THE VILLAGES, FL – A drug raid within the confines of Florida’s most famous retirement community resulted in five arrests, with officers finding drugs and… a golf cart chop-shop?
Kenneth Ray Padgett, 53; Charlotte L. Gajewsky, 45; William Anthony Wade Romska, 38; Kathleen Unrath, 43; and Michael Edward Witkowski, 63, were arrested last Wednesday after a Sumter County Sheriff’s Office SWAT raid turned up a cache of drugs and stolen property, including golf cart parts.
According to CBS News, charges include possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell; keeping or maintaining a drug shop; possession of heroin; and possession of paraphernalia.
Nearby residents and deputies had referred to the residence -owned by Unrath’s ailing uncle- as a “problem location,” which had been a bane for many residents in the area due to unkempt property and constant coming and going of individuals.
Deputies obtained a search warrant after an informant helped orchestrate three drug purchases. Following the warrant, the raid did not disappoint – drugs were found in plain sight and investigators uncovered an entire attic full of golf cart parts, leading authorities to believe the location was used as a golf cart chop-shop. Other items found in the home were reported stolen in locations as far as Georgia.
Golf carts are a popular mode of transportation in The Villages, with local infrastructure designed to accommodate golf cart traffic, including an overpass road. The community is known for its beautiful golf courses and the vibrant lifestyles of its residents.
While Unrath’s uncle -who is in poor health- is not believed to have been involved in any illicit activities, the arrested individuals face Charges of possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell; keeping or maintaining a drug shop; possession of heroin; and possession of paraphernalia.