It was a ‘joint effort’: Caller alerts cops to man stealing pot that washed up on beach

Robert Kelley
Robert Kelley

Not the most usual thing you’d see wash up on the beach: marijuana.

Loads of it.

But according to a report from the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office, deputies on Thursday responded to Jungle Hut Park in Palm Coast, Florida, after a caller said she could see multiple packages, “presumably containing marijuana,” and that various individuals were attempting to open up the packages and take them.

Once deputies arrived on the scene, the report says that a man later identified as Robert Kelley was on the scene. Officers asked him whether he had grabbed any marijuana from the beach. Kelley said that he had but that he was just holding it in his car until law enforcement arrived.

A probable cause search was conducted on Kelley’s vehicle, during which cops discovered what appeared to a “brick” of marijuana in the trunk.

The report reads that the “brick” was “wrapped in plastic and contained approximately 11 pounds (wet weight) of a green leafy substance believed to be marijuana,” concealed in a brown beach towel.

The suspected narcotics tested positive for marijuana.

Roughly 100 pounds of marijuana have washed up on on the beaches in St. Johns, Flagler and Volusia counties in recent days, according to the report.

“This is another great example of ‘See something, say something,’ ” Sheriff Rick Staly said, reported News4Jax. “This guy tried to take advantage of a situation and it completely backfired on him. Now, thanks to the joint effort of our citizens’ watchful eyes and good police work, these narcotics are off the streets.”

Kelley was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana over 20 grams, and released on $2,500 bond. The drugs were turned over to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.