Bicyclist who was carrying fentanyl is arrested in Bunnell

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A 53-year-old convicted felon with an extensive criminal history is behind bars once again after a deputy sheriff found enough fentanyl on him to kill 4,000 people.

James Donald Forbes Jr. is held on $31,500 bond at the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility following his arrest just before 9:00 p.m. Tuesday (October 11, 2022) on Palm Avenue near Avocado Boulevard in the Mondex.

Forbes — who has been booked 12 times at the Green Roof Inn since 2013 — tried to flee on foot soon after the deputy found a suspicious package on him during a pat-down. Forbes was placed in handcuffs following a short physical struggle, according to Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly.

“This career criminal clearly doesn’t get it,” Sheriff Staly added. “All he does is keep cycling in and out of jail, mostly on drug charges. I’m all for second chances but 12 is way too much. This guy needs to sit behind bars for a while and get some help with his drug problem.”

A Flagler County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) deputy was on patrol when he came across Forbes pedaling southbound on Avocado using the wrong side of the road and with no reflector lights on his bicycle. The deputy initiated a traffic stop on Forbes after he turned his bicycle onto Palm.

Forbes told the deputy that he had a knife on him when asked about any weapons on his person and consented to a pat-down after the knife was safely removed by the deputy. That’s when the deputy found an unusual number of bulky items in Forbes’ right front pants pocket, which Forbes claimed was money and lighters.

The deputy asked Forbes if he was concealing drug paraphernalia in his pocket, at which point Forbes pulled out a bottle cap and an O-ring. He then threw the bottle cap away from the deputy’s patrol vehicle after the deputy asked him to put it on the hood.

“Some drug users will use bottle caps to hide their drugs,” Sheriff Staly added. “It appears that Forbes was trying

The deputy then tried to place Forbes in handcuffs to prevent evidence tampering, but Forbes pulled away and attempted to flee. The deputy managed to grab Forbes and subdue him after a brief physical struggle.

A search of Forbes uncovered a green plastic container in his right front pants pocket with two separate plastic bags, each filled with four grams of fentanyl. That’s enough to potentially kill 4,000 people, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, which estimates a fatal dose of fentanyl to be two milligrams.

Due to the amount seized, Forbes was charged with trafficking in fentanyl. He’s also charged with possession of methamphetamine after deputies found evidence of that drug inside the plastic bags holding the fentanyl.

This is the first time Forbes has been arrested this year by FCSO. He was arrested twice in 2021 on a variety of charges, including possession of meth, cocaine and marijuana along with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He was convicted and sentenced to over a year in prison for that incident. He was also sentenced to over a year in prison in 2015 for felony battery and leaving the scene of a crash with injury in Flagler County.

Since 2013, Forbes has also been arrested for grand theft auto, aggravated battery related to domestic violence, driving with a suspended license, violation of probation, petit theft, failure to register a motor vehicle, habitual traffic offender and failure to appear in court for a felony summons.

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