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Wednesday, November 23, 2022

MCSO arrests Ocala man after finding stolen gun, drugs inside vehicle during traffic stop

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office arrested a 29-year-old Ocala man after a stolen firearm, fentanyl, and cocaine were found inside his vehicle during a traffic stop.

On Tuesday, an MCSO deputy observed a Honda Odyssey that was traveling southbound on Baseline Road, near NE 7th Street, at a high rate of speed. When the deputy attempted to catch up to the vehicle, the deputy observed that the driver, later identified as Steven Montanez, was “unable to properly maintain lanes,” according to the MCSO report.

Steven Montanez
Steven Montanez

The deputy noted in the MCSO report that the vehicle began accelerating when the deputy got closer, and the deputy’s radar showed that it was traveling at approximately 75 miles per hour in a posted 35 mph zone.

The deputy observed that the vehicle was traveling in the middle of the road and had difficulty staying in a single lane. According to the MCSO report, the deputy suspected that Montanez might be under the influence of alcohol, and a traffic stop was attempted in the 3500 block of SE 58th Avenue.

When the deputy activated the patrol car’s emergency lights to attempt the traffic stop, Montanez continued to head southbound on Maricamp Road. He then turned onto Dogwood Road and traveled southbound on Pine Road before stopping his vehicle at Ralph Russell Park located at 1690 Pine Road. He then exited his vehicle and was detained by the deputy.

The deputy noted in the MCSO report that a search of Montanez’s vehicle was conducted, and the following items were located inside:

  • A Taurus G2S 9mm handgun that was reported stolen out of the Ocala Police Department.
  • A white powdery substance weighing 4 grams that later field-tested positive for cocaine.
  • Tablets/pills weighing 20 grams that later field-tested positive for fentanyl.

Montanez was arrested and transported to Marion County Jail where he is currently being held on $59,500 bond. He is facing felony charges for trafficking in fentanyl (4 grams or more), possession of cocaine, grand theft of a firearm, using or displaying a firearm during the commission of a felony, and fleeing or eluding a law enforcement officer with lights and siren active.

A court date has been scheduled on Tuesday, December 27 at 9 a.m., according to jail records.