An Ocala man who agreed to accept a ride from a Marion County sheriff’s deputy last week became violent and had to be tasered after he was asked about failing to pay child support.
The deputy was patrolling in the area of SE 140th Place in Summerfield early Thursday morning when he saw 26-year-old Christopher Ladon Pope and a woman walking east. They told the deputy that their car had broken down and they were walking to a residence on the other side of S U.S. 301.
The deputy called for backup and offered Pope and the woman a ride, which they accepted. But when he ran a computer check on Pope, he discovered he had an outstanding warrant for failure to pay child support.
When asked about it, Pope “became very nervous and started making small steps” away from the deputy. And once the deputy told Pope he was taking him into custody, he “started quickly backing up with his hands up,” a sheriff’s office report states.
The deputy grabbed Pope by the left arm and placed one handcuff on him, while another deputy grabbed his right hand. Pope was warned that he could be tased if he didn’t stop resisting arrest. But the battle continued and another deputy was kicked in the face multiple times, the report says.
Eventually that deputy used a taser on Pope and he was finally taken into custody. While searching him, deputies found a syringe and small plastic bags with two smaller bags inside Pope’s left pocket.
One of the bags contained a crystal substance that tested positive for methamphetamine (one gram), while the other contained a white powdery substance that tested for Fentanyl (.5 grams), the report says.
Pope was transported to the Marion County Jail and charged with two counts of possession of a controlled substance without a prescription (methamphetamine and Fentanyl), possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting an officer with violence, battery on a law enforcement officer, a probation violation on a past possession of cocaine charge and contempt of court.
Pope, who has been in the Marion County Jail six times since November 2001, was being held with no bond and is due in a Marion County courtroom on Jan. 22 at 9 a.m. to answer to the seven charges.