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Florida Man Killed After Brandishing Fake Gun In Robbery

Graham Perdue
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A Florida man reportedly learned the hard way that it is a bad idea to bring a fake gun to a drug deal and try to rob someone with a very real one. He paid for that mistake with his life.

Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd told local media that the deadly encounter resulted from a robbery attempt gone bad. He said Christian MacDonald was to meet with Robert Rafael Cruceta Pimentel at a Davenport hotel Tuesday to purchase marijuana.

MacDonald did not know that Cruceta Pimentel conspired with an associate to rob him during the transaction with a fake gun.


Investigators believe Cruceta Pimentel got into the car with MacDonald while Harold Sepulveda-Cruz entered the backseat. He brandished a fake firearm constructed from a screwdriver that was duct taped to a piece of wood. 

The backseat assailant allegedly threatened and began striking the intended marijuana purchaser with the fake gun. MacDonald reportedly begged Cruz not to shoot him before producing his own weapon.

A quite real 9mm pistol. 

Authorities said MacDonald fired 10 shots into the back seat, killing Sepulveda-Cruz. Cruceta Pimentel flung both the drugs and the money over a fence at the hotel before MacDonald called police to report the incident.


Investigators are still working to untangle the mess, but Cruceta Pimentel is charged with second-degree murder as well as nine other offenses. He is currently being held without bond.

MacDonald is not charged with a crime.

The sheriff explained that while the shooter apparently was attempting to purchase a small amount of marijuana, “he certainly was the victim of a robbery by his drug dealer and his drug dealer’s buddy.”

Judd noted that the deceased Cruz is believed to have been high on drugs when he lost his life. He said that if the holder of the fake gun needed “to hit a lick for a quick fix, if his buddy had just loaned him $100, he’d still be alive today.

The lawman added, “So while Robert had $900 in his pocket, he sat there while Harold got shot over $140 and an eighth of an ounce of marijuana.”