Alex Fregulia, 18, of Whispering Pine Drive, and Leonardo Silva, 20, of Briarview Lane in Palm Coast, each faces felony charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, a first-degree felony, and battery on a person 65 or older, a third-degree felony, following an alleged assault on a 70-year-old man that may have been triggered by a road-rage incident Friday.
The alleged victim was heading to Golden Corral off Cypress Edge Drive with his 65-year-old wife for lunch early Sunday afternoon when, according to his account to deputies, a vehicle cut him off, forcing to slam on his brakes.
When he pulled into the Lowe’s parking lot near Golden Corral and got out of his vehicle with his wife, Alex Fregulia, 18, and Leonardo Silva, 20, rushed him and punched him, and one of them got a golf club “and struck him several times on the back and once on the head,” he told Flagler County sheriff’s deputies. He had the marks on his back , his right elbow and the side of his right knee to show the deputies, to whom he spoke as paramedics were tending to his injuries in an ambulance bay. Paramedics parted the hair on his neck to show an injury there, too.
The two younger men, the alleged victim said, were laughing the whole time, calling him an “old man.” When he attempted to get back in his truck, he said they pulled him out again, laughing, and continued to beat him before getting back in their car and driving to a different part of the parking lot.
The alleged victim’s wife corroborated the account, describing how Silva and Fregulia almost ran into her husband’s truck, rolled down their windows and made obscene gestures while yelling. They then pulled into the Lowe’s parking lot as her husband was exiting his truck. And as he told them that they needed to drive safely, they rushed him, knocked him to the ground and laughed as they beat him, she said, one of them using a golf club.
As Fregulia described it to deputies, the “old guy,” as he called the alleged victim, beeped his horn and followed him and Silva into the parking lot: it was the alleged victim, not them, who parked next to the younger men, Fregulia said, and the alleged victim who started the verbal altercation. Fregulia told deputies that the older man kicked him in the stomach and punched Silva in the face, “so I engaged the old guy,” Fregulia said. He said he was defending himself.
The two younger men then walked back to their car, alleging that the “old guy approached the car with a golf club and started poking me through the window with it,” Fregulia said. The alleged victim then broke the golf club, according to Fregulia, so he threw it at the two younger men, ran back to his car and told his wife to notify authorities and claim that the golf club belonged to Fregulia and Silva, not to him. (In fact, the golf club belonged to the younger men, a deputy noted.)
Fregulia declined medical attention. “It should be noted that there were no visible injuries observed” on him, a sheriff’s report states.
Silva told deputies that the alleged victim’s vehicle honked at theirs after they passed him, and when both pulled into the parking lot, an altercation started. The altercation became physical when, according to Silva, the alleged victim “got out of the car and confronted my friend Alex and tried kicking him. I told him to back up, then he came close and punched me in the face so I started hitting him back and Alex jumped in after he got hit in the face.”
The two younger men thought the confrontation was over, only to see the alleged victim come at them with the golf club. According to Silva, the alleged victim “shoved it in the passenger window where my friend was sitting more than once, repeatedly attacking him until he broke the club.” Silva says he then “got out of the car with the other half to scare him, but then he tried to attack me with the other side but missed, so I hit him back for self defense.”
Silva declined medical attention and declined to pursue charges, but said the alleged victim “would try to be petty” about the incident and “lie about this.” Silva also showed no visible injuries, a deputy reported.
A man independent of both parties witnessed part of the altercation, though not the way it started. He told a deputy that he saw the two younger men beat up the older man. Golden Corral did not have cameras pointed in the direction where the incident took place, and Lowe’s told investigators that its cameras don’t reach that far.
“My investigation revealed inconsistencies with [Silva’s] and [Fregulia]’s statements, specifically with their accounts of how the altercation ended,” a deputy reported. “It should be noted, that the injuries present on [the alleged victim] were significant enough for him to seek medical attention, and were consistent with defensive action and will possibly [result in] scarring.”
“I obtained the golf club used during the incident, which was determined to have belonged to Leonardo as it was retrieved from his vehicle,” the deputy reported.
A conviction of aggravated battery on a person 65 or older carries a maximum prison term of 30 years, and a minimum-mandatory prison sentence of three years and up to a $10,000 fine and up to 500 hours of community service. The battery on a person 65 or older is a third-degree felony. Bond was set at $2,500 for each of the two alleged attackers. Fregulia had posted bail by the time this story published. Silva had not. Their arraignment is set for March 30.
I could have swore the Commanders report said this “DisturbanceWeapons
20-15541 Cypress Edge Dr
Road rage incident; both vehicles pulled into Lowes, elderly male
was upset that he was cut off and wished to speak with the driver
that cut him off. V1 (Elderly man) approached the vehicle on the passenger side
and the passenger exited and punched him in the face. At that time
the driver of the vehicle exited the vehicle and approached V1 Elderly man. V1 Elderly man
retreated to his vehicle and grabbed a 4-iron. The Elderly male threw the
club at the two subjects and they began hitting him with it. The
male sustained injuries to his back, which were photographed; male
declined to be transported by rescue. The two males were arrested
for Battery over 65 and agg battery. See report by Deputy Nguyen
Palm Coaster says
The article stated it was determined the golf club was owned by and belonged to Leonardo :
“I obtained the golf club used during the incident, which was determined to have belonged to Leonardo as it was retrieved from his
vehicle,” the deputy reported.
(In fact, the golf club belonged to the younger men, a deputy noted.)
James Saridis says
Leonardo IS one of the younger men. Leonardo Silva. The old man’s identity is never revealed.
Under Section 776.012, Florida Statutes, a person is justified in the use of non-deadly force in self-defense where the person reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to defend himself or herself or another against such other’s imminent use of unlawful force. There is no duty to retreat. If the defendant is in his or her home or vehicle, then, under Section 776.013, Florida Statutes, the law will presume that the defendant had a reasonable fear of imminent death or bodily harm if the alleged victim unlawfully entered or remained or attempted to remove another person against their will. A person who unlawfully and by force enters or attempts to enter another’s home or vehicle is furthermore presumed to be doing so with the intent to commit an unlawful act involving force or violence. Per florida law these kids were obviously utilising there right to self defense.the law,unlike the flagler county sheriff’s department does not discriminate against age creed race ect.i see a major lawsuit in the near future
If this is indeed true than these charges will surely be dropped and this elderly gentleman may be charged with assault with a deadly weapon.
Dave click on this link.they the fcso will not charge a elderly person in a attack against a minority.its sad but true…https://www.fox35orlando.com/news/flagler-county-woman-shot-neighbor-and-puppy-with-bb-gun-deputies-say
Seems the police are very ignorant and closed minded here.sounds like these boys were merely defending themselves against a mad old man physically attacking them.i believe over a month ago a 75 year old mad woman shot a man and two puppies that was in the younger man’s yard.shot in head and leg both causing pain bleeding and swelling and on video yet she the 75 year old mad woman was charged with a misdemeanor only.sounds like our sheriff department is very discriminatory in age and properly charging ppl only when convenient to them….wow
Are you kidding me? It was the younger kids golf club! Sounds to me like these kids got mad that the older man confronted them about the way they were driving. There is no reason that this should have gotten physical. Yeah, maybe it wasn’t the best idea to confront them. But I’m sure he wasn’t expecting to get severely beaten. If they were defending themselves and the man did try getting physical, why would they need a golf club? It’s 2 against 1. Doesn’t sound like the wife was involved in much. These comments disgust me. A bunch of punk kids thinking it’s cool to beat people who can’t defend themselves as well as the kids their age.
One of the punk kids also said it was the older man’s club when it was their club. And said the man used it to poke them thru the window of their car. So they lied, why would you believe them?
It clearly states in the commander reports that the elderly man got the golf club out of his trunk and threw it at them.at watch time these teens then obviously defending themselves hit him the elderly man with the golf club that the elderly man initiated the attack with.this is horrible to attempt to destroy these kids lives for protecting themselves against a assuilt with a weapon that the elderly man started
Mary Fusco says
Mmpatiant, let’s be honest. They were all looking for an argument. The obnoxious kids have nothing better to do and the older man was hotheaded. If one car drove away, the whole incident would have been avoided. Welcome to the new Palm Coast. Isn’t it just grand?? Imagine how wonderful it is going to be in the future when all the new building is done and the roads and stores are even more crowded with crazies.
They should have gotten a higher bail for doing something like that. You can’t just beat up old people and get away with it. Lock these guys up and leave them in there. They need to get a lesson taught to have respect because apparently the were not taught at home!
Okay, Rule One. It’s Florida. Nearly everyone is armed and half of them are crazy. DO NOT engage with people. Drive straight ahead and ignore it. If you want to live in a safe place don’t choose Florida.
CB from PC says
Flagler County Sheriff’s Dept. and FHP need to patrol Palm Coast Pkwy., Route 1, Pine Lakes Pkwy and Belle Terre…especially at rush hours and on Saturday.
Palm Coast Pkwy. has routinely become a place where drivers accelerate to 65-70 mph and then swerve into a turning lane, cutting off others.
Points, fines and increased insurance costs are all these people will understand.
Sooner or later someone will escalate one of these local road rage incidents and make an irreversible decision.
Call 911 before even dealing with the situation.
It is time-consuming, but so are funerals and court appearances.
Concerned Citizen says
Aggresive driving is on the rise in this county. And there is nothing being done by the Sheriff’s Office about it.
Tailgaiting and flashing your lights at someone who is driving compliant makes no sense. Just pass them and go on. I work for a company that has a zero tolerance policy for accidents/tickets. I didn’t set the speed limit so if you’re unhappy with it then write the state or something. Why ruin my day because you didn’t plan yours accordingly?
Likewise when approaching construction zones it’s a requirement to slow down and abide by the reduced speed limit. Getting pissy with the driver in front of you isn’t helping. Do you not realize there are enhanced penalities for construction zones, school zones and? You’re also required to move over for public safety and utility vehicles.
Accountability for ones actions begins with the driver behind the wheel. Respect also goes along way.
Numerous reports are starting to trickle in in as many months about road rage. What are you going to do about it? Start taking action before someone gets killed.
The golf club belonged to the 20 year-old.
“I obtained the golf club used during the incident, which was determined to have belonged to Leonardo as it was retrieved from his
vehicle,” the deputy reported.
Seems like all parties were in the wrong here. I think all males involved should have went to jail.
Seems like the supposed “victim” here got a pass because of his age.
Name (required) says
This town shouldn’t have such problems, in such prevalence. This is a weird place. I blame the locals. Here’s a single dose of what a single week in January in this area is all about.. (from a News Journal article, Jan.) I mean what’s up with people? DO BETTER!
• Deputies charged a man on Jan. 20 for trespassing on a neighbor’s property on County Road 330 East.
• On Jan. 18, the boyfriend of a Mahogany Boulevard resident was charged with domestic battery after pushing his girlfriend into a bush during an argument.
• An employee of the Country Store on County Road 305 reported on Jan. 16 that a customer pumped $54.19 worth of fuel and left without paying on Jan. 14.
• An employee with Adams Homes reported on Jan. 20 that the stove was missing from a Llach Court model home.
• Passenger windows on vehicles of two Outback employees were smashed on Jan. 19 and wallets were stolen.
• A resident of Shinnecock Court reported jewelry missing on Jan. 19.
• On Jan. 18, a resident of Rae Drive reported an X-Box One and controller missing from his bedroom after his sister and her boyfriend moved out.
• A Toyota Camry that had been reported stolen out of Jacksonville was recovered on Jan. 18 after a traffic stop on Moody Boulevard and Colbert Lane.
• Publix on Belle Terre Parkway reported a shoplifter on Jan. 17 and the shoplifter was charged with retail theft.
• A Brookside Lane resident was charged with domestic battery, battery on a law enforcement officer and resisting arrest with violence on Jan. 17 after a domestic disturbance.
• Staff at Publix at Belle Terre Parkway reported finding five cylindrical objects with taped ends on a shelf on Jan. 17. Deputies reported the objects were not explosives.
• A Princess Kathleen Lane resident reported her stepfather pushing her mother during an argument on Jan. 15, and another family member reported the stepfather grabbing and punching multiple family members. He was arrested for domestic battery.
• A laser meter was reported stolen from an unlocked vehicle on Lake Success Drive on Jan. 15.
• On Jan. 15, a resident of Washwick Place was arrested for domestic battery after grabbing and throwing a woman during an argument, then taking her phone away as she tried to call 9-1-1.
• A driver on Kankakee Trail was flown to Orlando on Jan. 14 after receiving burns and cuts while he was trying to retrieve items from a burning vehicle.
• A resident of Beachway Drive reported the decal from her Florida tag stolen on Jan. 14.
• A man riding his bicycle on Waterside Parkway at Pelican Lane on Jan. 14 reported being bitten by a dog being walked by two women. Animal Control was notified.
• A Zoffer Court resident reported on Jan. 14 that two firearms that had been reported stolen were found in the home.
• The window of a car parked on Corporate Drive on Jan. 14 was smashed and a purse and laptop stolen. The stolen debit card was later used at a Dollar General store for $300.
Rey lucky the old guy was not a concealed permit holder. Most likely, there would be two dead teens. I for one, being 69, carry for defense everywhere I legally can.
You sir are the exact reason we need to do away with concealed carry.
With people like you ,there would have been a loss of life that day instead of just some minor injuries.
Cowards always reach for a gun.
No Dave, there could very well have been a dead senior citizen.
Dave [email protected] says
If you “certainly” dont want to shoot anyone then why carry a gun?
Either fight with your fists or mind your buissness. Last thing we need is anothwr coward with a gun in the streets.
How do you figure that? There was minor injuries ,put aside the fact that the old man followed them 1st and approached them 1st. Only fists thrown , as you see if there was no golf club no one would have gotten hit with it, now imagine a coward had a gun, could have been worse
Geezer Bill says
Never bring a golf club to a gun fight !
Especially a 4 iron. A Driver or 3 wood at least.
A constant vigil when driving to be safe these days. The equipment is much better but unfortunately the drivers not so much. It is not speed that kills but the difference in it. I see day after day the only option is to hit the brakes hard for many to avoid an accident then they blow the horn at the other car which was compliant. It is not just here but for a small Town, old and young alike , a high percentage of in a hurry , impatient, disrespectful people who feel they are more important and entitled. I am not in a hurry and wont drive to suit your style. Get over it.
Okay, so who WAS the true owner of the golf club, the “old man” or one of the young boys? Conflicting reports seems typical when it comes to actual events.
Someone in Flagler says
People are lucky it was just that. Where I’m from they would have killed the man or the man would have killed them. This is becoming a big problem in palm coast. I had someone honk at me the other day I ignored it because I don’t have time for this kinds of stuff. You don’t know what’s going through their heads. Trust me I work in psychiatry I see people with many disorders you don’t know what you are up against in your shift until it happens. Be safe out there and don’t engage with this behavior if someone wants to go fast let them. Speeding kills I’ve seen plenty of heads brought into the ED because people don’t want to obey the speed limit.
I applauded this morning seeing our unmarked sheriff stopping speeders in Old Kings Road North! Thank you sheriff! Need more of that so the one’s like above two cool off or move away.
Also thanks to city for patching up that section of OKR. Our sheriff has to keep stopping, ticketing and sending again to driving school class those speeders or traffic laws violators. The only language they understand is stop, ticket and pay! Now they took out the “No Construction Traffic” sign from Club House Drive and I saw this huge semi who’s load is wholesale tobacco …what the heck is he doing in our residential Club House Drive with no businesses on its length except the Shell station on corner of PCP that he didn’t go to? Maybe now without the signs Club House drive has become the new cut… oops “past” thru? Traffic is a mess of speeders thinking Palm Coast is the Daytona 500 Speedway and bully drivers that by the way toss their litter out the window as well contaminating and blighting our once pristine Palm Coast.
Semi trucks once in awhile make home deliveries.
Also its good to let the construction traffic on clubhouse to share the load with Florida Park Dr.
Also as people age they start to drive way too passively, always stay aggresive if you wish to have a smooth trip. Driving like a turtle and being comsiderate of others on the road will only get you hurt.
If you cant keep up with traffic these days maybe you should look into giving up your license and taking an uber or lyft.
To see you applauded when the cops gave out tickets is sad, those are your fellow citizens ,we need less cops not more around here.
At one time I was a cop. I arrested a lot of folks, many of them for aggressive driving. I still carry a gun as a citizen. These days, I know my place in society. I keep my head down and I drive defensively. The LAST thing on my mind is engaging other drivers. I don’t want to fight anymore and I certainly don’t want to shoot anyone. People make me angry in traffic, and I keep it to myself. There is absolutely no point in letting others get to you. You’ll end up dead, in the hospital, or in jail. So far, I guess I’ve been lucky.
America Rinaldi says
If the county Sheriffs Deputies had a crystal ball to see who was going to have road rage that would be all well and good. That was a ridiculous statement.
Exactly which part was ridiculous? If you’re not a police officer, what business do you have getting out of your car and confronting other motorists to discuss “traffic situations”. Do you really know who you’re dealing with? Are you prepared to kill someone, or be killed? Because that’s what’s society has degenerated to. Who’s ridiculous now?
Nobody drives the actual speed limit.
Everyone knows you drive 7 mph over whats posted or 5 mph at the least.
Alot of people in Palm Coast play road police by driving slow and not letting you pass instead of minding their buisness
If you prefer to go the speed limit thats fine but slower traffic keep right!