Social media helps lead to motorcyclist's arrest

A Lake County deputy says tracking down 29-year-old Christopher Clarke was easy thanks to Clarke's own Facebook postings.  

Authorities say that recently Clarke seemingly taunted a deputy with what that deputy describes as erratic driving, weaving in and out of traffic on a motorcycle.  The deputy followed behind but noted that  the motorcycle's license plate was bent in a way that it couldn't be read clearly.

According to the arrest report, Clarke drove into a parking lot, but instead of stopping, he then pulled out the other side, fleeing the officer again, down Donnelly Street, crossing double lines and erratically passing other cars, eventually losing the deputy.

Lake County Sheriff's Office Spokesman Fred Jones says, "He's putting not only his life in jeopardy but he's weaving in and out of traffic, going through traffic lights-red lights-without stopping. So we have a policy we won't pursue you because of that but these deputies said you know what, we'll find another way to get you, and they did."

Sgt. Jones says that deputy compared notes with other investigators who had had similar run-ins.  At one point, Tavares police had arrested Clarke for driving without a license.  So, the deputy dug around on social media and found posts on Clarke's own Facebook page!  One posted that very same day, same motorcycle, same clothes, same face the deputy said.

Now Clarke is behind bars at the Lake County Jail charged with fleeing and eluding and reckless driving.  He has no bail at this point, and more charges coming, according to Jones, from other agencies who've been looking for him too for similar reasons.

Jones says, "He actually passed by one of the deputies and looked him straight in the eye and then took off!"