By Isaac Ray
A pair of brothers from Coral Springs was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon and burglary after attacking their neighbor with a baseball bat and yelling homophobic slurs.
On December 22, Coral Springs Police received a call to the 11400 block of NW 42nd Street about a physical altercation involving weapons. When officers arrived, the victim, who has a noticeable gash to his head, was already being treated by the Coral Springs-Parkland Fire Department.
According to the report, the victim told police as he exited his home and entered his car, his neighbors, James Paul Rice, 41, and Eric James Ballard, 36, began yelling “faggot” at him. He witnessed one of the men holding a wooden bat as they approached his vehicle.
The victim told police he rolled down his window, at which point Rice struck him in the left side of his face with his hand. The report stated the victim then attempted to exit the vehicle, but the men slammed the door on his legs. The victim was eventually able to leave the car and then charged the two men.
During a physical altercation between the three men, the victim alleged that Ballard struck him in the head with the bat, causing an injury that would later require stitches. The victim was eventually able to take the bat from Ballard and began swinging it at the men in self-defense before tossing it in a parking lot and leaving the scene.
The victim would later return to the scene to speak with police and receive medical attention. He was later transported to Broward Health Coral Springs.
Rice was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and battery and is being held at the Main Jail bond with no bond. Ballard was charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and was released on a $7,500 bond.
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