09/05/2013

400-pound man injures Fla. officer at drug house

The large man pushed the officer into something sharp, causing him to bleed 'profusely'

By Amy Pavuk
Orlando Sentinel

ORLANDO — A roughly 400-pound man was taken into custody Wednesday after he allegedly pushed an undercover deputy into something sharp and cut his arm while officials were checking out a drug tip in a neighborhood north of Orlando International Airport.

The deputy is "doing fine" but may need a few stitches after the scuffle on Volusia Drive near Nassau Avenue that caused him to bleed "profusely," Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said.

Darrell Wayne Roby, 40, was charged with one count of battery on a law enforcement officer.

The home had long been a "center of attention" for Orange County deputies and the neighborhood because of drug and prostitution activity that had taken place there in the past, Demings said.

And what they saw Wednesday — narcotics, cash and eight women in their late teens and 20s — led detectives to believe there may be more than just illegal drug use at the home.

Demings said three undercover narcotics detectives went to the house about 9:15 a.m. and "things got a little hairy," when they spotted drugs and stacks of cash inside.

The injured deputy, whose identity was not immediately released, does not appear to have been stabbed with any object but may have hit his arm on something as Roby pushed him out of the doorway.

Demings said Roby is "fairly large" — weighing about 400 pounds and standing about six feet tall — and posed a threat to his deputies.

As many as 14 people were at the home during the incident, including eight females. All were released.

"This very well may spiral into something else," Demings said, noting deputies were awaiting a search warrant to further investigate what went on inside the home.

The narcotics unit found drug paraphernalia and other evidence, said OCSO spokeswoman Jane Watrel.

Agents from the U.S. Immigration Customs Enforcement have opened their own investigation, she said.

Sheriff's Office records show deputies received more than 20 calls for service related to the home — ranging from prostitution to aggravated battery — in roughly the past year. Five of those calls were in August 2013.

When asked if there was human trafficking or a prostitution ring, Demings said he would not speculate, but that it was "awfully suspicious."

"There's no question there's something else going on," Demings said.

Copyright 2013 The Orlando Sentinel


McClatchy-Tribune News Service
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