SARASOTA COUNTY (WFLA) – Former deputy Scott Kelly is in jail facing a number of charges. He’s accused of contact and sending an explicit photo to a 16-year-old girl after responding to a call for service at her home last November.
The teen’s mother alerted authorities, which launched an investigation earlier this month.
That investigation revealed Kelly also utilized a law enforcement database to pull personal information of multiple adult-aged women. He then used that information to contact them through social media.
According to a SCSO report, the GPS in Kelly’s patrol car showed him utilizing the database near the intersection of University Parkway and Honore Avenue in October 2021. The report says the deputy ran the victim’s name through the database, then took photos of her driver’s license and her photo array.
During an interview with authorities, the female victim told the sheriff’s office Kelly messaged her on Facebook before the conversations transitioned to Snapchat.
Retired Sarasota police lieutenant Randy Boyd says it is sickening whenever a sworn officer violates the public’s trust.
“We all have data at our fingertips and that goes right back to the ultimate responsibility. Just to do the right thing every time, even when no one is looking,” said Boyd.
Kelly was hired by the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office in April 2018 as a patrol deputy. Following his arrest this week, 27-year-old made his first appearance before a judge Thursday afternoon. The judge set the bond on six charges at $70,000. If he does bond out, he’s been ordered supervised release.
“This is one of the toughest days for our agency, and one of the toughest days for our profession,” said SCSO spokesperson Kaitlyn Perez. “When a public official utilizes his badge and his uniform to gain personal benefit, it not only reflects on the law-enforcement profession, but it deeply impacts the men and women who wear the uniform every day, who do the job the right way,” she continued in a video statement released Wednesday evening.