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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Belleview man arrested after battery incident in homeless camp

A 46-year-old Belleview man was arrested for allegedly striking a female victim outside of a homeless camp tent.

On Tuesday, a deputy responded to reports of a physical altercation near the Neighborhood Storage located at 4709 SE 102nd Place in Belleview.

A female victim told the deputy that she was battered by Michael Paul DeMoss. She stated that she was inside of a tent with DeMoss when an argument broke out late at night.

Belleview man arrested after battery incident in homeless camp 1
Michael Paul DeMoss

DeMoss allegedly wanted the victim to perform a sex act, which the victim agreed to in order to stop the argument.

Later that morning, the victim awoke to someone shaking her tent. She stated that DeMoss was looking for a pack of cigarettes, and he began accusing her of stealing his cigarettes.

According to the victim, DeMoss began yelling at her and then proceeded to strike her with an open hand on top of her head. DeMoss then allegedly grabbed her by the back of the hair and twisted it into a tight knot.

DeMoss pushed her and grabbed her hair once more while they continued to argue, the victim alleged. Several hours later, she stated that DeMoss demanded his cigarettes by no later than 5:00 p.m. or else he would “take her for a ride that she would not come back from and bury her in the [Ocala National Forest].”

When DeMoss disappeared inside his tent, the victim ran to the Neighborhood Storage where she called the police.

DeMoss was arrested and transferred to Marion County Jail where he faces a felony battery charge. He is being held without bond and a court date has not been scheduled yet, according to jail records.