Sunday, April 29, 2007

Cocaine is evil

Just ask Rev. Hugh King. $25 dollars worth is threatening to bring down his promising career.

King, 53, is pastor of the Greater Union Baptist Church, one of the largest black churches in Pensacola, and also serves on the board of trustees for Community Maritime Park Associates Inc.

The former Pensacola City Council member was arrested late Friday evening at A and Blount streets by Pensacola police, who reported finding a plastic bag with cocaine in King's back pocket.

King is leader with a long history of success in support of the Pensacola black community. He is a second generation Baptist pastor, of the Greater Union Baptist Church, one of the largest black churches in Pensacola. King is also president of the local chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Council, King helped push to rename a portion of Alcaniz Street in honor of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King. Jr. In short, King is the last man one would expect to find in possession of cocaine.

Police arrested King shortly before midnight Friday when responding to a burglary call in the 100 block of North D Street. Police were notified that two black males were seen leaving the scene of the burglary in a gray Chevrolet Blazer. Several blocks away, they spotted a light-green Ford Explorer driven by Mark Anthony Cotton, 51, a police report states. King was a passenger in the car.

After stopping King and Cotton, an officer noticed a knife in the center drink holder of the car and observed a white-powder residue on it.

King and Cotton later were searched, and a plastic bag with white powder was found in King's back pocket, arresting officer Charles Joseph Decker reported.

As expected, his church is standing behind him. The charge is out of character, I am sure his friends are suspicious that the whole thing might be made up. The comment thread on this article sure seems to indicate this is likely.

Comment by Hunter Hunter:

...your right, he's probably going to say someone planted that on him. Good thing this is a local story and not on CNN or Fox news, because im sure both Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson would love to stick there nose's all up in this story.

King seems like a righteous dude. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt for now. Besides, my libertarian sensibilities tell me that personal drug use is nobody's business. Of course, doing cocaine is not something one would expect from a leading community pastor. His actions still fall under the "acts of hypocrisy" heading on my blog, and his name goes into my new filter.

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Gary McGath said...

I don't have any actual knowledge beyond what the news says, but my instinctive reaction is to suspect a setup. It's Florida.

Mojoey said...

No kidding - I'm cutting this guy a lot of slack. Florida has the worst record at this kind of thing.