Holmes Beach man pleads to disorderly in exposure case

Adjudication was withheld for a Holmes Beach man who pleaded no contest to a disorderly conduct charge in connection with flashing a school bus driver in October 2017.

Richard Wheeler, 70, of Holmes Beach, pleaded no contest Jan. 11 to the disorderly charge after Manatee County sheriff’s deputies found him wearing no pants near Bayfront Park in Anna Maria.

From early to mid-October 2017, the female bus driver reported Wheeler sitting on a seawall and walking on North Bay Boulevard while wearing no pants as she worked her morning route, picking up students at North Bay and Crescent Drive.

The driver reported Wheeler lifted his shirt Oct. 17-18, exposing his genitalia as the bus headlights shined upon him, according to an MCSO probable cause affidavit.

The next day deputies reported finding Wheeler wearing no pants in the 200 block of North Bay Boulevard.

Manatee County Sgt. Russ Schnering, who headed the MCSO substation in Anna Maria at the time, said no student reported seeing Wheeler without his pants, and MCSO requested a warrant for his arrest on exposure of his sexual organs.

The 12th Circuit State Attorney filed the formal charge of disorderly conduct in December 2017.

As part of Wheeler’s probation, Judge Mark Singer ordered him to undergo a mental health evaluation and perform 25 hours of public service, but allowed for 12 hours of service to be bought out at $8 per hour.

Wheeler was assessed $624.25 in court costs and fines, according to the court records.

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