One teen in shooting near Armature Works gets bond; other to remain in custody

TAMPA — A Tampa judge on Friday decided that one teen accused of starting a gunfight near Armature Works last month should have the opportunity to bond out of jail and the teen who fired back at him should remain in custody while his case is pending.

Jaimartez Young, 19, is accused of opening fire at Gabriel Catuy, 17, at the Stones Throw restaurant on April 9, sending customers and employees fleeing. Prosecutors said Young’s rounds hit three women who were customers at the restaurant situated south of Armature Works.

Catuy admitted during interviews with Tampa police detectives to returning fire. One of the rounds hit Young’s 13-year-old brother in the leg. All of the shooting victims survived.

Prosecutors had asked Judge Samantha Ward to order both teens held in jail until their cases are resolved. Assistant State Attorney Justin Diaz argued there is clear evidence that both teens committed dangerous crimes by opening fire in a public place filled with bystanders. Diaz said Young is also a potential flight risk, noting that he didn’t turn himself in until three days after the shooting.

Defense attorneys for both teens asked Ward to set a reasonable bond and set conditions such as requiring them to wear GPS ankle monitors.

Ward agreed there was enough evidence to implicate the teens. She pointed to Catuy’s lengthy criminal history, which included at least one gun offense, and prior probation violations as a deciding factor in her decision to keep him in jail on two counts of attempted first-degree murder, possession of an operable machine gun and discharging a weapon on public property.

Ward cited Young’s lack of criminal history as a main factor in her decision to grant him bond. She set his bond at $301,500 — $75,000 for each count of attempted first-degree murder with a weapon, $1,000 for the charge of carrying a concealed firearm and $500 for discharging a weapon in public. If he bonds out of jail, he will be on house arrest and will be required to wear a GPS monitor.

Young’s attorney, Rick Escobar, asked Ward to set his bond at $100,000 because that’s the amount he and his family could pay. When Escobar said the bond she set is “tantamount to no bond,” Ward countered that $75,000 for attempted first-degree murder is “a relatively low bond.”

Evidence and testimony presented Friday showed that Catuy got into an altercation with Young’s 13-year-old brother at Stones Throw, and the brother called Young, who walked from a nearby apartment complex and came into the outdoor seating area where Catuy was hanging out with several friends.

Young brandished a firearm, and someone with Catuy gave him a handgun that had been modified into a fully automatic weapon with an extended clip, according to testimony. When Young’s brother pointed at Catuy, Young started firing.

Both teens ran into the courtyard on the east side of Stones Throw, where Catuy fired several rounds at Young, who fired back as he was running away.