Winter Haven man arrested for damaging property, crashing into PCSO patrol cars – CBS Atlanta

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) – On Sunday August 22, 2021, PCSO detectives arrested Joseph O’Connor, 57, of Winter Haven following a neighborhood disruption that led to the crash of the patrol cars of two deputies.

According to the preliminary inquiry and witness statements, shortly before 2:00 p.m., O’Connor drove a white Dodge pickup truck into the yard of an unincorporated Schalamar Creek Golf and Country Club residence in Lakeland, damaging the system watering.

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The owner called the sheriff’s office. When the First Deputy arrived and attempted to contact the suspect, O’Connor fled. With his hazard lights and sirens on, the deputy followed O’Connor and attempted to make another traffic stop. O’Connor stopped at the intersection of Alpine Circle and Armitage Place, but when the deputy approached his truck, he ran away again.

Due to residential and golf cart traffic in the area, MPs stopped following O’Connor and called additional units, including the agency’s helicopter, to respond. O’Connor was found in his truck parked on Champion Drive.

MPs maneuvered two marked patrol vehicles, one in front of the van and one in the back, to prevent O’Connor from running away again. O’Connor then attempted to escape again by crashing into the patrol vehicle in front of his truck, then backing into the one behind him.

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When O’Connor realized he couldn’t leave, he shouted at MPs, “Get the F *** out of here” and “Just F *** shoot me.” While still sitting in his truck, O’Connor grabbed a hunting knife and threatened MPs. He then dropped the knife into the floor of the truck and crashed into the patrol vehicles again.

MPs then used several less-than-lethal techniques (Taser, pepper spray and bean balls) to pull O’Connor out of the van. He was taken into safe custody.

“It was a dangerous situation that endangered the neighborhood and my assistants. I am proud of my deputies for their swift action and for taking this runaway criminal into custody before he injures or kills anyone, ”said Grady Judd, Sheriff.

O’Connor was arrested and charged with:
Battery aggravated on a police officer (2 heads) (F1)
Burglary of an Occupied Residence (F2)
Flee to Elude (2 counts) (F3)
Resist a law enforcement officer with violence (11 counts) (F3)
Criminal mischief (2 counts) (F3)
Resist a law enforcement officer without violence (M1)
Trespassing with theft (M1)
Criminal mischief (M2)
Failure to obey a lawful order (M2)

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O’Connor’s criminal record includes three arrests for battery misdemeanor, domestic violence battery and impaired driving.

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