FORT WALTON BEACH, FL (February 24, 2020) – According to an online news report from WKRG.com, Fort Walton Police arrested a 16-year-old boy for attempting to rob and injure an individual he met to purchase a Sony PlayStation 4 game console. The attempted robbery occurred at the Fort Walton Beach Recreation Center, located at 132 Jet Drive. The news report also states that the boy replied to an online private sale advertisement on Instagram, showed up to make the purchase, attempted to purchase the game console using two counterfeit $100 bills, and then discharged a firearm at the victim's motor vehicle.
According to the online news report, the victim of the attempted robbery looked at the two $100 bills and challenged the authenticity of the case with the 16-year-old. It was at this time the robber pulled out a firearm and tried to rob the seller of the PlayStation 4. The victim attempted to drive off and flee the robber, who then fired a shot into the vehicle of the victim.
The robber was identified as a resident of Okaloosa County. Detectives obtained an arrest warrant and later arrested the 16-year-old boy. The boy is facing a charge of shooting into an occupied vehicle, attempted robbery, carrying a concealed firearm, and engaging in a scheme to defraud. There may be additional charges pressed against the 16-year-old boy. The report states that the suspect was arrested, and during a body search, police found a firearm that had the serial numbers removed. The firearm matched the caliber of the bullet casing found at the scene of the crime by law enforcement.
The Fort Walton Beach Police Department also reminded people to use extreme caution when transacting in private sales off of the Internet. The Fort Walton Beach Police Department recommends meeting and conducting a transaction at a safe location, such as a police station. According to the Fort Walton Beach Police Department, there are designated parking spaces near the police station that are dedicated as a safe "exchange zone" to conduct these types of private transactions. In addition, the
The Fort Walton Beach Police Department has designated two parking spots in the front of the station as an exchange zone. The public is also welcome to come into the Fort Walton Beach Police Department allows people to use the police station's lobby to make these types of exchanges.
Florida Statute 812.13 Robbery
According to Florida Statute 812.13 Robbery, the word "robbery" is defined as the illegal taking of property or money from another person, whether temporarily or permanently, by way of violence, putting in fear, assault, or by use of force. If the offender is in possession of a deadly weapon or firearm during the robbery, the crime becomes a "felony of the first-degree" in the state of Florida. A felony in the first-degree, if found guilty, carries punishments such as imprisonment, significant fines, and a lengthy probationary period following release from prison.
If the offender did not use or carry a firearm during the robbery, the charge could be filed as a second-degree felony. A second-degree felony in the state of Florida also included imprisonment, stiff fines, and a long probationary period.