Gary Blough, an injured war veteran from Daytona Beach, tried to stop three sadistic punks from smashing a turtle on the sidewalk and kicking it down the block.
His wife, who was walking home with her child, saw three men torturing the turtle and went home to tell her husband about the incident.
Upon arriving at the scene, Blough tried to reason with the three perpetrators, who continued to smash the turtle to the sidewalk. One 16-year-old then began to kick the reptile toward an apartment building.
Blough said, “The one had [the turtle] over his head, and he was smashing it down on the sidewalk. I asked them to please leave it alone…, just let it go to the lake.”
Blough told police that the turtle was trying to crawl away but was seriously injured and unable to walk.
One of the men, Johnnie Beveritt, 18, again picked up the turtle and threw it down on the sidewalk; the two other men, Ryan Ponder, 23, and a 16-year-old boy, kicked the turtle toward an apartment building away from the pond.
Blough then became the next victim of their assault when the three young men began pummeling him. “They started hitting the back of my head and started punching me. I was able to fend off a little bit but, I mean, three of them got the better of me,” he said.
Although Blough told them he did not want to fight, one of the attackers said, “I don’t give a f— and I don’t care if I go to jail.”
When neighbors came outside to see what was going on, the three suspects ran away. A diligent Daytona Beach police officer searched for and captured all three suspects, and Blough’s wife was able to identify the attackers.
Blough told police he is a disabled veteran who was seriously injured in the Persian Gulf War. He suffered serious injuries at the hands of these three attackers, including a fractured skull, broken facial bones, internal bleeding, and a concussion.
This veteran is hoping the punks get what they deserve and said he would intervene again if needed. “Yeah, I’d do it again, and take the beating again, if it meant saving that turtle,” he said.
Police found the dead turtle floating in the pond in a puddle of blood. One officer, obviously sickened by the cruel acts, wrote in his police report:
“The animal likely suffered greatly during the time it was being battered by the three defendants.”
It was definitely his way of making sure the city’s district attorney knows just how sick and depraved these three suspects are and what they did to both a war veteran and a turtle.
All three men have been charged with aggravated battery and animal cruelty; the 16-year-old remains unnamed due to his age.
H/T: Click Orlando
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