Month: April 2009

Sexual Predator: Kenneth Vanyo

MEDIA RELEASE

Date: April 14, 2009
Time: 11:15 AM

Fanning Springs, Florida- On April 7, 2009 Kenneth John Vanyo registered with the Levy County Sheriff’s Office as a sexual predator. Vanyo previously lived in Pinellas County and his new address is 17210 NW US Hwy 19 Lot # 1 in Fanning Springs.

Vanyo was convicted in 1996 for six counts of lewd and lascivious assault on a child less than 16 years of age, lewd assault and sexual battery on a child. Vanyo was released from the Florida Correctional Institution on September 8, 2006.

Sexual Predator:

Kenneth John Vanyo
17210 NW US HWY 19 Lot #1
Fanning Springs, Florida
White Male
09/18/57
5’09”, 187 lbs, black hair, brown eyes

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Wanted: George “Bo” Wilkinson

MEDIA RELEASE

Date: April 14, 2009
Time: 11:15 AM

Chiefland, Florida- The Levy County Sheriff’s Office has active warrants on George Freeman Wilkinson for scheme to defraud/organized fraud. Wilkinson also goes by nickname “Bo” and may possibly be driving a dark red Chevrolet truck with “Wilkinson Tree Service” on the doors, dark in color Chevrolet Tahoe or a maroon Nissan truck.

Wilkinson has contacted numerous Levy County citizens and tells them that he is doing work in the area and he can give them an excellent deal. Wilkinson will obtain half the payment for services and never perform the work. This should be raising a red flag to any citizens that are told they need payment before the services are rendered. Wilkinson has defrauded over a dozen victims in Levy County and more charges are expected to follow.

Wilkinson has a Gilchrist County warrant for expired tag more than six months and also a Taylor County warrant for passing a worthless check. Wilkinson is a four time convicted felon with a past history being convicted on possession of cocaine and aggravated battery.

It is unknown where Wilkinson is living but we feel that he is still in the area defrauding other victims. A reward is being offered and you can remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-877-349-8477 or you can contact Investigator Mike Bell at 352-486-5111 extension 266.

Suspect:
George Freeman Wilkinson
Last known living in Old Town, Florida
White Male, 5’10”, 215 lbs, brown hair, hazel eyes, tattoos on right shoulder, chest and abdomen.
05/21/77

Vehicles:

Dark red Chevrolet truck with “Wilkinson Tree Service” on the doors.
Chevrolet Tahoe dark in color.
Maroon Nissan truck.

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Arrest Kenneth Bertha Inglis Florida

MEDIA RELEASE
Date: April 13, 2009
Time: 1:30 PM

Dunnellon, Florida- On April 13, 2009 Deputy Bob Cannon arrested Kenneth Bertha for aggravated assault and battery. Investigator Roger Bell also filed charges on Bertha for possession of marijuana under 20 grams and possession of drug paraphernalia.

At 7:55 PM Deputies responded to 9751 SE CR-337 in reference to a man with a gun. Upon arrival the victim stated that the disturbance was over money that he owed Bertha. Berta knocked on the front door and asked the victim to come outside and walk to the barn. The victim noticed that Bertha had zip ties in his hand and became extremely nervous. Bertha started cursing and pulled a pistol and pointed it at the victim’s stomach. The victim immediately grabbed Bertha’s gun hand and a struggle ensued on the ground. During the struggle Bertha threatened to kill the victim and his wife and burn the house down. The victim’s wife and small infant child were home during this incident and hid inside the bathroom.

The victim was able to hold Bertha down and he stated that he would put the gun up if the victim would let him go. The victim stated that he was scared to let him go but allowed Bertha to put the pistol in his pocket while he continued holding Bertha down. Bertha then asked for a beer and stated that he would leave if he got a beer. The victim had his wife give Bertha a beer and as he was walking away he stated that he would be back to finish what he started. Bertha was seen driving a black corvette and was later located by Inglis Police Department at 288 Sapp Street in Inglis.

On April 13, 2009 Investigator Roger Bell executed a search warrant at 288 Sapp Street. Investigator Bell was unable to locate the pistol but he located a small amount of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia inside the residence.

Defendant:
Kenneth M. Bertha
288 Sapp Street
Inglis, Fl.
White Male
7-31-50
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Honoring Dispatchers

National Public Safety Dispatcher Week

April 12-18, 2009 is National Public Safety Telecommunication Week. I want to take a special moment to personally honor the men and women who serve as public safety dispatchers for Levy County.

As Sheriff, I recognize the dispatchers’ play a pivotal role. They perform many different responsibilities that are absolutely crucial for the functioning of this department; just a few examples of the many roles they play include technical support, computer skills, answering complaints, dispatching calls with professionalism and efficiency when dealing with the public. Not only do they have to answer 9-1-1 calls, but they also dispatch to the Sheriff’s Office, Chiefland Police Department, Cedar Key Police Department, Inglis Police Department, Levy County Fire Service and Emergency Medical Services. If taking care of all emergency personnel in the County is not enough, the dispatchers also have to enter all missing persons, wanted persons, stolen tags and vehicles into the Florida Crime Information Center and National Crime Information Center computer systems.

Dispatchers are truly the unsung heroes of public safety. Dispatchers sit in a dark room looking at computer screens and talking to voices from faces that they will never see. It’s like reading a great suspense novel but never getting to finish the chapters because the next impending call requires undivided attention.

When help is needed, the first person the citizens will speak to is a dispatcher. They are the calming influence of all and the quiet, competent voices in the night that provide the pillars for the bridges of sanity and safety. Dispatchers are required to make sense out of the frantic calls, no matter how angry or frightened or hurt the callers may be. Dispatchers meet the anxiousness and adrenalin of the terrified victims, angry citizens and suicidal people with reassurance and competency.

Dispatchers represent what it means to “multi-task”. At any one time, dispatchers are required to perform a myriad of tasks including questioning a caller reporting a crime in progress, typing information into a computer, dispatching a call while at the same time putting another caller on hold and answering the radio. Only a unique and talented person can perform this job well. The emotional roller coaster rolls to a stop after a 12 hour shift just to begin all over again the next day they work.

I regard the Levy County Sheriff’s Office dispatchers as the backbone to this department. In 2008, the Levy County Sheriff’s Office dispatchers handled 118,402 computer aid dispatch events, over 21,213 9-1-1 calls, 7,437 EMS calls, and 3,234 Fire Department calls. This is incredible, especially considering there are only 13 employees. I commend and honor the men and women for the fine job they do and the professional attitudes they exhibit while on duty. Your work does not go unnoticed and I thank you for a job well done.

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Arrest Lacey Howard

MEDIA RELEASE

Date: April 10, 2009
Time: 4:00 PM

Bronson, Florida-On April 9, 2009 Detective Mike Bell arrested Lacey Howard for multiple felony charges and was transported to the Levy County Jail.

A crime wave began for business owners in the city of Bronson on April 1, 2009 and ended when Detective Mike Bell arrested Howard on April 9, 2009. Howard broke into the following businesses, stole money and did extensive amount of property damage.

On April 1, 2009 Howard burglarized Cole’s Four Corners bar located at 399 Hathaway Ave. Howard used an axe and broke the window to gain entry into the business. Upon entry Howard stole liquor and did over $ 5,000 in damage to a window, sink and an automated teller machine.

On April 5, 2009 Howard forcibly entered the Capano’s restaurant located at 760 East Hathaway. Howard broke into the vending machines and stole money. Howard stated that he observed a patrol car and fled the scene on foot.

On April 7, 2009 Howard burglarized the Progressive Insurance at 151 East Hathaway Ave. Upon entry he stole property valued at $ 180.00 and damaged a door.

On April 8, 2009 Howard attempted to steal the automated teller machine at Capital City Bank located at 500 East Main Street. Howard was captured on the surveillance camera attempting to steal the ATM machine and destroyed the ATM.

When the drag net tightened, Howard fled to Archer and the man hunt was on. On April 9, 2009 the Levy County Sheriff’s Office received information that Howard was back in town and he was arrested without incident. Howard confessed to the burglaries and was arrested for three counts of burglary, three counts of theft and three counts of criminal mischief.

Defendant:

Lacey Howard
574 East Main Street
Bronson, Florida
Black Male
09/20/78

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