Motion Filed to Suppress Evidence for Leon County Administrator Arrested for Drugs

Paul Byrd Jr
Posted at 10:17 AM, Feb 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-08 10:17:00-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - Attorneys have filed a motion to suppress evidence for a former Leon County Schools assistant superintendent arrested after deputies found over 30 grams of cocaine and 8 different types of controlled prescription medications.

According to documents from the Franklin County Clerk of Courts, Paul W. Byrd Jr. was arrested on February 28, 2014 for drug trafficking charges.

Attorneys said that the Franklin County Sheriff's Office had set up an illegal narcotics checkpoint on Highway 98 near Lanark Village. They said that while the probable cause affidavit in this case didn't mention a checkpoint, depositions revealed police misconduct they said violated Byrd's due process.

They said that in depositions, deputies referred to the operation as a "ruse" narcotics checkpoint and say that it was operated without any restricting guidelines, therefore making the "ruse" narcotic checkpoint an illegal one. 

Byrd was arrested in Franklin County after deputies tried to pull him over for vehicle code violations on the white Chevrolet truck he was driving. While one of the officers was talking with Byrd, a drug sniffing dog signaled that there could be narcotics in the truck.

After deputies searched the car, Byrd was arrested and charged with Trafficking in Controlled Substance, 8 Counts of Possession of a Controlled Substance, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. In addition to the drugs, deputies said they found digital scales and $1,637 in cash.

Byrd was a Leon County Schools assistant superintendent but, according to the district, resigned after his arrest.