OKEECHOBEE — After sitting in county jail for 11 months and 13 days, James Carnley entered a plea of no contest to charges of possession of morphine, possession of drug paraphernalia and battery inmate on inmate. Carnley was arrested in March 2020 after neighbors in the 200 block of Northwest 16th Street called in a complaint about a suspicious vehicle. Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Cross was dispatched in reference to the complaint. When Cross arrived, he found the vehicle with three people inside. All occupants seemed nervous with shaking hands, and all avoided eye contact.
Carnley, 28, who had an active warrant out for his arrest for using a computer to lure or solicit a child was placed in wrist restraints. In the floorboard of the seat where Carnley had been sitting, Cross found multiple syringes and a metal spoon with morphine residue on it. Carnley was booked into the county jail.
Two months later, Carnley was arrested again and charged with battery after starting a fight with another inmate and striking the inmate on the shoulder. The victim said someone banged on a trash can early in the morning and woke everyone up. After breakfast, Carnley started the fight with the inmate, accusing him of being the person who banged on the trash can. The inmate refused to fight, saying it was not worth his time, and he just wanted to go home. Carnley refused to accept no as an answer and charged the inmate, who then yelled for a guard.
Carnley was sentenced to nine months and one day for the battery charge, but has already served it. He was sentenced to 11 months and 13 days on the drug charges but has already served that too.
The solicitaion of a child charge is still proceeding through the courts with a jury date possibly coming up in May.