West Palm man charged with aggravated assault with a firearm in dispute over trash, mangoes

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A 23-year-old West Palm Beach man was arrested Tuesday after city police alleged that he pointed a gun and threatened a business owner.

Melkis Crisostomo Fernandez was charged with one count of aggravated assault with a firearm and one count of armed trespassing. According to an arrest report, Fernandez parked his Toyota Camry at a private property about at 7 a.m. Tuesday.

The property owner told police he watched Fernandez through the security cameras at his business, the address of which police did not release.

The property owner, who also is unidentified, said he saw Fernandez throwing trash out of his car. He walked down to the parking area to ask Fernandez to leave. He and Fernandez began to argue. When asked what he was doing on the property, Fernandez said he had been picking mangoes from a tree.

The property owner again asked Fernandez to leave and Fernandez refused, the report said. The owner knocked the mangoes out of Fernandez's hands and said he was going to call the police.

As he walked away, he heard Fernandez scream that he was going to kill him. The owner turned around to see Fernandez pointing a black handgun, the report said.

The owner, fearing for his life, ran back to his office and called police.

Shortly before 11 a.m., an officer found Fernandez sitting in his car and parked in his driveway on Worthington Street. The officer called for backup and two officers approached and demanded to see Fernandez's hands.

Fernandez raised his left hand but refused to lift his right one, the report said. He moved his right hand toward the center console and an officer immediately removed him from the car and handcuffed him, the report said.

He refused to speak but his wife came outside and told officers that he had a gun permit and usually kept his gun in the console. She gave officers permission to search. The officers found a loaded Beretta .40-caliber handgun in the center console, the report said.


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