Police Briefs 8/13/20


CCSO: Man arrested for molesting a minor for years

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – A man entrusted to care for a girl was charged on Aug. 5 with molesting her for years, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office said.

Eric Wayne Cole, 49, was charged with custodial sexual battery of a victim younger than 18 and lewd and lascivious behavior.

According to the arrest report, the abuse started when she was 13 and lasted four years. The child said she was molested “hundreds of times.”

The child took a photo of Cole while he was getting dressed following an assault so she would be believed, CCSO reported.

Cole was released from the Clay County Jail after posting bonds totaling $300,006.

Woman asleep at the wheel arrested with cache of drugs

ORANGE PARK – A Middleburg woman was arrested after Clay County Sheriff’s Office deputies found her asleep at a traffic light with a cache of drugs in her car.

Connie Frances Richter, 58, was charged with possessing heroin, fentanyl, Ambien, lorazepam, harmful new legend drug and paraphernalia, as well as DUI and refusing to submit to a blood alcohol level test.

Deputies were called to Tanglewood and Blanding boulevards on Aug. 9 shortly after noon to respond to a woman asleep at the wheel. When she was awakened, she appeared impaired, according to the arrest report.

She failed a field sobriety test and was arrested. The drugs were found in her car during a check of her SUV.

Richter’s bond was set at $28,020. If she is released, she was ordered to wear a PharmCheck Sweat Patch to detect the use of drugs by County Judge Kristina K. Mobley.

Man busted for soliciting minors for sex on internet

FLEMING ISLAND – A local man was arrested Aug. 5 for online solicitation a child for sex.

Roy Dale Pridgen, 65, was booked into the Clay County Jail after the Clay County Sheriff’s Office’s Crimes Against Children Unit and Homeland Security traced offers for sex with who he believes was a minor back to his internet address.

Pridgen’s bond was set at $75,003.

Seatbelt ticket turns into drug arrest for GCS woman

OAKLEAF – The Clay County Sheriff’s Office stopped a woman driving on State Road 23 for not wearing her seatbelt and wound up finding fentanyl, methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Shaina Pear Katz, 26, of Green Cove Springs, was arrested Aug. 8 after a CCSO K-9 alerted deputies of the narcotics.

She also was given a ticket for not wearing her seatbelt.

Man killed in head-on crash near Shands Bridge

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – A 62-year-old Green Cove Springs man was killed Monday afternoon in a head-on crash near the Shands Bridge.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a 32-year-old man from St. Augustine was driving westbound on State Road 16 when he suddenly veered into the eastbound lane and collided with on-coming traffic.

The driver who caused the crash suffered serious injuries, while a driver in a third car that was involved wasn’t hurt.

FHP no longer releases the names of drivers involved in accidents.

Woman dies after hitting guardrail on Thunder Road

MIDDLEBURG – A 42-year-old Middleburg woman died Tuesday night when her car ran off Thunder Road, hit a guardrail and came to a stop in the ditch.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the accident happened near Darlene Road at 10:30 p.m. She apparently veered to the right and she over-corrected and crashed on the opposite side of the road. The accident report also notes the woman wasn’t wearing her seatbelt.

FHP no longer releases the names of drivers involved in accidents.


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