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Former Volusia Sheriff's Office Sergeant Charged With Perjury In Investigation That Led To His Firing

Date Added: March 19, 2021 2:14 pm

FORMER VOLUSIA SHERIFF’S SERGEANT CHARGED WITH PERJURY IN INVESTIGATION THAT LED TO HIS FIRING

A fired Volusia Sheriff’s Office sergeant has been charged with making false statements in the investigation that led to his termination by Sheriff Mike Chitwood last year.

Jacob Kraker, 37, was arrested Thursday afternoon by Port Orange police on a Sheriff’s Office warrant charging him with perjury, a felony.

The charges stem from the investigation into an off-duty incident in July 2020. Kraker, who was out of uniform and working as a security officer at a Port Orange apartment complex, used a neck hold on a young man during an incident at the complex’s pool. The encounter was captured on video by a surveillance camera.

During the investigation of the incident, Kraker stated that the young man head-butted him, and in his incident report on the encounter, Kraker described the young man’s actions as ”throwing his face and head in to Kraker’s head making contact.”  The investigation and the surveillance video itself showed no head-butting occurred.

Investigators asked Kraker if he used “any type of neck hold or any variation of a neck or chokehold,” to which he answered no. The video as well as witness statements contradicted this statement.

At the conclusion of the internal affairs investigation in August 2020, the Sheriff’s Office submitted its findings to the State Attorney’s Office for review. The Sheriff’s Office has been working in conjunction with the SAO on this investigation, which resulted in the issuance of an arrest warrant. Port Orange police arrested Kraker on Thursday afternoon and transported him to the Volusia County Branch Jail. He was released Thursday evening after posting $10,000 bond. The investigation of this case remains open and ongoing.

Sheriff Chitwood terminated Kraker in September 2020 after finding he violated several agency policies, including unlawful use of deadly force. The Volusia Sheriff’s Office general orders manual states: “A neck hold is considered deadly force; VSO does not train in this technique and does not authorize its use.”

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