What would have been a routine traffic crash report turned into a narcotics arrest for the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday.
Deputies responded to a crash in the area of US-1 and Venetian Boulevard around 6 a.m. on Wednesday morning. While getting the information from the two parties involved, the deputy noted that the driver of one of the cars, Kirill Gromov, was very nervous and had a hard time giving his basic information.
Another deputy approached the first deputy and told him of a weed smell emanating from Gromov's car. The deputy looked inside to see if he could see any contraband. There was a large object in the back seat covered with a towel and the deputy asked Gromov about it.
Gromov told the deputy it was his safe, that he and his wife had gotten into an argument and he had taken it when he left. The deputy asked him to open it because, due to a prior burglary charge, Gromov was listed as a burglar. Gromov opened the safe willingly, and inside the deputy found remnants of marijuana, which Gromov said was his wife's because he did not smoke. The deputy asked if Gromov had any stolen property to which he replied that he did not.
The deputy asked Gromov to check the front of his vehicle and Gromov asked why he needed to. He said he did not consent to the front being searched, but because of the weed and the smell, the deputy had probable cause.
Inside of the vehicle deputies found hundreds of Xanax pills, ecstasy tablets, unlabeled pill containers with an unknown white powder substance inside, all of which were packaged for sale. Deputies also found a backpack with large cylinder containers full of marijuana and inside of the glove box ammo and a loaded glock.
When they arrested Gromov, he had a bag inside of his pocket with a large amount of a powdered white substance, which he told deputies was cocaine; it tested positive.
However, Gromov attempted to tell deputies that the pills and ecstasy tablets they had found were fake, but they tested positive as Xanax and ecstasy. Gromov was arrested as was his passenger, Morgan Sanford, who said she had no clue what was in the vehicle.