Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Army sergeant beaten by four men near MacDill is 'very grateful' for support

TAMPA — Johnny Aparicio, the 24-year-old Army sergeant whose severe beating by muggers May 13 triggered a national outpouring of sympathy, said Thursday he has recovered from his injuries and is grateful for the public's support.

The soldier looked fit and unmarked when he appeared in court for a hearing which was to determine whether one of three 18-year-olds arrested in the robbery would be released on bail. The hearing was canceled after the Public Defender's Office decided not to seek his release.

Aparicio declined to talk about the attack that occurred on a Sunday at 3 a.m. after his car broke down on Iowa Avenue. He had only been assigned to MacDill Air Force base three weeks ago prior to the incident.

He was attacked by four men. A surveillance camera recorded the men repeatedly punching and kicking the fallen sergeant. The video spread across the country, sparking outrage and thousands of expressions of concern.

"I'm aware of the support and I'm very grateful," Aparicio said. He didn't want to say more, other than, physically, he's doing better. A MacDill spokesman who accompanied him said the sergeant wants to put the incident behind him.

The three 18-year-olds charged with robbery and aggravated battery are Lerome Howard, Jared Richardson and Geroshe Lewis. Howard is free on $15,000 bail. Richardson and Lewis remain jailed. Prosecutors want to keep both men in jail.

A hearing is pending for Richardson, but the Public Defender's Office told the court it won't contest Lewis' detention.

A fourth man sought in the robbery is still at large.

John Barry can be reached at (813) 226-3383 or jbarry@tampabay.com.

Army sergeant beaten by four men near MacDill is 'very grateful' for support 05/24/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 27, 2013 6:32pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. After fraught debate, Trump to disclose new Afghanistan plan

    War

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump will unveil his updated Afghanistan policy Monday night in a rare, prime-time address to a nation that broadly shares his pessimism about American involvement in the 16-year conflict. Although he may send a few thousand more troops, there are no signs of a major shift in …

    U.S. soldiers patrol the perimeter of a weapons cache near the U.S. military base in Bagram, Afghanistan in 2003. Sixteen years of U.S. warfare in Afghanistan have left the insurgents as strong as ever and the nation's future precarious. Facing a quagmire, President Donald Trump on Monday will outline his strategy for a country that has historically snared great powers and defied easy solutions.  [Associated Press (2003)]
  2. Trial begins for man accused of threatening to kill Tampa federal judge

    Criminal

    TAMPA — Jason Jerome Springer was in jail awaiting trial on a firearms charge when he heard inmates talking about a case that had made the news.

    Jason Jerome Springer, 39, is accused of threatening to kill a U.S. District Judge Elizabeth Kovachevich, according to a federal indictment.  |Hernando County Sheriff's Office photo]
  3. Editorial: Tampa Electric customers should not pay for utility's fatal misjudgments

    Editorials

    There will be financial fallout from the terrible miscalculations that resulted in five workers being killed in June at Tampa Electric's Big Bend Power Station. State and federal regulators should ensure those costs are borne by the company's shareholders, not its customers. Monetary considerations will not begin to …

    LUIS SANTANA   |   Times
There will be financial fallout from the terrible miscalculations that resulted in five workers being killed in June at Tampa Electric's Big Bend Power Station. State and federal regulators should ensure those costs are borne by the company's shareholders, not its customers.
  4. Superior Uniform acquires Los Angeles-based PublicIdentity

    Corporate

    SEMINOLE — A subsidiary of Seminole-based Superior Uniform Group has acquired Los Angeles-based branded merchandise company PublicIdentity Inc.

    Superior Uniform Group CEO Michael Benstock
[Courtesy of Superior Uniform Group]
  5. Money is the issue as Hillsborough strains to fix school air conditioners

    K12

    TAMPA — With more than 200 repair requests tumbling in every day, school officials in Hillsborough County are broadening their circle of air conditioning mechanics as they struggle to control a debilitating cycle of breakdowns and sweltering classrooms.

    Hillsborough school officials want to expand the number of contractors who work on broken school air conditioning systems. But it all gets rolled into a workload that has increased by 40 percent since 2011. "With no increase in budget, no increase in equipment and no increase in manpower, and as the equipment gets older and needs more maintenance, this is going to continue to grow," said Robert Weggman, general manager of maintenance." [iStockphoto.com
]