Man Charged with First-Degree Murder in Killing of Teen Walking to School

DeAndre Eugene Florence, a 23-year-old Florida resident, is facing a first-degree murder charge in connection with the death of a 15-year-old high school student. The incident, which occurred during a cellphone robbery, took place while the victim was on his way to school. Florence, who had recently been released from prison after a conviction for second-degree murder, was arrested on December 18, 2018.

The victim, Alejandro “Alex” Vargas Martinez, was a student at Boone High School in Orlando. In addition to the murder charge, Florence is also accused of robbery by snatching, racketeering, three counts of grand theft of a motor vehicle, and dealing in stolen property.

Authorities have disclosed that Florence and a 16-year-old accomplice were part of a criminal operation that focused on cellphone thefts. The accomplice, Denim Williams, was killed a few years prior during a robbery attempt. Florence had been arrested in relation to that incident and had accepted a plea deal, which resulted in his conviction for second-degree murder.

During a press conference, Martinez’s family expressed their grief and their ongoing remembrance of him. They voiced their faith in the justice system and their conviction that the truth would ultimately come to light.

Florence is currently being held without bail in the Orange County jail. His arrest and the charges he faces have brought renewed attention to the issue of cellphone thefts and the potential for violence associated with them.

The case also highlights the challenges faced by law enforcement and the justice system in dealing with repeat offenders. Florence’s previous arrest and conviction did not deter him from allegedly engaging in further criminal activity, raising questions about the effectiveness of current strategies for rehabilitation and deterrence.