KISSIMMEE – From having the smell of marijuana in the car, to being spotted peeking in car windows at a store parking lot on Christmas Eve, suspected criminals have been making it awfully easy for the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office to make arrests lately.
Ivan Matos, 24, of 4929 Fells Cove Ave. in Kissimmee, was arrested today after Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies got a call around 2 a.m. about a car operating recklessly in the area of Osceola Parkway and Buenaventura Lakes Boulevard.
Deputies were able to locate the vehicle, a blue BMW, in the parking lot of a Walgreens at 2050 E. Osceola Parkway Boulevard in Kissimmee. Deputies approached the vehicle and spoke with the driver, later identified as Matos. But at first it wasn’t the conversation that caught the deputies’ attention, but the aroma emanating from the car.
“As deputies were speaking with Matos, they could smell what appeared to be marijuana,” noted Twis Lizasuain, the public information officer for the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, in her release on this arrest.
Deputies made a note of the smell, and reported that Matos cooperated with them and agreed to allow a search of the vehicle. The source of the smell quickly became apparent. Deputies reportedly found a large sum of cash, prescription pills, and “approximately 9.5 grams of marijuana, and more than 300 plastic bags, commonly used to package narcotics,” Lizasuain noted.
Based on the evidence, Matos was arrested and charged with possession of a controlled substance (Xanax) with intent to sell, two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of cannabis with intent to sell and possession of a controlled substance (Diazepam) with intent to sell. He was booked into the Osceola County Jail.
Alprazolam, or Xanax, is a commonly used and FDA-approved prescription drug meant for the treatment of panic disorder and anxiety disorders .
Diazepam is a benzodiazepine, used to treat anxiety and nervousness.
Prescription drug abuse is considered a major problem in Florida. So-called “pill mills” are where doctors write prescriptions for pain killing medications that in some cases can be highly addictive. The abuse of prescription drugs is considered one of the nation’s fastest growing drug problems. The Center for Drug Free Living Addictions Receiving Facility in Orlando has reported that addictions to heroin have, until recently, made up 47 percent of the patient base at this forty-bed inpatient detoxification stabilization facility, while pharmaceuticals – and that included all the pain pills – was at 50 percent. Last year, those numbers jumped to 83 percent for pain pills, 15 percent for heroin and 2 percent for Methadone.
It’s been estimated that pill mills can bring in $25,000 a day, and these clinics are particularly prevalent in south Florida. Broward and Palm Beach counties have 200 known pill mills. Some even advertise “No wait, walk in’s welcome for chronic pain” out front.
The second arrest happened on Christmas Eve, as Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies were conducting a routine check in the parking lot of the Best Buy store at 1620 W. Osceola Parkway in Kissimmee, and noticed a suspicious-acting man — later identified as Jack Arenas, 28 — looking in the windows of several vehicles.
The deputies watched as Arenas went into the Best Buy, then made a call on his cell phone. He left the store and got into the passenger side of a Toyota van.
The van driver, later identified as Jaime Andres Patino-Orozco, 17, parked next to a silver Chrysler van. Deputies reported that Arenas got out of that car, and looked in the window of the van before using a tool to break into it.
“He took numerous electronics from the van before the two suspects attempted to leave the parking lot,” Lizasuain noted in her release on the case. “A deputy attempted to stop the vehicle, but Patino deliberately drove the car towards the deputy. Another deputy blocked the vehicle and both suspects were taken into custody.”
Deputies recovered three Ipads, several cameras and other electronics totaling $4,000 from the two suspects, who were charged with car burglary, grand theft and possession of burglary tools.
Patino-Orozco was also charged with aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer.
Arenas was booked into the Osceola County Jail and Patino-Orozco was booked into the Orange County Juvenile Detention Center.
Arenas is from Rego Park, N.Y., while Patino-Orozco lives in Orlando.
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