Told She Was Free To Go, She Consented To Search Of Car. Police Cuffed…Jailed…
BY: CRIME DESK | BocaNewsNow.com
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2022 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — A Delray Beach woman, stopped for DUI on Federal Highway near Camino Real in Boca Raton, passed a field sobriety test and was told she was free to go. But when the woman consented to a Boca Raton Police Officer’s request to search her car before leaving, Whitney Berra said “yes.” Police say they found cocaine, morphine, Gabapentin prescribed to a friend, and more. That landed Berra in the Palm Beach County Jail on multiple drug charges.
The following is the official narrative of the traffic stop, the search, and the arrest as written by Boca Raton Police.
On 8/12/2022, at approximately 0340 hours, I was patrolling the area 1000 S Federal Hwy, when I observed a vehicle approaching me northbound on Federal Hwy. The vehicle came to a stop past the stop bar at E Camino Real and then reversed until the vehicle was behind the stop bar.
Once the light turned green, the vehicle proceeded northbound on S Federal Hwy. I turned behind the vehicle and began following the Kia Sportage, I observed the vehicle traveling 10-15 MPH below the speed limit and failing to maintain a single lane between the 1000 block of S Federal Hwy and the 1000 block on N Federal Hwy. While approaching the traffic light at Glades Rd and Federal Hwy the driver exhibited slow reactions and began braking late for the red light and stopping passed the stop bar.
Once the traffic light turned green and the vehicle accelerated, I initiated a traffic stop by activating my emergency red and blue lights and siren. The vehicle stopped at approximately 1300 N Federal Hwy. It should be noted that the location of where the vehicle stopped was within 1000 feet of Boca Raton municipal “Hughes Park” I walked towards the driver side window and spoke with the driver, later identified as W/F Whitney Berra (DOB: 12/26/1986) by FL DL. It should be noted that Berra was the sole occupant of the vehicle. I conducted a set of field sobriety tests based on the driving pattern and concluded that the driver was not impaired.
It should be noted that while conducting the (field sobriety tests), my backup officers observed a glass pipe with burned ends in plain view on the center console. I completed my traffic stop by turning off my forward-facing emergency lights and told Berra that I had concluded my traffic stop and that she was free to leave.
I then asked Berra for permission to conduct a search of her vehicle for any illegal substances and firearms. Berra provided verbal consent for me to conduct a search of her vehicle. While conducting a search of Berra’s purse which was on the front passenger seat of the vehicle, I located 2 plastic baggies containing a white powdery substance which I suspected to be cocaine. I also located a purple capsule containing the numbers 40227, I also located a blue tablet/bar containing B7071.
Inside the purse I also located 9 glass pipes with burned ends in addition to the single glass pipe on the center console. In the glove box I located 2 sets of Gabapentin (600mg and 400mg) prescriptions for a “redacted name”.
I read Berra her constitutional warnings from a department-issued preprinted I card. Berra advised that she understood her rights and agreed to speak with me. Post Miranda Warnings, Berra advised that she knew she was in possession of the white substance and knew the substance to be an illegal narcotic.
Berra advised that she knew she was in possession of the purple capsule which she identified as morphine. Berra also advised that she knew she was in possession of the blue tablets and that they were illegal but was unsure exactly what substance they were. When asked about the prescriptions in the glove box, Berra advised that a friend left them in the glove box approximately 2 days ago. Berra advised that her friend provided her with the illegal substances and that she intended to deliver them to a family member I utilized two separate Cocaine Quick Check kits (one use only) to test the white powdery substance located in both bags which turned blue indicating the substance was cocaine.
The total amount of cocaine weighed 2.8 grams. Berra was then placed under arrest for possession of cocaine and transported to the Boca Raton Police Department. I contacted poison control and spoke with Judy (ID 23972) who identified the purple capsule as morphine (30mg, Schedule 2). The blue tablet was identified as Alprazolam (2ng, Schedule 4). The prescriptions, orange capsule containing “IP103” and white tablet containing “177 G” was identified as prescription Gabapentin based on Berra’s knowledge of the illegal substance which was in arms reach of her in the driver seat, Berra was in constructive possession of all substances in her purse and glove box.
Whiteney Berra, 35, of NE 4th Street in Delray Beach, is now charged with, “sell cocaine within 1000 feet of a specified area scheduled 2,” “possession of drugs or controlled substance without a prescription,” “possession of harmful new legend drug without a prescription,” and “drug equipment, possession and or use.” Bond was set at $15,000 on the cocaine charge which she posted. She was released to a family member. A court date is pending.
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