Marion County man accused of battery on a deputy to be released

Updated:

Loading

MARION COUNTY, Fla. - A man who spent two years in prison for touching a deputy was ordered to be released by a judge.
 

Prosecutors said Johnny Ostane should have never been behind bars because of a confrontation with a deputy at a Waffle House.
 
Ostane said his attorneys told him to plead guilty because if they were to lose during the trial, Ostane could receive more time on his sentence.
 
Ostane said he never touched the deputy and didn’t deserve his 30-month sentence, but because he’s been in trouble in the past he felt he had no choice but to take the plea deal.
 
"I've been praying about it. Now it’s happening,” Ostane said.
 
Ostane said he was walking into a Waffle House when Marion County Deputy Eduardo Bustamante confronted him.
 
In a report, Bustamante claimed he saw Ostane pull up and just went over to talk with him and during the conversation asked for Ostane’s license. Ostane said he told Bustamante he didn’t have one and the deputy grabbed him.
 
Ostane said he got away and ran into a nearby wooded area and the deputy ran after him.
 
"I tripped and fell and he jumped on my back and started beating me with his baton stick,” Ostane said.
 
Bustamante said in his report that Ostane turned around and “took a fighting stance” and started swinging at him. The deputy admitted to hitting Ostane in the arm and upper thigh before arresting him.
 
Ostane was charged with a number of offenses, including battery on a law enforcement officer.
 
The state attorney’s office investigated the case and examined pictures of Ostane’s injuries. Officials determined Bustamante was not truthful and agreed with Ostane that he was struck from behind.
 
Bustamante later resigned after other cases came to light and were investigated.

The Sheriff's Office said it's dropping the cases Bustamante was involved in. The FBI has also opened a criminal investigation in the deputy's conduct. 
 
Marion County Sheriff Chris Blair said he’s disappointed and the community will be less safe once Ostane is back on the streets. He said Ostane admitted to the crime and anyone who can attack a uniformed officer is dangerous.