[PHOTO CREDIT: Lake County Sheriff’s Office]
[Original Publish Date: 01/07/20]
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LEESBURG, Florida — A Umatilla man who claimed to be both a deputy sheriff and a confidential informant, is facing a slew of charges after being accused of home invasion and shooting a dog with a pellet gun.
Around 8 a.m. Monday, Lake County Sheriff’s deputies responded to Haines Street and Claire Drive in the Bassville Park area on a complaint of a man waving a gun around and claiming to be a law enforcement officer, according to an arrest affidavit. Another deputy was flagged down by a man who said he chased a man from his friend’s home.
The victim told deputies she was asleep when what appeared to be two people attempted to kick in her door. She watched the suspects kick her door on video surveillance and yell that they were the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and had a warrant for the victim’s arrest. After failing to kick in her door, they kicked in the glass next to the door, causing the victim hide in a closet for safety, the affidavit states.
The suspects entered a room where her three large dogs were located and they began to bark, and “sounded if they were trying to protect her.” She heard what she believed to be a shot and one of the dogs yelped. She heard the suspects rifling through her things and yelling. Once the noise stopped, the victim exited the closet and found one her dogs locked in the bathroom with what appeared to be two pellet wounds.
Deputies found Jaret Michael Hainey, 35, hiding in the backyard of an unrelated home on Claire Street wearing latex gloves and carrying a backpack; he told deputies he was a confidential informant (CI) working with LCSO and had been in the middle of “doing a buy” when he was chased by an unknown subject with a knife. Hainey was searched and deputies found two pocket knives in his left pocket and a small bat in his waistband, the affidavit states. Hainey told a deputy he could search whatever he needed to because the “stuff” in the backpack was for the sheriff’s office “anyways.”
A search of the backpack found a live stream camera, 20 silver-colored necklaces, four silver-colored bracelets, one gold-colored necklace and a necklace holder — the exact items reported missing from the victim’s home. Deputies also found methamphetamine in the backpack.
Hainey was charged with home invasion, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, grand theft, possession of methamphetamine, two counts of possession of a weapon or ammunition by a convicted felon, false impersonation and animal cruelty. He is being held in the Lake County Jail on $230,000 bond.
Our Editor-in-Chief, Marilyn M. Aciego, began writing for Lake Legal News in 2010. Born and raised in Lake County, she is a graduate of Umatilla High School and Lake-Sumter State College. She started her journalism career at LSSC, where she was editor of both student publications, The Angler and The Odyssey. Her professional career began at the Daily Commercial in 2004 where she covered cops and courts the majority of her time there until she left in 2009. Currently, along with being Editor-in-Chief of Lake Legal News, she is the Florida bureau chief for an international media organization. She has made more than two dozen appearances on live national television, including Nancy Grace and the Greta Van Susteren show, along with her appearance on Evil Twins. Contact her with breaking news, tips, and feedback by sending an e-mail to 352Tips@gmail.com. You can also contact us on our Facebook page — and make sure you “Like” and “Follow us” there. [PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher]