Former police chief accused of sexually battering 14-year-old in Sumter County

Ex-Center Hill Police Chief William Ray Pruitt arrested Friday

Former Center Hill Police Chief William Ray Pruitt is accused of sexually battering a 14-year-old girl using a deadly weapon. (Sumter County Sheriff's Office)

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. – A former Center Hill police chief was arrested Friday in connection with the sexual battery of a minor in Sumter County, deputies said.

William Ray Pruitt, 56, was arrested after Sumter deputies were advised by the Marion County Sheriff’s Office on Monday that he had sexually battered a 14-year-old girl in Sumter County while using a deadly weapon, according to a news release.

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After investigators collected and reviewed evidence, Pruitt was arrested via warrant in Live Oak on Friday by the U.S. Marshal Florida Caribbean Regional Fugitive Task Force and the Suwannee County Sheriff’s Office.

Pruitt served as Center Hill Police Chief from March 1998 to Sept. 1999 and does not have a pension that will be impacted, city officials said.

No other details were released.

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Samantha started at WKMG-TV in September 2020. Before joining the News 6 team, Samantha was a political reporter for The Villages Daily Sun and has had freelance work featured in the Evansville Courier-Press and The Community Paper. When not writing, she enjoys travelling and performing improv comedy.