Disabled Navy Vet Tried to Stop Thugs Killing Turtle, Got Beaten Instead
“Yeah, I’d do it again and take the beating again if it meant saving that turtle.”
A disabled Navy veteran of the Persian Gulf War was beaten by three men near his home in Daytona Beach, Florida, when he tried to stop them from killing a turtle.
A woman was walking her toddler around a pond at Wedgewood Apartments and told police she saw three men torturing a turtle. She went home and told her husband, Gary Blough, they were “smashing up a turtle.”
Blough went outside and said he saw a group of three men repeatedly abusing the animal, according to the police report.
“The one had it over his head and he was smashing it down on the sidewalk,” Blough said. “I asked them to please leave it alone, just let it go to the lake.”
But 18-year-old Johnnie Beveritt, 23-year-old Ryan Ponder, and an unidentified 16-year-old had other ideas. They turned their wrath toward Blough:
“They started hitting the back of my head and started punching me. I was able to fend off a little bit but I mean three of them, got the better of me,” he said.
Blough told them he did not want to fight, one of the attackers said “I don’t give a f—and I don’t care if I go to jail,” according to the arrest report.
Blough suffered a broken skull and facial bones, internal bleeding, and a concussion. The beating also dislodged a stint he had put in just days earlier.
The three suspects have been charged with aggravated battery and animal cruelty. The turtle was found dead, floating in the pond surrounded by blood.
“Yeah, I’d do it again and take the beating again if it meant saving that turtle,” Blough said.