Updating Breaking News: Former corn maze security guard arrested on battery, suspect of arson

A former security guard at the Newberry Cornfield Maze located at 20015 W. Newberry Rd. was arrested late Friday night (Oct. 16th) on elderly battery charges and is a suspect in the arson case.

According to the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office booking office, Matthew Deavitt, 23 of Old Town, was arrested on battery of an elderly person and a suspect in the arson investigation.

According to the arrest report, upon arrival at the Cornfield Maze, ACSO deputies were made aware of a battery that had occurred on the premises. It was determined through witness and victim statements that Matthew Deavitt struck a 71-year-old security guard in the head with a gallon jug of an unknown liquid while being escorted off the property.

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Deputies made contact with Deavitt at the Marathon gas station located at 24252 W Newberry Rd., arrested him, charged him with Aggravated Battery on a Victim 65 years of Age or Older, and transported him to the Alachua County Jail.

Matthew Deavitt mugshot

According to Alachua County Sheriff Office Sgt. Scott Ulrich, Deavitt allegedly attacked the 71-year-old security guard at the maze and then allegedly set a small building on fire.

No injuries have been reported from the blaze.

This is a breaking and developing news story and will be updated as more details are learned.

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