BY JENNIFER CABRERA
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Altonio Lee Richardson, 40, was arrested early this morning at GRACE Marketplace after police and staff gave him multiple chances to stay on a cold night.
Richardson was asked to leave the property multiple times before a staff member called 911 just after midnight, asking police to remove him. A Gainesville Police Department officer called the staff member, and the two of them agreed that because it was 32 degrees outside, they would allow Richardson to stay. The staff member said he would call back if things escalated.
At about 12:35 a.m., the staff member called back to say Richardson was escalating but was not violent. At about 2:30 a.m., the staff member called again to say Richardson had become violent and was hitting staff members.
The officer arrived and asked Richardson to leave the property, but Richardson reportedly refused. The officer again told him to leave and offered to help push his wheelchair, but Richardson reportedly refused again. The officer then began pushing the wheelchair off the property, but Richardson reportedly put the brakes on. He also allegedly resisted being handcuffed by pulling his hands underneath his body and ignoring commands to stop resisting. The officer reported that he was eventually detained without use of force.
The officer noted that Richardson had an active warrant for failure to appear on charges of possession of drug equipment and resisting arrest from July. He was also arrested in April for attacking a woman in her tent with a cane near GRACE Marketplace, but those charges were dropped. He has 16 felony convictions and 32 misdemeanor convictions and has served five state prison sentences, with his most recent release in June 2021.
Richardson has been charged with trespassing after warning and resisting arrest without violence. Bail information is unavailable on weekends.
Articles about arrests are based on reports from law enforcement agencies. The charges listed are taken from the arrest report and/or court records and are only accusations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.