Lieutenant Robert Weber informed Historic City News reporters that a continuing undercover operation has nabbed two more men yesterday who Flagler County deputies say committed separate acts of indecent exposure at Graham Swamp Preserve in Palm Coast.
The Sheriff’s Safe Neighborhood Unit has maintained a surveillance detail using plain-clothed detectives along the walking trails of the Preserve at 1125 Old Kings Road North for some time — three men were arrested at Flagler County parks in October, two were at Graham Swamp Preserve; and another man was arrested at the Preserve in December.
“These operations will continue at Graham Swamp as long as there is a need,” said Flagler County Sheriff James L. Manfre. “Our goal is to create a safe environment for visitors to the preserve.”
In the two incidents, the men approached undercover deputies and initiated conversation before exposing themselves.
Leslie Colombo, 70, of 34 Philmont Lane, was arrested at 1:09 p.m. after he began a conversation with the deputy and then exposed himself, asking the deputy to walk back to the parking lot with him. Once at the parking lot, Colombo again exposed himself and asked the deputy to leave with him for sexual activities elsewhere. At that time, he was taken into custody.
Charles Bitzer Jr., 68, of 9 Barkley Lane, was arrested at 1:10 p.m. when he exposed himself and began masturbating in front of another undercover deputy following a brief conversation that took place on the trail.
“This was an excellent operation by the Safe Neighborhood Unit,” Manfre said.