The silver Honda Odyssey was parked early Sunday in an area of Vero Beach that had recently seen a rash of robberies. So a deputy from the Indian River County Sheriff's Office on routine patrol approached the van with Pennsylvania plates to investigate.
According to a police report, the deputy made contact with the driver, who later identified himself as Lester Wagner by producing a South African passport. His ID showed an address listed in Sebastian.
Something didn't seem right with the suspect.
"I immediately noticed that Wagner was sweating profusely, looking around rapidly, digging into his pockets and speaking quickly, which was an indicator to me that he was nervous," read the officer's report.
Premium content for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
The deputy asked the man why he was nervous, and he answered that he was just sleeping.
When Wagner was asked whether he had any weapons or any illegal substances in the car, he reportedly said "he didn't think so," but then added that he was a user of "speed and opiates," as per the report. The man then consented to a search.
Wagner, who had obvious marks on his arms "consistent with intravenous drug use," was placed in mechanical restraints for the "officer's safety," while the search was conducted. The officer discovered a capped syringe, marijuana leaves, a silver spoon, a container with blue and brownish gray powder as well as a suitcase and clothes strewn all over. The suspect then announced that had used the syringe to inject drugs earlier and was "still coming down" off his high. He also revealed that he was living out of his girlfriend's van and that she lived in Pittsburgh. Her whereabouts are unknown.
When the deputy tested the powder, it came out positive for a mix of codeine and morphine. After weighing it, the mixture measured 80. 6 grams.
Wagner, 32, told the deputy it was "pre-workout" powder, but couldn't name what brand or where he purchased it. He was arrested for trafficking of a controlled substance (a felony) and transported to the Indian River County Jail.
He remains behind bars on $25,000 bond.