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Sunday, December 10, 2023

Homeless man jailed after trespassing at historic home

Ricardo A.J. Kirkwood
Ricardo A.J. Kirkwood

A homeless man who spent three months in jail earlier this year was arrested again after police found him sleeping outside a historic Leesburg home with needles and a drug pipe in his possession.

An officer observed 31-year-old Ricardo A.J. Kirkwood sleeping on the property of the Mote Morris House, located at 1195 W. Magnolia St., at around 7:10 a.m. Thursday, according to an arrest report from the Leesburg Police Department.

After approaching Kirkwood, the officer learned he was previously trespassed from the property on April 10.  Kirkwood was placed under arrest and taken to the Leesburg police station for booking, the report said.

Police searched Kirkwood at the station and found a red case inside his green backpack. The case contained four capped syringes, a cut blue straw and a cracked clear pipe with burn marks commonly used for narcotics, according to the report.

Kirkwood was arrested on drug and trespassing charges last October after he tried to flee police at a Leesburg gas station. He was sentenced to 90 days and released in January. Jail records show he has two other arrests, one for trespassing and the other for domestic battery.

The Mote Morris House was built in 1892 by Leesburg’s eight-term mayor, Edward H. Mote, and is one of the few original residences left in Leesburg. The building was relocated in 1990 from Main Street to its current location, which has 2 acres of botanical gardens with 40-foot oak trees. The house is owned by the city and is available to rent for events.

Kirkwood was charged with trespass after warning and possession of drug paraphernalia. The Ohio native was transported to the Lake County Jail and is being held without bond.

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