VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – The father of an 18-year-old man who shot at law enforcement after a chase ended in Mount Dora is missing and considered endangered, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office.
The sheriff’s office said Jonny Santiago drove from authorities in several counties after deputies were called to his parents’ home in Deltona on Sunday.
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Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood said Santiago’s family was concerned about the way he was acting. Chitwood said his father, Juan Santiago, flew down from New York on July 10 and went to the home on East Lehigh Drive.
Chitwood said the two Santiago men were heard arguing on a phone call with Santiago’s mother and Juan Santiago tried to get his son to turn over the keys to a white Ford F-150 pickup truck.
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During the argument, Chitwood said the mother heard gunshots before the call disconnected. Deputies said that when they arrived, there was no one in the home and there were no vehicles found at the property, but there were shell casings and droplets of blood in the driveway.
Deputies said the man drove off in his father’s white pickup truck, which the sheriff’s office posted about Monday morning to have people keep an eye out for.
CALL 911 IF SEEN: Deputies are looking for this vehicle (white 2021 Ford F-150, FL tag IY0 0TW) in an investigation in Deltona.— Volusia Sheriff (@VolusiaSheriff) July 11, 2022
The driver fled from law enforcement in Volusia & Seminole.
Subject(s) may be armed. If spotted, please do not approach - call us on 911. Thank you! pic.twitter.com/Pc2beSHUTm
The truck was seen in DeBary, Sanford and Mount Dora before law enforcement was able to take Jonny Santiago into custody, according to the sheriff’s office.
According to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, deputies found the truck on Eudora Road in connection with a shooting, “possibly a homicide,” and attempted to pull Jonny Santiago over.
Jonny Santiago led authorities on a chase before crashing into a synagogue and shooting at police, deputies said. Officers shot back at Jonny Santiago, injuring him, according to the sheriff’s office.
He was taken to the hospital, where he is stable, deputies said. There were no injuries reported among law enforcement officers.
Chitwood said neither Jonny Santiago nor his mother is cooperating with law enforcement.
“One of the more stranger twists in this case is mom was reluctant to allow us into the house after we called her back ... she begrudgingly helped us and now she’s not helping us whatsoever. So your husband’s missing under violent suspicious circumstances and you don’t want to help,” he said.
Chitwood said he believes the 18-year-old killed his father and dumped the body somewhere in Deltona. He said without help from the suspect or the mother, the search for Juan Santiago will come down to technology and DNA and timing is of the essence.
“He’s listed as a missing endangered person. Obviously he doesn’t have a cell phone. You know what we believe is that’s what happened. He shot his father over the car and he hasn’t spoken to us, refuses to speak to us. And then that’s where we are,” he said.
Jonny Santiago faces charges of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, discharging a firearm from vehicle in public and aggravated fleeing and eluding lights and sirens.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is currently investigating.
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