Drug rip-off, gunfire lead to 5 men arrested, deputies say

Stolen gun also recovered


DELTONA, Fla. – A drug rip-off that led to gunfire resulted in the arrest of five young men and the recovery of a stolen gun from a DeLand home. 

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office said the robbery happened shortly after 1 p.m. Friday near the intersection of Layton Avenue and North Midland Drive in Deltona. 

Victor Martinez, 24, of Deltona, initially told deputies that he was buying marijuana and was robbed of his money, Later he admitted he actually was the seller, deputies said.

The Sheriff's Office said that Martinez arranged to make a transaction and drove to meet a car containing four people: Korey Hill, 14, Xavier Melendez, 15, and Tristan Burgess, 19--all of Deltona----and Corey Williams Jr., 18, of DeBary. The group meant to make the deal at Firefighters Memorial Park, but Martinez said there were too many people around. 

The two cars drove a couple of blocks away and parked. Martinez told investigators that after Melendez got into Martinez's car to make the transaction, Williams walked up, holding a handgun, and knocked on the driver's side window asking, "What else you got in there?" deputies said.

Investigators said that Martinez took off driving, Melendez jumped out as the car sped away, and Williams fired two gunshots.

As investigators tracked down all of the suspects and interviewed them, Williams initially denied any involvement in the incident. Then a deputy tested each of the suspects for gunshot residue, and Williams' test was positive. He then admitted to firing the shots to scare Martinez, investigators said.

Deputies said that Martinez voluntarily took a deputy to his residence in Deltona, where he turned over his marijuana and some drug paraphernalia. 

The gun used in the incident was recovered in an attic at Burgess' residence in Deltona, along with an amount of marijuana worth of a misdemeanor charge. The gun was determined to be the same one stolen in an April 8 burglary of a DeLand residence, authorities said.

The defendants' charges are as follows.

Martinez: Use of a two-way communications device to commit a felony, sale and delivery of narcotics, providing false information to law enforcement, possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana with intent to sell and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Williams: Armed robbery, aggravated assault and grand theft of a firearm.

Burgess: Principal to armed robbery and possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana.

Melendez: Principal to armed robbery and use of a two-way communications device to commit a felony.

Hill: Principal to armed robbery.