Orange County sheriff’s deputies arrest three men following a weekend neo-Nazi demonstration that drew widespread condemnation
Orange County sheriff’s deputies have arrested three men who took part in an anti-Semitic, neo-Nazi demonstration last weekend. Two of the men are facing hate-crime charges.
According to the arrest warrants, a motorist was punched and pepper-sprayed and had his cellphone taken during an argument with a group who were waving Nazi flags and yelling slurs on Alafaya Trail in East Orlando last Saturday.
The demonstrators wore swastikas and other insignia associated with the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement.
The victim told investigators he got out of his car and approached the group, telling them he is Jewish, after they spat at him.
Other motorists helped him get to safety after he was pepper-sprayed and punched.
Cape Canaveral resident Jason Brown, 47, has been charged with grand theft, while 46-year-old Joshua Terrell, from Indiana, and 45-year-old Bert Colucci from Lakeland, face charges of battery with a hate crime enhancement.
Deputies say Colucci pepper-sprayed the man, while Terrell hit him multiple times, and Brown took his phone, which was later found in a storm drain.
The demonstration over the weekend was met with intense, bipartisan backlash from local and state lawmakers, with the exception of Christina Pushaw, Gov. Ron DeSantis' spokeswoman who, in a since-deleted tweet, initially questioned whether the people taking part in the hate protest were really Nazi's or Democratic plants.