Pasco County

Pasco County deputy arrested, terminated after bizarre sexual encounter

***WARNING: This article contains content that could be considered graphic.***

LAND O' LAKES, Fla. (WFLA) - A Pasco County deputy has been fired after being arrested for putting semen on a woman.

A spokeswoman for the Pasco County Sheriff's Office confirms 25-year-old Deputy Joseph Mercado has been terminated after being arrested last month.

An affidavit states Mercado went to a woman's home in Pasco County around 3 a.m. on Feb. 15 saying he needed to discuss a "serious incident that he witnessed." The victim says she agreed to talk outside in the driveway.

After the victim repeatedly asked Mercado to leave, arrest documents say he started masturbating and then used his finger to put semen on the woman above the neckline of her shirt. Authorities say he also tried putting it on the victim's lips but she pulled away.

The woman says she continued to ask Mercado to leave and then went into her home until he left.

The sheriff's office tells News Channel 8 that Mercado was off-duty at the time of the incident. The arrest report also states Mercado and the victim "were not in an ongoing dating relationship" when this incident happened.

Mercado was arrested on Feb. 28 for battery.

Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco released this statement to News Channel 8:

The Pasco Sheriff's Office ensures discipline is paramount in our organization.  The allegations were investigated and he was arrested and terminated."

Before his arrest, Mercado was on the popular A&E show "Live PD."

Neighbors who live next to Mercado's parents home were shocked.

"That gentleman has been an example.  Work and home, family," said Ruth Ilyas. "He has always helped his neighbors. This is something that I really can't understand or believe."

"That boy has done nothing but good. Nothing but good since I've know him and he was 10-years-old," said Paul Blackwood.

"My wife and I, we just, we've been talking to everybody that we know and have known him and nobody can believe it at all."

He was also featured several times in pictures and videos posted on social media accounts for the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.


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