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Incident At Gas Station Lands Two In Jail

Posted November 30th, 2022

An incident in a gas station parking lot Tuesday morning have landed a man and woman behind bars after attacking a patron who was at the gas pumps.

On Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2022 at approximately 7:55 a.m., our victim and female passenger were at the gas pumps at Chevron, located at 2100 First St. N in Winter Haven. Another car was on the opposite side of the pumps belonging to 44 year-old Jose Padilla Torres of Winter Haven.

Torres was inside of the store while his female passenger, 44 year-old Aracelis Hernandez Santiago of Winter Haven sat inside of the vehicle.

Torres came out of the store and began yelling across the parking lot at our victim. The victim walked across the aisle of pumps to see what Torres was yelling about when Torres reached into his vehicle and grabbed an aluminum bat and started striking our victim. The victim was able to block the strike with his hand, causing a minor injury to his hand. He grabbed Torres and was able to take him to the ground in order to keep him from continuing the attack.

Santiago then exits the vehicle and grabs the bat and starts swinging the bat at the victim. Meanwhile, the victim’s girlfriend had ran to the confrontation and was able to stop Santiago from striking the victim. As the physical melee was winding down, Torres and Santiago got back in their vehicle while the victim’s girlfriend went to their vehicle. Our victim was still outside of Torres vehicle waiting for him to leave. Torres begins to back up but then speeds forward striking our victim causing him to bounce onto the hood and strike the windshield. He rolls off and is able to walk to the passenger side of his vehicle when Torres speeds around the pumps and attempts to strike the victim a second time.

Torres, once again circles the pump island and attempts to strike the victim a third time. As the victim was attempting to leave the parking lot, Torres strikes the right rear side of the victim’s vehicle as Torres drove the parking lot a fourth time.

Both parties drove in separate directions from the lot, but ended up at the same intersection of Ave V NE and 2nd St NE where another verbal altercation ensued. Officers were able to meet up with both parties where Torres and Santiago were taken into custody.

Both Torres and Santiago were booked into the Polk County Jail. Torres is charged with two counts of Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon (F2) and Criminal Mischief more than $1000 (F3). Santiago is charged with Aggravated Assault with Deadly Weapon (F3).

TORRES                  SANTIAGO