Man Arrested for Child Abuse, False Imprisonment, and Possession of Incendiary Device in Brooksville

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According to authorities, Ricky Eugene Thomas, 34, was placed under arrest and charged with Child Abuse, False Imprisonment, and Discharge/Place Destructive Device. His bond was set at $15,000.

BROOKSVILLE, FL – On Tuesday, May 16, 2023 just before 8:30 p.m., Hernando County Sheriff’s Deputies were conducting proactive patrols in the area of California Street and Narrow Street in Brooksville when they observed a silver Nissan being driven recklessly in the area.

According to authorities, as the deputies attempted to conduct a Traffic Stop, the driver threw something out the driver’s side window. The driver, later identified as Ricky Thomas, then pulled over in the area of Orlando Avenue and Chancas Street.  Thomas was detained by deputies.

Upon making contact with Thomas, deputies detected a strong odor of gasoline emanating from within the vehicle and also from Thomas’ person. Further investigation revealed, the area where the driver had just been driving, also smelled of gasoline.

Investigation revealed that Thomas was previously in a relationship with a female who lives in the general area. Upon making contact with the female, deputies learned that Thomas was parked in her driveway for several hours, harassing her and a juvenile who was also present.

Ultimately, Thomas exited his vehicle and began arguing with the female. The juvenile, hearing the argument, responded to the back patio and got in between Thomas and the female. Thomas then struck the juvenile in the head. Immediately after striking the juvenile, Thomas picked up the juvenile, from behind, and forcefully carried the juvenile off the patio and toward Thomas’ vehicle  All the while, the juvenile was fighting to get free of Thomas’ grip. Finally, the juvenile broke free and ran into the residence.

Deputies noted several injuries on the juvenile’s body, both from being struck and being forcefully removed from the patio and carried toward the vehicle. Utilizing a gas can that was stored on the property, Thomas filled a plastic water bottle with gasoline.  Thomas then added items to create a “wick” thus, making a “Molotov Cocktail” that he planned to toss onto the female’s property, where he had recently poured gasoline.

Deputies located the Molotov Cocktail in the area where they observed Thomas throw something out the car window.  Fortunately, deputies observed, and were able to detain Thomas, before he deployed the device.

Ricky Eugene Thomas, 34, was placed under arrest and charged with Child Abuse, False Imprisonment, and Discharge/Place Destructive Device. His bond was set at $15,000.

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