Broward Court

Accused Child Molester Battles Broward Deputy in Failed Escape Attempt

Samuel Austin Shirk, 20, is accused of assaulting a child and a Broward Sheriff's deputy

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A 20-year-old man, who is accused of sexually assaulting a child, is now charged with assaulting a deputy while handcuffed, the Broward Sheriff’s Office said.

Samuel Austin Shirk was arrested Sunday at a Fort Lauderdale address and booked into the Broward County Jail about 2:20 p.m.

He is facing ten charges that include sexual assault on a person under 12 years of age, lewd and lascivious molestation, video voyeurism, displaying a firearm, battery on a law enforcement officer, and attempted escape, among others, records show.

Samuel Shirk

Once in custody, Shirk was questioned by detectives at the Sheriff’s Office. When he asked to use the restroom, he was handcuffed and escorted by a deputy.

After using the restroom and reentering the holding cell while handcuffed, Shirk attacked a BSO deputy. She screamed for help and a detective joined in to subdue Shirk and put him in a holding cell, officials said.

Investigators say the sexual assaults were committed over a span of several months this year.

When the victim’s family found out what was happening they contacted the Broward Sheriff’s Special Victims Unit on Saturday and an investigation was launched.

Shirk remains in the Broward County Jail without bond.

Detectives are concerned there may be other child victims in the community.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Special Victims Unit Detective Vanessa Encina at 954-321-4689.

Anonymous tips can be given to Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-8477 or online at

Tipsters can also dial **TIPS (8477) from any cellphone in the United States or submit a tip through the SaferWatch App.

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