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Update: victim says suspects took over his apartment to sell drugs and forced him to take drugs

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

See December 9 update below

Nathail Eugene Harrington, Jr., 28, and Antonio Quitrial Howard, 31, were arrested early this morning and charged with false imprisonment, simple battery, and auto theft.

According to the arrest reports, shortly after midnight on Wednesday, December 8, the two visited the victim at his apartment at College View Apartments, in the 1100 block of NW 3rd Avenue. Harrington had allegedly given the victim drugs on credit and demanded payment at the time of the incident. The victim could not pay, so Harrington allegedly began to strike the victim and demand that he log into his bank account on his cell phone.

The victim had trouble logging in, and Harrington allegedly hit him every time he failed. The victim finally was able to log into his account, but it only showed a balance of $1.00. Harrington then allegedly told Howard to steal the keys to the victim’s van and open its side door. Harrington allegedly forced the victim toward the van’s open door, telling the victim he would take him to an unknown location and kill him.

The victim was able to get loose and ran to a nearby gas station, where the clerk called 911. The van was pulled over a short time later in the 2700 block of SW 13th Street, and Howard and Harrington allegedly fled on foot and were taken into custody about a block away.

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Post Miranda, Harrington and Howard both admitted to driving or riding in the van, but they denied beating and imprisoning the victim.

Harrington is being held on $75,000 bail, and Howard is being held on $65,000 bail.

December 9 update: The victim contacted Alachua Chronicle and told us that the part of the arrest report that says he purchased drugs on credit is incorrect. According to the victim, he had offered to fix a car for Harrington, who brought the car to his apartment about a day and a half before the reported incident. The car needed to cool for an hour and a half before doing the repair, so Harrington came up to the apartment to wait. Over the next day and a half, Harrington allegedly took over the apartment to sell drugs and forced the victim to take drugs. The victim had recently lost his phone, so when Harrington asked him for money, he had to try to log in on Harrington’s phone. The bank sent confirmation texts to the lost phone, and Harrington allegedly beat the victim every time the login failed. The victim told us he intends to file a complaint with Gainesville Police Department about the incorrect report; this is a developing story.

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