bus station

At about 5:30 a.m. Sept. 2, a DeLand police officer saw a middle-aged man at the DeLand Intermodal Transit Facility (which will henceforth be referred to as “the Transit”) “sitting near an outlet charging his cellphone.” The lawman asked the guy what he was doing, and the gentleman answered the officer.

Then the officer asked the gentleman “if he was there to catch a Votran bus,” and the fellow said he was.

Next, the officer asked the man “if he had any money or a bus pass,” and the answer was no.

In the police report, the lawman says, “I informed the defendant that he had no reasonable reason to be on the property if he wasn’t there to ride a bus.”

The officer noticed that the man, who apparently was a transient or perhaps a homeless person, had a multicolored glass bowl — the kind out of which some people smoke marijuana — in one of his pockets. The defendant asked if he could throw the bowl away; the lawman said he could once he was through with the guy.

The Transient at the Transit walked toward the end of the property, and the officer “informed the defendant that he needed to come back, and wasn’t free to leave at this time.” But the Transient at the Transit left the Transit and kept walking north on Woodland Boulevard.

The officer “ordered the Defendant back towards [the officer] several more times,” but the Transient only stopped and turned around when the policeman “informed him he would go to jail if he didn’t come back.”

The Transient “then stated that he was going to jail anyway since he was trespassed from the bus station.”

The lawman walked up to the Transient and put him in handcuffs. Doing research in the trespass file, the officer learned that the Transient had been trespassed from the Transit a little more than one month earlier, so he arrested the Transient for trespassing after receiving a warning.

It seems the Transient was also charged with resisting an officer without violence, presumably because the Transient at the Transit left the Transit prematurely and wouldn’t come back when ordered to do so.

So what happens once the Transient no longer resides in the county jail? If the powers that be want to give him bus fare to leave the county, will the Transient be allowed to stand, sit or lie down at the Transit long enough to catch the bus he’s got fare for? And is it fair for non-transient people in some other locale to be visited by a Transient who may want to settle down in their fair city?

— By Keith Allen, based on local police-agency reports. If you have information about a crime, call Crime Stoppers, 1-888-277-TIPS. You could be eligible for a reward.


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