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In Flagler Beach, 2 Men Accused of
Provoking a Violent Brawl Are Jailed

| June 11, 2012

Jacob Visconti, left, and Steven Hoffman-Brown bear the marks of a violent confrontation early Friday morning in Flagler Beach. (FCSO)

Jacob Visconti, left, and Steven Hoffman-Brown bear the marks of a violent confrontation early Friday morning in Flagler Beach. (FCSO)

It was just past 2 a.m. Friday morning when a Flagler Beach police officer was flagged down and told of a “large disturbance” on North 2nd Street. When an officer arrived there, a man in a black shirt was lying on the ground in the middle of the intersection with North Central Avenue. He was surrounded by a crowd of 10 or 12 people yelling at him. A red Nissan Altima, its passenger-side window smashed out, the shards on the pavement, was stopped in the middle of North 2nd, facing the ocean.

According to witnesses and victims of the incident, whose accounts were summarized in police reports, several people were leaving Poor Walt’s, the Flagler Beach bar at North 2nd Street and Central when Steven Hoffman-Brown, 24, and Jacob Visconti, 30, their faces masked with bandanas, approached the people aggressively and started yelling: “We’re going to fuck you up.”

The people yelled back, telling the two men to leave them alone. Some got in the Nissan to drive off. “As they were turning on North 2nd Street,” the reports state, “one of the males smashed out the rear passenger window with a crow bar.” Brittany Vitale, 25, a resident of Palm Coast, was at the wheel. She stopped the car and got out, upset that the window had just been smashed out. It was her sister’s car. “It was at that moment that she was struck in the face and throat,” the report states.

Four men, one of whom had been in the car, including 25-year-old Nicholas Lomelino of Flagler Beach, ran to Vitale’s defense. Witnesses saw Hoffman-Brown strike Lomelino, the report states. The Hoffman-Brown yelled that he had a gun “and reached into his pocket as if he were to pull it out.” Several people rushed him, struck him and pulled him to the ground, the report states. Visconti meanwhile “began hitting people with the crow bar, striking victims Samuel Puckett”–a 36-year-old resident of Palm Coast–”twice and Sean Bertram in the arm.” Bertram is 27-year-old resident of Palm Coast. The victims and witnesses told police that they’d rushed Visconti, too, wrestled the crowbar from him and thrown it into the bushes, where cops later found it.

Visconti then allegedly ran to his black truck and began charging people with it, knocking Lomelino on the ground and injuring him. Lomelino, police said, had lacerations on his knees, arms and elbows. Katie George, 26, of Flagler Beach, told police that she, too, was struck by the truck and knocked into the bushes. One other victim, Samantha Lutz, 25, of Flagler Beach, told police that Visconti rushed her, too, with his truck, but missed as he drove the truck erratically, before leaving the scene, and Hoff-man Brown. Witnesses recorded the truck’s tag number.

Visconti, of 152 Point Pleasant Drive in Palm Coast, was stopped by a Flagler County sheriff’s deputy at 2:16 as he drove west on State Road 100. Deputies escorted him back to the scene where witnesses and victims identified him and his vehicle as being involved in the incident.

“When I approached Visconti,” the Flagler Beach police officer’s report states, “I observed several cuts and swelling of his left eye. I observed and photographed blood on the exterior driver’s side of his vehicle.” Visconti initially declined medical attention, then asked for it when his shoulder and the cuts surrounding his eye were hurting. He was taken to Florida Hospital Flagler, treated, then booked into the Flagler County jail, along with Hoffman-Brown. The latter is a resident of European Village in Palm Coast.

Both men’s injuries sustained in the brawl were clearly visible in their jail mug shots.

Visconti faces one count of aggravated assault, five counts of aggravated battery, two counts of battery, a count of criminal mischief, and one count of wearing a mask while committing a felony. He posted $11,000 bond and was released.

Hoffman-Brown faces three counts of aggravated battery, two counts of simple battery, a count of criminal mischief and a count of wearing a mask while committing a felony. He posted $7,000 bond and was released. He’d been booked into the Flagler County jail six times previously, going back to October 2007. Charges have included shoplifting, driving on a suspended license, violating probation, marijuana possession (under 20 grams), and domestic violence battery on two separate occasions, the last time on May 3.

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42 Responses for “In Flagler Beach, 2 Men Accused of
Provoking a Violent Brawl Are Jailed”

  1. Clint says:

    And some are against the ” STAND MY GROUND” law because its barbarian ? Take a good look at the future of America !

  2. Art Woosley says:

    Drinking in a bar at 2 A.M. is a stupid and foolish thing to do and be. Even in little Flagler Beach, dangerous sick people are looking to commit felonious activities and victims to assault.

  3. LAWABIDINGCITIZEN says:

    THAT HOFFMAN-BROWN KID HAS A HISTORY OF BATTERING WOMEN. HE SHOULD BE MADE AN EXAMPLE OF!

  4. The Truth says:

    A bad decision by both of these men, but some black eyes/bruises and a couple of nights in jail will hopefully do them good.

    It sure looks like Mr. Hoffman-Brown was on the losing end of this one though…

  5. George says:

    Looks like these two morons picked a fight with an MMA contender and got their tails handed to them! lol

  6. flaglerguy says:

    Send ‘em to jersey shore!

  7. Perrin says:

    I have seen some of these young people around town and wanted to submit my humble opinion. The Brown kid needs therapy, he just cannot handle his alcohol. I have seen him get confrontational and aggressive when he’s drunk, but he always gets beaten up, as he did this time. I can’t imagine him being part of any type of organized, planned attempt to assault a bunch of people. I don’t know anything about Visconti. I’ve seen Lomelino around town and he occasionally acts aggressive towards people. What’s interesting is that Brittany Vitale is married to a FCSO deputy assigned to the jail, and Samantha Lutz is the daughter of a relatively high ranking member of FCSO. Being somewhat acquainted with Steven Brown’s drunken habits, this is what I think happened: Steven got drunk and began bothering/making advances towards Brittany and Samantha, and, as has happened in the past, got badly beaten for his drunken behavior. Both ladies are a part of an extended group of friends, a “crew”, many of whom are cops. They hang around in various bars in town and are often aggressive, and I’ve even seen them take people “out back” and beat them up. I think one of the “victims” in this incident dates another “victim”. Because of the law enforcement component of this episode, I hope everything is fully investigated by the FCSO and hopefully by FlaglerLive. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a lot more to this than what the “witnesses” are saying. The two men who got arrested seemed to have been severely beaten. I wouldn’t be surprised if FCSO is sued for mishandling this case and possibly even suppressing evidence.

  8. Perrin says:

    Oh, and incidentally, the family of the FCSO deputy assigned to the jail (mentioned in my earlier comment) did a fund raiser party for the Sheriff. Nothing to do with the case but interesting nevertheless. It doesn’t surprise me that the two young men who were severely beaten, got arrested and had very high bails, the “victims” have friends and family in very high places!

  9. John Smith says:

    These two punks got just what they deserve. I suppose they will be crying stand your ground since they are the ones who got the beating. They need to be in jail.

  10. ANONYMOUSAY says:

    @clint: No citizen anywhere who truly fears for their life needs a law to tell them when to protect themselves or their family. But it seems people these days want a free pass to take a life, or take advantage of a law that is being cloaked to help the (individual himself depending on who they are) not whether it really was life or death or torture to begin with. We all have a God given right to defend ourselves and loved ones IF our lives truly are in danger, but we still have an obligation to do everything possible to yes make sure we’re safe but also not take a life because we can or because a weapon empowers one. It’s a false sense of security, shooting someone over a fist fight or because one won’t back down is barbaric. If we live by the sword we die by the sword.

  11. Flagler Beach says:

    Why do we keep letting people like this out of jail. They need about 10 years in jail because they have not learned from their past. I’m glad they picked a fight with the wrong people, guess the bandanas didn’t offer them much protection.

  12. knowsalittle says:

    Have to disagree with ANONOMOUSAY. If have a CCL and if these two had approached me and threatened me, as well as had a crowbar and threat of a weapon, I would not have hesitated to use my weapon. The vicitm’s in this case were doing nothing wrong and were attacked without provocation. Too bad these two were not shot and injured and/or killed. Two less thugs to worry about and have to pay for jail time.

  13. Eric says:

    I knew I would see these two on here eventually! Less than a month ago they tried to run me off the road on US1 (slowing down to 30 mph right in front of me, swerving across both lanes to prevent me from passing, etc.) and were driving very aggressively. How do I know it was these two jokers and not a different random black truck? Mr. Hoffman-Brown took the time to lean out the passenger side window and give me the finger while less than 20 feet in front of me. They both gave me the finger but the driver didn’t lean out the window to allow me to see his face. I couldn’t reach my cell phone at the time and wasn’t willing to come to a stop with them acting like that or I would have called the cops.

    Once they were done harassing me (not too long in real time but way too long in “stressful situation time”) they sped off at 100+ mph down US1. They almost t-boned a white car that was crossing over and misjudged how fast they were going. Mr. Hoffman-Brown again leaned out the window to give the finger to this unfortunate driver who happened to have crossed in front of them. By the time I reached my phone, they were out of sight down the road and I realized that I hadn’t gotten the license plate number.

    I would be pretty useless when it came to filing a report. I figured that boys who acted like that one day probably acted like that often enough that it would eventually catch up with them. Although, I initially expected to see the truck in a new series of horrific accident photos on here. I guess their behavior did catch up with them and was worse and more violent than I would have wished. I hope their consequences are severe.

  14. elaygee says:

    This is not the end of these two.

    • lawabidingcitizen says:

      @elaygee.. your absolutely right, unless the system works how it should and the go to prison. i cant say it enough, but Brown is a repeat offender when it comes to battering women, not to mention the 4 other times he has been to brough to jail (7 times just in this county) and Visconti tried running poeple over with his vehicle. this was no normal street fight, these kids were out to cause trouble… and trouble found them

      • nay says:

        Steven brown is my bestfriend i known him for oover 7 yrs he is not a women beater

        • lawabidingcitizem says:

          @ nay…. he has 3 battery charges (all 3 on women)… what would you call that. thats says alot about you, sticking up for somebody who hits woman.

  15. Dawg says:

    They don’t look so big and BAD now! Life in prison won’t get any better boys. Enjoy

  16. Kendall says:

    Have we learned why they did this? Were the people targeted for a reason such as a grudge? Were these guys trying to rob them or was this just for sport?

    Let’s hope they serve long, hard time.

  17. Geezer says:

    An innocent man was shot by a neighbor, on his own property in Flagler Beach.

    But these two cockroaches attempt to assault and run people over while DUI and get
    off with only three black eyes, and a little jail.

    Score: Cockroaches: 1, People of Flagler Beach: 0

  18. Anonymous says:

    @knowsalittle: You have the gun, so therefore you have the upper hand. No one is saying you can’t defend yourself. Just don’t look for a reason to take some one out when you could have tried other means to get away or quell the situation. But oh yeah, it’s ones right to kill another. Whatever. Everybody wants to be a cowboy and pull their gun. Go join a gang or some resistance group if you want to shoot people that bad. So many people have such a false sense of security due to gun ownership. If one wasn’t armed guaranteed they would retreat and find safety. When armed it becomes a showdown. This is coming from someone who USED to carry guns. If I had time to pull it I had time to leave. Your home is another matter.

  19. Mack says:

    @Art Woosley – what is this, Massachusetts circa 1691? Are you preparing to call the ladies out at 2am “common women” for having a drink with friends?

    All I have to say is that I’m glad these folks defended themselves and I hope the trend continues.

  20. jdub says:

    It seems to me these two were lucky to get out of this one alive. They should be thankful for that. It’s people like perrin (above) who try to incite that there is more to the story than what is being reported. I wonder if you he/she is a family member or friend. Why is it people always look to conspiracy theories instead of facts. The two criminals picked the wrong group to assault. Period. Should we now feel sorry for them for getting their assess handed to them? I think not. With violent records and no regard for public safety, they got what they deserved. Almost!!

  21. Outsider says:

    If you’re young, go out to the bars and drink alcohol, and act like an asshole, this will happen to you. My only complaint is that these jerks are ruining our county.

  22. Honest Abe says:

    @ Perrin, this is Flagler Beach PD case, not the county. You have seen both of these guys act aggressive in the past and you believe one needs therapy, yet in your following breaths manage to say “I wouldn’t be surprised if FCSO is sued for mishandling this case and possibly even suppressing evidence”.

  23. Jennifer says:

    I wonder what the real story is here? Something is not adding up. Why were they targeted?

    If the victims husband is an officer was her husband one of the 4 men in her car?

    • lawabidingcitizen says:

      @ jennifer, why does there have to be more to the story. these are 2 trouble makers, who used bandanas to conceal themselves (not normal) then smashed a window out of an innocent womans vehicle (not normal) THEN tried running over poeple with their vehicle (not normal) and the end result was the victims stood their ground and 2 violent poeple got beaten up. From what i have gathered, the victims husband was not one of the 4 mens involved. he was working

  24. Karen says:

    I have to honest and say that the moment I read the comment these two yelled at people using the f-bomb, I couldn’t read anymore. It’s bad enough that we’re subjected to people spewing this around us, but to have the news print it is horrible. Is there no editting? Of course, from the comments, it didn’t seem to bother anyone else. Seems society is becoming very desensitized to foul language whether spoken or written. Just hope no young people use this news source for anything. This is rather classless. You just couldn’t have written f*** or anything similar than the full word???? Just saying!


    [Karen, at FlaglerLive we find the expression "just sayin'" a lot more objectionable than foul words in their proper, illustrative context, and have been editing that expression out of comments.--FL]

    FL — Sorry if ‘just saying’ offends you. But using foul language is definitely worse. You surely didn’t have to print the word out to get the point of the article across. And there is nothing proper about foul words. Except that maybe a bar of soap is in the picture. And my use of the words ‘just saying’ were to denote my own personal opinion and no one else.–K

  25. Perrin says:

    @jdub, perhaps you are one of the “victims” or even one of the arresting officers? Or perhaps a corrections officer at the jail? I’m definitely not related to Steven or the other accused. As I said, I don’t know Visconti, ans have never seen him. I have only seen Steven a couple of times around town. I am not sympathetic towards him and if he did this, he needs to be punished. At the very least, he needs rehab and therapy. From what I’ve seen and heard, Steven, when not drunk, is like an air-head, and lost. When he drinks, he becomes aggressive and inappropriate, but always gets beaten up because he is little. He certainly doesn’t seem capable of planning, organizing and carrying out an attack on a large group of people, some of whom were probably law enforcement. @Honest Abe, thanks for pointing out the area was under Flagler PD jurisdiction. I don’t quite know the difference, but I am sure the two departments are very close, and there is a county jail component to this. I didn’t say these two men are innocent, I merely stated, from what I know and have heard about both parties, and the fact that the two men were so badly beaten up, many feel there is more to this than meets the eye! For example, just yesterday, I heard both men don’t have skinned knuckles, usually indicative of a violent attack. I also heard the family had asked for an investigation. This is all talk and again, I admit I might be wrong, but the circumstances of this whole episode and the family connections of the victims, raise red flags in many people’s minds. That’s why I hope there is an investigation.

    • Astonished says:

      When two men follow three women at 2 am with bandanas on their face to the car, maybe next time they should watch for the boyfriend and his friends coming around the corner. Conspiracy? Really? There were no off duty police in the victims party and it’s hard for officers or their families to hide or cover up something like what had happened that night. These girls are still picking glass out of the hair from when the two men hit the moving vehicle window with the tire iron. These boys should be in jail.

  26. Pillars of the community! says:

    Ol’ homeboy on the right is not a quick learner like his boy on the left! I guess the object of a street fight is to avoid the incoming punches. It looks like his face took the brunt of the situation. If I ever got beat that bad I would give up street fighting for good, maybe think about giving up alcohol as well. Sounds like these boys are allergic to alcohol, everytime they drink they break out in handcuffs! Them ol’ beer muscles really helping you out now huh? What a bunch of wusses! Embarrassments, not only did you get your a**es handed to you, you got pinched!

  27. GoodFella says:

    It does seem like their is more to this story, I cannot imagine two guys just randomly picking a confrontation with people that they do not know.

  28. David says:

    What keeps attracting these low life to our county ? It’s certainly can’t be jobs. It’s time to clean up the scrums here in Flagler and run them out of here. We don’t need this crap.

  29. vox says:

    Observation from a bystander….I got there before the cops, and this report at Flagler Live is spot on accurate. I stayed there thru most of the investigation. There were no ulterior motives, conspiracies or anything else. FBPD was first on the scene and supported by FCSO, and everyone was given the benefit of the doubt until a full investigation was completed. Brown was transported from the scene by ambulance because of the severity of his injuries, Visconti was escorted back to the scene in his own truck, and was allowed to leave in his own truck to return to FBPD for further investigation. All reports at the scene corroborated, and the forensic evidence at the scene supported the statements. End of story. Excessively high bail was the result of the number of charges and the fact they masked their faces with the bandanna. Sometimes, it is what it is.

  30. flaglerguy says:

    @David, they come here because they can’t make it anywhere else. That would be my guess. Would a deadbeat really want to live in a city where jobs were plentiful and people actually had some sort of ambition? Flagler County is a FREE pass to most, with decent weather year round…and a healthy supply of pills to keep them ‘in business.’ Plus, if you ever get thrown in jail here, regardless of the crime, your likely to eat a meal or two, and then get released.

  31. FB Sarah says:

    When your at the bar at 2am, especially Walts, there’s nothing good that can come out of it…Maybe all the “Palm Coasters” should just stay home, or on their side of the turf..I’m sure the cops have video, Walts has like 10 cameras…I don’t see what the big deal is, it was just another fight, where they got caught this time, spanked, throwing in jail, huge bail set and in the end they’ll prob just receive drug court, where the system will make more money off them.. Just another Day in Flagler County….boo freaking hoo!

    • lawabidingcitizen says:

      just another fight….just another fight doesnt involve a man swinging a crowbar at females, or closed fist punching females, or one step further, trying to run poeple over with a vehicle. where i come from, a man doesnt hit, push, disrespect a female, if you want to fight, its man to man, one on one,. and what is this “West Side Story”, i didnt know that there was seperated turf around here…. ill say it again. Brown and his buddy put bandanas over their faces (premeditated) and had a crow bar and assaulted and battered numerous poeple, until their weapon got knowcked out of their hands, then got beat up. i’m sure if you were the victim, you would want to prosicute to the fullest. and the incident didnt take place in “Walts” it happened on the side street as the victims were leaving.

      • Clint says:

        Personally, I know some females that would kick your butt if you played that gentleman “crap” with them. Male or female, makes NO difference. You get physically abusesive your going to get your butt handed to you or worse.

        • lawabidingcitizem says:

          i agree, im just saying. where i come from, a man doesnt hit a woman, reguardless of the circumstance. But to hit a woman, for no reason at all, is disgusting, that should not be tolerated

  32. mw says:

    Grandma allways said nothing good happens after midnight!

  33. jester says:

    I know Steven, he was a good kid, a trouble kid but he had a good heart. I don’t know what happened to him, weather it was drinking or drugs, but I hope he get the help he needs. I love you “Super Bitch” get your shit together!!

  34. Flylikeabrick says:

    They got what they deserved! Dont associate these kids with this neck of the woods. These guys had something to prove and did not accomplish that. The gentleman who dished out the beating is a stand up guy. A crowbar, bandanas, and harassing woman… These guys need to be in the ground or in jail. Good old fashioned street justice if you ask me. The proof is in the pudding. Repeat offenders, weapons, masks, and piss poor morals. Throw the book at em. Then beat em with it.

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