MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A criminal arrested for petty theft has also been accused of threatening to hunt and kill the officers who arrested him “like dogs,” according to an officer’s testimony made in court.
“He threatened us with violence in the effect of wanting to get a firearm and hunting us down like dogs and shooting us,” said Miami Beach officer Jose Perez to a judge on Oct. 9.
The officer said the threats were made after 60-year-old Ventura Gomez as arrested on Oct. 8 for theft, disorderly conduct and pot possession.
“[Gomez said] Miami Beach is going to know him as ‘The Cop Killer,'” said Perez.
Gomez has remained behind bars in part because of the alleged threats toward Miami Beach Police.
Some law enforcement officials have taken the threats as a warning from the career offender who has at least 60 arrests on his record — an average of one arrest for each year of Gomez’s life.
The State Attorney’s Office took offense to what they heard in court and added a charge of threatening a law enforcement officer.
“So we take that very seriously,” said Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle. “We will pursue those charges, and then the next trick is how to make sure that the system does something significant with him so that if there is any need to get him off that track, to make sure he doesn’t have weapons, to make sure he’s not really a threat. That’s going to be the real essence of this.”
Gomez’s charges for petty theft and disorderly conduct were dropped when witnesses failed to show up to court, but Miami Beach residents who said they know his criminal history made an appearance.
“Our community is at its wits end with people like Ventura Gomez,” said a resident in court. “He is a clear danger to the community.”
“He has made threats to police officers, and his aggression is just getting more and more violent,” said Perez.
Gomez remains in jail pending his next hearing, which is scheduled for Thursday.
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