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Buford 19-year-old arrested after PCP found in car

SUWANEE -- Detectives investigating a case of financial transaction card fraud, an increasingly more common crime, made an arrest for a not-so-common drug, reports said.

After arresting a woman at a Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road package store on fraud charges Jan. 27, police said, detectives searching the vehicle she was traveling in found a clear bag of "sugar-like substance" in the back floorboard.

According to reports, the driver and vehicle owner, 19-year-old Terrance McElliott of Buford admitted that the bag was his, but told officers it was sugar.

The substance, however, field tested positive for phenylcyclohexyl -- more commonly known as PCP -- police said.

McElliott was charged with trafficking when officers determined there were 248 grams of the drug. Under Georgia law, more than 28 grams warrants a trafficking charge.

Suwanee police Capt. Clyde Byers said his department doesn't often encounter PCP, which was popular in the 1960s and '70s. Gwinnett police spokesman Officer Brian Kelly called the drug "a rare find" in the county.

"Bad trips" reportedly damaged PCP's reputation in its heyday, causing dealers to market it under new names such as angel dust, super grass, elephant tranquilizer and killer weed.

Kelly said he hopes this arrest isn't a sign of resurgence and offered a couple of theories on why PCP isn't the popular street drug it once was.

"I honestly think some potential users are afraid of it," Kelly said. "There have been some well-publicized crash and burns affiliated with it. Across the country it has always been seen in lesser amounts than other drugs. Possibly the animal tranq persona of it ..."

McElliott is also charged with one count of credit card fraud and is being held without bond at the Gwinnett County Jail.

Jail records show he was arrested in July for credit card fraud and possession of marijuana.