NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. -- Authorities in New Smyrna Beach said they are searching for a 31-year-old convicted sex offender who broke free from a Volusia County sheriff's deputy that was in the process of arresting him Wednesday.
Deputies said the incident started shortly before 1 p.m. when they took Luis Alberto Hernandez Dejesus into custody. Dejesus is a convicted sex offender from north Florida who has been living in the New Smyrna Beach area, deputies said.
Authorities said a deputy found Dejesus in New Smyrna Beach and took him into custody for moving without notifying authorities of his new address, as required by law.
Officers said a deputy placed Dejesus in handcuffs and was getting ready to put him in the back of a patrol car when he attacked the deputy, broke free and took off running.
Dejesus bolted through a marshy mangrove before jumping into a tributary of the Indian River, deputies said.
The escape sparked a massive search from the ground and air, with patrol deputies and investigators, a sheriff's K-9 unit and a helicopter involved in the hunt.
New Smyrna Beach police and county beach units also were assisting in the search.
The deputy who was attacked sustained minor cuts and bruises in the scuffle.
DeJesus is 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs approximately 150 pounds. He has black hair and brown eyes.
Anyone who sees Dejesus is asked to dial 911 to report the location.
Video: WFTV Orlando