CRIME BEAT: recent felony arrests

Ashley Hunter
ECB Publishing, Inc.

ECB Publishing, Inc. is not responsible for the release or timeliness of arrest reports that have been issued by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office.

Eric Hughes – November 16
On Thursday, Nov. 16, Eric Dee Hughes, 50, was arrested by Florida Highway Patrol Trooper White on the charge of DUI – alcohol or drugs – fourth or subsequent offense.
Hughes' arrest report states that on the above date, at 3:41 p.m., Trooper White was dispatched to I-10 (near mile marker 227) for a vehicle that had driven into a grass median.
Upon arriving on the scene, Trooper White observed a Ford truck parked in the center median of the interstate. Jefferson County's EMS personnel were already on the scene and providing medical attention to the driver, who was the vehicle's sole occupant.
The driver (identified as Eric Hughes) was still sitting behind the steering wheel and Trooper White observed an opened container of beer being held between the driver's legs; upon further investigation, Trooper White noted that the container was half empty.
The driver was unresponsive to pain stimulus, and Trooper White further noted that there was a strong odor of marijuana coming from the interior of the vehicle. During a following search of the Hughes' vehicle, Trooper White located 2.5 grams of raw, non-medical marijuana concealed in the center console.
Hughes speech, the report says, was slurred and mumbled. Hughes acted “carefree and confused” and had a strong alcoholic odor coming from his breath. In addition, Hughes' eyes were bloodshot, red and watery.
Hughes was transported to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital (TMH), and Trooper White followed the ambulance in order to continue his investigation.
After being checked into a room at TMH, Hughes was informed by Trooper White that there was a current criminal investigation being conducted on Hughes' potential DUI. The report states that Hughes did not have any questions and acknowledged the investigation.
However, due to his level of impairment, Hughes was unable to perform any standard sobriety tests. At 4:49 p.m., Trooper White requested lawful breath and urine samples. Hughes refused to provide any samples, at which point Trooper White informed him of the Implied Consent Warning, but Hughes continued to refuse to submit to a lawful breath and urine sample.
At 5 p.m., Trooper White placed Hughes under arrest, and Hughes was handcuffed to his hospital bed.
After being medically cleared, Hughes was transported to the Jefferson County Jail.
According to the Driver and Vehicle Information Database (DAVID), Hughes had a previous history of criminal history and driving under the influence.
Hughes was booked into the Jefferson County Jail on the charges of driving under the influence, driving while license suspended (first offense) and possession of less than 20 grams of Marijuana.

Jamie Gamez – November 19
Jamie Gamez, 22, of Naples, Fla., was arrested by Jefferson County Sheriff's Deputy Kalinowski on Tuesday, Nov. 19 on the charge of possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell or distribute. Gamez's arrest was made on the authority of an outstanding warrant that called for his arrest.
According to the recently-released report issued by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office (JCSO), the investigation into Gamez' charge began in May of 2019, after a sergeant officer at the Jefferson Correctional Institute observed Gamez (who was an inmate) walking back to the housing area from the dining hall, with an item concealed in his hand.
The sergeant moved to stop Gamez, at which point Gamez transferred the item to another inmate. The sergeant stopped both inmates and retrieved the item.
It was revealed that Gamez had been in possession of a piece of paper that contained nine bags of white, powdery narcotics. The narcotics were photographed and documented before being sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement's crime lab for further analysis – revealing that the narcotics were methamphetamine.
A warrant for Gamez' arrest was issued, and Gamez was arrested by Deputy Kalinowski on Tuesday, Nov. 19.
A $5,000 bond was issued for Gamez's release.

Joseph Slater – November 21
Joseph Chance Slater, 28, from Monticello, was arrested on Thursday, Nov. 21 on the authority of a Thomas County, Ga. warrant that called for his arrest.
According to the report issued by the JCSO, Slater was taken into custody by Jefferson County Deputy Harrison after Slater fled from a law enforcement officer in Thomas County earlier that month.
On Sunday, Nov. 17, a Georgia law enforcement officer attempted to conduct a traffic stop on a vehicle Slater was driving after witnessing Slater drive in a manner that was reckless. Slater was unable to maintain his lane and eventually came to a stop near the Leon County, Fla. border.
The warrant that called for Slater's arrest stated that Slater placed “the motoring public at risk of injury.”
The warrant for Slater's arrest was released on Wednesday, Nov. 20, and Slater was taken into custody the following day in Jefferson County.
No bond was issued for Slater's release.