BUNNELL, FL – The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) has been working with Flagler County Code Enforcement, the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP), and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) on a case of parked vehicles blocking a State Right of Way and illegal dumping since February of 2020. The location of the ordinance violations occurred at 8899 State Road 11 in Bunnell.
Deputy First Class (DFC) Steve Williams took the case over in July of 2020 and was able to track the vehicles parked routinely in the State Right of Way back to 40-year-old Stephen J. Horton. The majority of the illegal dumping involved scrap metal and debris being dumped onto the State Right of Way. DFC Williams met with Horton on several occasions to discuss the issue of illegally dumping the materials on the right of way.
On July 9, 2020, FCSO issued a written warning to Horton for littering. FDOT hired an environmental services company to clear out all of the debris and fix up the State Right of Way at the cost of $4,200. The debris removed weighed over 500 pounds. FDOT also installed new ‘No Parking’ signs and reflective markers on the roadway. By August of 2020, Horton began parking vehicles illegally and dumping scrap metal back on the State Right of Way.
“We responded to this location for ordinance violations 14 times since February 2020,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “Multiple vehicles have been tagged and towed from the location for blocking the State Right of Way and Mr. Horton received plenty of verbal and written warnings along with County ordinance violations to clean up the mess but instead he refused to comply and continued to trash the area. Neighbors should not have to live with this eyesore.”
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On December 8, 2020, DFC Williams submitted charges to the State Attorney’s Office on Horton for Illegal Dumping. On January 16, 2021, a warrant was signed for Horton’s arrest. He was taken into custody by the Flagler Beach Police Department on January 16th and booked into the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility and released after posting a $1,000 bond.
Horton has previous arrests in Flagler County for Grand Theft, Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon, Fleeing or Eluding Law Enforcement, and Violation of Probation.