Aug 042018
 

By Amber Nolan

A Marathon man who made online threats to commit a school shooting at Marathon High School has been sentenced to six months in jail followed by at least four years on probation. The threats were made on February 17 – just days after the deadly Parkland, Fla. school shooting – and the same day that a large musical event was planned at the Marathon High School.

On Wednesday, August 1, Duviel Gonzalez, 20, pleaded no contest to making threats to kill or do bodily injury (a second-degree felony) and a misdemeanor count of possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana. Judge Ruth Becker, adjudicated him guilty on both counts.

Gonzalez posted photos on Instagram with the words “Marathon High school Your on my list for 2 Round” and another showing a photo of a man holding an assault rifle with his face half-covered with the words “Round 2 of Florida tomorrow.” He also wrote, “Marathon you will be next,” and posted a photo of five shotguns with the words, “Obviously can’t wait for These bad boys to get into work.”

After several people responded to the posts by questioning him and calling him “sick,” he added, “No don’t worry for sure I know you won’t be there but damn right I have enough ammo for Every classroom.” Someone responded, “Don’t kill me plz.”

According to a report from Detective David Fernandez, on the day of the threats, “several concerned students, parents and faculty members” of Marathon and Key West high schools called police after seeing the posts. “All parties expressed extreme fear for the safety of their children.”

After an investigation into the account, a search warrant was issued to the home of an individual who owned the phone that the threats were traced to. She told investigators she had loaned her phone to Gonzalez. When Gonzalez drove up in a car,  a U.S Border Patrol agent’s K-9 dog “alerted” to the smell of marijuana and the car was searched. Gonzalez was arrested for marijuana possession for a small marijuana cigarette.

Gonzalez admitted to police to making the threats to the Marathon High School using the borrowed phone. He also admitted it during several recorded calls from the Monroe County Detention Center.

In another post, referring to the guns, he wrote, “I can actually carry it and I have more guns just not going to need it all for a few people I hate in that school.” The specific victim responded, “Whatever u attention whore.” Gonzalez responded, “Lol you earned your self one or 2 in your face.”

Gonzalez’ threats were posted the same day Marathon High was hosting a countywide band competition including Key West and Coral Shores high schools, an event hundreds people were attending. The competition went forward with heightened security.

In addition to jail (166 days credit for time served), Judge Becker ordered Gonzalez to serve five years of probation. He is eligible to apply for release after four if he meets certain terms. During that time, he can’t have access to social media and is banned from all Monroe County School District properties.

Fines include $6,400 for the cost of the investigation, $398 in court costs and $100 for the cost of prosecution. In addition, he must perform 250 hours of community service, go through a substance-abuse evaluation, receive psychological counseling and have no contact with the specific person he threatened in his posts. On the marijuana charge, his driver’s license was revoked for one year.

Assistant State Attorney, Christine Poist, consulted with the victim and her parents, schools Superintendent Mark Porter, the School Board, Sheriff Rick Ramsay and officers involved in the case, and the FBI When deciding what to seek as punishment.

 

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Amber Nolan
Amber Nolan is a restless travel writer who calls Key West home. Her work has appeared on USA Today, About.com, Cruise Critic, Frommers, and several other travel publications. Amber’s most unusual project involved hitchhiking on small airplanes to 49 states, during which time she spent two years on the road, or rather, “on the skyways.” She is currently working on a book that documents the unusual journey and provides insight into the aviation community. Before getting into travel writing, Amber worked for an activist, investigative newspaper in London, so joining forces with the Blue Paper allows her to go back to her muckraking roots. She has a bachelor's degree in journalism.
 August 4, 2018  Posted by at 2:10 pm crime, Crime, News  Add comments

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