Moments of havoc: Deputies stop reckless driver near Christmas Parade route

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INVERNESS, FL – Citrus County Deputies were on their toes protecting the annual Inverness Christmas Parade when they spotted a driver acting recklessly near the parade route.

On Saturday, afternoon, Citrus County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested a man driving recklessly in the outer perimeter of the Inverness Christmas parade.

While directing traffic, one of our deputies observed 25-year-old Aaron Williams drive recklessly into the intersection of US Hwy 41 North and Montgomery Avenue. While attempting to stop Williams’ vehicle, Williams drove directly at and struck a deputy. Luckily, the deputy only sustained minor injuries. Williams then ignored the lawful commands of several other deputies commanding him to stop, while he continued swerving erratically around barricades blocking adjoining roads.

As nearby deputies flooded to Williams’ location, they were able to contain him while in the outer perimeter of the parade area. The vehicle was stopped and Williams was immediately arrested and charged with one count of Aggravated Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer and five counts of Resisting an Officer without Violence.

“What should have been a fun-filled, festive parade was interrupted by a few moments of havoc for those who witnessed the chaos caused by Williams’ careless and reckless actions,” said Sheriff Prendergast. Our deputies quickly recognized a threat to public safety and reacted immediately to Williams’ erratic behavior. Even though Williams had a blatant disregard for public safety, our deputies’ actions exemplified service above self when it comes to the safety of our community.”

“Road barricades and temporary road closures at events are not there to inconvenience you; they serve the purpose of keeping event participants and spectators safe. Be patient, and if possible, avoid event areas altogether. For this reason, we posted maps of the parade route on social media numerous times, and over the span of several days preceding the event to help alert citizens to the change in traffic patterns,” the office said in a statement.

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Photo by Citrus County Chamber of Commerce.