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Ocala sex offender jailed after failing to update vehicles

Robert Eugene Harper

An Ocala sex offender was arrested after he failed to promptly notify authorities that he got a new vehicle and got rid of three others.

Robert Eugene Harper, 48, of 5100 NW 55th Court, was charged Monday with four counts of failing to register vehicle changes within 48 hours. Harper is on probation and listed on the FDLE sex offender registry after being convicted in 2009 for receiving and possessing child pornography.

Harper is required to report any changes in vehicles owned within 48 hours in person at the Marion County Sheriff’s Office. In February, he reported that he had a white 2012 Dodge Ram 1500, a maroon 1998 Isuzu Trooper, a white 1991 Isuzu Trooper, and a red 1991 Honda Prelude. In March, he added a blue 1990 Isuzu Trooper and a red 1987 Dodge Raider.

On July 24, a sheriff’s deputy conducted an address verification and discovered Harper had not reported a green 1988 Suzuki Samurai that was in his yard. Harper said he purchased the vehicle the previous weekend and brought it to his residence. He said he switched the engine from one of his other vehicles. The deputy informed him he was in violation and told him to report to the sex offender unit on Monday to report the vehicle, according to the sheriff’s office report.

Harper reported to the sex offender unit on Monday and in addition to saying he bought the green Suzuki Samurai on July 19, he said he had removed the three Isuzu Troopers from his property at the beginning of June. He said he didn’t report the information because he thought he had more time. Harper has checked in with the sex offender unit 11 times since 2018 and has been instructed multiple times to report any changes in vehicles within 48 hours, the report said.

Harper was arrested and taken to the Marion County Jail, where he was released Wednesday on $1,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in Marion County Court on Sept. 1.

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