Volusia County

Man arrested, accused of slashing Orange City teen’s face in apparent random attack

ORANGE CITY, Fla. — A 22-year-old man is accused of slashing an Orange City teen’s face in a random attack over the weekend.

Nathaniel Peoples, of Deltona, is accused of coming up behind the 15-year-old boy as he was walking home from playing basketball at Mill Lake Park. Investigators said he slashed the teen’s face from near the corner of his mouth to his ear.

READ: ‘It’s inexplicable’: Orange City teen’s face slashed in apparent random attack

Peoples, who police said was on pre-trial release for a previous case, is now facing a charge of aggravated battery.

According to an arrest report, a family friend said Peoples came to his home on the day of the attack drunk and “off his meds” and said he had “buck fifty-ed” someone, which officers said means to cut someone’s cheek from the corner of their mouth to their ear.

READ: Cold case solved: Orange County detectives arrest man connected to 1997 murder

When officers interviewed Peoples, they said he made several false statements and said that he was “probably” at the crime scene, but did not admit to committing the crime.

The victim’s father, Michael Benson, said he and his son only recently moved to the area, and neither have problems with anyone.

“There’s no rhyme or reason. He doesn’t know anyone. He hasn’t had a confrontation. He’s just walking back with his ball; it’s inexplicable,” Benson said.

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Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson, WFTV.com

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.