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Man denies eating marijuana after fleeing cops, but deputies see green

Jaaziel Hector Santana of Pembroke Pines was stopped in Marathon by sheriff's deputies, where they said it appeared he had tried to eat marijuana after fleeing police. (Monroe County (Fla.) Sheriff's Office)

MARATHON, Fla. – A Pembroke Pines man driving on U.S. 1 in Marathon, who Monroe County Sheriff’s deputies said they tried to stop and he took off, was arrested Tuesday, but not until paramedics were called. Deputies wanted to make sure that Jaaziel Hector Santana was medically OK after they believed he ate marijuana to get rid of it before he was stopped by cops.

Deputies said they tried to stop Santana, 23, near Mile Marker 59 around 1 a.m. after they said the license on his Volkswagen sedan was “obstructed” — the report did not say exactly what the obstruction was. But, deputies said when they turned on lights and sirens, Santana took off. They noticed, as they were following him, that that he was “hunching over, reaching toward the passenger side and moving around inside the vehicle.”

When the driver finally stopped on the Long Key Bridge, deputies said there was a “strong odor of marijuana emanating from the car.” They also said they saw remnants or “shake” of pot inside the interior of the car and an empty mason jar.

They reported that Santana’s tongue was green and that there were “small, leafy green substances in his mouth.” Santana denied eating marijuana.

After paramedics arrived and medically cleared Santana, he was taken to jail, where he faces charges including fleeing and eluding police.

About the Author:

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local 10.com.