail records show.

Berg is no stranger to the tri-county area legal system, having been arrested in March 2019 when she was found driving a vehicle with a stolen license plate at Wal-Mart at Buffalo Ridge Plaza in The Villages. At the time, she was arrested on charges of theft, possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana and possession of drug equipment.

Berg also was arrested in February 2019 after she was caught with methamphetamine in her bra. She was taken into custody during a traffic stop after a K-9 unit alerted on her vehicle during a traffic stop, indicating the likely presence of narcotics, according to a report.