U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert announced that a St. Croix man, Aneudis Acevedo, age 32, appeared before Magistrate Judge George W. Cannon, Jr. on Monday in District Court and pleaded guilty to resisting or impeding an officer of the United States.
In a news release issued Tuesday, Shappert said court documents showed that in the late afternoon of Jan. 10, shots were fired on the Buck Island Reef National Monument after a fight occurred on the beach. Immediately after the shots were fired, Acevedo fled the scene in his boat at a high rate of speed while carrying several passengers. He fled from a National Park Service boat and officer, disobeying multiple orders directing him to stop. At one point during the pursuit, the boats physically came into contact, but Acevedo continued to flee, according to the release.
Acevedo forced the National Park Service boat to abandon the pursuit after he went into shallow channels by a reef, the court records show. The U.S. Coast Guard assisted and approximately two hours later took the defendant into custody on the south side of the island of St. Croix. However, at that point the boat passengers were no longer on the boat.
Acevedo is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 16 and faces up to one year in prison. A federal District Court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
The National Park Service, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the FBI investigated the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel H. Huston is prosecuting the case.
This case is part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a nationwide initiative that brings together federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement officials, prosecutors, and community leaders to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in a community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. More information on the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods is available online.