ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - A suspect bound for the Orange County jail tried to make a break for it by jumping out of the patrol car transporting him.
According to the arrest report, an Orange County Sheriff’s deputy in the Fugitive Apprehension Unit was sent to pick up Joseph Michael Breese on Wednesday afternoon. Breese was wanted on an outstanding warrant for failure to update his address on his sex offender status and failure to appear for eight counts of Unlawful Possession of Materials Depicting Sexual Performance by a child.
A representative for the Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Ingrid Tejada-Monforte said that the charges carried a no bond status and when the deputy arrived for Breeze the arrest went without incident.
“He was willing,” said Tejada-Monforte, “he knew what he had done wrong, why he had the warrant.”
Tejada-Monforte said deputies working in their special units like Fugitive Apprehension usually drive regular cars and in cases where the arrest is incident free they will often simply transport the suspect in that car rather than calling for a marked back-up. When they make that choice, she said it’s procedure to put the suspect in the front seat, cuffed, and secured with a seatbelt because the unmarked vehicles don’t have the protective cages regular squad cars do to keep the deputy safe.
“He was secure in the front seat with his cuffs on,” she said.
When the deputy was turning the vehicle from Ocoee-Apopka Road onto State Road 429 he reported hearing the seatbelt next to him come undone and the suspect began opening the passenger side door. The deputy said he slammed his brakes and stopped his vehicle in the middle of the roadway, grabbing Breese by the shirt to try to prevent him from getting out.
According to the report, Breese continued to pull away as the deputy called for back-up, and he eventually was able to stretch out of the car with the deputy still clinging to his shirt. The deputy reported that he was eventually pulled out of the driver’s seat and head-first into the roadway as he tried to cling to the shirt.
The report said Breese fled with the deputy pursuing close behind. Two bystanders then stopped to help and the deputy was able to catch Breeze.
After he was checked out at the hospital for minor injuries from the struggle, Breese was booked into the Orange County Jail and, on Thursday, received an additional charge for attempting to flee and resisting arrest.
As for the front seat arrest policy in those unmarked cars, Tejada-Monforte said the incident could spur a conversation on that.
“We always learn from every lesson; this is not something that occurs every day,” she said. “In this instance they’ll [the Sheriff’s Office] probably review the policy.”
Tejada-Monforte said the deputy involved in the incident was not seriously injured and is back at work.