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Attorneys say deputies acted in self defense in McDonald’s parking lot rough arrest

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Attorneys for Broward Sheriff’s Officers Christopher Krikovitch, who is no longer with the department, and BSO Sgt. Gregory Lacerra, are saying that two deputies were acting in self defense last year while trying to stop a group of teens fighting outside of a restaurant.

Delucca Rolle was 15-years-old when his attorney said he was pepper-sprayed by deputies and his face slammed into pavement. Rolle said he was pepper sprayed after reaching for his friend’s cell phone. The friend was in the process of being arrested for trespassing

The takedown of Rolle was caught on video shortly after that.

Defense attorneys are painting the teenager as someone who enjoys fighting and who has a history of fighting. Prosecutors said that isn’t the case and that the deputies went overboard.

Defense attorneys, appearing virtually, said that the video showing the incident needs to be put into context. They are arguing for Florida’s Stand Your Ground law to be applied in this case – that the deputies perceived a threat in an area known for fights.

Jeremy Kroll, the attorney for Krikovitch, one of the BSO deputies who responded to a group of young people fighting in a McDonald’s parking lot in Tamarac, said BSO had received an excessive amount of calls to send police to that plaza.

“The Broward Sheriff’s Office received 84 or 85 calls for service to that plaza. (The deputies) not only became the subject of scorn and taunts but they were, on several occasions, attacked,” Kroll said.

Eric Schwartzreich, the attorney for Lacerra, said Rolle “admits that he’s posted fights, not only his fights, but fights on social media.”

Defense attorneys are arguing that Rolle was looking for a fight and despite the optics, the deputies stood their ground.

The judge in the case needs to decide whether Stand Your Ground should even apply to this case or to the deputies.

The hearing is expected to continue next week.

About the Author:

Andrew Perez is a South Florida native who joined the Local 10 News team in May 2014.