Sanford, Florida Mayor — Where Trayvon Martin Was Killed — Gets Carjacked At Gunpoint
Sanford Mayor Jeff Triplett was carjacked at gunpoint outside of his friend’s home early on Saturday morning in the same town where Trayvon Martin was killed in 2012.
According to WFTV, the mayor was standing outside of his friend’s home around 2:20 a.m., when two armed men and another man approached him and stole the mayor’s wallet and Mercedes after one of the armed men pointed a gun at the mayor.
The mayor’s life was threatened and he was made to get on the ground before all three suspects jumped into the mayor’s 2012 Mercedes-Benz ML350 on Chapman Avenue with his wallet and took off. The mayor’s wallet reportedly had his city identification, two credit cards, a bank card, and $300 cash.Because of Mayor Triplett’s accurate descriptions of the carjackers, police were able to track down some of the suspects fairly quickly after the crime happened.
Two of the men were caught, in the area, shortly after the carjacking by police, according to NBC News. A 17-year-old, Damarcus Paige, and an 18-year-old, Jermine Jacques Horne, were accused of robbing the mayor.
The third suspect is still on the run.
Fox 35 reports that the mayor’s Mercedes was found, damaged, a short time after the arrests. A police officer saw the car near the scene of the crime and attempted to stop it. The two men crashed the car and tried to flee on foot, but both were apprehended. It is unclear whether the third man also fled the crash and escaped or if he was not in the car at that time.
Although both men said they did not have any weapons when they were apprehended, there was a stolen gun recovered in the mayor’s wrecked vehicle, according to CDA News.
Triplett praised the Sanford Police Department for catching two of the three carjackers so quickly after they threatened him and took off with his car and his wallet.
Triplett said, “Being a victim of a crime is unnerving, yet it was reassuring to witness both speed and diligence from the Sanford Police Department. It is disheartening when this type of crime takes place in the city of Sanford.”
Sanford is about 25 miles northeast of Orlando, and it has made headlines several times because of the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman 4 years ago.
Zimmerman was a neighborhood watch volunteer in a gated community in Sanford. He said that he killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in self-defense. A jury acquitted Zimmerman of murder charges in 2013, and the Justice Department did not prosecute Zimmerman on civil rights charges. The incident sparked debates nationwide about race relations and incited protests.Triplett was the mayor of the town when Martin was killed. He has been the mayor of the town since 2010.
Sanford police are now searching for the third suspect who helped to carjack and rob the mayor of Sanford. They are asking for the public’s help in catching the third suspect and urge anyone to call them with information they may have to help in the case. In fact, a reward of $1,000 is offered for information which leads to the arrest of the third person involved in the mayor’s carjacking.
Paige and Horne are both charged with carjacking with a firearm and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Horne is also charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
[Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images]