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She used to work with inmates in the Florida Keys. Now she is one.

Stacey Lynn Medina
Stacey Lynn Medina

A Monroe County Sheriff’s Office employee tasked with helping inmates with issues like legal research, dietary requests and attaining their high school general equivalency degrees, is now an inmate herself after police say she was caught in a car early Thursday morning with cocaine and marijuana.

Stacey Lynn Medina, 43, lost her job as a jail program staff assistant Thursday morning and is in county lockup on cocaine and marijuana possession charges and allowing an unauthorized person to drive her car. Medina’s bond information was not immediately available.

Deputies arrested her around 2:15 a.m. at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and Cross Street on Stock Island, said Adam Linhardt, sheriff’s office spokesman. She was pulled over because the brake lights on her Kia SUV were not functioning, Linhardt said. Driving the car was Stephen William Jones, 45.

Jones
Stephen William Jones MCSO MCSO

He faces charges of cocaine and marijuana possession and driving with a suspended license, third subsequent offense. He also faces a count of smuggling contraband into a detention facility.

Medina told deputies she knew Jones’ license was suspended, but let him drive because she had pain in her foot, Linhardt said. A deputy noticed loose marijuana in several places on the car floor and on the passenger’s seat. A Key West police K-9 “alerted to the presence of drugs in the SUV,” Linhardt said.

Deputies found a rock of crack cocaine in between the front seats and another one “nearby,” LInhardt said. They also found a metal pill box with 14 crack rocks inside it, according to Linhardt.

There was also a notebook in the trunk with names and dollar amounts written in it. The deputy “surmised the notes and dollar amounts to be consistent with drug sales,” Linhardt said.

Deputies also found two kits commonly used by cops to test and identify narcotics. One was designated for cocaine and the other for marijuana, Linhardt said. Police are investigating how Medina and Jones ended up with the kits. Both of their cellphones were taken as evidence, Linhardt said.

The sheriff’s office hired Medina in 2000. She relocated out of the Keys the next year, but returned to work in 2002, and has been working there ever since. Her annual salary was $38,937, Linhardt said.

David Goodhue covers the Florida Keys and South Florida for FLKeysNews.com and the Miami Herald. Before joining the Herald, he covered Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy in Washington, D.C. He is a graduate of the University of Delaware.
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