The Sanford Police Department on Friday night issued a press release announcing an arrest for an alleged drug offense that included an unusual statement about the suspect’s bond status.
Patrick O’Neil Clegg, 40, of Sanford, faces multiple counts related to the alleged sale and distribution of heroin, according to the press release, which states that the offenses occurred in September 2019. Warrants were served on Clegg Thursday, ten months later. Agents with the department’s Tactical Narcotics Team say they seized 17.5 grams, or a little more than half an ounce, of heroin.
“The arrest was the result of an investigation that took place in September 2019. At the time Clegg was out of jail on a $200,000 secured bond for heroin trafficking charges he got in July 2019,” the release reads. “That case is also still pending.”
For the charges on which Clegg was arrested Thursday, bond was set at $500,000 unsecured, meaning Clegg was released without having to pay. If he fails to appear in court, however, Clegg will owe the $500,000.
What’s unusual about the press release is its fourth paragraph, which offers a comment about Clegg’s release. It is rare for the Sanford Police Department to offer comment on pending cases, especially with regards to the workings of the court system. The unedited paragraph from Captain R.L. Allen of the Sanford Police Department is below:
“As Captain of the Sanford Police Department drug unit I find it apprehensible [sic] that the revolving door at the courthouse lets criminals back on the street to peddle their poison when they already have multiple charges pending. Officers work hard to make arrests in order to stem the flow of Narcotics into our neighborhoods. NEWS FLASH! The Heroin they are selling is killing people on a regular basis. We have overdoses in Lee county just about every day now. Someone needs to start making common sense decisions about letting these people back out on the street. It’s frustrating for drug agents and it feels like we are spinning our wheels most of the time. We don’t do this job in vain!”