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New Port Richey police officer arrested on drug charges in Hernando

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Published:   |   Updated: March 13, 2013 at 09:49 AM

A New Port Richey police officer, currently under suspension, was arrested on drug trafficking charges Thursday following an investigation after Hydrocodone pills were found in his car during a traffic stop in Hernando County.

John Nohejl, 35, a 13-year veteran, was charged on multiple drug counts by the Hernando County Sheriff's Office in conjunction with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE).

Both agencies say they had received information that Nohejl was using and selling both crack cocaine and prescription pills, and the investigation led to a traffic stop Thursday night at Deltona Boulevard and Keesler Street in Spring Hill.

When a Hernando County detective approached the vehicle, deputies say Nohejl refused to produce identification or exit the vehicle.

Hernando County deputies say Nohejl then fled from the traffic stop and drove around the block.

He was located moments later at the intersection of Dolin Avenue and Hartley Road where the vehicle was stopped again, and he was taken into custody, deputies say.

Deputies say one Hydrocodone tablet was located on the front driver's side floorboard, and a baggie containing 27 more was located on the side of the road where Nohejl had thrown it after fleeing from the traffic stop.

Nohejl was also found to be in possession of two driver's licenses, deputies say.

After Nohejl was taken into custody, deputies say a search warrant conducted on his residence turned up various drug paraphernalia, including pipes, baggies and scales, and 0.1 grams of cocaine.

"Since becoming a law enforcement supervisor, I have had the pleasure to meet many administrators. I have found that they, without exception, are outraged by any criminal activity by a fellow law enforcement officer," Hernando County Sheriff Al Neinhuis said. "These agency leaders are eager to work together to rid our ranks of intentional felons.

"Unfortunately, these cases, more than most, take time. We have to ensure that the allegations are true and that the subsequent case is rock solid before taking action against one of our own."

Nohejl, whose last assignment was as a master patrol officer on the evening shift, has been on paid administrative leave since April 2012 after the first of two internal investigations was ordered.

According to the New Port Richey Police Department, the first investigation, in November 2012, cited Nohejl with sleeping on duty, neglect, and improper conduct. He was suspended without pay for 20 days.

A second subsequent internal investigation is ongoing.

Nohejl was transported Thursday to the Hernando County Detention Center on $110,500 bond.

Nohejl remains on administrative leave while the Hernando County Sheriff's Office and FDLE continue their investigation.

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