Police Have Made An Arrest In A Street Takeover Incident In Orlando, FL
According to a report from Fox 35 Orlando, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office has made an arrest in relation to a so-called “street takeover” event that took place more than three months ago. Elijah Grove-Thomas, 25, has been arrested and is facing serious criminal charges. In this article, our Orlando criminal defense attorney explains what we know about the case as well as the charges that were filed against the defendant.
Multi-Month Investigation Leads to Arrest in Street Takeover Incident
In Orange County, a man named Elijah Grove-Thomas, 25, has been charged after reportedly driving a Dodge Charger in circles around a fire truck, hindering its response to an emergency call. This incident occurred in April, amid street racing activities at Sand Lake Road and Winegard Road intersection. While no car fire was found, the fire truck was obstructed from leaving due to the reckless driving. After a three-month probe, officials confirmed Mr. Grove-Thomas as the driver seen in the related social media video. Specific charges faced by him weren’t detailed, but both felony and misdemeanor charges Notably, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office also noted that the vehicle owned by Mr. Grove-Thomas—a Dodge charger—has been impounded.
An Overview of Fleeing or Attempting to Elude Law Enforcement Officer Charges
In the state of Florida, fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer is taken very seriously and is codified under Florida Statutes § 316.1935. Indeed, this charge is often more severe than any other potential charge that a person is facing when being pursued by police. The offense typically occurs when a driver, after being ordered to stop by a duly authorized law enforcement officer, willfully refuses or fails to stop the vehicle. Here are some key points to know:
- The Elements of the Crime: For a person to be found guilty of this offense in Florida, the prosecutors must prove the following three things: 1) The defendant was operating a vehicle on Florida roads, 2) A law enforcement officer ordered the person to stop or remain stopped, and 3) The person, knowing they have been directed to stop by the officer, either willfully refuses or fails to stop.
- Felony Levels: As noted previously, fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer is a felony offense in Florida. Assuming that there are no other aggravating factors present, the crime is classified as a third degree felony charge. However, if a person is seriously injured or killed as a result of the attempt to flee, the charge could be enhanced to a first degree felony.
- The Criminal Penalties: The penalties can range from probation to prison time, depending on the circumstances. A third-degree felony can lead to up to 5 years in prison, a second-degree up to 15 years, and a first-degree can even mean life in prison. Of course, there can be additional adverse consequences as well, such as the revocation of a driver’s license.
Contact Our Orlando Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
At The Baez Law Firm, our Orlando criminal defense attorney fights aggressively to protect the rights, freedom, and future of our clients. If you or your loved one was arrested and charged with any type of criminal offense related to a “street race” or “street takeover”, we are here to help. Contact our legal team today to set up your completely confidential consultation. From our Orlando law office, we provide solutions-driven criminal defense representation throughout Florida.