A traffic stop three years ago turned into a 5-minute guilty verdict Thursday for a man charged with Trafficking in more than 200 grams of Methamphetamine, State Attorney Larry Basford announced.
A jury deliberated for only 5 minutes before returning the guilty verdict against Reggie Gathers, 40, who now faces a minimum-mandatory 15 years in prison but could receive up to 30 years, prosecutors said. Circuit Court Judge Dedee Costello set sentencing for Nov. 9.
Prosecutor Peter Overstreet presented evidence that Gathers was a passenger in a vehicle pulled over for a traffic violation on Oct. 5, 2018, by the Bay County Sheriff’s Office. The driver had a revoked driver’s license and BCSO Sgt. Raymond Scott said there was the odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle. Sgt Scott also introduced a video from a convenience store that captured the driver and Gathers attempting to conceal the methamphetamine.
Deputies searched the vehicle and found Gathers in possession of more than 200 grams of methamphetamine.
Prosecutor Overstreet called Scott from the Special Investigative Division of the BCSO and a chemist from the Florida Department to testify.
In addition to the prison sentence, Overstreet said the defendant faces a mandatory $250,000 fine due the large amount of methamphetamine involved.