GPS company changes tune, says emails never sent about fugitive cutting off device

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OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. - The GPS company that claims it notified the state attorney's office and a judge after an accused sexual offender who authorities said removed two GPS ankle monitors and took off is changing its tune Tuesday night.

Investigators said an alarm to Court Resources that 70-year-old Loomes Wheeler Jr. was no longer at his residence went out at 1:49 a.m. Monday, but the Sheriff's Office was not notified until after 8 a.m.

Osceola County deputies said it took several hours for them to learn about the situation because an employee of the monitoring company, Court Resources, thought it was a false alarm and did not report it right away, according to the director of the company, David Saporito.

Saporito had originally said one of his employees sent a direct email to the State Attorney's Office and a judge at 2 a.m. on Labor Day when the bracelet alerted, but no one answered the email.

The Osceola County Sheriff's Office said that's not true.

The company changed its tune and told investigators Tuesday it never emailed or called anyone, including deputies, until the morning, and only because one of Wheeler's children called the GPS company first, looking for their father.

Wheeler disappeared a day before he was supposed to have a hearing on property default charges.

He was set to face Pedro Mont III, who said Wheeler defrauded him out of $300,000.

According to investigators, one of Wheeler's GPS ankle monitors was found in a wooded area near his home, and the other was found on the driveway of his home.

Investigators said Wheeler, the owner of Horse World, was arrested April 16 and charged with nine counts of capital sexual battery, four counts of lewd and lascivious conduct and three counts of sexual performance by a child.

According to investigators, a 9-year-old told them she had been battered by Wheeler, a relative, a number of times from the time she was 5 years old.

The girl told investigators that the alleged encounters happened at Wheeler's home and at his place of business, Horse World Riding Stables in Kissimmee.

On April 25, Wheeler was arrested again after a 20-year-old woman told them that Wheeler, a relative, touched her inappropriately when she was 7 or 8 years old, investigators said.

According to investigators, the woman told them the last incident she could remember with Wheeler was when she was 16 years old.

Wheeler was charged with three counts of lewd or lascivious molestation, investigators said.

Court Resources officials said Wheeler had two bracelets because the signal is weak in the area where he resides. One is for inside the home, the other for outside the home but still on the property.

Wheeler is a white male, 6 feet tall and weighs 170 pounds. He has gray hair and green eyes. He was last seen in the area of Granada Boulevard in Kissimmee.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Osceola County Sheriff's Office at 407-348-2222 or Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS (8477). Calls made to Crimeline remain anonymous, and tips that lead to the felony arrest of suspects and/or the recovery of stolen property and drugs are eligible for cash rewards of up to $1,000.

Investigators said Wheeler didn't take his identification or his car with him.
Wheeler may have had a lot of cash at his disposal because between February of this year up until last month Wheeler has sold several properties, such as a Kissimmee home, totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars.

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