Don’t Ask, Don’t Cell

Most folks who tune in to NortheastFlorida news are now familiar with the sex-scandal-turned-abuse-of-power-scandal involving Clay County Sheriff Darryl Daniels. To counteract all the bad press, the sheriff’s PR team has been working overtime to transform his image from two-timer to truth-teller. Still, the bad news just keeps coming. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is currently investigating Daniels’ bizarre arrest of his pregnant mistress, Cierra Lewis Smith, among other irregularities. According to CCSO insiders, Daniels’ cell phone records are turning up evidence in the form of calls and texts.

It appears that Sheriff Daniels has been using his position of power, in Clintonian fashion, to gain access to numerous young women. Officers have maintained for more than a year that Daniels has a fondness for young women, and has turned the county sheriff’s office into his own personal dating service.

Folio Weekly has spoken with a young woman who said Daniels approached her at a local business and, unsolicited, asked for her number in the guise of county volunteerism. Then, he began calling and texting her on a regular basis. The FDLE has interviewed her about the exchanges.

Another young woman, who lives out of state, said Daniels obtained her picture and began calling and texting her. She believes Daniels used official resources to obtain personal information, including her place of employment. At 5:15 a.m. on her birthday, Daniels awoke her with a text: “Happy Birthday sexy booty.” The sheriff later told her he was attending a Concerns of Police Survivors in her state and asked to pay a personal visit. “Put your out to dinner clothes on tonight and show me where to go,” he texted. She turned his offer down. Daniels asked her not to tell anyone he contacted her. She changed her number.

All the women who spoke with Folio Weekly expressed the same emotion: fear. Each said they were afraid if they openly rebuffed Sheriff Daniels’ advances, he would hurt them or their families.

Insiders say Daniels’ phone records clearly reveal the married man had an obsession with the opposite sex. Sources also said that, on May 6, the day of Smith’s arrest, Daniels made multiple calls, including one to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams. Folio Weekly requested the call logs, which are public record, on May 30. Although a clerk obtained the records shortly after, she relayed that she had to wait for the sheriff to redact “personal” calls. The redaction of phone numbers belonging to spouses and children is permitted by the Florida Statutes, but it must be done in a timely manner. In this event, it took almost a month.

When we obtained the logs on July 3, we discovered that Sheriff Daniels had redacted all May 6 calls, as well as many others made between January and May. Assistant Chief of Public Information Officer Keith Smith verified that the redactions were “correct.” But if we are to believe Daniels’ claim that he redacted the May 6 calls because they were to and from his wife Denise, we must also believe that she was in several places—in multiple states—at the same time. In truth, at least according to public records, Daniels’ wife was present at Smith’s arrest and recorded it on her iPhone in real time. Officers saw Denise Daniels, and she can be heard on her own recording, loudly ordering officers to arrest her husband’s “stalker.” Yet the sheriff’s phone records show Mrs. Daniels in St. Johns County, Jacksonville, Orange Park, Middleburg and Green Cove Springs at the time of the arrest. On May 7, Daniels’ cell logs show his wife spoke to him from Green Cove Springs then, 16 minutes later, from Arlington, Virginia. At 11:04 a.m., Denise Daniels allegedly spoke to him from Orange Park then, 45 minutes later, from Louisville, Kentucky. His daughter apparently spoke to her father from Charlotte, North Carolina then, seven minutes later, from Orange Park.

Such wide-reaching geographical discrepancies suggest that Sheriff Darryl Daniels was less than truthful about his cell phone call logs and was willing to throw his wife and daughter under the bus to affirm his misrepresentations. If the FDLE comes to the same conclusion, Daniels may need to search for another job—and another dating service.

Stay tuned.