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Monday, March 4, 2024

Woman admits to relapse when confronted with meth in her purse

Mary Elizabeth Shockley
Mary Elizabeth Shockley

A Fruitland Park woman admitted to relapsing on methamphetamine after being caught with the substance during a traffic stop in Eustis.

Mary Elizabeth Shockley, 43, was charged with possession of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia. Lake County Jail records show she was previously arrested on drug charges in November 2019 and January 2020, and she was charged with violating her probation in September 2020.

At around 11:48 p.m. Saturday, a Eustis police officer observed Shockley driving a black Chevy pickup truck southbound on North Bay Street with the passenger-side headlight not working. As the officer followed Shockley, she used her right turn signal to indicate she was going to turn onto East Clifford Avenue, but she kept going and turned right onto Ferran Park Drive, according to the arrest report.

The officer conducted the traffic stop and spoke with Shockley, who said she recently had a friend rewire the headlamp because it kept going out. Asked where she was going, Shockley said her male passenger had lost his sunglasses while working at the Eustis Hometown Celebration festival and she was taking him back to get them. The report noted there were no longer any tents or trailers at the park.

Shockley denied having anything illegal inside the vehicle but told the officer he’d have to get consent from the passenger to conduct a search. The officer told her it was her decision because she was the driver and registered owner of the vehicle. Shockley started yelling at the passenger, telling him police wanted to search the vehicle. The officer could hear the passenger become irate and yell that he was being harassed, the report said.

The officer used his K9 partner to conduct a free-air sniff of the vehicle, and the dog gave a positive alert on the front passenger door seam. While the officer was preparing to do a probable cause search, Shockley admitted to having something illegal inside the vehicle. She didn’t say what it was, but it was in a lock box inside her purse, according to the report.

The officer found the purse behind the driver’s seat. Inside was a magnetic lock box. Once the box was forcefully opened, the officer found two glass pipes with round tops commonly used to smoke methamphetamine. Also found were a small plastic bag containing a crystalized substance, as well as another box with a shard of crystalized substance in it. The substances tested positive for methamphetamine, the report said.

When asked if she knew what the officer found, Shockley said she believed it was methamphetamine but it didn’t belong to her. She said she had a friend in the vehicle earlier and she saw the box and placed it in her purse when she picked up the male passenger. Shockley did not say anything about the second box. She then dropped her head and said she was going through a rough time. Shockley said she had relapsed the previous day after being clean for a long time, according to the report.

The Georgia native was arrested and taken to the Lake County Jail, where she was released after posting $3,000 bond.

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