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Morriston man faces drug, kidnapping charges

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 A Morriston man, using an alias, was arrested Monday on several charges after Levy County deputies were called to Ocala Highlands West shortly after midnight.

A male caller dialed 911 and told the operator that he and his wife had been in an argument with the neighbor and he was injured, according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.

When deputies arrived on scene and contacted the victims, they were told that during the argument the neighbor struck the male victim twice with the butt of a shotgun.  

The victim had been struck once in the face and once on the back of his head. He escaped and fled to his home. The suspect then grabbed the female victim, professed his love for her and told her that he wanted her to come to Mexico with him. 

She was able to talk him into releasing her unharmed. As she was running to safety she heard two gunshots fired from the direction of suspect’s home.

Deputies were told the suspect, Hector Soto, returned to his home located across the street. Deputies approached the home and utilized their PA system to call to Soto. The deputies got no response from anyone inside the home.

 Deputies from the Patrol, Criminal Investigations and Drug Task Force Units established a perimeter at the home.  The deputies maintained the perimeter throughout the night. 

 Shortly after daybreak, the deputies entered the property in an attempt to locate the suspect. The home was found to be empty.

 Investigators later received a tip that Soto had made his way to Marion County. With the assistance of the Ocala Police Department, LCSO Investigators located Soto in the Ocala area of Marion County and took him into custody.

LCSO Investigators subsequently obtained a search warrant for the residence in Ocala Highlands West.  The search of the property revealed that Soto was also cultivating marijuana.   Evidence indicating he had been using multiple aliases was also found inside the home.  A search of state arrest records indicated the suspect had previously been arrested under the name of Jose Angel Gomez.

Soto, a/k/a Gomez, was booked into the Levy County Detention Bureau.  He was charged with aggravated battery, attempted kidnapping, aggravated assault and cultivation of cannabis. His bond was set at $1.125 million.