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Largo police make two felony drug arrests

LARGO — Two people who caught the attention of Largo police officers because of parking and traffic infractions were arrested on drug charges over the weekend.

In the first incident at about 9:50 p.m. Saturday, two plainclothes officers approached a vehicle improperly parked in a handicapped spot at the Brittany Bay apartment complex at 1201 Seminole Blvd.

After receiving consent to search, police found a gram of cocaine under the passenger seat, authorities said. The passenger in the vehicle ran away, but was found hiding in some bushes a short time later by a Clearwater police K9 team that was called to assist with the search.

Curtis James Echols, 29, was charged with possession of cocaine with intent to sell, possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting arrest without violence.

The driver, a woman who was not identified, was not arrested.

Echols, 29, of the 3100 block of Adrian Avenue SW, was released from the Pinellas County Jail on Sunday after posting $10,300 bail.

He has been convicted of cocaine possession and driving with a suspended or revoked license, according to Pinellas court records. He is scheduled to be sentenced next month on a probation violation charge.

About 4:30 a.m. Sunday, the same two officers noticed a driver run a light or stop sign on Starkey Road and called uniformed officers to pull her car over.

During the stop, officers found crack cocaine and narcotic pain relievers.

Julie Patricia Cunningham, 38, who is also listed as Julieann Cunningham in court records, was charged with obstruction by disguise, driving with a suspended license, possession of crack cocaine, possession of hydrocodone and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Largo police spokesman Lt. Edward Sohoski said the arrests were the result of active police work.

"Here's people that drew attention to themselves over something minor and ended up being felony arrests," Sohoski said.

Cunningham was still being held at the Pinellas County Jail in lieu of $4,550 bail Tuesday afternoon.

Court records show that Cunningham, of the 8400 block of 78th Terrace N in Largo, was convicted of domestic battery in January and was sentenced to a year of probation and family violence counseling.

Largo police make two felony drug arrests 08/10/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 10, 2010 2:09pm]
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