SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) — Sarasota police said they uncovered hundreds of grams of cocaine, a loaded 9mm handgun, and other controlled substances hidden inside the wall of a Sarasota home on Tuesday after several neighbors suspected the home to be a drug house.
Officers said Rodney and Jason Austin, who belong to the same family, face several charges after a search warrant uncovered a list of illegal items including:
- 377.1 grams of cocaine (hidden in a divider wall)
- 30.7 grams of marijuana
- 6 oxycodone pills (schedule 2 controlled substance)
- 5.7 grams of synthetic cannabinoids
- Taurus G2 9mm handgun with a magazine with 9mm rounds inside (hidden in a divider wall)
- $6,857 in U.S. currency
Officers said Jason, who is a nephew to Rodney, claimed he was at his uncle’s house “to sleep” despite being in violation of his parole. He was arrested and faces charges of violation of probation.
Rodney, 42, who is a one-time convicted felon, was also arrested and faces charges of:
- Trafficking in cocaine of more than 200 grams
- Possession of a controlled substance (oxycodone)
- Possession of a controlled substance (synthetic cannabinoids)
- Possession of marijuana of more than 20 grams
- Possession of a firearm by a Florida convicted felon
- Possession of for trafficking in controlled substances
Officers said they conducted “multiple controlled buys from the residence to which information supplied was that Rodney was selling rock cocaine from the residence.”
The case remains an active and ongoing investigation. Anyone with any information is asked to call the Sarasota Police Department Criminal Investigations Division at 941-263-6070.