Cocaine dealers were using an abandoned house in the historic district of Key West as a workplace, police said.
Four men were arrested Tuesday in cocaine-related crimes after a Key West police Special Investigations Unit responded to several local complaints over the property, 318 Truman Ave., in Key West's Bahama Village neighborhood.
“Although the house is abandoned, people reported seeing drug dealers and users hanging out on the property,” said police spokeswoman Alyson Crean.
Exzabeus Dreon Benjamin, 46, of Miami, was arrested on two felony counts of the sale of cocaine after police said he sold the drug to undercover operatives twice at the Truman Avenue property.
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Shawn Michael James, 52, of Miami, was arrested and charged with possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute.
Detectives said they watched James hide a bag of suspected narcotics behind a tow-away zone sign on the property.
They also saw several people enter the property, meet with James briefly, then leave.
During several of the encounters James would go retrieve drugs from the bag hidden behind the tow-away sign and then meet with the suspected buyers on the side of the house.
After witnessing the suspected drug activity, detectives stopped James and obtained a search warrant for the property.
Detectives recovered the bag that James was hiding behind the sign, which they said contained 25 bags of powdered cocaine and 14 bags of crack cocaine.
At the time of his arrest Tuesday, James was already out on bond from two previous sale of cocaine charges and an unrelated battery charge.
Two other men were arrested on drug charges Tuesday for dealing in other parts of the island.
Alfred Kennedy, 54, of Key West, was arrested on one felony count of selling cocaine following an undercover operation on White Street.
Alexander Rahming, 50, of Key West, was arrested Tuesday on two felony counts of selling cocaine during two separate undercover operations.
He was initially arrested for stealing a cancer society collection jar from a local business, police said.
While jailed, Rahming was arrested on the drug charges.