The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) reported on their website about the arrest of Daniel Saylor. Mr. Saylor has been the chief of the Windermere Police Department for nearly 9 years.
Mr. Saylor has been charged with unlawful compensation for official behavior, a second-degree felony, and one count of official misconduct, a third-degree felony.
FDLE began investigating Saylor months ago after receiving information that Saylor had terminated an investigation by his department into the sexual battery of a child. It is alleged that the sexual battery was committed by a personal friend of the chief's, and that he terminated the investigation in order to keep his friend from going to jail.
As a result of a multi-agency investigation, Saylor's friend was also arrested and charged with sexual battery on a person less than 12 years of age, a capital felony and lewd and lascivious acts upon a minor, a third-degree felony.
According to FDLE, Saylor offered incentives to members of his department in an effort to get them to lie to FDLE and destroy material evidence regarding the allegations against his friend.
Both men were booked into the Orange County Jail and are being held without bond.
I understand that Saylor's friend is being held without bond because sexual battery on a child under 12 is a capital felony. However, Saylor should have a bond because his crimes are not punishable by life.
Police misconduct is prosecuted fiercely, but many times, prosecutors are quick to "jump the gun" without investigating the facts. It will take the testimonies of all of those involved to prove that the chief was using his position of power to influence an investigation in such a manner than it can be deemed criminal.
Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney who represents clients in Miami-Dade and Broward. For an evaluation of your case, call today. All calls are free and confidential.