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HCSO arrests couple on child neglect, drug charges

Published Sep. 28, 2013

TAMPA — A man and a woman were arrested on charges including drug possession and child neglect, authorities said, after they dealt drugs from their Clair-Mel home.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office had been investigating a report of drug sales at 8718 Fish Lake Road since September, the agency said, involving local street gangs the "58th Street Boys" and "Tampa Bloods." Friday morning deputies, detectives and the agency's SWAT team served a warrant and found drugs, guns and stolen property in the home, along with two infants.

The Sheriff's Office reported finding three handguns, 3.5 grams of crack cocaine, 20.3 grams of hydrocodone, 10.2 grams of the painkiller Darvocet and a motor scooter reported stolen to Tampa police. The home's residents — Kenyett Patton, 39, and Melissa Springer, 34 — were arrested and both face charges of possession of cocaine, possession of a controlled substance without a prescription and child neglect. Patton, who has 13 prior felony convictions, is also charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Both were booked into the Hillsborough County jail Friday. Patton's bail was set at $16,000, Springer's at $8,500. A warrant will be issued for a third subject who was not there Friday, the Sheriff's Office said.