Two park and trail locations provided for the enjoyment of families and residents, were targeted in a sting operation yesterday; leading to the arrest of three Flagler County men who are accused of unnatural and lascivious acts and exposure of sexual organs.
The two surveillance locations yesterday were Graham Swamp Preserve on Old Kings Road and Malacompra Park on Malacompra Road. Both have been the source of complaints and the scene of arrests in past years.
“Our residents should not expect to encounter deviant behavior when they are on a family outing,” said Flagler County Sheriff Donald W Fleming. “We will continue these operations for as long as it takes for the word to spread — Not in Flagler County.”
The sheriff told Historic City News reporters that the department has intelligence gathered from other locations in Flagler County that will be included in random surveillance operations in the future however he was unwilling to disclose those locations.
Arrested during yesterday’s sting:
Gary Thompson Jr., 43, of 1 West Place, Palm Coast.
Arthur Bellany, 59, of 1 Roundmill Lane, Palm Coast.
Vernal Arnette III, 72, of 323 Palm Drive, Flagler Beach.
At Graham Swamp Preserve, both Thompson and Bellany engaged undercover deputies in conversation that turned sexual. The men exposed themselves to the law enforcement officers at locations along the trail and began to masturbate. At Malacompra, Arnette walked with a deputy into a bathroom at the park after engaging him in a similar conversation. Arnette exposed himself to the officer and began masturbating before he was arrested.
All three arrests are the result of separate encounters, and each has been released from the Flagler County Inmate Facility after posting $2,000 bond.