Wednesday, September 23, 2020
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The Villages

Villager’s grandson arrested after fleeing hospital after crashing vehicle

Matthew Beaton

A Villager’s 32-year-old grandson was arrested after fleeing UF Health The Villages Hospital where he was taken by ambulance after crashing his vehicle on County Road 466.

Matthew Phillip Beaton crashed his white Ford Escape at about 8 p.m. Saturday onto a median and was found unresponsive behind the wheel, according to an arrest report from the Florida Highway Patrol.

A member of The Villages Public Safety Department administered Narcan to Beaton, who “woke up and came to the realization he was involved in an accident,” the report said. He was transported by ambulance to the hospital in The Villages.

An FHP trooper found heroin and a bent silver spoon in Beaton’s vehicle, which was towed from the scene.

The trooper went to the hospital to complete the crash investigation and learned that Beaton had fled, telling hospital staff, “I’m not going back to jail.” He had a friend pick him up.

The trooper found Beaton at about 10 p.m. Tuesday at the home of his grandmother at 604 San Marino Drive. Beaton admitted that on the night of the crash he was driving home from buying heroin in Lake Panasoffkee. He said he stopped at Wawa at County Road 466 and U.S. 301 to use the drug and became unconscious while driving on County Road 466.

He provided a urine sample.

He was arrested on charges of driving under the influence and possession of drug equipment. He was booked at the Sumter County Detention Center and released after posting $1,500 bond. 

Beaton was arrested in 2018 after he was found sleeping in a Villages Property Management truck at Lake Sumter Landing. At the time, he was employed by the District Government. He was found to be in possession of a syringe, cocaine and the drug Quetiapine, for which Beaton did not have prescription.

Beaton was free on $3,500 bond when he was arrested a few months later at the Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market at Sarasota Plaza after he was found in a white Ford Edge suffering a seizure. The Michigan native had fresh track marks on his arm with blood oozing out, an arrest report said. Beaton, who was nervous and sweating profusely, also had old track marks on his hands and arms. There was a syringe in plain sight, as well as 11 syringes in the center console of the vehicle. He was also found to be in possession of cocaine.

Beaton was placed on probation for three years. He also has been ordered to perform 25 hours of community service.

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