62ºF

Deputies involved in rough arrest of teen deserve due process, Broward sheriff says

Sheriff Gregory Tony says he disagrees with charges being dropped against teen

TAMARAC, Fla. – Broward County Sheriff Gregory Tony was visibly emotional Wednesday as he spoke in front of Tamarac city commissioners.

During the commission meeting, Tony said he did not agree with the Broward State Attorney's Office dropping the charges against Delucca Rolle, 15, who is at the center of a rough arrest last week.

He said his deputies still deserved their due process, whether they were right or wrong.

"I'm not here to speak in terms of politics. The community will get their justice deserved, and so will my deputies," Tony said.  

Deputy Christopher Krickovich is accused of punching a 15-year-old boy in the head and slamming his head into the ground during an April 18 arrest.

Tony addressed the concerns of residents after the arrest, which was captured on cellphone video Thursday outside a McDonald’s, where a crowd of teens had gathered to watch two students fight after school.

"I understand there is an emotional side to it, but don't lose focus on if we are going to want justice for one, it's justice for all," Tony said.

Tamarac resident Nancy Metayer said she and other residents "want to make sure that our community feels safe."

Residents, along with some city commissioners, called for the removal of not two but three deputies who they say were involved in the controversial arrest -- a motion that struck a chord with the sheriff.

"It is very easy to stand up and cry out that this employee needs to be terminated -- that is easy for all of you to do, but it is not easy for the chief administrator here who is compelled to execute activities by law," Tony said.

Prosecutors announced Tuesday that all charges were dropped against Rolle hours after they met with him and his attorneys.

Sgt. Gregory LaCerra is accused of pepper spraying a 15-year-old boy during an April 18 arrest.

It's a decision with which the sheriff said he disagreed. 

"I owe it to the deputies, whether they are wrong or not, that they get their due process," Tony said.

While the investigation within the sheriff's office continues, Tony has suspended both Deputy Christopher Krickovich, who appears in the video to punch Rolle and force his head into the pavement, and Sgt. Gregory LaCerra, the deputy who appears to pepper spray Rolle before he is taken to the ground in the video. 

"I think that they should be fired.  I think that they should not be serving any municipality," Tamarac Commissioner Marlon Bolton said. 

Both of the deputies remain on paid leave as the investigation continues. It's unclear whether the third deputy involved in the arrest will be suspended.

As for Rolle, his attorneys plan to take legal action against the deputies involved in the rough arrest.


About the Author: