Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Fugitive in St. Petersburg stabbing case captured in Jamaica

ST. PETERSBURG — A 44-year-old boat dweller who skipped town on an attempted murder charge was recently re-captured in Jamaica after six months on the run.

He was returned to the United States this week, authorities said.

Jay Alan Farmer was arrested in June 2009 and accused of stabbing a man outside the Renaissance Vinoy Resort. Bystanders chased him down and held him for officers.

Farmer was released from Pinellas County Jail on $50,000 bail a few days later. After missing some court appearances, he just disappeared.

An arrest warrant was issued in January, but he had fled to Jamaica, authorities said. He lived on a boat in St. Petersburg's North Yacht Basin at the time of his arrest, authorities said, but no local or federal law enforcement agency seems to know how Farmer got to Jamaica.

"He may be the only one who can tell you," said Pinellas-Pasco Assistant State Attorney David Tobiassen.

Jamaican authorities, however, didn't want him there. They picked him up on the U.S. warrant and held him until federal agents came for him July 24, according to Deputy U.S. Marshal Ron Lindbak.

Two marshals escorted Farmer back, landing in Miami Sunday.

He was returned to the Pinellas County Jail on Wednesday morning and appeared before a Pinellas-Pasco Circuit judge Thursday, pleading not guilty to a charge of failing to appear in court.

He also pleaded not guilty to the original charges of first-degree attempted murder and resisting an officer without violence.

His new bail was set at $250,013. "I would say that's pretty good," Tobiassen said.

According to police, Farmer knew the victim. Both were boat dwellers in St. Petersburg. The victim approached Farmer as he sat on a bench to talk to him about the handmade jewelry Farmer was known to make. Farmer claimed the victim was trying to buy drugs, police said, and that he was scared of him.

He ended up stabbing the victim and chasing him, police said. Farmer captured the events on a tape recorder to back his version, but police said the tape only bolstered the victim's allegations.

"It didn't help him," said St. Petersburg Detective Joe DeLuca. "It was him yelling at the (victim)."

It wasn't the first time Farmer has faced serious criminal charges. He was convicted of manslaughter, leaving the scene of an accident and driving with a license suspended or revoked in Hillsborough County in 1987.

An April 24, 1987, St. Petersburg Times article said Farmer was accused of running down and killing a 12-year-old boy while racing another car.

Farmer tried to flee then, witnesses said, but ended up losing control and crashing into a ditch. He was 21 at the time. His sentence in that case was not available Friday.

Times researchers John Martin and Carolyn Edds contributed to this report. Jamal Thalji can be reached at or (727) 893-8472.

Fugitive in St. Petersburg stabbing case captured in Jamaica 07/30/10 [Last modified: Friday, July 30, 2010 9:32pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally


    TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

    From left, Swim Digital marketing owner Trimeka Benjamin discusses the broad lack of diversity in advertising and marketing with 22 Squared copywriter Luke Sokolewicz, University of Tampa advertising/PR professor Jennifer Whelihan, Rumbo creative director George Zwierko and Nancy Vaughn of the White Book Agency. The group recently met at The Bunker in Ybor City.
  2. Kushner to testify before two intelligence committees


    WASHINGTON— President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner is set to make a second appearance on Capitol Hill — he will speak with the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, one day after he is scheduled to speak with Senate Intelligence Committee investigators behind closed doors.

    White House senior adviser Jared Kushner is scheduled to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee and the House Intelligence Committee. [Associated Press]
  3. Rays blow lead in ninth, lose in 10 to Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Rays manager Kevin Cash liked the way Alex Cobb was competing Friday night. He liked the way the hard contact made by the Rangers batters went away after the second or third inning. So as the game headed toward the ninth, there was no doubt in Cash's mind that sending Cobb back to the mound was …

    Rays starter Alex Cobb can hardly believe what just happened as he leaves the game in the ninth after allowing a leadoff double then a tying two-run homer to the Rangers’ Shin-Soo Choo.
  4. Exhumation of Dalí's remains finds his mustache still intact


    FIGUERES, Spain — Forensic experts in Spain have removed hair, nails and two long bones from Salvador Dalí's embalmed remains to aid a court-ordered paternity test that may enable a woman who says she is the surrealist artist's daughter to claim part of Dalí's vast estate.

    Salvador Dal? died in 1989 leaving vast estate.
  5. Sessions discussed Trump campaign-related matters with Russian ambassador, U.S. intelligence intercepts show


    WASHINGTON — Russia's ambassador to Washington told his superiors in Moscow that he discussed campaign-related matters, including policy issues important to Moscow, with Jeff Sessions during the 2016 presidential race, contrary to public assertions by the embattled attorney general, current and former U.S. …

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation after meetings with an ambassador were revealed.