BRONSON, Fla. (WFLA) — A stolen trailer led to the discovery of a child living in a home “within reach of” over a dozen firearms and 90 pounds of drugs, the Levy County Sheriff’s Office says.

The Citrus County Sheriff’s Office asked neighboring agencies to keep an eye out for a dump trailer that was reported stolen from Homosassa. Levy County deputies recognized the suspect’s vehicle as a pickup truck “they had encountered many times” in Bronson.

“Detectives knew this truck was frequently seen at a home located next to local daycare and began conducting surveillance,” the sheriff’s office wrote in a news release on Thursday.

Deputies spotted a trailer matching the stolen one at a home on East Hathaway Avenue. A registered sexual predator, Michael G. Hernandez, 42, was found to be living at the address, which deputies said they had received complaints about.

When the sheriff’s office stopped by the home to execute a search warrant, they found Hernandez attempting to drive away and took him into custody. Hernandez allegedly “dropped methamphetamines on the ground and attempted to grind them into the dirt as detectives were handcuffing him,” according to the news release.

Deputies said a 4-year-old child was found in the car with about eight ounces of marijuana in the seat next to them.

Two women were also arrested on the property. Hernandez’s girlfriend, Alexandra Gomara, 27, was allegedly found with drugs and Kristie Collins, 49, was wanted for failure to appear in court.

Photo allegedly showing marijuana kept in trash bags, stored on a small boat in the yard. (Levy County Sheriff’s Office)

The sheriff’s office confirmed the trailer was the one stolen from Homosassa and returned to the home with an amended search warrant. The search allegedly turned up “a cache of guns and a large quantity of narcotics,” according to the news release.

Detectives said they found more stolen items and seized 14 firearms. Several were allegedly loaded and left within reach of the young child. A combined 90 pounds of marijuana, fentanyl and methamphetamines were also discovered, the sheriff’s office said.

Hernandez was charged with the following offenses:

  • Violation of sexual predator registration requirements
  • Child neglect
  • Evidence tampering
  • Possession of marijuana with intent to distribute
  • Possession of methamphetamines
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was held at the Levy County Jail on a $266,000 bond.

Gomara was charged with child neglect and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. Her bond was set at $155,000. Collins was held on a $300 bond for the outstanding warrant.

The sheriff’s office said the suspects could receive additional charges as the investigation progresses. Anyone with information related to this case is asked to contact the Levy County Sheriff’s Office at (352) 486-5111.