Business owner accused of bringing gun onto school campus

Deputies say they found James Donovan in wooded area of Landrum Middle

By Erik Avanier - Reporter

St. Johns County Sheriff's Office booking photo of James Donovan

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. - Deputies arrested the owner of a Jacksonville Beach heat and air company accused of bringing a gun onto school property, the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office said.

James Donovan, 40, of Ponte Vedra Beach, is charged with trespassing on school property with a firearm, possessing cocaine and possessing drug equipment. 

Deputies said responded Friday night to Landrum Middle School after receiving a 911 call about 20 homeless people wandering in a wooded area of the campus. Deputies said the man who called 911 is the same man they later arrested. 

When deputies arrived, according to an arrest report, they found Donovan crouched low to the ground and holding a handgun while slowly approaching a deputy as if he did not want to be detected.

Deputies said they then ordered Donovan to drop his weapon.

When Donovan was asked whether "he was trying to coax deputies into the woods in an attempt to ambush deputies," he replied, "no," the arrest report said.  

Donovan was released Saturday night from the St. Johns County jail on $7,500 bond, online jail records show.

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