PALM COAST, FL – A Flagler County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) deputy conducted a traffic stop on a silver Kia on Thursday afternoon for traveling 59 miles per hour in a 45 mile per hour zone. As the deputy approached the vehicle, he detected a strong odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle.
The driver, 19-year-old Jordan Mercarter, of Palm Coast, admitted to the deputy that he had marijuana in a bag strapped to his chest. He also alerted the deputy to a firearm in the driver door slot. Deputy Conway asked Mercarter if he had a concealed carry permit, as the firearm was in his immediate reach, and he replied that he did not. Deputy Conway removed the firearm and put Mercarter in handcuffs.
Within the bag on Mercarter’s chest, Deputy Conway located marijuana and hashish oil packaged for sale. Mercarter admitted to deputies that he was on his way to sell the marijuana and brought the firearm along for protection. Mercarter would not tell deputies where he got the firearm but it did not appear to be reported stolen. Further investigation revealed a larger quantity of marijuana and hashish oil at Mercarter’s residence, packaged for sale.
“I’ve always said that guns and drug dealing is a dangerous business and often leads to violence,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “While some might not think dealing marijuana is a big deal, it proves to be one when people are carrying firearms for protection and committing crimes. I’m glad this traffic stop by Deputy Conway was able to take this dealer off the streets before his drug dealing turned violent.”
Mercarter was placed under arrest and charged with Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Sell, Possession of Hashish, and Carrying a Concealed Firearm. He was booked into the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility and released after posting a $7,500 bond. Two passengers in the vehicle were released from the scene.