May 28, 2018
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Drugs found in strip search of Connecticut man, Old Town police say

By Nok-Noi Ricker, BDN Staff

OLD TOWN, Maine — A Connecticut man who dropped a baggie of cocaine on the ground and had a rock of crack cocaine clinched in his hand when police stopped him late Friday night, was found with more drugs when strip-searched at the jail, Old Town police say.

Torrence Benton, 25, of New Haven, Conn., was a passenger in a car stopped by Officer Justin Angelo at about 11:20 p.m. when it turned off Main Street onto a one-way street, heading the wrong way, Sgt. Michael Hashey said Saturday night.

“Connecticut Probation and Parole needed to be contacted [for the driver] and one passenger was acting nervous and kept giving different names and [dates of birth],” the sergeant said.

That passenger was Benton. When police asked him to step out of the vehicle, “the subject dropped something on the ground and was clenching something in his fist,” Hashey said. “The stuff in his fist was rock cocaine and what he had dropped on the ground was a package of cocaine.”

The cocaine weighed a quarter gram and the crack cocaine weighed a half gram, the sergeant said.

Officer Ryan Fitch, who arrested Benton and took him to Penobscot County Jail, requested a strip search be conducted on Benton when they arrived. The officer said in an email Sunday morning that additional drugs were discovered concealed on him.

“The total weight of the crack cocaine seized from Benton was 2.8 grams, including what was located during the strip search at Penobscot County Jail,” Fitch said.

Benton was charged with two Class C felonies — unlawful possession of scheduled drugs and trafficking in prison contraband. Either could send him to prison for up to five years, if convicted.

He remained behind bars on Sunday, a jail official said.

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