Volusia County

WATCH: 2 men help deputy being attacked by suspect during traffic stop

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — Two Volusia County men are set to be recognized by Sheriff Mike Chitwood after he said they stopped to help a deputy who was attacked by a man he was trying to take into custody following a traffic stop.

According to an arrest report, a deputy conducted a traffic stop on Frank Padilla Velez, 41, Tuesday afternoon after Padilla Velez cut across all lanes of traffic of Howland Boulevard and almost hit the deputy’s cruiser.

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Deputies said Padilla Velez was acting erratically when he exited his vehicle and hit a deputy in the head with his elbow when the deputy attempted to handcuff him.

Two Good Samaritans saw the fight break out and pulled over to help the deputy. Deputies said Richard Croly stopped to assist the deputy and Joseph Patrick helped secure Padilla Velez’s dog, that had jumped out of the man’s truck during the struggle.

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Chitwood announced both men who stopped to intervene will receive citizen’s awards in recognition of their actions.

“All my respect and gratitude goes out to these two men who took action when they saw a deputy under attack,” Chitwood said. “It makes me proud to know that in Volusia County, our residents still have our deputies’ backs.”

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Padilla Velez was charged with resisting an officer with violence, battery on a law enforcement officer, driving with a suspended license, careless driving and expired registration.

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.