Arrested Man: 'I Thought Cocaine Wasn't Illegal in Florida'

By Bryan Le 02/27/14

A Florida man becomes an Internet joke after making his bold claim while attempting to hide the drugs in a flower pot right in front of arresting officers.

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He tried his best not to seem suspicious.

Despite making a last ditch attempt to hide a bag of cocaine in a flower planter in front of his arresting officer, a Key West, Fla. man claimed he didn't know he was doing anything wrong. "I thought cocaine wasn't illegal in Florida," Guy Lanchester, 46, told arresting officers, unwittingly becoming another in a long line of Florida punchlines.

The 46-year-old painter was arrested at Key West's Pier House Resort after a security guard witnessed Lanchester and two others trespassing on the property and heard a woman scream. In addition to cocaine possession, Lanchester was also charged with felony tampering of evidence after trying to stash the baggie right before the arresting officer's eyes.

"I asked Lanchester what he had in his hand and Lanchester quickly shoved his hands into the flower pot and yanked them back out," said Officer Darnell Sealy.

But Lanchester's sleight of hand was no match for a quick wave of Sealy's flashlight, which revealed a baggie containing 0.8 ounces of cocaine.

Lanchester's two companions were searched and released. The reason for the woman's scream was not provided by police.

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Bryan Le grew up in the 90's, so the Internet is practically his third parent. This combined with a love for journalism led him to The Fix. When he isn't fulfilling his duties as Editorial Coordinator, he's obsessing over fancy keyboards he can't justify buying. Find Bryan on LinkedIn or Twitter