Gulf Shores beach visitors find bundles of cocaine washing ashore
MOBILE, Ala. (WBRC) - Some late-night beachgoers in Gulf Shores got a big surprise Monday night, May 17, 2021 as mysterious packages began washing up on the shoreline. Police were called about 11:00 p.m. and by midnight, they said a total of 30 bundles of cocaine had been recovered. Another package washed up Tuesday afternoon.
Was there a boat chase and it was thrown overboard? Did a drug boat sink in a storm or just what did happen to cause more than 70 pounds of cocaine to wash up on Gulf Shores beaches? Police said they’ll likely never find out.
“It starts with more questions than answers and we rarely get any answers on these cases,” said Sgt. Jason Woodruff with Gulf Shores Police.
Most of the cocaine washed ashore between 6th Street Public Beach Access and to the west about a quarter mile. In all, 31 kilos were recovered.
“It is rare, but we have something like this, generally once every year, once every other year but certainly nothing, you know, like this amount,” Woodruff said.
Because it happened in the late-night hours, most visitors had turned in and were shocked when they found out that amount of drugs had washed up right in front of their condos.
“We’re shocked. Yeah. We are shocked,” said Chris Laughlin. “This is such a family-oriented place to come. I can’t believe a bunch of cocaine washed up.”
“You’ve seen like the Miami Vice and all that stuff, so you know that stuff happens in the Florida – Miami area, but up here? You wouldn’t think it,” another beachgoer said.
The contraband was turned over the US Customs Tuesday morning and investigators said it will go through more lab tests to see if any other drugs are present. Police said each package weighed one kilogram, or about two and a half pounds, which would carry a street value of at least $1.2 million dollars.
“We’ll typically get notified if there’s other wash ups along the gulf coast, but we are…as far as our case, I say our case. It’s not even really a case for us but it’s really a closed case from go for us. I mean, there’s really nobody to prosecute,” Woodruff explained.
ATV patrols will continue along the beach, keeping an eye out for any more bundles. If you see any mysterious packages, police said to not handle them. First, call police and keep an eye on it until officers respond.