HCSO deputy terminated after off-duty animal mistreatment

From the Hardee County Sheriff’s Office:


The Hardee County Sheriff’s Office announces the immediate termination of Deputy Nicholas Zotto, age 29, who has served with our agency since April 2022.

Recently, a series of videos have come to our attention depicting concerning behavior from Deputy Zotto while off duty, more specifically the treatment of animals in his care as owner of Pawsome Sitters, LLC in Manatee County, FL.

The Hardee County Sheriff’s Office is committed to upholding the highest standards of professionalism, integrity, and service to our community. Deputy Zotto’s actions have fallen short of the ethical and moral standards we demand from all members of our law enforcement team.

The Hardee County Sheriff’s Office remains dedicated to maintaining the trust and confidence of our community and holding our personnel accountable for their actions.

We would also like to thank the members of the Hardee County Sheriff’s Office who continue to consistently uphold our values and deliver exceptional service to our community. The citizens of Hardee County can continue to rely on us to protect and serve with the highest standards of professionalism and commitment.

Skip to content