'Prime suspect' in custody in 12-year-old boy's hit-and-run death, records show

Jonathan Williams violated probation by leaving Polk County, officer says

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist, Mike DeForest - Investigative Reporter

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - A person considered a "prime suspect" in the hit-and-run death of a 12-year-old boy struck on International Drive the day after Christmas is in custody on a probation violation in Polk County, according to records obtained by News 6.

Florida Highway Patrol troopers said the driver of a Ford Focus struck Sebastian Duque Tuesday night on International Drive near Westwood Boulevard, ditched his car in the median and ran away.

The FHP said the boy was with other children crossing International Drive on a bicycle when the crash occurred. Two of the children with the victim said they were crossing the road when the car clipped the wheel of Duque's bike. They said that sent him underneath the Ford Focus.

Duque died at Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital.

Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Kim Montes said the driver who hit the boy was not at fault for the crash, however, the criminal action was when the driver left the scene.

Jonathan Caleb Williams, 21, of Winter Haven, was arrested Wednesday after Polk County Sheriff’s Office records showed he had violated the terms of his probation when he left his home county.

The Florida Department of Corrections learned of Williams' alleged probation violation when they were contacted by a Florida Highway Patrol corporal investigating the fatal hit-and-run on International Drive, according to a report.

The Florida Department of Corrections officer wrote in the arrest affidavit that Williams is a “prime suspect” in a fatal hit-and-run. Williams admitted to his probation officer that he was in Orange County at the time of the crash, a violation of his probation, according to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office arrest affidavit obtained by News 6.

The corrections officer also wrote in the report that FHP officials told him Williams would be charged in the Orange County hit-and-run.

Williams was arrested in May after his father found a marijuana plant in the family’s backyard and told Williams to get rid of it, but instead he moved it into a shed, Winter Haven police arrest records show.

When Williams' father cut the plant, Williams became “extremely irate, destroying many items in the shed and damaging the walls and windows,” according to the arrest affidavit.

While police were investigating the marijuana plant incident, they discovered Williams had recently brought home a generator that had been stolen from a vacant home.  Records show Williams confessed to entering the vacant residence and stealing the generator, claiming he was going to return it after taking gas out of it.    

Williams later pleaded no contest to manufacturing cannabis, possession of drug paraphernalia, burglary of a structure and grand theft. The judge withheld adjudication and put him on probation for five years.

Williams was booked into the Polk County Jail Wednesday. News 6 has reached out to FHP about pending charges related to the crash.

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