Local News

Three cruisers damaged after getaway, sheriff’s office says

LORIDA - A routine call authorities made to investigate a disturbance complaint at a Lorida mudhole ended up with three damaged cruisers and two deputies who had to avoid getting run over, an arrest report states. Curtis James Brown Jr., 28, of 1909 E. Holiday Drive, Lorida, is accused of trying to flee in his truck when authorities stopped him, ramming into their vehicles during his alleged getaway and then trying to escape on foot, along with the two kids and a dog who were with him, the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office arrest report alleges. Brown was released from Highlands County Jail on an $87,000 bond. He has been charged with aggravated assault with a weapon, aggravated battery on an officer and two counts of cruelty to a child. Highlands County Sheriff’s Office deputies Angelic Sanchez and Wayne Dunn and Sgt. Jamie Davidson responded to the scene at 11:10 p.m. Saturday to investigate the noise complaint and possible underage drinking, the arrest report states, when they saw Brown leaving the wooded “party’ area.
They stopped him and Davidson asked him how many people were there at the mud hole, the arrest report states. “There’s a lot of people there,” he responded, the report adds, and then accelerated away from them when Davidson asked him to turn off the ignition. “The defendant’s eyes were bloodshot and watery and he spoke with a thick slurred speech,” the report adds. Authorities also saw a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old standing in the front seat with a dog between them, the report states. Brown then drove his truck about 429 feet from where he was stopped, the report adds, striking the right front corner of Gunn’s Tahoe, then traveling along the passenger side where the outside mirror was destroyed. Then he struck Davidson’s vehicle, sideswiping “the entire passenger side causing considerable damage to the patrol vehicle,” the report states. Brown allegedly continued 400 more feet where he hit Sanchez’s patrol vehicle, “causing considerable damage to the left front corner,” the report adds. While still accelerating and attempting to escape, he hit a residential fence and a pine tree, the report adds. When his truck was “disabled,” he gathered the two kids and the dog and fled on foot until Gunn sent K-9 Sarge after him, the report adds. The two kids were treated by EMS for minor injuries, the report states. Sanchez and Gunn reportedly also had to get out of the truck’s path so they would not get hit as Brown fled from the scene, the report adds. pagarwal@highlandstoday.com

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