ENGLEWOOD, Fla. — The Charlotte County Sheriff's Department arrested 43-year-old Ryan James Gros on various drug charges.
CCSO deputies went to a home on the 11200 block of Pendleton Ave. early Tuesday morning to issue a search warrant, which led to the arrest.
“When my deputies are knocking on your door with a search warrant, it’s already too late. I would much rather help someone through my Drug Addiction Recovery Initiative than bring them to jail, but that isn’t up to me; it’s up to the individual to make the choice. Until they do ask for help, we’re going to keep busting the dealers and users in Charlotte County.” CCSO Sheriff Bill Prummell stated in a press release.
According to CCSO, the department started the investigation because of multiple overdoses at the residence.
“First when I got up, I was wondering what was going on and then I knew, and then I was like thank God they did something," said George Grossman.
Grossman has lived in the neighborhood for 14-years. He says that the drug bust was concerning because his normally quiet neighborhood has had a lot of children in the area.
“You know, that’s just blatant disrespect for the neighborhood,” Grossman said.
One neighbor who did not want to give her name said she was shocked to wake up to see so many police in the area Tuesday morning.
"It was like 7:15 when I woke up and came out," the neighbor said. "That has never ever happened around here, and I’ve been here for about two and a half years.”
Nationally, the CDC reported that there has been an uptick in drug overdoses from 2020 to 2021 nationwide. A spokesman with CCSO said no one with the department could go on camera. However, he was able to provide stats that show if Charlotte County is following the trend. According to stats provided by Sheriff Deputies, the county saw a 41 percent increase in overdoses from 2020 to 2021.
"The first four months of 2022 are heartening. So far, we are down 72% when comparing the first four months of 2022 to the same period in 2021," stated Chris Hall, Community Affairs specialist with CCSO. "However, as we all remember, the first four months of 2020 is almost all "pre COVID". Charlotte County is still higher in the first four months of 2022 than we were in the first four months of 2020."
When searching the home, deputies found Fentanyl, methamphetamine, and the prescription drug Trazadone.
Gros is additionally facing felony charges for habitual driving with a license suspended or revoked and was sent to jail.