Ricardo Vazquez Jr. speaks with his attorney, James Chandler, via WINK News
Ricardo Vazquez Jr. was acquitted by a jury today in Collier County of 4 counts of sexual molestation of two minors. Vazquez had worked at a Naples police officer several years ago. One of the counts could have earned him a life sentence, due to the accuser’s age. However, there was no physical evidence to back up the allegations, only the testimony of the accusers, and there were some inconsistencies in their statements. Vazquez was convicted of 2 lesser counts of misdemeanor battery, and sentenced to time served on those, since he had been in custody since his arrest in 2016. He will be released today, and is not a felon or a sex-offender. Vazquez had denied the charges all along, took the stand in his own defense, and it was demonstrated that the accusers did not like him. The trial started on Monday, closing arguments were yesterday, and they jury took the night off, and came back today to finish their deliberations.
Vazquez was represented by Naples attorneys James Chandler and Elizabeth Humann, who did an excellent job with a tough case. I spoke to Chandler, who said, “It was a great day for the Vazquez family and I am happy that their son and brother is returning home to them. It was a hard fought and emotional trial. Now it is time for Rick to try to return to life. I am extremely proud of our team.” It was a huge win on another big case for Chandler and his firm.
Posted in Criminal Law, Florida, Naples / Collier / Southwest Florida, Police
Tagged battery, collier, james chandler, lewd, naples, npd, ricardo vazquez, sexcrime
Ricardo Vazquez, all six-foot-five, five-hundred pounds of him, was arrested this week and charged with two counts of child molestation on a girl under 16 in Collier County. The arrest is noteworthy as Vazquez is a former cop who was with the Naples Police department for five years, until he was fired in 2010, according to Fox-4. The Naples News is reporting that he resigned from that position. He apparently most recently worked as a utilities technician in wastewater collection. At this time, he is still in custody on a $200,000 bond.
Yesterday, prosecutors in Fort Myers agreed to a plead deal with Keith Reese, a 44-year-old former school cafeteria worker. Mr. Reese pled to charges of Lewd and Lascivious Conduct for sexual contact with minor. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors agreed to a sentence that doesn’t include jail time. Mr. Reese will have to serve 7 years of sex-offender probation, and will be designated as a sex-offender. The abuse allegedly occurred over a period of 2 years, and allegedly involved Mr. Reese’s step-daughter. The initial allegation was for sex with a minor, but the amended charge indicates improper sexual contact, not necessarily intercourse. The amended charges suggest there were significant issues with the State’s case, and the plea may have been a “best interest” plea for both sides: the State gets to supervise him, and Reese doesn’t have to risk being convicted at trial and getting time.