An Ocala woman experiencing an apparent mental health or substance abuse episode in the middle of traffic was arrested after she allegedly punched a deputy and spat in the face of a rescue worker.
Yvette Casstillo Hammack, 38, of 5501 SE 34th Avenue, was charged with two counts of battery on an officer/firefighter/EMT and a single count of disorderly conduct after the incident, which happened around 3 p.m. Tuesday in the area of SE 30th Court and SE 50th Place. Multiple callers to law enforcement reported she was acting erratically, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office report.
A deputy observed Hammack was sweating profusely and acting erratically. She was walking up and down the street and yelling at everyone she could see, talking nonsense. Hammack was talking about how she is home from the war and saying she is at war with someone, the report said.
When asked a direct question, Hammack would speak as if she was answering, but her response had nothing to do with the question. She would unexpectedly start singing a song. Her behavior led the deputy to believe she was under the influence of a stimulant drug, but she was not able or willing to disclose if she was on any substances, according to the report.
Hammack’s demeanor towards the deputy was aggressive and confrontational. Passersby said they had seen her charging at a moving vehicle and even trying to get into a different vehicle. Hammack repeatedly spat on the ground in front of the deputy and Marion County Fire Rescue personnel. She repeatedly ignored the deputy’s directions of where to stand while another deputy was trying to determine what happened prior to their arrival, the report said.
Without provocation, Hammack lunged at a deputy and repeatedly struck him with an open hand in the head and shoulder region. The deputy took her to the ground and with the help of another deputy and a rescue worker, he was able to place Hammack in handcuffs. During the process, Hammack spat in the face of the rescue worker, according to the report.
Hammack was taken to AdventHealth’s TimberRidge ER, where she was medically cleared. She was then transported to the Marion County Jail, where she was being held early Friday on $4,500 bond. Hammack will appear in Marion County Court on Sept. 8.