PALM COAST, Fla. – A routine traffic stop led to police to find a 4- to 5-foot tall marijuana plant seated in the backseat next to a young girl.
26-year-old Joshua Michael Spaulding is accused of child neglect after he was caught by a deputy transporting a 4- to 5-foot-tall marijuana plant "seated next to" a young girl, according to a Flagler County sheriff's report.
The Daytona Beach News-Journal reported that Spaulding was arrested shortly before 7 p.m. Tuesday on Beacon Mill Lane and charged with cultivation of marijuana, possession of drug cultivation paraphernalia and child neglect after he was stopped because of an inoperable brake light.
Deputies received a tip from a landlord that "the renters," Spaulding and a woman, were growing marijuana inside the home and were in the process of "moving the system from the residence," the report states. The landlord also described the green Cadillac Spaulding was driving.
The deputy said the plant was within a foot of the girl, who is estimated to be five.
"Spaulding advised that he and his girlfriend had been evicted from the residence in December," the deputy said. "He returned back to the home to pick up a plant and a system for a friend."
A large lamp, multiple hoses and towels were found in the trunk of the car, the report states.
Spaulding was booked into the Flagler County Inmate Facility where he remained Wednesday on $2,500 bail.