Wednesday, September 23, 2020
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The Villages

‘Nervous’ couple arrested after K-9 alerts on vehicle at Circle K

Antonio Achan Louis

Maria Mendell

A “nervous” couple was arrested after a K-9 alerted on their vehicle during a traffic stop at a Circle K on Main Street in Wildwood.

Antonio Achan Louis, 32, of Lady Lake, was driving a gray Chevrolet Blazer on U.S. Hwy. 301 at about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday when a check revealed the tag on the Blazer actually had been assigned to a maroon Pontiac, according to an arrest report from the Wildwood Police Department.

During a traffic stop, Louis admitted he knew the improper tag was on the Chevy Blazer, but said “someone else had placed it on there,” the report said.

Louis and a passenger, 37-year-old Maria Mendell of Fruitland Park, “were nervous and making furtive movements inside the vehicle.” A K-9 unit was summoned to the scene and the dog alerted on the vehicle, signaling the likely presence of drugs.

A search of Mendell’s purse turned up pills including Lorazepam, Oxycodone and Alprazolam. She also had two plastic bags containing cocaine and methamphetamine hidden on her person.

A glass pipe was found under the driver’s seat of the Blazer.

Mendell was arrested on multiple drug charges and booked at the Sumter County Detention Center on $12,000 bond.

Louis was arrested on charges of failure to register a motor vehicle and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was booked at the jail on $1,100 bond.

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