Santa Ridealong

Santa Claus with Deputy First Class Nick Leutner. Mr. Claus is taking rides with deputies before each Shop With a Cop event this year.

PORT CHARLOTTE - Prior to showing up at the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office’s annual Shop With a Cop events this year, Santa is riding with deputies to spread Christmas cheer and warn individuals to stay on his “Nice List.”

On Wednesday, Santa rode with Deputy First Class Nick Leutner, of the Traffic Unit, patrolling the Port Charlotte and Charlotte Harbor areas.

Leutner pulled over one driver for a seat belt violation before searching the vehicle for marijuana after allegedly smelling weed in the truck. However, no illegal substances were found in the vehicle or on the resident, who got off with a warning for the seat belt violation.

The motorist got a candy cane from Santa along with his license and registration.

“It’s better than weed,” Santa said, handing over the festive treat.

He said the motorist would be on his “Naughty List” — but only for 24 hours.

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