After an arrest for possession of marijuana, a Pinellas County resident had a firearm confiscated by the officer who caught her smoking in downtown St. Petersburg.
Now, 57-year-old Rebecca Marsh of Tierra Verde is filing a petition to have police return her .380 Ruger LCP.
The police report said the gun and concealed carry weapons permit (CCW) would not be permitted to be brought into the jail, so a St. Petersburg Police officer put into an SPPD locker.
On Sept. 13, 2015, an officer — unnamed in court documents — was patrolling the area just after midnight. The officer first smelled “a strong odor of marijuana.”
According to the incident report, the officer identified a red Dodge pickup truck where the smell was emanating.
Upon seeing a female passenger light a pipe and blow smoke out the truck window, the officer approached the car on the driver’s side.
After the officer asked to hand over the pipe, Marsh, who was in the vehicle along with 66-year-old Pinellas Park resident John Joseph Steimel, attempted to hide it by her side. After a short struggle, the pipe was turned over to the officer.
While Marsh exited the truck, a baggie containing roughly a half-gram of marijuana fell to the ground.
As backup rolled in, the officer searched Marsh’s purse, finding a gun and CCW permit. The officer had the items transported to a locker at the police station.
Along with the pot and gun, police also found prescription pills in the driver’s possession.
In March 2016, Marsh, a licensed facial expert, pleaded “no contest” to the charges, paying $450 in fines. On Oct. 31, she filed a petition without the help of an attorney to have her gun returned.