Hillsborough County
Chad Chronister, Sheriff
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    Release Number: 18-407

    • For Immediate Release:
    • Public Information Office of Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
    • May 4, 2018
    • Contact Person:
    • Public Information Office : piocommandcenter@hcso.tampa.fl.us
    • 813-247-8060

    Deputies Vehicle Ends With Search For Suspect In The Mud

    Two deputies, who had immersed themselves in the water and mud up to their chest while in full duty uniform, carried Harris out over a quarter mile themselves.
    • Thursday
    • May 3, 2018
    • Time: 3:00 AM
    • Palm River Road and 301 Highway South

    Aviation Video:


    (2015 Booking photo)
    Michael Harris
    DOB: 8/30/1978

    Charges: Fraud Use of Credit Card VOP, Burglary Unoccupied Conveyance VOP, Possession Controlled Substance VOP, Grand Theft 3rd Degree VOP



    A deputy on routine patrol observed a Jeep Cherokee driving through the parking lot of a business area at approximately 3:00 am. The deputy attempted to make contact with the Jeep and the Jeep accelerated away from him and onto Palm River Road. The driver of the Jeep pulled into a 7-Eleven parking lot located at 1001 301 Highway South. When the deputy, who did not give chase, eventually pulled in behind the Jeep, a white male wearing a blue t-shirt fled the vehicle and began running westbound behind the 7-Eleven. A passenger inside the Jeep stayed behind and identified the driver as Arthur Perkins DOB: 10/19/75. Perkins has not been located and it is unknown why he ran, but a charge for Resisting an Officer without Violence will be direct filed with the State Attorney's Office shortly.

    While deputies were circulating the area for Perkins, they noticed a man, who was later identified as Michael Harris, matching Perkins’ description walking in the area. When Harris noticed the deputies, he began to run thinking they were looking for him as he had outstanding warrants for his arrest for violation of parole. He ran into a wooded and swampy area nearby where a two-hour search resulted in his arrest.

    Patrol Deputies, K9 Units and Aviation assisted in the search that may have saved Harris’ life. While trying to elude the deputies, Harris ingested an unknown amount of methamphetamine. Harris was soaking wet and was becoming hypothermic from hiding in and near the creek to the point he could not walk out of the woods on his own. Due to the incredibly tough terrain and their location in the woods, EMS services could not reach the suspect to render aid. Two deputies, who had immersed themselves in the water and mud up to their chest while in full duty uniform, carried Harris out over a quarter mile themselves. The nearest address to where Harris was eventually located hiding in dense vegetation was just east of 1702 Green Ridge Road. Harris is currently in a local area hospital.

  • Sheriff Chad Chronister
    Sheriff Chad Chronister
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