Date: September 27, 2002 "For Immediate Release"
To: News Media
From: Sheriff Lawrence W. Crow, Jr.
Media Contact:

Michal Shanley, 863 534-6631 or 819-0397 pager

Carrie Rodgers, (863) 534-6217 OR (863) 819-1856, Pager

Drug Suspect Recently Profiled In Crime Stoppers Ad Captured In Lake County 

A suspect wanted in Polk County on drug charges was arrested last night in Lake County after deputies received a tip on his whereabouts. The suspect recently had been profiled in a Crime Stoppers ad in a local newspaper.

Edward Joseph Persong, DOB 9/17/63, of Polk City, was arrested on two outstanding Polk County warrants charging Trafficking in Methamphetamine; Aggravated Battery; Resisting Arrest and Drug Possession. He was booked into the Lake County jail. 

Last night (Thursday, Sept. 26, 2002) Polk County Narcotics Unit detectives received information from Northwest patrol deputies about Persong's possible location in Lake County.

With the assistance of the Lake County Sheriff's Office, PCSO detectives responded to the Ramada Inn located at US Highway 27 in Clermont, and arrested Persong without incident.  Also in the motel room with Persong was Samantha Messer Thornburg, who was arrested on Lake County warrants. She was booked into the Lake County Jail.

A subsequent search warrant was executed on the motel room, and detectives confiscated a half pound of meth and a handgun.

The investigation is continuing.

Distribution: Undersheriff, Division Commanders, Communications, News Media

A text only version of this release is also available.

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