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Carnival workers charged in attack

Published Sep. 2, 2005

A fight between carnival workers after a night of drinking Friday had more twists and turns than a Tilt-a-Whirl.

The carnival workers were staying on the grounds of First Baptist Church of Indian Rocks, 12685 Ulmerton Road, which is holding a harvest celebration that includes carnival rides. The workers went out drinking at a nearby bar Thursday night and were returning to their quarters early Friday morning when they got into an argument, according to Largo police.

The quarrel apparently was over a woman. Two of the carnival workers began beating on a third until he was semiconscious. Then they dragged him to a nearby pond on the church grounds. While another worker kicked and beat the man, the two held him under water trying to drown him, police said.

But the man under water pulled out a knife and stabbed one of his assailants in the arm pit. Someone called police, who arrived at the church and sorted out what had happened.

Officers arrested three men. The two who police said held the man under water were booked into the Pinellas County Jail on attempted homicide charges. Both men, John Slack, 39, of Yulee, and Chad Farrell, 31, of Miami were being held at the jail Friday without bail.

Farrell also faces a drunken driving charge in Miami-Dade.

Police also arrested Jose M. Ramos, 23, of Chicago on an aggravated battery charge. Officers said he was the one who kicked the man while he was being held under water. He was being held at the jail Friday in lieu of $10,000 bail.

The name of the man held under water was not available Friday. Police said he only suffered minor wounds.