Broward County courthouse escapee prompts high security

Murder suspect Dayonte Resiles chooses attorney during courtroom appearance

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A murder suspect who escaped from the Broward County courthouse last month appeared in court Tuesday, and the Broward Sheriff's Office wasn't taking any chances. Heavily armed deputies surrounded him.

"What I need to know from you is do you plan on hiring a lawyer or do you want me to appoint Mr. Dohn Williams to handle this case as well?" Broward County Judge Raag Singhal asked Dayonte Resiles.

Resiles chose Williams, who represented him prior to the July 15 courthouse escape. The 21-year-old broke free from his handcuffs and shackles and spent five days on the run before he was caught at a Days Inn in West Palm Beach.

Twin brothers Kretron Barnes and TreVon Barnes, 17, were recently charged as adults for their alleged roles in Resiles' escape. Six others -- Winston Russell Jr., LaQuay Stern, Francine Mesadieu, Paige Jackson, Armonie Frankson-Dennis and Walter Hart -- were also arrested.

Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said the twins sat in the courtroom while Russell and Stern waited in Stern's 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.

According to a Broward Sheriff's Office 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 4-7. Detectives believe she set up a series of three-way calls in order to help Resiles plan his escape.

Frankson-Dennis is accused of driving Resiles to the Oakland Park Flea Market in the days after his escape. An arrest affidavit said telephone records show that Frankson-Dennis also communicated with Russell six times -- five incoming calls and one outgoing text message -- in the moments immediately after Resiles' escape.

Hart, who is an inmate in the county jail, is also accused of helping Resiles get out of his shackles before his escape.

Resiles was charged with first-degree murder in the 2014 death of Jill Halliburton Su, whose body was found in a bathtub in her Davie home. He now faces a total of 29 charges, including escape and criminal conspiracy.

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