Florida deputy uses personal watercraft to chase down suspect (VIDEO)

Nick Tomecek
The Destin Log

MIRAMAR BEACH — A Walton County Sheriff’s deputy used a personal watercraft to help apprehend a suspect on Friday afternoon.

Deputies responded to Shore Drive following an anonymous tip that a man, wanted on a felony warrant, was living at a home in the area.

Deputies recovered numerous stolen tools outside the residence and inside the back bedroom where he was staying. Additionally, vessel registrations to two stolen personal watercraft out of Okaloosa County were found in a bag under the man’s clothes, according to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office.

He was spotted fleeing the area by deputies who tracked him to Cessna Park on County Highway 393 riding one of the stolen vessels.

He got off the watercraft and made it onto the boat ramp when he was approached by deputies. He was given numerous verbal commands to “stop” as deputies repeatedly announced themselves as the “Sheriff’s Office,” the release said.

The man fled on foot and attempted to flee in the water by swimming away. He was taken into custody a short time later after a deputy jumped on a personal watercraft and guided him back to land.

A video posted by the Sheriff’s Office, shows the man raising his hands as he stands in water up to his waist.

Found in the bag on the stolen watercraft, deputies located burglary tools including bolt cutters, a hammer, a drill, a screwdriver, a drill bit, a pry tool, a pick tool used for ignitions, and a wrench.

He had an active felony warrant from Walton County for grand theft auto. He was released on July 23 after recently being charged with several vehicle burglaries, armed and unarmed, theft of a firearm, and theft of several motor vehicles, WCSO said.

His new charges include grand theft auto, violation of felony probation, possession of burglary tools, obstruction, burglary and grand theft.

This story originally published to, and was shared to other Florida newspapers in the USA TODAY Network - Florida.