Florida Man Gets Pulled Over for Speeding, Realizes Cops Can't Search What They Can't Open

The key has a Hyundai logo on it because it belongs to the author.
Image: Alanis King, Monroe County Sheriff’s Office

Thinking on your feet isn’t easy to do, and even when a time-constrained idea fails, there’s solace in that you tried instead of freezing up. That was the case with a Florida man pulled over for speeding on Christmas Eve, who decided it would be smart to throw his keys in the car and lock it to “prevent” a search.

He didn’t actually prevent the search, and likely made it more obvious that the cop needed to do close inspection. But, again, he was thinking on his feet.

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The Miami Herald, citing a Monroe County Sheriff’s Office arrest report, wrote that Florida resident Charles Albert Garcia was casually cruising through a 45-mph zone at 70 mph when he got pulled over for speeding. Garcia, 40, told the deputy who pulled him over, Jason Farr, that he was in his father’s Lexus and he was on his way home with Christmas gifts.

He had a little more than that in the car, though. Here’s what happened initially during the stop, according to the Miami Herald:

According to Farr’s report, Garcia’s license has been suspended since April 2012, and he had been arrested for driving on a suspended license three previous times. He also had a warrant out for his arrest for not showing up to court for a traffic violation, Farr wrote in his report.

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When deputies told Garcia they planned to search the car, the arrest report said, he threw the keys inside and locked it. Because that wasn’t the most foolproof plan, the report said a towing company came by, unlocked the car, and deputies began their search a little later than expected.

Garcia was arrested on a few counts once deputies got inside, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office database: multiple felony counts for controlled substances without a prescription, a felony for cocaine possession, a felony for habitually driving with a suspended license, a misdemeanor for obstruction without violence, and a few other things.

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The Miami Herald, citing the arrest report, wrote that deputies found some cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, amphetamine pills and marijuana in the car, and that Garcia was released Wednesday on a bond of $64,000. The report didn’t say whether he really had any Christmas gifts with him.

If he did, though, it sounds like they were only a day late.

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About the author

Alanis King

Alanis King is a staff writer at Jalopnik.