BRADENTON -- A Bradenton man charged with the slaying of a neighborhood ice cream man was denied a lower bond Wednesday morning.
Juan Carlos Ramirez, 30, is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Jose Luis Mendoza Aguilar on Oct. 17, 2015. Ramirez is being held at the Manatee County jail on a $500,000 bond.
On Wednesday morning, Ramirez appeared before Circuit Judge Susan Maulucci via video conference as Assistant Public Defender Anne Hunter argued for a bond reduction.
Maulucci, however, denied the request.
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Assistant State Attorney Brian Chambers argued against Hunter's request for the bond being reduced, as a Spanish translator translated for Ramirez.
"Based on the facts of the case the defendant could have faced no bond," Chambers said. "Since it could have been no bond, a $500,000 bond seems reasonable."
Witnesses told police that Ramirez got out of his truck, walked up to Aguilar and shot him several times and then proceeded to kick him even after he was on the ground, Chambers recounted. Ramirez later also admitted to the shooting.
"Most importantly, after this he abandoned his life in Bradenton and sold some items from his business," Chambers argued.
Chambers said Ramirez then fled to Tampa where he was found, making him a flight risk.
Hunter told Maulucci she disagreed with the facts of the case as they were presented by the State Attorney's Office. Ramirez's arrest history was also listed for Maulucci, which includes eight arrests for charges of violation of probation, DUI, leaving the scene of a crash, resisting arrest without violence, driving without a valid driver's license, aggravated assault and carrying a concealed weapon.
Hunter said she had filed a motion for a 'Stand your Ground' defense.
Shortly before 6 p.m. Oct. 17, Bradenton police received a 911 call reporting a shooting with injuries in the 600 block of 22nd Lane East in Bradenton, according to the affidavit for his arrest warrant. When police officers arrived they found Aguilar on the ground with several gunshots wounds. He was taken to Blake Medical Center where he died.
Witnesses told police that Aguilar, who sold ice cream from his bicycle, was riding around the neighborhood when a confrontation between the two men occurred. After shooting Aguilar, witnesses said Ramirez got back into his truck and drove off, according to police.
One witness said if they saw a picture of the suspect they would recognize him, according to the affidavit. The following day, an anonymous tip was called into the Bradenton police dispatch identifying Ramirez as the shooter and then the Manatee County Sheriff's Office received a Crimestoppers tip about where the shooter's truck could be found.
Jim Curulla, the lead police detective in the case, went to the home and interviewed the resident through a translator who admitted being friends with Ramirez. The man reportedly told Curulla that Ramirez had brought him the truck, some business paperwork and tools and when asked what was going on, he said in Spanish, "I have to go."
Early the morning of Oct. 22, detectives with the Manatee County Homicide Investigative Unit and the U.S. Marshal's Fugitive Task Force found Ramirez in northern Hillsborough County.
Jessica De Leon, Herald law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter@JDeLeon1012.