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Methamphetamine dealer caught in Central Florida

Methamphetamine dealer caught in Central Florida

Methamphetamine dealer caught in Central Florida

A Central Florida methamphetamine trafficker was arrested and learned his fate in the court of the Honorable Judge Cary F. Rada last week.

James Lewis Hodge III, 34, was convicted of trafficking methamphetamine and possession of paraphernalia. The charges against Hodge stem from his arrest in 2022. He was sentenced to 20 years in the Florida Department of Corrections on the drug trafficking charge.

“This drug trafficker’s sentence to 20 years in prison sends a clear message that illegal activities that threaten the safety and well-being of our communities will not be tolerated,” said Fifth Judicial Circuit State Attorney Bill Gladson. “Criminals will pay for committing crimes that endanger lives.”

On April 25, 2022, a Lake County Sheriff’s Office deputy conducted a traffic stop.

Officer Heuser approached the driver, later identified as Hodge, and explained the reason for the stop.

While speaking with Hodge about the violation, the officer could smell a distinct odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle. A K9 unit responded to the stop and alerted to the vehicle. Hodge and another occupant were asked to exit the vehicle so it could be searched.

Upon exiting the vehicle, officers discovered Hodge was on probation and was on a condition to seek contraband or alcohol. Officers searched his person and located nearly 28 grams of pills that tested positive for methamphetamine.

Hodge was arrested and charged with trafficking methamphetamine.

The outcome of this case was the result of the diligent efforts of our law enforcement partners and Assistant State Attorneys Chelsey Omega and Gennady Gusak.