Nease High School is located in Ponte Vedre, a town in St. Johns County, Florida. Nease High School is probably best know for having football superstar, Tim Tebow, on its high school football team. While Nease High School has a reputation for being one of the safer schools in the Jacksonville area, three arrests occurred at this school on Wednesday. St. Johns County police arrested four teenagers in reference to a drug deal. Three of the four teens were arrested at the school.
First Coast News of Jacksonville reported that “Taylor Davidson, 18, and Dylan Medlin, 19, were among those arrested at the school. Medlin is charged with aggravated assault, weapon offense and trespassing.” These criminal charges arise out of allegations that he pulled a gun “on August 30 while trying to sell marijuana to a group of juveniles outside of Palencia Elementary School after school hours. Davidson was charged with trespassing.”
The St. Johns County police arrested two other people. They were under the age or 18. They are considered juveniles in Florida, so their information is not made public. They were arrested for misdemeanor charges. One of the Florida juveniles was not a student, so he was arrested off campus.
First Coast News further reported:
“Davidson accompanied Medlin by car to the school to sell the drugs. According to a St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office offense report, one of the juveniles said Medlin told them the price was $20 a gram, which they thought was too expensive and said they would not buy it. Another juvenile told police that he told Medlin that he was going to ‘snatch the dope.’”
“The initial juvenile mentioned claims Medlin said ‘you don’t know who you are (expletive) with’ and pointed a gun out of the car. The juvenile told investigators they began running through Pirate Ship Park. Medlin caught up with them and started swinging the gun at them, according to the juvenile. According to several of the juveniles’ accounts, a physical altercation ensued. One of the juveniles was able to disarm Medlin and they threw the gun in the woods, according to the report. The gun, which was stolen, was retrieved from the woods by one of the juveniles and was sold to Tyler Skelly, 19, for some marijuana, according to the report. A witness in September claimed to be ‘75 percent sure’ that Medlin was the one with the firearm.”
The article describes this case as a Ponte Vedre high school drug deal that took a turn for the worse. Most people would read this and assume that the boys were arrested for Florida drug charges. Since, they were arrested over a month later, I am assuming that the marijuana is gone. The police are not going to be able to prove a Florida possession of marijuana or drug sale case without the drugs.
As a Jacksonville criminal lawyer, the drug charges are the least of my worries. Florida gun charges are very serious. Any time a firearm is involved in case, you are looking at the possibility of the criminal case having minimum mandatory Florida prison sentences. If Medlin pointed the gun as stated in the report, this is a Florida aggravated assault with a firearm charge that carries a minimum mandatory prison sentence of three years.
The best thing that the teenagers can do is to talk to their Jacksonville lawyers about their case before saying anything. Any statements made will be used against them. For example, a text message from Davidson states, “Me and my buddy just got robbed :(( for a half ounce. :((” and “Yeah…. we chased him down but got jumped by 4 big guys so we ran and GTFO there.” While you may read this and think that Davidson and Medlin are guilty, I do not think that is accurate. Davidson did not say he was selling drugs. He said that drugs were taken from him. How do we know they were not for his personal use? If Medlin had a gun and the other juveniles did not, how did Davidson and Medlin become robbery victims? They had the gun, so it would seem that they would have the upper hand. The report states that one juvenile was able to disarm Medlin. How? They said that they threw the gun in the woods but later sold it to another boy. This behavior does not seem consistent with juveniles that were afraid of a man chasing them with a gun. There is much more to this story that needs to come out. Also, the eye-witness is only 75% sure that Medlin had the firearm, which should not be enough to convict a person.
The adults and juveniles that were charged need to meet with a St. Johns County lawyer to build a defense immediately. I am sure that the St. Johns County State Attorney will file charges and prosecute this case.