How law enforcement agencies are recruiting future officers in a difficult climate
Small towns and big cities alike are struggling to recruit and retain law enforcement officers amid national controversy over the police profession. Many veteran officers are retiring, leaving agencies in a bidding war for qualified candidates — as they try to hire the next generation to protect and serve.
Nassau County Sheriff’s Office releases bodycam footage from deadly shooting of woman holding ‘BB-style rifle’
The Nassau County Sheriff’s Office on Thursday released body camera footage from early Jan. 11 when, according to the sheriff, a deputy shot and killed a woman who was “holding a BB-style rifle.”
Nassau County sheriff: 54 arrests made, hundreds of pounds of drugs seized in ‘Operation: Heavyweights’
A monthslong, multi-agency investigation named “Operation: Heavyweights” has resulted in 54 arrests and the seizure of hundreds of pounds of illegal narcotics, Nassau County Sheriff Bill Leeper announced Tuesday.
Emotional support dog ‘Tank’ brings comfort to grieving Nassau County Sheriff’s Office
As the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office deals with the emotions surrounding the potentially fatal injury to one of their own, deputies and volunteers got a little help Sunday in the form of a 105-pound Bernese Mountain Dog.
Nassau County jail sees spike in COVID-19 cases among inmates
The Nassau County jail is dealing with a spike in coronavirus cases impacting about a fifth of its inmate population, authorities said. According to the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, 46 male inmates — or about 21% of the 212 inmates in custody there — have been placed in quarantine after testing positive for the virus. The surge in cases at the Nassau County jail comes as Florida’s jails and prisons continue to grapple with the virus. While most inmates and staff have been cleared after testing positive, 208 inmates have died. Last month, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office confirmed that three inmates at the Duval County jail have died as a result of complications from COVID-19.
Get a call from a Nassau County deputy? Make sure it’s legitimate
The Nassau County Sheriff’s Office is warning residents about a recent police impersonation scam. In a Facebook post Thursday, the Sheriff’s Office said a resident recently got a phone call from someone who identified themselves as Deputy Charles Lee. The victim fell for the scam and lost thousands of dollars they loaded onto prepaid gift cards, according to the Sheriff’s Office. They also will not ask that people send prepaid gift cards, money orders or credit card payments over the phone. If you believe you’ve received a scam call, contact the Sheriff’s Office’s non-emergency line by calling 904-225-5174.
Deputies: Boy, 12, brings 3 guns to Nassau County school
CALLAHAN, Fla. – A 12-year-old Nassau County boy was arrested Thursday after deputies say he brought three guns and ammo to a private Christian school in Callahan. "She discovered the butt of a gun and turned it over to the principal,” who told deputies he found a revolver, a second handgun and two boxes of .380 caliber ammunition inside. The teacher said Stanford told her he had brought the guns to school to show the principal. Inside his desk was a drawing of a man outside of a school with guns. The child’s mother, Sasha Lewis, told deputies the family has guns at home, but she thought the gun safe was locked.
Man & woman arrested in Nassau County shootout
YULEE, Fla. – Nassau County deputies arrested a man and woman Monday in connection with a recent shooting that unfolded outside a Yulee tattoo parlor. John Michael Kite, 37, and Ashley Blair Morgan, 36, were arrested after they came forward Monday, the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office said. Deputies answering that call found a man with gunshot wounds to his stomach and left wrist lying on the sidewalk near the business. They said the victim and a man from the car got into a shootout, and one of the minors was struck during the exchange. The suspected shooter was dropped off in Fernandina and the wounded minor was taken to a Jacksonville hospital, witnesses said.
Ex-Nassau County deputy charged in towing kickback scheme
YULEE, Fla. – A Nassau County deputy has been fired after authorities say he hatched a scheme to score kickbacks for steering business to his then-girlfriend’s fledgling towing company. John Daniel Galloway, 35, of Callahan, was arrested Nov. 22 at the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office. He was booked on a felony charge of unlawful compensation for official behavior and released the next day after posting $15,000 bond, Nassau County jail records show. She told investigators Galloway took an interest in her towing business and proposed a way they could both benefit financially from it. According to Galloway’s arrest warrant, he explained that they could sidestep the Sheriff’s Office’s towing rotation by saying drivers involved in crashes requested towing service from her business, Atlas Towing.
NCSO: Driver arrested after Yulee woman falls out of car, dies
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. - A Yulee woman was arrested and accused of DUI manslaughter after a passenger in the car she was driving fell out of the back seat, hit her head and died on a Nassauville street Saturday night, according to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office. The second passenger in the car told investigators the deceased woman tried to get out of the car while it was moving, according to a case report. Witnesses driving behind the car told the Sheriff's Office Collum then drove away and left the woman in the road. Nassau County Fire Rescue was called and pronounced the 25-year-old Yulee woman dead at the scene. Collum has been charged with DUI manslaughter, DUI involving death and failure to immediately stop and render aid.
Woman hit, killed by train in Nassau County
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. - A pedestrian was struck and killed by a train Friday afternoon just north of Hilliard, authorities said. It happened about 2:30 p.m. on the railroad tracks at Andrews Road near U.S. 23. Nassau County Sheriff Bill Leeper told News4Jax a woman stepped out in front of the train. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the woman, identified as 62-year-old Rosalina Wolf, was walking south on the railroad tracks when she was struck by the train, which was traveling southbound. The crash remains under investigation, the Highway Patrol report shows.
3 arrested in Fernandina Beach drug house bust
Three people were arrested Thursday after the Nassau County Sheriff's Office and the Fernandina Beach Police Department combined to arrest three people at a home in Fernandina Beach. According to the Nassau County Sheriffs Office, narcotics detectives from NCSO and FBPD served a search warrant at a home on Stewart Avenue in the Amelia City area of Fernandina Beach after complaints of drug activity. Chad Anthony Ledford, 38, from Fernandina Beach, was arrested and accused of sale of a controlled substance, theft of a motor vehicle and keeping a place where controlled substance is kept/sold/used declared a public nuisance. Rachel Lee Jennings, 34, and Michael Allen Couey, 49, both of Fernandina Beach, were also arrested and face multiple charges. Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.
Nassau County deputies warn of scam calls threatening arrest
Investigators are warning residents that if they get a call from someone claiming to be a Nassau County deputy and threatening to arrest them, they should hang up immediately. The difference in the most recent scams are that the callers are asking people to meet them at locations in Nassau County, like convenience stores. Never pay anyone by gift card, Green Dot card or Western Union, and never give the card numbers over the phone, deputies said. The Nassau County Sheriff's Office will NOT call you and ask for payment to avoid arrest. Call the Nassau County Sheriff's Office at 904-225-5174 if you are unsure if you are being scammed.
Deputies: Human skull, bones found in wooded area of Nassau County
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. - An apparent human skull and bones were discovered last week in a wooded area between Callahan and Hilliard, according to a Nassau County Sheriff's Office report. His case is one the 10 open missing persons cases in the county. According to the Sheriff's Office, it appeared they had been there quite some time. Silcox told News4Jax that her son-in-law was one of the corrections officers who found the bones. Leeper told News4Jax on Tuesday that the remains were not believed to be those of Joleen Cummings, a 34-year-old Nassau County mother of three who disappeared in May 2018.
Deputies: Human skull, bones found in wooded area of Nassau County
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. - An apparent human skull and bones were discovered last week in a wooded area between Callahan and Hilliard, according to a Nassau County Sheriff's Office report. Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.
53 people arrested in 'Operation Cold Summer'
YULEE, Fla. - After an investigation that spanned several months, detectives in Nassau County announced Wednesday that 53 people have been arrested after numerous undercover drug stings. Narcotics detectives with the Nassau County Sheriff's Office and Fernandina Beach Police Department were part of Operation Cold Summer. According to Sheriff Bill Leeper, the 53 people were arrested on various drug charges and all have prior arrests. Items seized during the operation include over four pounds of meth, 11 grams of heroin mixed with fentanyl, 14 grams of crack cocaine, about four pounds of marijuana, six firearms, a vehicle and $8,688. "If you are selling illegal drugs in Nassau County you can stop now, leave the county, or keep looking over your shoulder because we are coming after you," Leeper said.
Recognize him? Deputies say man burglarized Yulee internet cafe
YULEE, Fla. - Deputies with the Nassau County Sheriff's Office asked for help Friday identifying a man they said burglarized an internet cafe in Yulee. According to investigators, the man stole money from a safe in July at the Track Arcade on State Road 200 just west of U.S. Highway 17. An employee told News4Jax that there was another burglary less than a mile away at the Beach House Arcade, which is owned by the same person who owns the Track Aracde. At both arcades, News4Jax was told the owner would not comment. Anyone with information that could help investigators is asked to anonymously contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS or call the Sheriff's Office at 904-548-4064 and reference case number 2019-78754.
Man accused of sending obscene photos to girl
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. - A 21-year-old Jacksonville man was arrested early Tuesday morning after a monthslong investigation into obscene photos being sent to a child living in Bryceville, according to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office. The investigation dates back to Dec. 14, 2018, when the Sheriff's Office received a complaint about a child receiving several obscene photos from a man. According to the arrest report, a woman told deputies that her daughter, whose age was redacted, was receiving obscene photos from a young man. The report stated that many of the conversations were "very sexual in nature" and referred to trading photos of each other. The girl's mother told deputies that she was sure that Roberts was aware that her daughter was a minor because her daughter knew his younger brother.
19-year-old accused of sending obscene photos to minor
YULEE, Fla. - A 19-year-old Jacksonville man was arrested Tuesday after a months-long investigation into obscene photos being sent to a child living in Bryceville, according to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office. The investigation dates back to Dec. 14, 2018, when the Sheriff's Office received a complaint about the child receiving several obscene photos from an adult male. According to the arrest report, social media posts revealed explicit conversations between the child and Trey Roberts from Jacksonville. The conversations were sexual in nature with photographs being exchanged. After investigation a warranted search of several social media sites, an arrest warrant was issued for the Roberts, he was arrested for transmission of materials harmful to minors.
4 arrested after drugs discovered in Yulee home where child lived
From left to right: Nassau County Sheriff's Office booking photos of Jessica Dunman, Grady Glover, Ricky Labigang and Robert SteffensYULEE, Fla. - Four people were arrested after Nassau County deputies said they discovered drugs in a Yulee home where a child had been living. The Sheriff's Office said the four people were arrested on the following charges:Robert Adolf Steffens, 44, of Yulee, is charged with possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia and violation of probation. Jessica Lynn Dunman, 40, of Yulee, is charged with possession of methamphetamine, child neglect, possession of cocaine, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, place where control substances are kept/sold/used declared a public nuisance. Grady Eugene Glover, 37, of Yulee, is charged with child neglect, tampering with utilities, possession of methamphetamine, possession of cocaine, possession of drug paraphernalia, place where control substances are kept/sold/used declared a public nuisance. Ricky Anthony Labigang, 59, of Yulee, is charged with possession of cocaine and four counts of sale of a controlled substance.
Nassau County Sheriff's Office holds active shooter drill at Yulee High
YULEE, Fla. - The Nassau County Sheriffs Office and other agencies took part Tuesday in an active shooter training drill at Yulee High School. The school has about 1,200 students and sits right next to Yulee Middle School. The drill involved a scenario where an active shooter was on campus targeting students. Last week, the Fernandina Beach Police Department also held an active shooter exercise at Fernandina Beach High School. Nassau County Sheriff Bill Leeper said all county agencies must practice and learn how to respond the best way possible to an attack.
Yulee High School to hold active shooter drill Tuesday
YULEE, Fla. - A heads up for parents and students of Yulee High School who might be on campus during the summer: the Nassau County Sheriff's Office plans to conduct an active shooter drill at the school on Tuesday. According to Nassau County Sheriff Bill Leeper, the active shooter training will begin at 9 a.m. and last until 11:30 a.m.Law enforcement and fire rescue vehicles will likely be seen on campus. Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.
Coast Guard takes boater off Cumberland Island to hospital
A Coast Guard Air Station Savannah MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew medevacs a man July 13, 2019, 12 miles east of Cumberland Island. The Dolphin crew hoisted the man and transported him to UF Health Jacksonville after he was found unresponsiveJACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Coast Guard transported a man found unresponsive on a boat off the coast of Cumberland Island, Georgia, to a hospital Saturday, authorities said. Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville received a report about 10:10 a.m. from a good Samaritan who found an unresponsive man aboard another vessel about 12 miles east of Cumberland Island. According to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office, the man was identified as Chuck Dopson, 55, of Yulee. The Coast Guard said he was alone and either had a heart attack or was shocked.
Coast Guard takes boater off Cumberland Island to hospital
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Coast Guard transported a man found unresponsive on a boat off the coast of Cumberland Island, Georgia, to a hospital Saturday, authorities said. Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville received a report about 10:10 a.m. from a good Samaritan who found an unresponsive man aboard another vessel about 12 miles east of Cumberland Island. According to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office, the man was identified as Chuck Dopson, 55, of Yulee. The Coast Guard said he was alone and either had a heart attack or was shocked. Crews began towing the vessel and then handed it off to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office, which continued to tow it to Dee Dee Bartels Public Boat Ramp.
Men arrested after tires stolen from Nassau County dealership
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. - Two men were arrested after $3,000 worth of tires were stolen from a dealership, according to the Nassau County Sheriff's Office. The Sheriff's Office said 23 tires were stolen in June from the Davis Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram dealership on State Road 200. The tires were taken from the service rack located on the side of the building. Surveillance video, the Sheriff's Office said, shows two men drive onto the lot in a pickup truck. One man cut a cable wire that was holding the tires, and both placed the tires into a truck.
Father & son attacked with baseball bats, robbed
FERNANDINA BEACH, Fla. - A father and son told investigators they were attacked with baseball bats and robbed of their fishing poles, according to a report from the Nassau County Sheriff's Office. The robbery was reported Sunday afternoon on the Nassau Sound fishing pier, the Sheriff's Office said. Four witnesses were questioned at the scene, but none had any information about a suspect. The father was said to be 60 years old, while the son was said to be 30 years old. Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.
Deputies: Several sought in Yulee car burglaries
YULEE, Fla. – There's a neighborhood crime alert in Yulee, where deputies are asking for the public's help in identifying several young men who are suspected of breaking into several cars over the weekend. Surveillance image provided by Nassau County Sheriff's OfficeThe Nassau County Sheriff's Office said the auto burglaries happened Saturday in Timber Creek Plantation. On Wednesday, the Sheriff's Office released surveillance images showing three individuals who appear to be hiding in bushes. Deputies said the three seen in the photos are connected to the car burglaries. To remain anonymous and report a tip, call First Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS (8477).
Nassau County deputies search for 'endangered' 41-year-old woman
NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. – Deputies are searching for a missing 41-year-old woman who is considered endangered, the Nassau County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday. Kimberly Moore Hensley was last seen March 1 at Day Spring Village in Hilliard, deputies said,She was reportedly wearing a black short-sleeve shirt, black leggings with a white stripe down the side, black closed-toed sandals and sunglasses. Deputies described Hensley as being 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighing 250 pounds and having blue eyes and brown hair. Anyone with information about her whereabouts is asked to call detectives at 904-548-4034. To remain anonymous, contact First Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.