SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Former Sarasota County Sheriff’s deputy Frank Bybee has now found himself on the other side of the law. He has been sentenced to 15 years in state prison.
This comes after he was found guilty of kidnapping and exploiting an elderly woman.
Frank Bybee was a respected sheriff’s deputy and a decorated military veteran. He sat in handcuffs while his now ex-wife sobbed three rows back. This man who once was sworn to protect the public was now paying for his mistakes.
“You’ll forever be known as a bad cop….your name will forever be infamous in Sarasota County and probably points beyond,” said Judge Donald Mason.
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Prosecutors say he stole thousands of dollars from a woman he befriended on the job.
After he was sentenced, Bybee left the courtroom in tears and mouthed “I love you” to his ex-wife. Sheriff Tom Knight is thankful this chapter is over.
“We said back then we knew he was a criminal and he got what he deserved today. He’s out of the community, he embarrassed law enforcement, he embarrassed the sheriff’s office and he’s wrecked his life and he’s wrecked the life of his family,” said Knight.
The sheriff said this is a reminder the badge should not be taken lightly
“The worst about it is there’s no winners in this. We get a bad cop out of our uniform, we protect the integrity of the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office on our own with our detectives but the losers here are his children, and that’s what’s truly sad about this,” said Knight.
His three boys will spend the next 15 years without their father.
“He’s not gonna get a chance to see them become young men and that’s devastating,” said Defense Attorney Ronald Kurpiers.
The defense team plans to file an appeal.
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