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Handicap parking violation in Athens leads to arrest of paroled felon on drug charges


Santonio Raymond Hall Jr.

By Joe Johnson

A convicted felon is back behind bars on drug offenses after he parked a car in a handicap parking space.

Santonio Raymond Hall Jr., 29, was arrested Monday on warrants charging him with trafficking fentanyl, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, possession with intent to distribute marijuana, possession of a controlled substance near public housing, and misdemeanor obstruction.

Hall’s arrest stemmed from when, on Dec. 19, an officer was making a welfare check at the Broadacres Homes public housing community off West Broad Street, according to an Athens Clarke County police report.

While driving through the complex, the report notes, the officer found an unlocked car with its engine running in a handicap parking space.

When looking in the vehicle, the officer found a bag of containing five ounces of marijuana and $786 cash, which she took to the Baxter Street substation to place it into evidence, at the station the officer discovered that bags of fentanyl, meth, crack and powdered cocaine had been mixed in with the marijuana, according to the police report.

When making contact with the abandoned car’s registered owner, she initially said that someone had stolen the vehicle but eventually admitted that Hall was her former boyfriend and he had taken her car to visit his children at Nellie B Homes, according to the report.

Warrants were subsequently obtained for Hall for having the drugs in the woman’s car and he was arrested on Monday.

In addition to the drug offenses, he was charged with violating parole that stemmed from a 2012 aggravated assault conviction in Clarke County Superior Court, according to court records.

In 2016 Hall was acquitted of a murder charge for having fatally shot one of two young men who used fake marijuana to set up Hall for an armed robbery. Instead, he was convicted of criminal attempt to purchase more than an ounce of marijuana, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, and sentenced to 10 years of probation

As of Thursday, Hall remained incarcerated at the county jail after having been denied bail by a Magistrate Court judge at a bond hearing the day after his arrest.

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