Public Information

Press Releases

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that has been used in the blog.

For Immediate Release

January 14, 2016

Investigators with the Walton County Sheriff’s Office are asking for the public’s help in identifying a possible suspect in six burglaries over the last few weeks.

In these six cases in the Rosemary, Seagrove, and Red Fish Village area witnesses and victims have described the same individual in their encounters. The subject is described as a tall, thin, white male standing at around 6 feet tall wearing jeans and occasionally a ball cap with either very short hair or a bald head. His approach to these burglaries is to wait until homeowners leave their house and, in broad daylight, checks the home to see if they are unlocked and enters; focusing his attention on cash and high end jewelry.

These six burglaries are included in 28 total residential burglaries which have occurred south of Highway 98 over the last year. The suspect described in this release is NOT suspected in ALL 28 of those burglaries. However, WCSO is encouraging residents and visitors to HIDE their belongings, LOCK their doors, TAKE your person items even if you plan to leave your home or vacation rental for just a short time.


If you SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING and report any suspicious activity to the Walton County Sheriff’s Office by calling 892-8111. 

U.S. Highway 98, Walton County— Two men and one woman are arrested over the weekend in Walton County for Driving Under the Influence; both men admitting to drinking before getting behind the wheel.

On Sunday evening Walton County Sheriff’s Deputies arrested James Turner, 50, Jessica Wright, 38, and Seferino Sanchez, 24, after all three were observed driving recklessly along U.S. Highway 98.

Turner, who tested more than twice the legal limit at .264, was observed swerving back and forth while driving and tailgating another vehicle around 5:30pm Sunday evening. Turner admitted to deputies he “drank two beers and a shot.”

Wright was also observed swerving back and forth while driving and then braking abruptly in the middle of the road. Wright passed over her license three different times while trying to locate it in her purse as the deputy stood watching. She also told deputies she was coming from a bar on the “westside.”

Sanchez, who was the third arrested Sunday for DUI, almost struck a deputy’s vehicle multiple times as he drove east on U.S. Highway 98 and was even observed stopped at a green light. He admitted to having “three or four very strong beers” while drinking in Destin. Sanchez blew a .251 and then a .248 in two different breathalyzer samples.

Turner was arrested for driving under the influence and failure to maintain lanes. Wright was arrested for driving under the influence and failure to maintain lanes. Sanchez arrested for driving under the influence and failure to obey a traffic signal. All were transported and booked into the Walton County Jail.


The Walton County Sheriff’s Office is committed to taking drunk drivers off of our roadways. Please remember no night of drinking is worth your life or the life of somebody else. 

This is a letter from a Walton County Citizen emailed to the Sheriff's Office on January 4th, 2016. 

"On my way to work this morning,  my tire blew out on highway 98.  I was able to pull on the side of the road knowing my tire was gone.  I knew I needed to call the Sheriff’s department to let them know that my car was going to sitting on the side of road until I can get someone to change the tire.  The dispatcher was so nice, she took my information and told me she would have a deputy call if anything else was needed.  Meanwhile I called a friend to come pick me up so I could get to work.   While I was waiting for my ride, Deputy Pelliteri (#371) called to check on me but, here is where she went above and beyond, She asked if I had a tire and said she would change my tire so I can get to work.  Lo and behold, she wrestled with the flimsy jack and lug nuts but she got the job done.   I just want everyone to know how much I appreciate Deputy Pelliteri  for making a really stressful situation much, much better.  She didn’t have to do that but she did and I will sing her praises to everyone.

This is just another exam of the wonderful people at the Walton County Sheriff’s department, I am so grateful!


Thank you so much and please thank Deputy Pellitteri for helping me!"

Mossy Head, Fla— A law enforcement officer’s promise to his sons was carried out this Christmas thanks to Walton County business owners and members of the community.

Captain Dewey Adams was the North District Commander for the Walton County Sheriff’s Office and was responsible for overseeing law enforcement activities in the northern portion of the county. Unfortunately, his untimely passing left a wife and two young boys without their father this Christmas. Before his passing Captain Adams promised his sons he would build them a treehouse for Christmas this year and thanks to Sheriff’s Office employees, business owners, and community members that promise was fulfilled.

Standing nearly twelve feet tall in the backyard of the Adam’s home is now a 14’x14’ tree house built from the hard work and donations of Beachway Contracting, Lowe's, and Frank’s Cash and Carry, and Jason Ramsey from Ramsey Researching. Several employees of the Sheriff’s Office also donated their personal time and money towards the project.

The final touches were completed Monday afternoon including the incorporation of an old wooden slide/swing set that Captain Adams built.

The Walton County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank Beachway Contracting, Lowe's, Frank’s Cash and Carry, Ramsey Researching, and all of those involved for donating materials and manpower to see this project through its completion.

Miramar Beach, Fla— What was supposed to be a date to a movie turns into a sexual battery landing one 17-year-old behind bars Tuesday.

On December 14th David Justin Kenny,17, took a 15-year-old girl to a movie to the Carmike Boulevard 10 Movie Theatre in Miramar Beach. During the movie Kenny grabbed the victim by the throat and told her if she did not perform sexual acts on him that he would hurt her. 

Following the incident the victim’s family contacted the Walton County Sheriff’s Office and reported the battery. Kenny was taken into custody Tuesday night and charged with lewd and lascivious battery on a victim aged 12-16.

“This kind of behavior is despicable,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “We applaud the parents for contacting us and for helping us put this man where he belongs – in jail.”


Kenny was arrested and booked into the Walton County Jail and then taken to the Department of Juvenile Justice. 

DeFuniak Springs, Fla— It was a day full Christmas magic for 500 less fortunate Walton County children Saturday as kids and their families met Santa and ate a hearty Christmas feast. 

This year the Community Christmas event was able to provide gifts and meals for 151 Walton County families. Local churches prepared food and fed more than 700 people at the Chelco building on 331 North on Saturday. The Matrix Community Center vetted all those receiving assistance with Candy Nowling leading the effort organizing the event along with numerous others.

“We are proud of the outpouring of support from the community,” said Sheriff Adkinson. “A lot of hard work went into this on multiple levels and by multiple different organizations.”

Santa Patrol boxes were dispersed to a list of locations around the county where toys and gifts were dropped off by members of the community. Even cash donations were made by anonymous donors.


“It’s our job to make sure that these kids have a good Christmas,” said Deputy Harold Shover, who led the WCSO effort. “There are too many people to even name who helped along the way making this event possible.” 


DeFuniak Springs, Fla— Walton County Sheriff’s Office is fighting technology with technology in an effort to stay ahead of crime in Walton County.  New software now at the fingertips of Sheriff’s Office employees will make intelligence based policing even more effective within the department.

The two year transition to New World software is in the “Go Live” stage and the entire process has been completely driven by employees.

“They chose the vendor, they configured the software, and they trained other agency employees,” said Captain Audie Rowell, Project Manager for the transition to New World. “We called them our build team.”

The Sheriff’s Office felt it had outgrown previous software used by staff. New software will allow a more integrated system that will allow better crime reporting, even faster response times, and smarter ways to track criminal activity.

“It’s intelligence base policing,” said Captain Rowell. “This system is huge with 2 million lines of code, which in laments terms just means we can do so much now with the information we gather.”

New World acts as a comprehensive solution for law enforcement by offering computer aided dispatch, records management, mobile computing, and corrections management. Each module integrates with each other working from a common database.

“Just like in anything else, you need quality assurance,” said build team member Sharon Manning. “The New World program provides that. If we are more effective we are serving our citizens better.”


The new software was built specifically for each division of the agency from Patrol to Jail Intake. Specifically, a new online based inmate inquiry built for real time updates to those arrested in Walton County.


For the link to the inmate query follow the link below:

Santa Rosa Beach, Fla— A Milton man caught “squatting” in a residence in South Walton is arrested on multiple charges including a warrant out of Santa Rosa County on sexual assault charges.

On December 5th two Walton County Deputies responded to a home on Whispering Lane in Santa Rosa Beach in reference to a burglary in progress. When deputies arrived they found the suspect, later identified as Roy Allen Stokes, still inside the residence. Stokes was apprehended and it was also discovered he had two warrants out of Santa Rosa County for sexual assault on a person between the age of 12 and 18 with a $1 million bond.

Found on his person at the time of the arrest was a knife concealed in his right shirt sleeve. He told the owner of the property he was “hiding out.” 

“We really want to encourage our local realtors and those with summer homes in our county to be vigilant,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “It’s important to check in on your homes and make sure if you see anything suspicious you report it as soon as possible.”


Stokes was subsequently arrested on charges of armed burglary, possession of a concealed weapon while in the commission of a felony, and theft of utilities. 

Walton County , Fla— More than 500 children in our community are in need this holiday season. With Christmas right around the corner the Walton County Sheriff’s Office and the DeFuniak Springs Fire Department are proud to partner with Matrix Community Outreach Center for “Community Christmas” Santa Patrol.

WCSO is asking anyone who is willing to participate to purchase random gifts at your leisure and simply drop them off. We are in need of gifts from ages 0 – 15 in their original packages. Montary donations can also be made.  Our community volunteers will help to make sure that your gift is given to an appropriate aged child.

Drop-off locations include:

Aaron’s Hardware, DeFuniak Springs

Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union, Santa Rosa Beach 

DeFuniak Springs Fire Department

Matrix Community Outreach Center

Trustmark Bank, DeFuniak Springs

Triangle Chevrolet, DeFuniak Springs

Walton County Sheriff’s Office        


            DeFuniak Springs, Santa Rosa Beach, Freeport Substations 

A DeFuniak Springs man is lured to a home and then held at gunpoint while he’s robbed of his motorcycle. Now, the man behind the robbery is behind bars.

The incident occurred on November 17th on Martin Road just before midnight when Travis Kyle Hoose, 29, used a woman’s cell phone to send Facebook messages to the victim and made plans for him to come over and take her on a motorcycle ride. But, when the victim arrived Hoose confronted him by pointing a handgun at the victim, holding it to the back of his head, and told him to get on his knees.

A struggle ensued between the two men and the victim was able to slip away after Hoose hit him with the weapon in the back of the head. The victim was able to escape and call Walton County Sheriff’s Deputies who arrested Hoose after finding him hiding inside a closet in the home.

“Hoose is no stranger to the judicial system,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “I’m glad – in this case— no one was badly hurt or worse.”

Travis Hoose was charged with robbery with a firearm, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, and grand theft auto. He was transported and booked into the Walton County Jail.