NORTH EAST — A man is facing numerous drug and weapons charges after investigators confiscated a loaded handgun and an unspecified amount of heroin and crack cocaine during an Interstate 95 traffic stop near North East, according to Cecil County District Court records.

Investigators identified Andre Davis Yarde, 24, of Laurel, as the suspect.

The investigation started at approximately 9 p.m. on Thursday, when Deputy Dale Smith of the Cecil County Sheriff’s Office stopped a 2010 Honda Accord driven by Yarde in the northbound lane of I-95 near North East because the vehicle’s headlights had not been activated, only its daytime running lights, and because it had been following the deputy’s patrol vehicle too closely, police reported.

Court records allege that, moments before the traffic stop, Yarde maneuvered the Honda into a lane adjacent to Smith and then maintained the same speed as the deputy’s patrol vehicle, resulting in them traveling side by side, which made it difficult for Smith to get behind the suspect vehicle to make the stop. After a short period of time, Smith was able to maneuver his patrol vehicle behind Yarde’s car and make the traffic stop, court records show.

Standing beside the suspect vehicle, Smith noticed several air fresheners inside the Honda, police reported.

The presence of those numerous air fresheners coupled with the “actions by Yarde while driving” prompted the deputy to dispatch CCSO Cpl. Michael Thomas and specially-trained scent dog, K9 Roscoe, to the scene, police said. During a sniff-scan outside the suspect vehicle, police added, K9 Roscoe alerted to the presence of illegal drugs, which led to a probable-cause search of the Honda.

While searching the center console, Smith found and seized a Glock 27 handgun with a .40 caliber round in the chamber and a magazine that held 14 additional bullets, court records allege.

The deputy also found a baggie holding an unspecified amount of heroin and crack cocaine, according to charging documents. Smith located approximately two ounces of suspect marijuana in the center console area, too, court records allege.

In addition, investigators confiscated five cell phones after finding them inside the car, as well, police reported.

Smith arrested Yarde at the traffic-stop scene without incident, court records show.

Scheduled for an Oct. 15 preliminary hearing, Yarde is facing 11 charges, five of which are felonies, including possession of heroin/fentanyl with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm during the commission of a drug trafficking crime, according to court records.

Yarde is free after posting $750, which represents 10 percent of his $7,500 bond, court records show.

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