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Thread: Teenager Takes a Bat to Sheriffs, Then Tries to Grab Gun

  1. #1
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    Adult charges, bad choices bring tragic end for teen



    For his alleged role in a brutal assault and robbery in May, Jonathan Fontanez, 17, had already been arrested July 16, gone before a juvenile court judge July 17, and was scheduled to appear before two judges next week.

    When prosecutors filed adult charges against him July 31 for the same May incident, it triggered another arrest warrant.

    Fontanez was shot and killed while the Broward Sheriff's Office tried to serve that warrant at 2 a.m. Monday.

    "It makes no sense," said Gordon Weekes, an assistant Broward public defender who handles juvenile cases. "The court already had control over this kid. He had no history of missing court dates. They could have waited for the arraignment to set bail or take him into custody."


    Instead, the Broward Sheriff's Office dispatched a five-man tactical unit to arrest Fontanez in the middle of the night.

    "It's pretty outrageous to go after a 17-year-old at 2 a.m.," said Frank de la Torre, a chief assistant public defender.

    Authorities say Fontanez attacked deputies with a bat, injuring two, and attempted to grab an officer's gun during the scuffle outside his West Park home.

    If that's true, it's hard to fault the deputies for their lethal response. Go after police with a bat, you pretty much deserve whatever comes your way.

    Family and friends say Fontanez might have mistaken the deputies for home invaders, something the Sheriff's Office disputes.

    With hundreds of outstanding arrest warrants in Broward, why did the Sheriff's Office decide to go after Fontanez?

    Weekes said it's not unusual for juveniles whose cases get transferred to adult court to remain free until their arraignments, so long as the offense is eligible for bond. That was the case for Fontanez, charged with robbery with a deadly weapon and aggravated battery/serious bodily injury.

    His arraignment was scheduled for Aug. 21. He also had another juvenile hearing set for Aug. 18 before Circuit Judge Elijah Williams, who released Fontanez to 21 days of house supervision last month.

    In May, Fontanez and his older brother allegedly robbed and beat a Hollywood landlord. According to the Broward State Attorney's office, Fontanez used a pair of brass knuckles in the $568 robbery, and the victim needed nine staples to the head for his wounds.

    Ron Ishoy, a spokesman for the Broward State Attorney's Office, said the nature of the alleged crime and Fontanez's age (he turns 18 in December) led to adult charges. He also said that if a suspect isn't in custody when adult charges are filed, the clerk of court issues an arrest warrant.

    "That pick-up order is sent to BSO, which apparently prioritizes its warrants based on the severity of the alleged crime," he said.

    At 17, Fontanez was no stranger with the law. He had a few criminal traffic cases in his past, and an arson incident that got settled through a juvenile pre-trial diversion program.

    After the May robbery, Hollywood police found the teen and his mother cooperative. Investigators even let him finish his high school exams, with the agreement that he would turn himself in after the school year.

    But Fontanez apparently reneged on the arrangement, and he eluded Broward Sheriff's deputies when they came to his home in June.

    He apparently made a series of bad choices that ultimately got him killed.

    His biggest mistake may have been being a kid. In our two-pronged legal system, it meant two arrests for the same crime. Double jeopardy, indeed.



    Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

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    This article brings very deep frustration I must express. Just know that it is directed to the article and not the user who posted it.

    there needs to be a poll set up for this one if you would like votes, it'd be easier for everyone to see what others think

    =]

    btw, imho, if the officers identified themselves... the kid showed no signs of becoming a descent human... he already had a track record as long as Barabas himself and was only 17? what is thisyoung MANgoing to do when he turns 21? what about 25?

    he attacked the police and reached for someones gun...

    with his history of violence and indescretion, i can see why the officers used deadly force, especially after being hitting two officerswith a bat, then reaching for an officers firearm? what was this fool thinking.

    now in reference to my MAN reference... i recently saw something on tv about how kids at ages 6,7,8, and 9 used to work in the farm fields and mines here in the states. now in america we baby the "kids" way too much and they are becoming push over whimps that wouldnt stand up for their country, friends, or themselves.

    i think we use the term KID too much. especially with teenagersonly a coupleyears away from their 20's. a 17 year old personknows good and well the difference between right and wrong. I REFUSE to make EXCUSES for humans that choose to live like fools and idiots then try and cower behind the term KID so they can get off easy because they want to cry to their mommy when they get thrown in the slammer...







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    there needs to be a poll set up for this one if you would like votes, it'd be easier for everyone to see what others think
    Not sure if you understood the subtitle, it's not I who is asking for votes, there's a vote in progress on the same site as the article, click on the link and you'll see it.


    Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

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    Ahh, I see.

    Sad case, nonetheless.

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    It sounds like they did a no-knock warrant. If 5 masked men carrying guns come into my house at 2 am I'm not going to assume they are police. I'm going to assume they are robbers even if they are shouting, "Police!" How much effort does it take to shout "police"? Why didn't they serve a warrant during a reasonable hour? Was Mr. Fontanez such a risk to the community that he needed to be brought in at 2 am instead of waiting a few more hours?

    I'm sure Mr. Fontanez was a scumbag but I can definitely see myself responding in the same manner as he did faced with the same scenario.

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    Well, if they didnt shout Police, I am utterly surprised and they are a bunch of idiots.

    If they did announce themselves... dont know what to say.

    They family says they didnt know it was the Police but... I dont know. A person with his track record, I would not be surprised if he attacked them knowing it was the Police.

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    Maybe they should bring cameras when they serve warrants? With all the gear SWAT gets you'd think they'd give at least one officer a helmet camera or a button camera. I'm thinking that they are more worried about the public seeing what really goes on during the no-knock raids than being vindicated in court. All they have to do now is lie in court, knowing that their word is prized over the defendant's.

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    yeah, that is sad.

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    Even a recorder in the pocket, would at least give audio confermation.



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    Speculating the enteringSherriff team did not do their duty in notifying thier arrival...

    -------- if that is true

    Then,

    it is hard to pick the twigs from the straw when both sides are at HUGE faults.



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    If the facts are true as reported, he had it coming in a big way. There are few, if any, here who would not shoot someone attacking them with a bat then trying to grab their gun.

    No knock warrants suck, and this is another example of why/how things go bad. Never the less, that doesn't excuse anything the perp did.

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    Dr.Coy wrote:
    btw, imho, if the officers identified themselves... the kid showed no signs of becoming a descent human... he already had a track record as long as Barabas himself and was only 17? what is thisyoung MANgoing to do when he turns 21? what about 25?

    he attacked the police and reached for someones gun...

    with his history of violence and indescretion, i can see why the officers used deadly force, especially after being hitting two officerswith a bat, then reaching for an officers firearm? what was this fool thinking.

    now in reference to my MAN reference... i recently saw something on tv about how kids at ages 6,7,8, and 9 used to work in the farm fields and mines here in the states. now in america we baby the "kids" way too much and they are becoming push over whimps that wouldnt stand up for their country, friends, or themselves.

    i think we use the term KID too much. especially with teenagersonly a coupleyears away from their 20's. a 17 year old personknows good and well the difference between right and wrong. I REFUSE to make EXCUSES for humans that choose to live like fools and idiots then try and cower behind the term KID so they can get off easy because they want to cry to their mommy when they get thrown in the slammer...
    yup

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    The poll asks the wrong question. Obviously deadly force was justified once the guy started swinging at LEOs with a bat and trying to grab guns. Obviously this was a bad guy and I feel not a moment of remorse, pity or outrage at his death.

    However, the question should have been:

    Do you think it was necessary or prudent for five police wearing masks and dark clothes to barge in and serve a warrant at 2 am against someone who was going to be in court 10 days hence, who had never missed a court date, who could have been arrested at that time without issue and who was only being arrested at this time because of a change in status of the charges from juvenile to adult being that he had already been arrested and arraigned on the original juvenile charges?

    That answer is: NO, NICHT, NEIN, ARE YOU ON CRACK?

    Bunch of gung-ho tacticool deputies who figured they could play with their toys and beat up, er arrest, a 17 year old at 2 am. Same stupidity, different day. Lucky they didn't end up with another Branch Davidians stand-off.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    I think this MAN got what was coming to him!Kids today have no fear of authority anymore!Mostly because parents feel they cant discipline there kids because of Lawyers that prey on cases like that!Second is that we took the schools ability to discipline away also.Teachers are more like baby-sitters than authority figures.If teachers could paddle those lil asses, there would probably be less school related shootings!Someone has to do something soon before all of society is lost,and we're not to far away from it now!

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    juvenile courts are over rated. we do baby the teenagers too long. most dostart to learn right from wrong at an early age. some don't due to i'm sure a lack of parental involvement for whatever the reason. 18 should not be the magical number for freebies. but a loss of life is still a loss of life and a sobering event.



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    81% of the respondents to the poll agreed that lethal force was justified. I'm one of them.

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    A police officer need not to identify during the serving of a search warrent: If evidence is likely to be destroyed ,or if indentifing themselves would put their lives in danger due to armed suspects in the home.

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    bluelinewalker2 wrote:
    A police officer need not to identify during the serving of a search warrent: If evidence is likely to be destroyed ,or if indentifing themselves would put their lives in danger due to armed suspects in the home.
    The police officers are supposed to have evidence supporting the search warrant in the first place.Destruction ofevidence is used as an excuse to bust in.

    No knock warrants are used way too often and should be scaled back along with more oversight.

    What is wrong with the old way? Surrounding the house and then knocking on the door? If the suspect doesn't wish to open the door, then more severe measures can be taken, such as shutting off the electric, water, etc. A bullhorn could be used if they will not answer the phone. Teargas can be deployed if all else fails. The last thing should be a storming of the house.

    Whether you like it or not, people are innocent until proven guilty, and they should be treated as such.

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    I am missing something in this article. Where did it say it was a no knock warrant. It said the assault and shooting happened outside the home. As for not missing court dates:
    But Fontanez apparently reneged on the arrangement, and he eluded Broward Sheriff's deputies when they came to his home in June.
    Seems that he had missed some dates and had to be chased down. Something is missing in this article if what others have posted are true.

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    bluelinewalker2 wrote:
    I think this MAN got what was coming to him!Kids today have no fear of authority anymore!Mostly because parents feel they cant discipline there kids because of Lawyers that prey on cases like that!Second is that we took the schools ability to discipline away also.Teachers are more like baby-sitters than authority figures.If teachers could paddle those lil asses, there would probably be less school related shootings!Someone has to do something soon before all of society is lost,and we're not to far away from it now!
    A police officer need not to identify during the serving of a search warrent: If evidence is likely to be destroyed ,or if indentifing themselves would put their lives in danger due to armed suspects in the home.
    No one here in this forum has made an excuse for the young man's crime(s), nor implied he should not be punished for it. True america's youth have been sissified and not held responsible for their actions or raised correctly by their parents... and on the other hand parents have been arrested for spanking their children.

    The facts in this particular instance are that a group of "highly trained and experienced" LEO's made a dumb ass descision to do a "High Risk Warrant Serve" on a low risk individual at 2 AM. Whats more they chose to use lethal force instead of non lethal force. The report clearly states the suspect TRIED to grab a weapon, he never grabbed one. Why wasn't he sprayed or tazed? Because the "Highly Trained" LEO got scared and pulled the trigger when he and his 4 masked buddies could have subdued the guy.

    Now bluelinewalker, don't get it twisted and think i'm a cop hater or a criminal sympathizer. I have great respect for the Law and it's enforcement officer's WHEN THEY FOLLOW THE LAW and make wise descisions. I want criminals to get what they deserve, and i fully support the LEO's in making that happen.

    But let me tell you this... If you or any other Officer, Deputy, Marshall or Swat Team Member busts through my door at 2 AM, I don't care what you "yell" to "identify yourself" you better have you shield swinging in front of your vest and hope i see the glimmer of my tac lite off it before you get a face full of lead.

    I Lived in a large rental home in a nice quiet neighborhood in a college town for 4 years. More than a couple times deputy's came to my home to serve a warrant on a person who had lived there 3 years earlier. Most of the time they "caught me" late in the evening when I or my wife and I we just returning home. Once however three deuptys apparently thought it would be wise to bang on my windowless side door at 11:30 at night. When I threw the door open and they were greeted by an 870, they all agreed they could have used a more effective means of communication. Although I immediatly lowered my weapon once i identified them as LEO, It had the makings for a potentially ugly turn of events due to their stupid descision.

    Having a badge should mean you have a high moral character and use descernment and GOOD JUDGEMENT. It's too bad some use their shield as a get out of jail free card for being stupid!

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    Deepdiver,

    Maybe you have information that wasn't in the article but I didn't see anything about the Police wearing mask. They might have been wearing 'BDUs' but many times Officers on the road wear them such as K-9 Officers. This doesn't necessarily mean they could not be identifies as Law Enforcement. As for him being in court and never missing court before, the article said that he broke his promise to turn himself in after his school exams. What makes you think he would all of a sudden turn in to a respectful bad-guy and go to court. He already had a history of violence and he was just a few month away from being 18. He was much a man as hewas going to get.

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    N00blet45 wrote:
    Maybe they should bring cameras when they serve warrants?* With all the gear SWAT gets you'd think they'd give at least one officer a helmet camera or a button camera.* I'm thinking that they are more worried about the public seeing what really goes on during the no-knock raids than being vindicated in court.* All they have to do now is lie in court, knowing that their word is prized over the defendant's.
    +1

    If cops are so trustworthy, they should have no problem when we require them to record everything they do at all times.

    As far as I am concerned, not only should police be required to video/audio record at all times, any period where there is a lapse in the recording should be treated as an attempt to circumvent due process, and any evidence obtained during such a lapse in recording should be invalidated.

    It may sound harsh, but if the police are as trustworthy as they pretend they are they have no reason to complain. Remember, we have an expectation of privacy, but as OUR employees the police should have no such expectations.

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