A convicted felon who went AWOL during his trial on a cocaine possession charge last week is now back in custody.
Peruzo Kalske “Ruzo” Duck, 32, turned himself in to Oktibbeha County sheriff’s deputies late Sunday night.
Duck’s trial on a charge of possession of between 2 and 10 grams of cocaine got under way before Judge Lee Howard Thursday morning, but during a recess from jury selection proceedings, Duck skipped out on his trial.
District Attorney Forrest Allgood said that Duck told his attorney, Jeff Hosford, that he was going to make a phone call during the recess, but Duck never returned to the courtroom when proceedings resumed.
Howard issued a bench warrant for Duck’s arrest.
Despite Duck’s absence, his trial continued Thursday with Hosford continuing to act on his client’s behalf.
Duck was convicted after the jury deliberated for 16 minutes, and he will be sentenced now that he has been taken into custody.
The charge on which Duck was convicted stems from his July 27, 2009, arrest by Starkville Police Department narcotics detectives during a traffic stop at the intersection of Strange Road and Hospital Road.
At the time of Duck’s arrest, SPD Sgt. Steven Gant said Duck had been the target of a six-month drug trafficking investigation.
The cocaine possession charge against Duck stems from the discovery of between 15 and 20 grams of crack cocaine during the traffic stop on the date of his arrest, Gant said last year.
Police also seized $233 in cash at the time of Duck’s arrest.