Off-duty cop attacked while defending homeless person from group of teens

Sarasota County

Police say a group of teenagers attacked an off-duty cop in Sarasota on Thursday, leaving him with minor injuries.

The incident occurred at Payne Park, 2050 Adams Lane, at about noon.

Police said the officer was jogging at the park when he saw a group of teens harassing, pushing and hitting a homeless individual.

The officer identified himself as a Sarasota police officer and when he tried to intervene, he was attacked by at least five teenagers who struck him several times, leaving him with minor injuries. 

The teens fled the area. 

The officer’s name was not released. Further details were not immediately available. 

Police said those with information should call Detective Dan Riley at 941-954-7062 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers (941-366-TIPS). You can also leave a tip online at

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