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A “Cop” Faces Weapons Charge After Temperamental Confrontation at Palm Coast Gas Station

| September 6, 2017

The incident took place at the Mobil gas station on Palm Coast's Pine Lakes Parkway Tuesday evening. (© FlaglerLive)

The incident took place at the Mobil gas station on Palm Coast’s Pine Lakes Parkway Tuesday evening. (© FlaglerLive)

Justin Digeorgio, a 23-year-old resident of Palm Coast’s Panorama Drive, faces a charge of improper exhibition of a weapon after he allegedly pointed a gun at another person at a very busy Pine Lakes Parkway gas station, where Digeorgio allegedly cut through a long line to a gas pump. The incident took place around 8 p.m. Tuesday (Sept. 5).

Digeorgio repeatedly identified himself as a “cop” to the alleged victim and to a Flagler County Sheriff’s deputy, according to his charging affidavit, but was not able to show a badge or identification to the deputy seeking to verify the information.

Sheriff Rick Staly said Digeorgio is a non-sworn bailiff at the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office. “I personally reached out to sheriff Williams last night,” Staly said, referring to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams, “to let him know what we were investigating.”

Staly pointed to the incident to urge residents to be more patient at stores and gas stations during the Hurricane Irma emergency. “We’re all in the same boat, so let’s try to help our neighbors and work as a community – as a team – to prepare for the hurricane,” Staly said. “Our agency is in full hurricane reparation mode so that we will be ready to assist you throughout this storm event.”

“We’re all in the same boat, so let’s try to help our neighbors and work as a community.”

Two witnesses told the deputy that they saw a man at the gas pump holding a space for his 44-year-old wife to pull in after he’d waited in line. The witnesses then saw Digeorgio skip the line and back up into the spot in his Honda, where the man was standing. The man, a 60-year-old resident of Palm Coast, then confronted Digeorgio as Digeorgio continued to back up his car, to the point that it collided with the Toyota truck the man’s wife was driving. The witnesses heard Digeorgio yell out to the man that he was a cop, and to back up.

As the man described it, he’d told Digeorgio, “you can’t do this,” and Digeorgio pulled out a gun as he was yelling to him to back up. At one point the man placed himself between the Honda and the Toyota and was knocked down as the Honda kept backing up, though the investigating deputy reported that no collision between the Honda and the man was visible on surveillance camera. The man was not injured.

As Digeorgio described it, according to the charging report, “when he pulled up to the gas pump, a man got out of his vehicle and began yelling at him saying that he was next and to get in line. [Digeorgio told] him that he was in line but on the other side of the gas station.” The man, according to Digeorgio, began to yell and punched the trunk of the Honda, telling his wife to bring her car over. Digeorgio said he called 911 at that point, and told he man he was “a deputy with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.” As the confrontation and the yelling continued, with the man telling Digeorgio “I don’t give a fuck that you’re a cop,” Digeorgio says he pulled his gun after repeatedly telling him to “back up” because he was in fear for his safety (Digeorgio was in his car the whole time, and the man, who was black, was not armed). The loaded 9mm gun had been in his waistband.

The man then said, “shoot me,” Digeorgio claims, before the man’s wife led him back to his car.

When the investigating deputy reviewed surveillance footage, it showed the man holding the spot when Digeorgio reversed into it, then shows the two men exchanging words after the older man had walked up to Digeorgio’s window. The footage records the man falling, but not the car striking him.

Digeorgio was not arrested. He faces a misdemeanor charge, which was forwarded to the State Attorney’s Office for review. The weapon was seized as evidence.

This evening, the Mobil gas station on Pine Lakes was busy, but there were no lines.

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24 Responses for “A “Cop” Faces Weapons Charge After Temperamental Confrontation at Palm Coast Gas Station”

  1. The Geode says:

    To be honest, I can almost see the justification of anger aimed at some INCONSIDERATE codger “saving a spot for his wife”. What makes HER so special that she can’t wait like everybody else? Why did they have the need to fill up EVERY car they had? If anything happened, I’m sure they would have driven ONE car. People are too gluttonous and greedy when consideration is needed.

  2. Who are you kidding. Another day in paradise. Another day in hell. says:

    Oh dear God. Where do they think they are going any way. This the end we are all going to die. Good bye everybody goodbye🤓

  3. Kathleen Vacchelli says:

    There were many witnesses there and 2 young male bystanders called 911.and said that there was a man at the gas station brandishing a gun. When the police arrived they went straight to the black couple. That is when the young men said that it was Digeorgio who was the aggressor and had the gun. Also Digeorgio called the man a nigga. This man’s life was in danger. He could of been shot because he was black. On the back of Digeorgio’s car was a sign that said “Police Lives Matter”. The loaded 9mm gun had been in his waistband with his hand on it. Sheriff Rick Staly said Digeorgio is a non-sworn bailiff at the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office. I don’t think this makes him a cop??? Only a misdemeanor !!! Did he think he did not have to wait in a line like the rest of us. This could of all been avoided if Digeorgio had waited in line like everyone else.

  4. hypocrites says:

    Of course there’s no charges, he’s a pig! They don’t investigate and CERTAINLY don’t charge their own kind, that’s just the way they see it. He may not be a real, sworn-in officer, but he’s close enough that the police don’t give a shit about his crimes. It’s okay though, the jackass will point the gun at someone again, and eventually it will be aimed at the wrong person.

  5. Sw says:

    How do you not reslize that the CAMERAS are rolling everywhere “COP”.And even if you were a COP you dont cut in line at a gas pump chump. IDIOT smh

  6. Old Lady says:

    Hurricane frenzy strikes again

  7. Bc. says:

    What right did that man have to hold a spot if everyone did that it would be a nightmare trying to get gas. Sounds to me the older man got very aggressive and I am sure the Jacksonville man had every rite to protect himself. If no car was at that pump that pump is available period…

  8. Amy says:

    He needs to be arrested. Point blank period.

  9. Geroge says:

    Cop pulls gun on unarmed man, no arrest. Man pulls gun on cop, gets shot to death. Seems legit.

  10. Tiggy says:

    Flagler Live,

    The way the headline of this story reads is disingenuous and inflammatory. Why stir the pot when it is not necessary? It is clearly stated the employee is not a sworn officer. He doesn’t have any of the constitutional powers of arrest.

    • FlaglerLive says:

      Digeorgio repeatedly referring to himself as a “cop” was central to the incident developing as it did. That’s why the quote marks around the word. Ignoring the fact would be disingenuous. We fail to see how the headline is “inflammatory,” unless you’re implying that cops in any context somehow are sacred cows and should not have their profession aggrieved by fact. If so, we disagree.

  11. Conscious says:

    It’s because this couple is black that you all are outraged he held a spot for his wife to get gas. People have been filling up buckets of excess gas for their families in case of an emergency. There is no justification for a man/cop/un-sworn bailiff to pull a gun on a pedestrian period and use a FALSE title to assert himself as more important than this man trying to help his family prepare for this storm. Amerikkka at its finest.

  12. JasonB says:

    How exactly does someone claim to be a cop and brandish a gun, and not get arrested? Just a misdemeanor, really?

  13. HonkeyDude says:

    Yes. ~FL

    Flagler Live can you please answer one question….. Was the firearm seized as EVIDENCE?

  14. Just the truth says:

    Please people keep your cool now is not the time to lose your patients.

  15. Born and Raised Here says:

    Us Native Floridians don’t act like that, had to be folks from New York. This county is full of them.

  16. Dave says:

    Where is the justice in Flagler County? Where is the Sheriff and why won’t he protect his citizens from this police thug? And then the Sheriff has the nerve to tell the people to be on good behavior while it’s the cop brandishing a gun causing trouble. Internal Affairs! INTERNAL AFFAIRS! I really hope the victim sues

  17. Anonymous says:

    No doubt another internal investigation and then 3 days off with pay. This guy is not above the law and needs to be arrested. There needs to be an age requirement of min 35 to be an officer…..too many kids out there pretending to be adults.

  18. New Yorker 13 says:

    This guy should of been arrested , he pulled a gun on the gentlemen which is agg. assault which is a third degree felony and a jail sentence up to 5 years in jail.

  19. Joe says:

    It is too easy to become a police officer in this country.
    Many immature boys who don’t know what to do with their lives and just want power and authority over others and good benefits go into this job.
    An officer’s job is not to be a self-serving immature thug. Your job is to serve and protect american citizens.
    This arrogant boy with bad nerves should be banned from police enforcement for endangering the lives of others over gas. How will he handle more serious situations when he becomes an actual police officer? Probably, just shoot before think.

  20. The Geode says:

    Conscious – I am BLACK. I am also the first comment you see castigating “the codger” for holding a place in line. At the time, I had no idea of the race of the couple – NOR DID I CARE. It is wrong to try and skip those who’s time and patience is as valuable and as short as yours. This isn’t about “race” it’s about inconsiderate ass-hats who think their wants and rights supersede everybody else’s.

  21. Heading North says:

    He’s NOT a police officer, he’s nothing more than a court bailiff, civilian.
    And yes, he needs to be prosecuted, no question!

  22. Robin says:

    On the state of Florida, it is an offense under Florida law to display a dangerous weapon in an angry, careless, or threatening manner. Improper Exhibition of a Firearm and/or Improper Display of a Weapon are crimes governed by Florida Statute 790.10. This man is not a sworn officer and should have been arrested at the scene but instead our lame deputies let him go. We have one of the worst sheriff’s offices in the land. We were pulled over in our development and told we did not stop in the proper place behind the stop sign when the law clearly says you can pull forward until you have clear visibility to see into the intersection. The deputy had to issue an apology to us and learn the law correctly. I guess this deputy was to scared to fight real crime so instead trolls communities to write citizens what he thought would be a traffic citation. This is the kind of deputies Flagler County has. There is no excuse. This man should have been arrested and booked into the jail. He also claimed to be a police officer which is also illegal. He should be arrested and fired from his job as he is a disgrace.

  23. Robin says:

    Our sheriff should not be investigating the “matter”. He should be investigating why this man banishing a weapon was not arrested by his deputies. There is no excuse for not arresting this guy.

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