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Sheriff Pleads Long Punishment For Old Nemesis: Andrew Rulon Is Sentenced to 8 Years

| January 14, 2014

Andrew Rulon, left, when he was sentenced to seven years in prison for armed robbery in 2005, and in his mugshot from last year, when he was booked on burglary charges that led to a new, eight-year prison sentence.

Andrew Rulon, left, when he was sentenced to seven years in prison for armed robbery in 2005, and in his mugshot from last year, when he was booked on burglary charges that led to a new, eight-year prison sentence.

It was an unusual move for a sitting sheriff. But there was Flagler County Sheriff Jim Manfre Monday, addressing Circuit Court Judge J. David Walsh after a felon had entered a no-contest plea, and asking the judge to impose a lengthy prison term.

The felon was Andrew Rulon, 41, of 17 Lakeview Lane in Palm Coast. Walsh imposed an eight-year prison sentence followed by seven years of drug-offender probation on burglary and drug charges.

A sheriff would not normally appear at the sentencing of what seems like an ordinary felon getting an ordinary sentence.

But there’s history between Manfre and Rulon, and a little bit of geography. Almost 10 years ago, Rulon was convicted on charges of assault and armed robbery. Manfre was sheriff at the time, finishing his first stint in that position. His detectives investigated the case. In 2005, just after Manfre left office, Rulon was sentenced to seven years in state prison, with credit for time served, but was released in October 2010.

Just after 10 p.m. last April 25, Rulon, was arrested again. He was hiding in the woods in the area of Beechwood Lane and Lupi Court, northeast from the intersection of Palm Coast Parkway and Belle Terre Parkway. Moments earlier, 911 had received a report of a burglary at Safe Haven Veterinary Hospital at 30 Lupi Court, where a window had been shattered. When Rulon consented to a search, deputies found eight syringes filled with a non-narcotic fluid and an intravenous pack marked “For Veterinary Use Only.” But Rulon refused to answer questions. The items found on Rulon were matched to those missing from the veterinary hospital.

The syringes and the pack were valued at $2.24. The window was valued at $300.

Rulon’s Toyota was in a nearby parking lot. A large concrete bunny rabbit and wheelbarrow lawn ornament were in the back seat of the Toyota, which was unlocked, with Rulon’s wallet and driver’s license under the steering wheel, in a cubby. The bunny rabbit was stolen from from a yard on Farragut Drive on April 22. It was valued at over $100.

Rulon posted bail on $8,000 bond and was released after his April arrest, but re-arrested two weeks later when a deputy noticed Rulon driving his Toyota erratically down Colbert Lane and on State Road 100. When a deputy stopped him, Rulon claimed he’d been arguing with his girlfriend over the phone. But his eyes were watery and bloodshot, according to his arrest report. His speech was slurred. His car smelled of alcohol.

He was found to be in possession of small amounts of crack cocaine. Deputies had planned to test him for drunk driving, but the cocaine discovery trumped that attempt, and Rulon was booked at the Flagler County jail.

“It is unfortunate that the defendant in this case chose to victimize residents of the Grand Haven community,” Manfre said at the sentencing on Monday, in comments reported in a Seventh Judicial Circuit news release. “The sentencing of the defendant to eight years in prison, followed by a long term of drug offender probation is testament to the strength of our Neighborhood Watch program in that community. The local group was able to keep residents informed about the defendant and following his arrest, they continued to make sure they were active participants during his prosecution and ultimate sentencing.”

Manfre is a resident of Grand Haven.

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7 Responses for “Sheriff Pleads Long Punishment For Old Nemesis: Andrew Rulon Is Sentenced to 8 Years”

  1. Enlightened says:

    Way to go Manfre. Worry about your own neighborhood. The heck with the rest of us. Conflict of interest. I think so. Where are the deputies? I don’t see them patrolling my neighborhood. The last time I seen them was when Fleming was Sheriff.

  2. Wolley Segap says:

    yeah…crime can occur all around us non gated community common folk…but as soon as it makes it’s way passed the guard sshack, special appearances and requests are made?

  3. A.S.F. says:

    I have a sad feeling that this is what happens when elderly parents enable their adult children. Let’s hope Mr. Rulon learns his lesson this time.

  4. ryan says:

    Good job to the FCSO. Another scumbag off of the street. I don’t know why anyone would complain like the first statement about a conflict of interest. We need to make sure that this Rulon guy is not portrayed as a victim of injustice, which would be a lie. All that matters is that this crackhead is off the streets for a very long time.

    • Wolley Segap says:

      the fact that this guy is off the street is good. the fact that the sheriff of the “entire” county showed favoritism to his own gated community by attending a proceeding and asking a harsh punishment be set is not so good. Hes no longer a lawyer while he is in the role of sheriff. There are plenty of court cases where many in the county are victims yet we’ve never seen him go to court on behalf of anyone until something involved his own neighborhood. Living behind those gates is a sheriff out of touch with the reality of what goes on in our neighborhoods.

  5. Nathan says:

    Correct, it’s not a conflict of interest. It’s called “special interest” and in the last year the Sheriff has NEVER made an appearance at any court preceeding, EXCEPT now when it only involves the gated and guarded private community HE lives in. My 2 cents.

  6. Ed says:

    Granted I see what all of you are saying about getting addicts and thieves off the streets. But what’s going to happen when their prison term is complete? They get out and then what? IF there were any jobs, who would hire him, or many many of the others who have been locked up for a long time. How do we propose they survive, legally support themselves and their children if they have any? I propose we stop outsourcing American jobs immediately. Boycott products made outside the USA and it will force a return of jobs back here were they belong. Then we might start to see a turn around.

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