GULFPORT POLICE DEPARTMENT
MEDIA NEWS RELEASE
                                                                 
Lt. Robert Vincent
Acting Chief of Police
727-893-1030

12/31/09--Drug Dealer Arrested Near Law School Campus

Gulfport, – Officers arrested Carlos J. Stephens (25, of St. Petersburg) Wednesday afternoon following an undercover operation that took place near Stetson University College of Law. An ongoing investigation revealed that Stephens had been delivering cocaine to a St. Pete Beach resident at a designated meeting place on 13th Avenue South, which is the northern boundary of the law school's campus.

After the transaction was observed by the undercover officer, a containment team moved in and apprehended Stephens without incident. Police recovered three "rocks" of crack cocaine, and they initiated proceedings to seize the 2000 Cadillac he drove to make the sale.

Stephens is charged with three counts of selling cocaine, two of which are elevated to a higher level because the transactions occurred within 200 feet of the college campus. Wednesday's deal was the third observed by Stephens at this location in less than one week.

Police have notified the administration and public safety department at Stetson, although there is no evidence at this point to suggest that Stephens ever had any interaction with students.

During the investigation and takedown, the college campus was sparsely populated due to the winter break between semesters.

Click here for a booking record.