Update: The domestic battery charge against Winston Slaughter was dropped in September. In the other case, detailed below, he waived counsel and pleaded guilty to one count of criminal mischief, a first degree misdemeanor, and sentenced on Oct. 17, 2015, to 12 months’ probation.
In late July, Winston Slaughter, a 21-year-old resident of 3 Farragut Drive in Palm Coast, was arrested on a domestic battery charge, and will be arraigned next Monday on that first degree misdemeanor. But Slaughter now faces more serious charges: two counts of felony criminal mischief, stemming from the aftermath of a road rage incident in which he’s accused of pouring paint and corrosive liquid on cars belonging to a neighbor and the neighbor’s wife.
The road rage incident, according to Slaughter’s arrest report, took place the evening of Aug. 28. The report states that the other man involved in the incident is unknown. But that man followed Slaughter to his house, where the two men then fought. Slaughter was struck in the face and sustained a laceration below the left eye and some swelling–an injury clearly visible in his mug shot subsequently taken at his jail booking.
Later that evening, Slaughter left his house and close by in the same neighborhood located the white Ford pick-up truck that matched the description of the one the man who’d allegedly struck him was driving earlier that day. The arrest report states that Slaughter then spray-painted the truck on the front hood, the windshield, the passenger side front fender and the headlights, along with a few other places. Another substance, possibly brake fluid, was poured on the front hood.
The pick-up truck belongs to Marcus Harvell. “It appears,” the report states, that Slaughter “caused the damage as retaliation for the road rage incident which turned physical.”
Early the morning of Aug. 29, Slaughter’s father, Timothy Slaughter, reported to the Sheriff’s Office that his son told him he’d done the damage to the pick-up truck, believing the truck belonged to the man who’d struck him. The following day, however, a sheriff’s deputy went to Harvell’s home to ask him whether he’d been involved in any sort of altercation with Slaughter Thursday evening. Harvell denied being involved in any such altercation.
By then, Harvell had noticed scratch marks in addition to the paint and fluid damage to the pick-up truck: that damage had not been apparent the first time the damage had been reported. Nor was the damage to Harvell’s wife’s car: it was scratched on the hood. “It appears,” the report states, “the suspect returned to the residence and damaged the vehicle a second time after seeing the paint was cleaned off.”
Slaughter’s home is a few hundred yards away from Harvell’s around a corner. Saturday morning, Slaughter’s father acknowledged to deputies that his son had left the house at about 1 a.m. that morning on his motorized scooter, whose battery died, requiring Slaughter’s father to pick up his son at 3 a.m. Deputies concluded that the second round of damage to the cars took place between those times. Slaughter denied being involved and said he knew nothing about the incidents, but declined to speak with police beyond that.
Slaughter was arrested on two counts of felony criminal mischief and burglary.