To avoid any misunderstanding, Jonathan Warrenfeltz broadcast his status in life with big tattooed letters emblazoned across his forehead: “Misunderstood.”
And the word was there in all its glory when, police said, Warrenfeltz and a companion robbed five beachgoers at gunpoint in Dania Beach. In fact, the tattoo was how the victims readily identifed the ex-convict as their assailant.
The suspects also made a wrong turn during their getaway, and left a trail of stolen items behind. They were in custody within 30 minutes.
Warrenfeltz, 24, Fort Lauderdale, and Joshua Zeaya, 23, no known address, were held without bond Wednesday on five counts each of robbery with a firearm. Zeaya was also charged with aggravated battery and battery causing bodily harm, records show.
Seven witnesses identified Warrenfeltz from several facial tattoos, including “Misunderstood” in cursive script. He apparently got the tattoo after his release from prison Feb. 1, records showed.
According to arrest reports, Warrenfeltz, Zeaya and two women drove in a 2002 Toyota Camry to the Dania Beach Pier near 300 N. Beach Rd. about 6 a.m. Wednesday.
Zeaya and Warrenfeltz approached four women and a man sitting on the beach. Zeaya demanded their valuables while holding a gun partially concealed under his T-shirt, according to Detective Marcos Toledo.
“It was a long gun, whether a rifle or shotgun I don’t know,” Toledo said Thursday during a first appearance hearing. “They stole over $1,500 in property from the five individuals.”
Jonathan Warrenfeltz, 24, is accused of robbing five beach-goers at gun point in Dania Beach (Broward Sheriff’s Office, courtesy)
Zeaya threatened to hurt anyone who failed to cooperate. They handed over their property to Warrenfeltz, but Zeaya still hit one of the women in the head with the gun and kicked her hip. He also kicked the man in the chest, reports said.
“After they stole the property from the victims they jumped into a vehicle and fled the scene into a Motel 6,” Toledo said.
But the suspects left a trail of evidence between the crime scene and the motel, Toledo said.
“After the [suspects] took off they started throwing property out of the vehicle until they reached Motel 6,” he said. “We did find in the vehicle credit cards, ID cards and wallets as well as a backpack belonging to the victims.”
No gun was found. “We’re still searching,” Toledo said.
The suspects made a wrong turn, Toledo said, and drove all the way to the end of John U. Lloyd State Park before turning around and heading for the motel at 825 E. Dania Beach Blvd.
Assistant Public Defender Dale Miller argued that the lack of a firearm should result in reduced charges. “If there’s no rifle, there’s no proof evident and presumption great that there was a rifle involved in this case,” he said.