On July 17, 2018 at approximately 7:00 am, officers from the Fellsmere Police Department assisted agents from the US Border Patrol detain multiple people outside of 122 N. Maple Street in Fellsmere. The detention occurred as a result of an on-going drug investigation involving several locations in Fellsmere.
Investigators were led to 122 N. Maple Street as a result of a traffic stop that occurred on Friday, July 13th at approximately 10:40 PM at the intersection of North Broadway Street and New York Avenue. The stop was conducted because the vehicle had a faulty brake light.
During that stop, officers identified the front passenger as Francisco Gonzalez, age 27, of 122 N. Maple Street, Fellsmere and subsequently arrested him for possession of cocaine. Gonzalez had approximately two grams of powdered cocaine contained in three separate baggies. One of the baggies was observed by an officer in plain view as he sat in the vehicle. A woman driver was identified and released.
It was determined that Gonzalez is in the United States illegally so a hold was placed on him by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He is currently in custody in the Indian River County Jail.
Information learned during that stop, when combined with the ongoing drug investigation led to the belief that multiple illegal aliens lived at, or frequented 122 N. Maple Street and participate in drug activity.
Fellsmere Officers assisted a Border Patrol agent detain a total of 10 people outside the home at 122 N. Maple as they were preparing to leave for work. After investigating their identity and status in the United States, six were released and four were taken in to custody because they entered the United States unlawfully.
They were transported to the USBP station in Orlando where they are being processed for removal from the United States. There were no additional charges at the time of this press release and they were identified as:
-Jose Luis Gonzalez-Salvador, age 26, from Vera Cruz Mexico
-Daniel Encarnacion-Avila, age 25, from Vera Cruz Mexico
-Sergio Trejo-Mejia, age 22, Queretaro Mexico
-Bernando Lazaro-Martinez, age 26, from Vera Cruz Mexico
No evidence of drugs was detected during a brief sweep of the home by investigators, but officers noted that interior construction was being done without a permit and referred the matter to City of Fellsmere code enforcement authorities.
“The Fellsmere Police Department, like other law enforcement agencies, work with Immigration Officials to identify undocumented immigrants who engage in criminal activity and will assist in their removal from the United States as a means to protect the community”. -Chief Keith Touchberry