Hillsborough County
Chad Chronister, Sheriff
Tampa, FL
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    Release Number: 15-133

    • For Immediate Release:
    • Public Information Office of Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
    • March 10, 2015
    • Contact Person:
    • Public Information Office : piooffice@hcso.tampa.fl.us
    • 813/247-8060

    Aggravated Battery On A LEO

    Two juveniles were also charged with Grand Theft Auto.
    • Monday
    • March 9, 2015
    • Time: 1:37 PM
    • 702 Valley Forge Boulevard
    • Sun City Center

    Arrested:

    George Ernesto Lopez
    DOB: 9-13-99
    1108 -24th Street South East, Lot #4
    Ruskin

    Charge:

    • Grand Theft Auto

    Arrested:

    Luis Esparza
    DOB: 8-7-00
    2311 – 24 Street South East
    Ruskin

    Charges:

    • Grand Theft Auto
    • Aggravated Battery on LEO
    • Resist Arrest with Violence
    • Fleeing To Elude

    Details:

    On March 9, 2015, District Four Intelligence detectives were conducting surveillance in Sun City Center area in a proactive effort to deter crime in the area. At approximately 1:37 p.m. detectives observed a golf cart being driven by the two above listed juveniles. Based on observations by the detectives, the golf cart was believed to be stolen. As detectives attempted to stop the golf cart, the subject (Luis Esparza) accelerated and changed direction intentionally striking Deputy Merry, forcing him to grab on to the front of the cart. Esparza traveled approximately 150 feet while Deputy Merry hung on to the front of the cart, before eventually stopping and fleeing on foot. As Esparza attempted to hurdle one of the detectives parked vehicle, he lost his footing and fell to the ground. Esparza was immediately taken into custody and transported to Tampa General Hospital for medical clearance after complaining of back pain. Deputy Merry suffered minor injuries and was immediately released by medical personnel. Lopez had fled on a bicycle just prior to detectives attempting to stop the cart, and was located nearby and taken into custody without incident. The golf card had just been stolen from the Prince Catholic Church in Sun City Center.
  • Sheriff Chad Chronister
    Sheriff Chad Chronister
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