Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Active Investigation

September 25, 2019 @ 2:55 PM

The Levy County Sheriff’s Office is currently on the scene at 5333 NE 212 Court and a large law enforcement presence is at this location. Please avoid the area. 

There is no known threat to the public at this time. School buses may be delayed in dropping off students that live near this location. We are currently working with School Board officials to contact parents whose children may be delayed because of this active investigation.  

More information will be provided when it is made available. 

Thursday, September 5, 2019

The Courage of Children

September 5, 2019

Child abuse in any form is one of the worst things a child should have to endure. Especially when that abuse is at the hand of someone the child knows or respects. Children talk daily with adults and are sometimes just dismissed. But, in this case a “teacher” listened and encouraged the child to say something.  This is a case where a child was horribly sexually abused and it took every ounce of courage she could muster to end her own abuse.

Detectives responded with investigators from the Department of Children and Family Services after a call to the ABUSE hotline was received. Detectives spoke to a child who described multiple forms of sexual abuse perpetrated by John E. Biles (2/23/84) of Morriston. Detectives listened to hours of testimony this child gave and through this developed cause to arrest Biles. 

Biles has been booked into the Levy County Detention Facility and charged with three counts of capital sexual battery and one count of lewd and lascivious battery on a child. His bond was set at $2.5 million dollars. But this did not end the investigation. 

Based on the testimony of this child Detectives seized Biles’ phone that the child said Biles used to record her abuse. Detectives discovered Biles did have images from this abuse on his phone. Other electronic items are still being examined and additional charges will be filed when this investigation is completed. 

Sheriff McCallum said, “this is another horrible crime of abuse committed against an innocent, vulnerable child victim. Our prayers are certainly with this child and I am so thankful for her bravery in speaking out and reporting this to her teacher, someone she truly trusted.  

This case is another example of the system working together to stop the abuse for this victim. I especially applaud and commend the teacher for having a relationship of trust with this child that initiated this investigation. From the teacher to the DCF investigator to the Child Protection Team at UF and my Detectives, I offer my commendations for a job well done and for the arrest bringing this perpetrator to justice and ending this cycle of abuse on this child.”

Monday, August 19, 2019

Levy County Flood Event

August 19, 2019

The Levy County Sheriff’s Office worked diligently over the weekend to ensure the safety of our community members. Several residents in the Gulf Hammock, Rosewood and Yankeetown area were unable to leave their homes after flood waters covered roads making them impassable. 

The LCSO Marine Unit and Deputies utilized our airboat to access several homes in the Gulf Hammock area and helped residents to higher ground. Some residents elected to stay but needed supplies such as fresh drinking water. 

The Levy County Emergency Management Office worked constantly with the LCSO and many of our county departments over this past weekend to maintain closed road postings and checking on residents. Many roads are still closed to traffic. The most up-to-date road closure notifications can be found on the Levy County Emergency Management website at Please report damages to your home or business to 352-486-5155 or online at

The Cedar Key School is closed today, but the rest of the county schools are open. Levy County School District does have a modified school bus route schedule in place. This information can be found on their website at

Sink holes and washed out roads will be just a few of the many hazards our county will face as these flood waters recede. Information about the dangers of flooded wells has been provided by the Levy County Department of Health. That information can be found at

Please use caution when traveling and do not drive into flooded areas.  

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Wanted Wisconsin Fugitive Apprehended

August 15, 2019

Lorenzo Bernabe-Lucas 5/19/90 of Racine County, Wisconsin, who has been a wanted fugitive and on the run since April of 2018, was arrested last night in Williston. Bernabe- Lucas fled from Wisconsin after a warrant for his arrest was issued for 1st Degree Child Sexual Assault. The United States Marshal’s Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force-Milwaukee developed a lead on the possible whereabouts of Bernabe-Lucas in the Williston area.  This lead was communicated to the U.S. Marshal’s Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force for assignment and follow up.

The Levy County Sheriff’s Office Drug Task Force Detective Rob Bowers, who has a special assignment to the U. S. Marshal’s Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force, was asked to conduct this local investigation. Detective Bowers conducted surveillance for over a week and communicated his investigative findings to both the local and Wisconsin task force members. Detective Bowers learned that Bernabe-Lucas was living and working locally in Levy County.   Detective Bowers also learned Bernabe-Lucas frequently car pooled with others from his place of employment.
Detective Bowers requested the assistance of the LCSO Tactical Response Unit (TRU), agents with the U. S. Marshal’s Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force and agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement on the afternoon of August 13, 2019 to take Bernabe-Lucas into custody. These law enforcement agencies worked together and arrested Bernabe-Lucas after a traffic stop of the car pool vehicle. Members of the LCSO TRU team boxed the truck in at the intersection of NE 200 Avenue and NE 30 Street where Bernabe-Lucas surrendered to law enforcement without resistance.

Bernabe-Lucas was taken to the Levy County Detention Bureau where he will be held on a $75,000 bond until he can be transferred to authorities in Wisconsin.      

Monday, August 12, 2019

Homicide Investigation

August 12, 2019

At 7:53 PM on August 11, 2019 Levy County Deputies responded to CR 464 in the south eastern area of Levy County. A 911 caller reported finding the body of an unidentified male on the side of the road. Deputies arrived and immediately secured the area as a crime scene. Levy County Detectives and Crime Scene was dispatched to the scene and assumed the investigation.

Detectives learned the identity of the person as Jafet Padin Rodriguez 9/14/85 of Ocala. The Marion County Sheriff’s Office responded to a suspicious incident earlier and was attempting to locate Rodriguez to check his well being. When they were not able to locate him a BOLO (Be On The Lookout) was issued. This BOLO aided in identifying Rodriguez. Levy County Detectives determined that Rodriguez suffered a single gunshot wound which ended his life.

Levy County Detectives are asking our community and the community of Marion County for assistance. This investigation has determined Rodriguez left his home on Saturday evening to go clubbing in the Ocala area. He never returned home. Anyone who saw Rodriguez in or nearby any nightclubs in Ocala and has information that could assist this investigation is asked to call Detective Mike McNeil at 352-486-5111. If you have information and wish to remain anonymous you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1-877-349-8477.