Man accused of leaving dead animals on Parkland memorial makes first court appearance

Covered in face tattoos, 29-year-old Robert Mondragon appeared in Broward County court for the first time Monday, a little more than two weeks after deputies arrested him after they say he placed dead animals on a memorial for those killed in the Parkland school shooting.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Covered in face tattoos, 29-year-old Robert Mondragon appeared in Broward County court for the first time Monday, a little more than two weeks after deputies arrested him after they say he placed dead animals on a memorial for those killed in the Parkland school shooting.

Mondragon, a Margate resident, faces numerous charges, including removing or disfiguring a tomb or monument, violation of probation for battery and indecent exposure and violation of a risk protection order.

Investigators said Mondragon had a disturbing fascination with school shootings.

Deputies said that on July 20, a school crossing guard discovered a dead duck with its chest cavity cut open on a bench at the MSD Memorial Garden, located outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Authorities said the next day, the school crossing guard found a dead raccoon on the same memorial bench, and on July 31, a deputy found a dead opossum on the bench.

According to detectives, surveillance video shows a white Nissan with all black rims or tires with no hubcaps arrive at the memorial shortly after 11 p.m. on July 30.

Detectives said the male driver got out of the car and walked to the passenger’s side, then entered the memorial for several minutes before getting back in the car and leaving.

Authorities said late at night the next evening, a BSO Parkland district deputy saw a white Nissan Sentra with illegal window tint that matched the vehicle description from the surveillance video driving slowly in the area of Pine Island Road and Holmberg Road, so he pulled over the driver.

Deputies say Mondragon was the only person in the car, and the deputy saw bird feathers and blood on the front passenger-side floorboard.

Mondragon told deputies he liked the smell.

He’s been on law enforcement’s radar since 2013, when he posted online he wanted to “pull a Columbine.”

In 2019, he was fired from Walmart after telling an employee if he was fired he was going to “shoot the place up” and in 2021, he was accused of pleasuring himself after asking a woman for directions and then biting a police officer.

“If this cycle continues, this individual is going to impact, he’s going to execute an active shooter event in the community and he will kill someone and we will kill him,” Sheriff Gregory Tony said at a news conference following Mondragon’s arrest.

Mondragon is set to return to Broward County court in December.


About the Authors:

Parker Branton joined Local 10 News in January 2019 as a reporter. He was born and raised in Rome, Georgia, but now loves living on the sunny beaches of South Florida.

Chris Gothner joined the Local 10 News team in 2022 as a Digital Journalist.