Carroll drug task force seeks forfeiture of 5 cars Cocaine, marijuana found in vehicles

March 21, 1993|By Darren M. Allen | Darren M. Allen,Staff Writer

The seizure of a small quantity of drugs could mean five more cars for the Carroll County Narcotics Task Force.

According to forfeiture suits filed in Carroll County Circuit Court in the last month, the county's drug task force is pursuing ownership of the five vehicles in which officers found a half-ounce of cocaine and 2 ounces of marijuana.

Under state law, police can seek forfeiture of vehicles in which any amount of drugs is found. But in most of the Baltimore metropolitan area, police rarely pursue forfeiture cases involving small amounts of drugs.

In two of the cars, officers found trace amounts of cocaine residue. In one car, officers seized a trace amount of marijuana. In another, officers found a half-ounce of cocaine. In the fifth car, officers uncovered 2 ounces of marijuana.

Five forfeiture suits in a 30-day period is unusual for the task force, which files about a dozen such suits a year.

But Assistant State's Attorney Barton F. Walker III said the high number of filings dating back to late February doesn't signal a pattern of more suits.

"Some months it rains, some months it pours," said Mr. Walker, the drug task force coordinator.

He and other task force members have repeatedly refused to reveal how many seized and forfeited vehicles are in their possession.

The cars sought in the most recent forfeiture suits are 1983 and 1984 Chevrolet Cavaliers, a 1985 Nissan 300ZX, a 1985 Ford Escort and a 1979 Toyota 2S.

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