Jason Scott Falbo II, 24, of Royal Palm Beach, learned his fate in a Palm Beach County courtroom after pleading guilty to nine counts of felony cruelty to animals from a May incident in which he mowed down and killed nine Muscovy ducklings with a lawnmower while working for a landscaping company. Circuit Judge Glenn Kelley informed the man, who a witness said laughed after running over ducklings, that through the plea deal struck between Assistant State Attorney Judy Arco and Assistant Public Defender Darcia Rufus, he would only see one year behind bars in the county jail.
Public commentary on the sentence indicates that people are fairly unified in being shocked at the sentence that Jason Falbo will serve, because at the same hearing when he pleaded guilty to the nine counts of felony animal cruelty, he also pleaded guilty to a completely separate charge of domestic battery for assaulting his then girlfriend through strangulation.
When Jason Falbo was first arrested, the Inquisitr reported that other charges also loomed over Falbo’s head.
“According to county arrest records, the suspect in the bird deaths has a history of domestic violence investigations. In April, he was accused of domestic battery by strangulation, aggravated child abuse, cruelty towards a child, and battery.”
For both crimes that he pleaded guilty to, Jason Scott Falbo II was sentenced to only a total of three years of probation, and the first year will be spent serving time at the county jail, plus community service, court fees and mental health exams. Falbo will be walking the streets before the autumn of 2016. Granted, when he gets out, he will not be allowed to own any animals, and he also will not be allowed to contact his ex-girlfriend whom he pleaded guilty of choking, but the idea that his sentence is so light doesn’t sit well with many people who are concerned that he could be a threat to society.
Of course, Jason Falbo told the judge it’s quite the contrary. He told the judge that he was going to go back to school and will be an x-ray technician. He told the judge that he needed a better defense lawyer than the one he was assigned. He said that without it, the judge would be destroying his “chance to be a pillar of the community.”
The arresting deputy wrote a scathing arrest report for Jason Falbo, according to the Sun Sentinel.
“Nine baby ducks lost their lives cruelly and viciously with extreme intent by Jason Falbo,” the officer documented. It was Jason’s first day on the lawn mower while working for Reliable Lawn Care, according to the Daily Millennial.
Jason Falbo’s animal cruelty was described in an affidavit.
“At the far west side of the property, the lawn man turned the mower around and began to head east again. At this point the blades were up on the lawn mower, and the man was not mowing adjacent to the first pass. The lawn man proceeded on a easterly direction and then the man stopped that mower.
“The man then engaged the blades again and began heading in a northeast direction headed for where the mother duck and ducklings had gathered…the lawn man then ran directly over the ducklings and body parts were scattered all over the lawn. Boyd Jentzsch, Larisa Gontchar, and [redacted] all observed the ducklings being chopped into little pieces.
“The lawn man then stopped and backed the lawn mower up and moved forward again killing more ducklings. Larisa Gontchar ran out followed by Boyd Jentzsch of the home yelling for the lawn man to stop. The lawn man then backed up again proceeded forward killing more ducklings and aiming for the mother and two remaining ducklings.”
The homeowner said that Jason Falbo was smiling as he went for the second pass to kill more ducklings with the commercial mower while a small child was yelling at Jason in tears.
“What are you doing to my ducks?” the seven-year-old child yelled at Jason Falbo before running into the house bawling. “Why are you laughing?”
“I thought he was going to run over my toes,” Boyd Jentzsch told the Palm Beach Post, recalling the incident as he approached Jason. “He wasn’t even cutting the grass. … He went right toward (the ducklings) and veered to the left.”
“Just seeing the look on his face, it told me he was a very violent person inside,” Jentzsch added, unaware at the time that the lawn care man was already facing assault charges for choking his former girlfriend. The public was so bothered by Falbo’s crimes that many hundreds signed a Change.org petition asking for the maximum penalty to be handed to the Florida man.
“This is not just about the ducks. This guy needs to be locked up forever,” a Facebook page called Bronxwatch wrote about Jason. “Society needs to be protected from people fueled by demon rage. People like this always graduate to humans.”
The FBI added animal cruelty to the list of crimes against society for that very reason, according to the Huffington Post.
In the strangulation incident, the police report states that Jason Falbo got upset with his girlfriend after she refused to tell him who she was texting, so he pushed her to the ground, grabbed her neck, and began choking her.
Do you think that Jason Falbo got what he deserved or should his sentence have been longer?
[Photo credits: Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office, Wikipedia]