TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A deputy with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is under investigation amid allegations that he received oral sex at a homeless camp while on duty.
8 On Your Side is not naming the deputy because he is not officially charged with anything at this point.
According to a search warrant obtained by WFLA, the alleged incident happened on Aug. 23 in Tampa. The documents state the deputy was transporting the victim, who had been involved in a non-violent domestic call with her boyfriend, to a homeless camp.
The warrant says the deputy was captured on surveillance video parking his patrol car at the homeless camp around 2 a.m. After checking a wooded area for the victim’s tent, the deputy returned to his car and removed the woman, the paperwork says.
The deputy was seen walking with the victim into the wooded area. He left a few moments later and returned to his patrol car by himself, but court documents say he then walked back into the wooded area.
The search warrant says the victim started masturbating when the deputy returned to his patrol car the second time. When the deputy returned, the court documents say he saw the victim masturbating, knelt down and pulled out his penis. He then received oral sex from the victim, the warrant states.
The court documents say the victim was not forced to perform oral sex but felt compelled to do so because the deputy was in uniform.
When investigators spoke with the deputy later, they say he admitted he watched the woman masturbate but denied receiving oral sex from her.
A communications officer for the sheriff’s office says the woman involved told someone else about the incident, who then told a deputy. In a statement, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said the deputy was immediately placed on unpaid administrative leave.
“The allegations against [the deputy] are deeply disturbing, and they are being thoroughly investigated. At this time, an investigation is ongoing to determine if his actions are criminal. Once that is concluded, an internal investigation will follow to determine if he violated any Sheriff’s Office policies or procedures,” the sheriff said. “When the allegations were made, immediate action was taken. [The deputy] was placed on unpaid administrative leave, a status that he remains in at this time. When the sheriff’s office is at liberty to speak further on this investigation, additional details will be provided.”
An attorney for the deputy provided this statement to 8 On Your Side:
“At this point, my client categorically denies the allegations of sexual battery.”
The sheriff’s office says the deputy involved has been employed since April 2017.
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