ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla. – The Drug Enforcement Administration confirms that 16 kilos of cocaine washed up on several St. Johns County beaches Tuesday night.
The St. Augustine Beach police got a report that two small packages about 30 feet apart washed up about 300 yards north of the A Street beach access.
A third package was found a short time later near Sea Colony.
"It blows my mind. We're from New Hampshire and we don't see stuff like that," said tourist Tammy Woodbury.
Officers and St. Johns County deputies searched from St. Augustine Beach pier to the Fort Matanzas ramp and found several more packages.
"I'm pretty surprised," said surfer Andrew Wright. "I'm always at the beach, I used to lifeguard, never seen anything like that happen before."
Officials said the value of the drugs could be up to $500,000. They cannot say if these bales are connected to the $7 million worth of cocaine that washed up on area beaches in May.
"It seems to me it's a planned event for pickup. It just seems it would be too odd, coming twice in the same location," said Naples resident Lynn Ecleston.
The DEA is also investigating how the drugs washed up on shore. The DEA told Channel 4 that each bundle that was found weighs about 2 pounds. They also said that the street value for each brick ranges between $22,000 and $36,000.
Investigators said they are not sure if the packages washed ashore or if they were planted on the beach.
"I can't imagine who would do that, let that kind of drug get into the hands of the wrong people," said Panama City Beach resident Cecelia Owens.
Investigators also said there could be more bricks of cocaine that may wash up. Anyone who visits the beach is being asked to contact police if they come across anymore bricks of cocaine.