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Welcome to the Polk County Sheriff's Office News Room, where the Public Information Officers (PIO's) post all of the information that they release to the news media. PIO's act as liaisons between news media organizations and the Sheriff's Office. The PIO's routinely release timely and accurate information and Crime Stoppers bulletins, and respond to routine and "breaking news" media inquiries. News releases and Crime Stoppers information can be found on this page.
PCSO's full-time Public Information Officers are Brian Bruchey, Carrie Horstman, and Alicia Manautou. The Public Information Officers can be reached by sending an e-mail collectively at PIOs@polksheriff.org.
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On Monday, November 4, 2019, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office concluded a month-long special operation to identify members of the community who possessed and shared child pornography. The operation, called “Guardians of Innocence IV: Fall Haul,” was carried out by undercover detectives from PCSO’s Computer Crimes Unit, and resulted in the arrests of 17 people (16 of whom live in Polk county).
During the operation, one man was caught as he was attempting to meet a Frostproof child for sexual favors, two men were pursuing nude pictures from two different 13-year-old girls using Snapchat and Facebook, and another who admitted that if he didn’t look at child pornography, he would sexually batter children.
“The people arrested during this operation prey on the most innocent and vulnerable among us---our children. The undercover detectives who investigate these crimes have to see things that nobody should have to see, and no child should have to experience. Each one of these arrests has removed a predator from our streets, and the internet.” – Grady Judd, Sheriff
The youngest person arrested was 19-years-old, while the oldest was 77-years-old.
At the time of arrest, detectives seized all known electronic communications devices belonging to the suspects, with forensic searches of those devices to follow. Those searches could turn up additional images and/or videos depicting child pornography, and the suspects would be additionally charged as needed. Attempts are also made to identify the children in various images and videos.
The 17 men arrested face a total of 626 charges (624 felonies, 2 misdemeanors). The combined prior criminal histories of all of the men includes 114 felonies and 71 misdemeanors. One of the men is receiving government assistance.
Those arrested are as follows:
Bryan Murray, 54, from Frostproof. Murray used Facebook Messenger to pursue a young teenaged girl for sexual favors. He told the victim that he wanted to be her “sugar daddy,” and sent a nude picture of himself to her. He was arrested when he travelled to meet her at a park. Murray was charged with Attempted Lewd Battery (F2), Transmission of Material Harmful to a Minor (F3), Travel to Meet a Minor after Solicitation (F2), and 3 counts of Use of Computer to Lure a Minor (F3). Murray is employed as a truck driver.
William Hage, 76, of Lakeland. Hage has been retired for the past 14 years. Before that, he was an Assistant Principal at Seth McKeel Middle School. He had hundreds of videos and images of child pornography, with girls of various ages, one as young as 8-12 months old. When detectives executed the search warrant, Hage was involved in an online chat, telling an unknown person about wanting to see a 15-year-old wearing something sexy. Hage was charged with Promotion of Child Pornography (F2) and 252 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2).
***Record sealed or expunged***
Christopher Drennen, 20, from Bartow. Drennen had given his laptop to a friend and asked the friend to get rid of files on it, specifying the files on a note that said “naked pics of kids and other **** like that.” The friend saw several images of nude children that she felt were inappropriate. A search of the laptop revealed three images of children exposed in a lewd manner and/or engaged in a sexual act. One image was a close-up of a nude 3-6 month old girl. Drennen was interviewed in the Polk County Jail (on unrelated charges) when he admitted that if he did not view child pornography, he would sexually batter a child in real life. Drennen was charged with 3 counts of Possession of Child Pornography (F3). Drennen said he is unemployed.
Michael Arambulo, 34, of Haines City. Arambulo told detectives that he was an ICU Registered Nurse at AdventHealth Heart of Florida Hospital for 5 years. Tips from NCMEC (National Center Missing and Exploited Children) led detectives to discover that Arambulo had been sending and receiving videos of pre-pubescent boys (some as young as 5 years-old) in lewd poses and sexual situations with other children and adults. Arambulo was charged with Promotion of Child Pornography (F2) and 10 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2)
Camillo Demaria II, 33, from Lake Wales. Detectives learned from a NCMEC tip that Demaria had uploaded several images and videos of child pornography. He also has a conviction from a Winter Haven PD case in 2012, in which he sent a nude photo of himself to a child. Demaria was charged with 26 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2). Demaria, who said he is unemployed, was in possession of methamphetamine at the time of his arrest, and charged with that as well.
Felix Rocha, Jr. 27, of Haines City. Following up on a NCMEC tip, detectives searched Rocha’s cell phone and located a video Rocha had exchanged with another Facebook Messenger user which depicted two pre-pubescent boys involved in bestiality. Additional videos with child pornography were also found in his possession. Rocha was charged with 5 counts of Possession of Child Pornography (F2). Rocha works in construction.
David Dailey, 42, of Auburndale. The investigation of Dailey began following a NCMEC tip on his use of Facebook Messenger. During the investigation, detectives found 100 images of child pornography on a micro SD card and cell phone. Dailey was charged with Promotion of Child Pornography (F2) and 100 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2). Dailey said he works as a laborer at WellDyneRx.
Donald Durr, Jr., 52, of Davenport. During an interview with detectives, Durr described himself as “a pervert, but not a monster.” An electronic tablet contained three images of child pornography, one of which depicted a girl between 5-7 years of age in a sexual act with an adult male, and a DVD created by Durr nine years ago which contained images of a 10-11 year-old girl exposing herself. Durr is charged with 8 counts of Possession of Child Pornography (F2) and 1 count of Promote Sexual Performance by Child (F2). Durr told detectives that he was a custodial worker for Walt Disney World Resorts.
Brett Kinney, 40, of Lake Alfred. During a proactive P2P or peer-to-peer (computer to computer) investigation regarding child pornography being available for sharing, Kinney told detectives that he had an addiction to child pornography, and has been viewing it for 22 years. Online, he would search for images of boys from toddlers to 10 years old. He has been charged with 1 count of Promotion of Child Pornography (F2) and 24 counts of Possession of Child Pornography-Enhanced (F2). Kinney said he was a Guest Experience Manager at Disney World.
Charles Mabry, Jr., 37 from Mulberry. Detectives discovered that Mabry was offering child pornography for trade on a P2P program (peer-to-peer). Detectives discovered various images and videos on his electronic devices. Mabry is charged with 1 count of Promotion of Child Pornography (F2) and 53 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2). Mabry said he works in Quality Control for Florida Beef while finishing out a prison sentence under work release status.
Edgar Villegas, 28, of Davenport. A NCMEC tip reported two images depicting child pornography were uploaded at the same address. Villegas told detectives that he has an addiction to child pornography. He was on probation for Promote Sexual Performance by Child and Possession of Sexual Performance by Child since being released from prison in March of 2019. Villegas was charged with 2 counts of Possession of Child Pornography (F2) and Violation of Probation. Villegas said he works in lawn maintenance.
Mack Witherington, 77, of Auburndale. The investigation of Witherington began with an anonymous tip to CrimeStoppers. During the investigation, 15 images depicting child pornography were located on Witherington’s desktop computer, one of which was of a girl of about 2 years of age in a sexual act with an apparent adult male. Witherington has been charged with 15 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2). Witherington is retired.
James Richardson III, 38, from Lake Wales. A NCMEC tip was received about an image depicting child pornography that was sent via Facebook Messenger. The investigation led detectives to Richardson, who by this time, was in the Polk County Jail on Violation of Probation and Possession of Methamphetamine charges. A search of Richardson’s cell phone, which was among his property at the jail, yielded two images depicting a girl between 6-8 years old involved in a sexual act with an adult male. Richardson has been charged with Possessing Depiction of Child Sexual Conduct (F3) and Promote Sexual Performance by Child (F2). Richardson is unemployed.
Mark Ott, 49, of Winter Haven. Detectives learned of child pornography being advertised for download and actively being shared at Ott’s residence. 27 child pornography files were located, depicting pre-pubescent girls (some as young as 3 months) engaged in sexual conduct, along with 47 images from downloads. Ott was charged with Promotion of Child Pornography (F2) 74 counts of Enhanced Possession of Child Pornography (F2). Ott said he worked as a mechanical engineer.
Rodney Montgomery, 51, from Polk City. NCMEC tips to detectives reported that more than 50 images of child pornography had been uploaded from a residence in Polk City. The investigation turned up multiple images of children between 5-10 years old in lewd exhibition. Montgomery was arrested in a Pinellas County undercover operation in 2014 for travelling to meet two females (14 and 15 years old), and went to prison. He was released in January 2017. Montgomery is being charged now with 20 counts of Promote Sexual Performance by Child (F2) and 10 counts of Possession of Child Pornography w/ the Intent to Promote (F2). Montgomery was also charged with Sexual Offender Failure to Comply with Registration (F3). Montgomery said he worked in construction.
Jacob Jackson, 31, from Lakeland. Detectives followed up on an allegation that Jackson had made contact with a 13-year-old girl via Facebook Messenger, and asked her for nude photos after he had been notified of her age. He also attempted to video chat with the victim. When confronted by detectives, Jackson admitted that he tried to solicit pictures of the girl. Jackson was charged with Attempted Promotion of Child Pornography (F3) and Using Computer to Solicit a Child (F3). His brother, Jerrid Jackson who resides in the home, was also arrested for Failure to Register Residency as required as a registered sexual offender. Jackson is unemployed and was receiving SSI government assistance.