Two face drug charges after raid in Port Charlotte

Mariah Merchant and Jonathan King
Mariah Merchant and Jonathan King(Charlotte County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Jul. 16, 2021 at 11:48 AM EDT
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PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. (WWSB) - Two Port Charlotte people were arrested after possibly flushing evidence down toilets as deputies executed a search warrant of a home Thursday, authorities said.

Charlotte County Sheriff’s deputies arrived at a home in the 3000 block of Brooklyn Avenue in Port Charlotte. Deputies announced themselves and ordered the occupants to exit. Two people complied; however, two others, identified as Jonathan King, 35, and Mariah Merchant, 29. did not. As deputies entered the home, they located the pair, each in separate bathrooms standing near the toilets.

While being searched, King was found to have $3,800 in cash on his person, as well as a baggie containing 7.8g of methamphetamine. Deputies also discovered trace amounts of fentanyl on his hands.

In the master bedroom, deputies discovered a safe containing a digital scale and pills.

Inside the other bedrooms, deputies located various baggies containing a total of 24.6g of fentanyl, 7.5g of methamphetamine, 3 Pyrex smoking pipes (testing positive for methamphetamine residue), a bottle of methadone, and 3 unidentified pills.

Merchant was arrested and charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. King was charged with trafficking in fentanyl; three counts of possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine, methadone and buprenorphine hydrochloride); and possession of drug paraphernalia.

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