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Dayonte Resiles held without bond after Broward County courthouse escape

Judge orders mental health evaluation for murder suspect

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A 21-year-old murder suspect who was arrested five days after escaping from the Broward County courthouse appeared before a judge Thursday afternoon.

Dayonte Resiles was apprehended late Wednesday night in room 149 of the Days Inn on 45th Street in West Palm Beach.

Broward County Judge Michael Davis ordered that Resiles be held without bond. He also ruled that Resiles be isolated from the general population and have his communication limited to his attorney.

After issuing his ruling, the judge asked Resiles if he understood.

"No, I don't understand," Resiles said.

Davis then explained his decision once more.

Resiles' attorney objected to one of the judge's stipulations.

"It should not be up to the Broward Sheriff's Office to determine when and where I can meet with my client, or if I can meet with my client in person," defense attorney Dohn Williams said.

Davis said no other inmates would be allowed in the visitation area while he meets with his attorney, raising another objection that led to a private meeting in the judge's quarters.

After everyone returned and Davis made his final ruling, Resiles raised his hand to speak.

"I believe that it would be unconstitutional, as well as unfair, to restrain and restrict me from being able to converse and talk and meet with my immediate family," Resiles told the judge. "I mean, how would they know about, as far as my well-being or if something's wrong with me or if I'm, like, mentally disturbed or going through anything, how would I be able to converse and talk with them?"

"Do you feel mentally disturbed?" Davis asked Resiles.

"I mean, I'm not saying I feel mentally disturbed, but not saying that I won't," Resiles said.

That prompted Davis to order a mental health evaluation. Williams objected, saying that it could be used against his client.

"He's telling me that he's got an issue," Davis said.

"He said he might have an issue," Williams said.

"I never stated that I had any issues," Resiles said.

"Well, he's raising the issue with me, and so now my concern is that he may be a danger to himself," Davis said.

Resiles escaped from the courthouse Friday, prompting a nationwide manhunt for the murder suspect. Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said a tip led Broward Sheriff's Office detectives to the motel.

"He came out of the room. He surrendered without incident," Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said during a news conference early Thursday morning. "He laid on the ground. He allowed us to handcuff him. No force was necessary. As I said, he's back in custody, and Broward County and South Florida is a safer place."

Resiles was awaiting a hearing when he escaped from the downtown Fort Lauderdale courthouse, eluding two unarmed bailiffs. He took off his jumpsuit, handcuffs and shackles during his escape. Surveillance video showed him running out of the courthouse wearing a white T-shirt and black shorts.

The escaped inmate is charged in the 2014 death of Jill Halliburton Su, whose body was found in a bathtub in her Davie home.

"We had a man who was on trial for murder," Israel said. "The state attorney is seeking the death penalty. It doesn't get more serious than that, and for him to be back in custody is a sense of relief."

Seven people have been arrested in connection with the escape, including inmate Walter Hart, who is accused of helping Resiles get out of his shackles before his escape.

Resiles' cousin, Francine Mesadieu, 31, and his friend, Paige Jackson, 18, both of Fort Lauderdale, were arrested Wednesday.

According to an arrest affidavit, Mesadieu gave Resiles a wig, eye color-changing contacts and clothing in an effort to help him conceal his identity.

Another arrest affidavit said that Jackson spoke to Resiles on the telephone at least 15 times between July 4 and July 7. Detectives believe she set up a series of three-way calls in order to help Resiles plan his escape.

Mesadieu and Jackson faced a Broward County judge Thursday morning. Mesadieu, who was already on probation, was ordered to be held without bond.

Jackson's bond was set at $50,000. Her mother almost collapsed in court when a prosecutor suggested a bond of $150,000 to $200,000.

The judge also ruled that Jackson, who is pregnant, must remain on house arrest if she gets out of jail.

LaQuay Stern, 18, of Palm Bay; Winston Russell Jr., 22, of Sunrise; and twins Kretron Barnes and TreVon Barnes, 17, of West Palm Beach, also face charges for their alleged roles in the escape.

Israel previously said that the twins sat in the courtroom while Stern and Russell waited in her silver BMW on the north side of the courthouse. He said one of the twins coughed into a cellphone as Resiles made his getaway, signaling to Stern and Russell that Resiles was on his way to the car.

Israel said the BSO received a slew of fake tips during their investigation.

"There was a lot obstruction and, you know, the folks that our investigators crossed paths with were not very helpful," Israel said.

A $50,000 reward was offered for information leading to Resiles' arrest.

"At this point, there will be some people that are probably eligible for the award," Israel said.

Resiles was returned to the main county jail -- "his final resting place," as Israel called it -- early Thursday morning.

Israel said he had a brief encounter with Resiles after he was caught.

"I just looked at him and he said, 'The sheriff's here,'" Israel said.


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