18-year-old faces charges in St. Johns County house party; parents in Italy

Maria Downey, 18. 

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. — An 18-year-old faces charges after deputies responded to a loud party at a St. Johns County home.

The St. Johns County Sheriff's Office responded at about 2 a.m. Wednesday to a call about a loud party at a home in the 4100 block of Pine Run Circle.

A deputy saw people running in multiple directions from the home when they arrived.

The deputy then saw people drinking alcohol and smoking through a front window. The deputy knocked on the window and heard people saying, "F**** the police, don't open the door."

The deputy said they saw people through the window walking through a rear sliding glass door. The deputy walked around to the sliding door and identified himself, asking for the owner of the home, SJSO said.

A lot of alcohol cans and bottles were scattered throughout the living room and a strong marijuana odor was smelled by the deputy.

The woman who claimed to be the owner of the home had alcohol on her breath and was unsteady on her feet, SJSO said.

The woman didn't give her name and told the deputy that he wasn't allowed in the home without a warrant, SJSO said. The deputy placed her in handcuffs as he speculated that she was underage and consumed alcohol, SJSO said.

The woman later identified herself as Maria Downey, 18, to another deputy.

Additional deputies who canvassed the area found other people, who were believed to be at the party, walking on adjacent streets. Two people were also found hiding in a closest, including a 17-year-old boy, SJSO said.

A neighbor called Downey's parents, who were in Italy. A family friend arrived at the home to secure it and take care of the pets.

A concerned parent talked with the deputies, saying his 16-year-old son went to the party and drove his father's truck without permission. The 16-year-old is believed to have ran from the home. SJSO said the truck was found parked on the side of the road.

Downey was arrested and charged with possession of liquor by a person under the age of 21, allowed minors alcohol during a house party and possession of drug equipment.

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