Vero News

Former Vero Beach mayor to appear in veterans court on assault charge


INDIAN RIVER COUNTY — A former two-time Vero Beach mayor will head to veterans court later this month for an aggravated assault charge, court records show.

Allen Craig Fletcher, 77, was scheduled to appear in veterans court at 1 p.m. July 23, records show. If Fletcher completes the program, the aggravated assault charge against him will be dismissed, Criminal Defense Attorney Andrew Metcalf said.

Records show Fletcher plead no contest to the charge on July 10. If Fletcher fails to appear in veterans court, his bond will be forfeited and a warrant will be issued for his arrest, court records show.

Veterans courts are for veterans with first offenses, like Fletcher, a U.S. Army veteran who served in the Vietnam War, Metcalf said. Veterans courts are designed to assist justice-involved defendants with the complex treatment needs associated with substance abuse, mental health, and other issues unique to the traumatic experience of war, according to the Florida Courts website.

Veterans court can last from six months up to a year, Metcalf said.

“This is a good compromise,” Metcalf said Thursday. “It’s good results for all parties involved.”

Fletcher was arrested in late March after police said he pointed a loaded revolver at the chest of a landscape manager during a heated argument. Fletcher told the manager, “You (expletive). Get the (expletive) off my property before I shoot you,” reports show.

Fletcher, of the 2300 block of Avalon Avenue, was charged with aggravated assault. Fletcher was released from the Indian River County Jail on $2,500 bond.

Fletcher served as Vero Beach mayor from 2002 to 2003 and from 2012 to 2013, city officials said. Fletcher also served as a city council member from 2000 through 2004 and from 2010 through 2014.

Vero Beach police responded to reports of a man with a gun about 12:30 p.m. in late March at Fletcher’s home. Fletcher yelled at landscape workers earlier because he thought they were cutting trees on his property, reports show.

The landscape manager and owner drove to Fletcher’s home. When the manager walked up to Fletcher’s residence, Fletcher opened the door and pointed the gun at the manager, reports show.

The manager ran back to the truck and left with the owner. Fletcher denied pointing the firearm and said, “there is nothing wrong with having a gun in your own home,” reports show.

Police seized the gun and arrested Fletcher.

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