TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - A Tallahassee man was charged with possessing Spice, an illegal drug also known as synthetic marijuana, after he gave an officer a substance he claimed to have bought from a smoke shop to help with his abnormal breathing and chest pain.
Mark A. Gerkin, 53, who was booked into the Leon County Jail on Sunday, came to the attention of the Tallahassee Police Department after he was accused of causing a disturbance at an apartment complex.
Gerkin had screamed obscenities at residents, threatened to kill anyone who had a problem with his lifestyle, and possessed the illegal drug known as Spice, the complaining party said.
Gerkin's eyes were bloodshot but he did not smell of alcohol, said the complainant, who told the officer that another resident told him that Gerkin and another resident had Spice.
Gerkin, in response to the complainant's demand gave him a small bag of unknown substance, and afterward became angry and threw objects around in the front porch area of his apartment.
Field testing the substance, which the TPD officer received from the complainant, the officer determined it to be synthetic cannabis. It weighed about 11.8 grams.
The officer read Gerkin the Miranda Warning and afterward captured on his patrol cruiser's recording system Gerkin's declaration that he bought the drug and later handed it over to the complainant.
Gerkin's public defender entered a conditional plea of not guilty and a notice of discovery demanding that prosecutors disclose to them any evidence that tends to negate or diminish his guilt.
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