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The Villages
Monday, June 5, 2023

Suspect in multiple thefts tasered at Walmart in The Villages

Darrell Freeman
Darrell Freeman

A suspect in multiple thefts was tasered by a deputy trying to take him into custody at a Walmart store in The Villages.

Darrell Freeman, 38, of Wildwood, was already a suspect in two previous thefts at the store at Sarasota Plaza and was in the process of committing another theft when he was confronted by a deputy at about 2 p.m. Monday, according to an arrest report from the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office.

Freeman walked away from the deputy, pushed him in the chest and took off running. The deputy caught up to Freeman and used a hip toss to take him to the ground. Freeman started grabbing at the deputy’s belt and tried to pull off the deputy’s radio. The deputy tried to hold Freeman down, but he kept resisting efforts to be subdued. The deputy used two knee strikes to try to bring him into compliance. When that failed to work, the deputy drew his taser and ordered Freeman to the ground. Freeman ignored the deputy’s commands and was tasered. Emergency personnel were summoned to the scene to check him out.

Freeman allegedly visited the same store on March 20 as well as this past Friday and stole merchandise. The incidents were captured on surveillance. He has previous theft convictions in Sumter and Marion counties. He had been arrested in 2021 with drugs in Marion County.

Freeman is facing charges of battery on a law enforcement officer, resisting arrest and multiple counts of theft. He was booked at the Sumter County Detention Center on $45,000 bond.

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