NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. (FOX 13) - A mother is pleading for someone to come forward and turn in the men responsible for robbing and beating up her teenage son in a random attack.
Pasco County deputies have arrested one of the four suspects, 21-year-old Austin Emanuel, and charged him with aggravated battery and robbery.
Emanuel is in jail, but deputies are still looking for his cousins: 24-year-old Justin Schreffler, 19-year-old Khristian Schreffler, 23-year-old Trenton Schreffler, who are all brothers.
The physical wounds are healing but invisible scars remain for the 15-year-old victim. His mother, Stephanie Byrd, is caring for him.
“I know he’s scared, but he’s not showing it. He’s trying to be brave,” she said.
On Feb. 20, four men jumped him when he walked home from school in Pasco County, robbing him and beating him up. The attack fractured his jaw and knocked out three teeth.
“What they put my son through was hell, and I want them all. I want them all, and I’m not going to stop,” his mother said.
According to the arrest report for Emanuel, deputies got a tip and someone who knows him identified Emanuel in the video that captured the attack. The victim’s mom said her son isn’t safe until all of them are caught.
“If you know where they are just think, what if they did it to your kids? You don’t want them to hurt somebody else,” Byrd said.
Deputies say the teal Ford Ranger seen in the video may now be painted gold.
Local businessmen hope to help get more tips in, offering a $500 reward for giving Pasco deputies details leading to an arrest.
“They’re cowards as far as I’m concerned. This is not what we do in Pasco County, and we just wanted to step up and do the right thing,” said Regan Weiss of Templar Contracting, the business offering the reward.
Weiss and his business partner Joey Deeb said after the sheriff’s office receives the tip, they will get help vetting the tipster to make sure the right person receives the award.
“Everyone needs to follow the right channels and go to the sheriff’s office. We aren’t the middle man for that. They are going directly to the sheriff’s office and the proper channels,” Deeb said. “He has the entire community supporting him. We’re supporting him. We’re not going to allow anyone to push him around.”
The community’s support means a lot to the teen’s parents who want justice.
“Just turn them in. My son is only 15 years old. And he didn’t deserve to be put through that,” Byrd said.
The teen’s mother said she stays with him all the time and keeps him home from school, fearing he may be attacked again.
If you have any information about the attack or the truck, call the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office crime tip line 1-800-706-2488 and reference case number 19-007661.