Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

David Charles Sutton | Oldest inmate, 71

Pasco County jail special report: At 71, oldest inmate complains, 'It's hard being here'

It's a young man's world.

The median age for a man in the Land O'Lakes jail is 30; the most common age is 19.

"It's all young guys in here," said David Charles Sutton. At 71, with a white mustache, he is the Land O'Lakes jail's oldest inmate. "It's very hard being here."

He watches very little TV and prefers to spend the hours in his cell reading Westerns and mysteries. His cell mate is 24 — "he's a good kid," Sutton said.

Sutton is accused of sexually abusing a 6-year-old girl and an 8-year-old boy. He denies the charge.

Arrested and booked on June 24, Sutton was originally housed with other inmates accused of serious crimes. Three weeks later, he moved to a different unit, where no one asks or knows his charge, and he says he feels much safer.

"Everybody looks down on you if they think you did something like this," he said.

Sutton was hospitalized six years ago for a silent heart attack and still takes medication for high blood pressure. Before his arrest, he lived independently, with his third wife, Bonnie. They have been married 12 years. He calls her twice a day.

"He knows he's innocent," she said. "He just bides his time and keeps to himself."

They moved to Florida 11 years ago from upstate New York. Sutton crisscrossed the country as a truck driver for 38 years. He grew up on a farm outside Ithaca.

He has five children, each in different states. One of them is a state trooper in Vermont.

"He's not too happy about this," Sutton said.

Pasco County jail special report: At 71, oldest inmate complains, 'It's hard being here' 08/08/09 [Last modified: Saturday, August 8, 2009 12:29pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Once 'angry' about Obamacare, Republican David Jolly came to see it as 'safety net'


    Former Congressman David Jolly, who ran against Obamacare in 2013, said in an interview Monday night that he now considers it a "safety net."

  2. Five children hospitalized after chlorine release at Tampa pool store


    Five children were sickened at a pool store north of Tampa on Monday after a cloud of chlorine was released, according to Hillsborough County Fire Rescue.

  3. Deputies find unidentified decomposing body in Dunedin canal

    Public Safety

    DUNEDIN — Pinellas County sheriff's deputies found an unidentified male body floating in a Dunedin canal Monday afternoon, the Sheriff's Office said.

  4. Rays acquire slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria from Marlins

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Chaim Bloom said the Rays weren't necessarily in the market for a shortstop. The team has a number of those. But when the Marlins recently began shopping Adeiny Hechavarria, well, that was too much to pass up.

    Adeiny Hechavarria has emerged as one of baseball’s top defensive shortstops in the past three seasons with the Marlins.
  5. Lightning journal: Forward Yanni Gourde agrees to two-year deal

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Just three years ago, Yanni Gourde was fighting to stay in pro hockey.

    Tampa Bay Lightning center Yanni Gourde celebrates after scoring against the Florida Panthers during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, March 11, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) TPA108