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Still no charges filed in shooting during melee

Also, the father of a teen involved in the fight escaped a jail work release program. He was later captured.

By SHANNON COLAVECCHIO-VAN SICKLER
Published February 23, 2006


TAMPA - Authorities still haven't decided whether to charge the two men who admitted they fired shots in a gang-related standoff that left two others dead Monday night. But Wednesday, the father of a teen involved in the melee escaped a work release program.

Freddie Vasquez Sr., jailed for violating probation from an earlier grand theft case, was working at Secure Environmental Electronic Recycling, 6902 E Seventh Ave., as part of a work release program.

Vasquez, 42, walked off the job at 10:45 a.m. and did not return, said Hillsborough sheriff's spokeswoman Debbie Carter. He wasn't scheduled to be released from jail until June.

He was found and arrested again at 7:05 p.m. at the Milner Hotel at 2708 N 50th St., not far from Interstate 4 in Tampa. Carter said he frequents the area around the hotel and checked in there under his real name. Deputies waited for him at the hotel and charged him with escape. Carter said Vasquez, also known as "Ike," did not say why he left custody.

Sheriff's investigators have not identified the 18- and 19-year-old men who told detectives they fired the shots that killed Sebastian Luengas, 16, and Michael Lee Roberts, 20.

But records show Vasquez has a 19-year-old son, Freddie Vasquez Jr., who lives at the home on Woodgrove Circle where Monday's confrontation took place.

Wednesday evening, Carter said Vasquez Sr. is "associated with" one of the people at Monday's shooting.

Detectives said the deaths of Luengas and Roberts followed a gang-related feud that started at a weekend carnival.

Monday night, with retaliation in mind, 10 to 12 teens, including Roberts and Luengas, piled into three vehicles and drove to the house on Woodgrove Circle. Property records show it is owned by Evelyn Vasquez, Freddie Vasquez Sr.'s wife.

The two sides started throwing rocks, bricks and bottles, according to detectives and witnesses. Then came the shotguns.

Roberts died at the scene. Luengas died at Town & Country Hospital.

The 18-year-old and 19-year-old later told detectives they pulled the triggers only as a "warning" to the other teens. Detectives are conferring with the State Attorney's Office on whether self-defense was a factor, according to sheriff's officials.

[Last modified February 23, 2006, 01:08:11]


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