LAND O'LAKES — There was smoke coming from cell number A412B at the Pasco County Jail and a deputy went to check it out. There was no fire. It smelled like cigarettes, which are banned.
This cell is the new home of Majin Alberto Camareno — a 35-year-old from New Port Richey who makes frequent appearances at the jail on charges of drugs, battery and violating his probation. Camareno settled in on Wednesday for a nine-month stretch on aggravated assault.
This time, he wanted some comforts of home, according to a report from the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.
The report said a deputy patted him down and found Loritab and Xanax pills, cigarettes, rolling papers and matches in the front of his underwear.
It turns out that Camareno had filled two "Happy Birthday!" balloons with the contraband and then hid them inside his rectum to smuggle them inside the jail. Once he was booked, Camareno retrieved the balloons and got the goods — which before consumption were about eight pills, 20 cigarettes, plus the papers and matches.
It is not known why he chose those balloons, though his own birthday is coming up on Nov. 23.
The report said he admitted to bringing the items into the jail, but that they were for his own personal use. Now he also faces charges of possession of a controlled substance and bringing contraband into a detention facility.
His bail is set at $10,000 for those two new charges. He won't be able to post that until his assault term is served.
Erin Sullivan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 909-4609.