Lake County boater finds teen’s body in Dead River

19-year-old believed to be involved in robbery last week, deputies say

TAVARES, Fla. – An investigation is underway in Tavares after a boater found the body of a 19-year-old man in the Dead River, according to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies said the boater notified authorities after seeing the man’s body in the water near the Palm Gardens Marina around 1:45 p.m. Monday.

Authorities have identified the man as D’Angelo Tyrek Terele Hardwick, of Tavares, and said he’s believed to be one of four suspects involved in a robbery that took place Friday morning at Joy’s Internet Casino.

According to an arrest report, at about 3:40 a.m. Friday, a man buzzed the front door at the internet cafe to be let in and while the security guard was using a metal detector wand on the man, another man came up and put a gun to the victim’s face.

Deputies said two other men then approached the security guard as he was wrestling with the gunman, forced him to the ground and handcuffed him.

A man held a gun to the security guard’s head while the other three robbed the patrons, telling them, “money and phones on the table,” and “somebody in here going to die,” according to the affidavit.

After the robbery, two suspects were arrested in a swampy area on Burleigh Boulevard while two others got away, according to the Sheriff’s Office. Deputies believe Hardwick is one of the two suspects who fled.

The two men who were arrested -- Zakee Grahai and Steve Manor -- both said it was their accomplice’s idea to rob the casino, records show. They would not name the fourth person involved in the crime.

Investigators said Hardwick’s body was found about three-quarters of a mile east of where the robbery unfolded.

Deputies have not said how Hardwick died.

The investigation is ongoing, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

No other details were immediately available.

This is a developing story. Stay with News 6 and for updates.