Three men accused of possessing drugs Tuesday morning didn't exactly go out of their way to hide, authorities said.
A Citrus County sheriff's deputy on patrol about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday noticed a suspicious vehicle in the parking lot of the DeRosa Plaza Food Mart on W Dunnellon Road.
Inside the red Buick were two men _ one asleep in the back seat, the other in the front passenger seat. A third man was digging through a trash bin.
Sitting on the vehicle's center console, in plain view, was a glass drug pipe, the deputy's report said.
Arrested on charges of cocaine possession and possession of drug paraphernalia were Tim Earl Reynolds, 39, 2653 N Nightshade Drive, Crystal River; Steven E. DeGennaro, 27, 1539 Dewey Way, Hernando; and Steven Joseph Hebert, 35, 14 Melissa Drive, Beverly Hills.
According to the deputy's report, Reynolds was passed out in the back seat, Hebert was passed out in the front passenger seat and DeGennaro was digging through the trash bin.
The deputy awoke the men and ordered them out of the vehicle. A rock of crack cocaine was found in the backseat near Reynolds, the report said.
A syringe was found in the glove box, and two syringes were found in Hebert's shirt pocket, the report said. Hebert also was sitting atop a second glass drug pipe.
Lying on the front passenger floorboard were two balls of copper scouring pad, the report said, used as a screen inside the drug pipes.
Tests showed that crack cocaine was inside both pipes, the report said.
All three men were booked into the Citrus County Detention Facility. DeGennaro is being held in lieu of $5,000 bail and Reynolds in lieu of $10,000 bail. Hebert, who was out on bail on three previous drug charges for selling Hydrocodone, had bail set at $25,000.
His previous bond was revoked.
In other news, law officers arrested a 32-year-old Inverness man on charges that he assaulted an Inverness police officer. Michael Autenrieth, 308 Pleasant Grove Road, was charged with battery on a law enforcement officer.
According to an Inverness police report, an officer was dispatched at 6:50 p.m. to Autenrieth's home. About 20 men were there, involved in a heated argument. The crowd ignored the officer's commands, the report said, and then the officer was approached by the suspect.
"You want some?" Autenrieth reportedly told the officer. "Come on!" Autenrieth then reportedly pushed the officer.
The officer took out his collapsible baton, expanded it and ordered Autenrieth back. Autenrieth pushed the officer again, the report said, and ran.
Another subject tried to approach the officer from behind, the report said, but an off-duty corrections officer on the scene ordered him back. More officers arrived and restored order, and Autenrieth was arrested.
At the county jail, Autenrieth called the officer a "punk a--," and said he would see the officer again on different terms. Autenrieth was released from jail on $5,000 bail later that day.