Police arrest man on drug related charges

Local St. Augustine reporters at Historic City News have learned that Monday morning, Police Officer Amy Troscher and Officer Jeff Truncellito have arrested a man who is no stranger to the St. Johns County Detention Facility — this time on drug related charges.

Monday morning about 10:30 a.m., Officer Troscher responded to a suspicious person call from Winn Dixie at 1010 South Ponce de Leon Boulevard. The manager told Troscher that a man had been wandering around the store for over an hour.

The manager told police that the man was talking to himself; taking items off the shelf, putting them in a shopping cart and then putting them back onto the shelf again.

Troscher contacted and identified the man as 31 year-old Matthew Paul Allen whose address was last reported as 6210 Cedar Lane in St. Augustine. Allen was last arrested in St. Johns County in July 2010 for Violation of Probation. Allen had been arrested two other times this year, in March 2010 for Vehicle Theft and again in February 2010 for Larceny.

Allen told Troscher that the reason for his lethargic behavior was because he was tired from working all night. Allen claimed he was waiting for his wife to pick him up at the store.

The manager allowed Allen to finish his shopping; but requested that Allen quickly make his purchase and that he then leaves the store. Troscher released Allen and exited the store.

A short time later, Troscher and Truncellito were called back to the store when the manager reported that Allen was on the restroom floor yelling and screaming. Officers found Allen on the floor with his back against the stall door and feet pressed against the toilet.

When officers were able to gain entry to the stall, Troscher reported that she could see a hypodermic needle and the bottom of a coke can floating in the toilet. Allen told police that he was trying to “shoot up” but he could not find his pill. Allen was taken into custody.

The needle was recovered from the toilet and the bottom of the can was seized as evidence. Allen was charged with Possession of drug equipment and tampering with evidence.

Community Affairs Officer Barbara Stevens of the St. Augustine Police Department reports that Allen remains in custody in lieu of posting a $1000.00 appearance bond.

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