Seminole County Sherriff’s office just fired deputy Chad Tavenner for his personal negligence which they say led to the deaths of a mother, her two children, and two good Samaritans at the hands of the mother’s estranged husband in an unbelievably horrendous murder-suicide.
According to the sheriff’s office, Tavenner failed to file reports, search for probable cause, and make two justified arrests despite Chericia Brown’s restraining order against her violent husband, Henery Brown.
On April 8, Chericia Brown called 911 to report that her estranged husband had violated a restraining order ambushing her at her their children’s Kindercare where they argued after she discovered he removed the spark plugs from her vehicle. When she called her friend to pick her up, Henry Brown, with her two children inside his car, tried to ram her friend’s vehicle.
Authorities say Tavenner was the responding officer and failed to file a report of the incident.
Two hours later, Tavenner was dispatched to investigate a vehicle driven by a man who matched Henry Brown’s description. But the Deputy didn’t bother to investigate.
He travels to that call for service and believes it is Henry Brown, but yet again fails to make a report, failed to establish probable cause, and does not notify anyone within the Sheriff’s Office or surrounding law enforcement agencies of a pending criminal matter involving a violation of an injunction, said Eslinger.
In the report, authorities say that Tavenner lied about vital details such as the location the incident took place and whether domestic violence was a factor. He also didn’t mention the fact that Chericia Brown had a restraining order against her husband.
We learned later that he actually deceived his sergeant and his co-worker that evening, saying that the incident actually occurred in Altamonte Springs, and that he was there only for an escort and a standby, said Eslinger.
According to police, there is a strong chance Chericia Brown, her children, and two other people would still be alive if Deputy Tavenner hadn’t failed to fulfill his oath as a peace officer to protect and serve. But since Tavenner couldn’t be bothered to do his job, five innocent people including two children suffered horrible deaths at the hands of Henery Brown.
Unfortunately, prosecutors say they would not be able to hold Tavenner criminally accountable for his negligence.
On April 17, Henry Brown had a friend drive him to the Lake Mary Chili’s restaurant. He knew Chericia Brown was at the restaurant because he had placed a tracking device on her vehicle.
According to police, Henry Brown then hid inside his wife’s car trunk and waited for her to come outside. When she did, he jumped out of the trunk and stabbed her 15 times.
Two good Samaritans witnessed the incident and ran to Chericia Brown’s aid, after watching her husband run off. However, Henry Brown had not left the scene.
Authorities say Henry Brown pushed his friend out of his vehicle. Just as police arrived, Brown ran over his wife and the two good Samaritans who were trying to help her, before fleeing the scene.
Police immediately suspected the husband’s involvement and sent a squad to Henry Brown’s home to secure the children and possibly arrest Brown, but there were no sign Brown or his two children.
While on the run, police say Brown placed two calls. One was a very upbeat call wishing his father a happy anniversary; the other was a vulgar, evil, and sick voicemail to his Chericia’s father; bragging about what he had done to his daughter.
He said, ‘I did what I did. I let her have it,’ said Lt. Mark Pergola with the Sheriff’s Office.
Brown then picked up his two children from the babysitter. But the sitter could tell something wasn’t right and called 911 after learning the police were searching for a violent man in the area.
During the search, law enforcement learned that Brown had purchased a gun in 2008, but he never surrendered the weapon when ordered by the judge who issued his wife’s restraining order in January.
Chericia Brown was taken to Central Florida Regional Hospital, where her husband showed up in the emergency department, presumably to find and kill her. However, police were also at the hospital and exchanged gunfire with Henry Brown, before he escaped with his two children still in his vehicle.
Police located Brown’s vehicle on stopped on I-4 where police believe Brown shot his two children and himself. All three were found dead when police arrived. Chericia Brown died at the hospital from her injuries.
The good samaritans who tried to help Chericia Brown outside of the restaurant were, Renata Vitkute, who’s a registered nurse and an unidentified paramedic. Both Vitkute and the paramedic survived being run over. However, reports say that the parametric may face a very tough road to physical recovery.
Vitkute’s husband, Josh Ziss told reporters:
I didn’t even know that my wife was there helping the lady at the time because I had just chased the guy around the back. So I didn’t know that my wife was out there and involved in the car accident until it was too late,” Ziss recalled.
To me, my wife is a hero and I think the paramedic the same thing. Anybody that went out there to try to help in this situation is a hero.
Featured image via Cop Block.