Crime

‘He’s getting away. What do I do?’: 911 call depicts Boca Raton woman’s beating, burning

Police release 911 call involving Boca Raton woman who was beaten, burned

Boca Raton police released the 911 call about a Hialeah delivery man who police say beat and burned a Boca Raton woman. She later died.
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Boca Raton police released the 911 call about a Hialeah delivery man who police say beat and burned a Boca Raton woman. She later died.

Boca Raton police have released the 911 call about a Hialeah delivery man who police say was trying to escape after beating and burning an elderly woman.

The call came from David Gonzalez, who was completing a Best Buy delivery with his partner, 21-year-old Jorge Luis Dupre Lachazo. They were putting a washer and dryer in 75-year-old’s Evelyn Smith Udell’s home on Monday.

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Police reports say that after installing the appliances, Gonzalez went outside to make phone calls while Lachazo remained inside to talk with Udell about the new appliances. After hearing yelling coming from inside the house, Gonzalez went inside and saw blood and Udell on the floor.

He immediately went outside and called authorities. It took about eight minutes for Broward County Fire Rescue to arrive.

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Evelyn Smith Udell. Florida Atlantic University

The 911 call began with Gonzalez hysterically pleading with the operator to get someone to Udell’s home. Both parties struggled to communicate because he said he didn’t speak English very well.

“I did the delivery on this house and then I heard a lot of screaming so I went inside and the lady was on the floor,” he told the operator.

As the operator tried to understand what happened, she connected Gonzalez with a translator and the call continued in Spanish. The interpreter confirmed the address and then tried to get further details about what Gonzalez had seen and where his partner was.

Gonzalez, in between piercing cries, says he doesn’t know what happened or if his partner hurt the client. Suddenly, the operator and translator hear Lachazo exit the house and start arguing with Gonzalez. It’s nearly impossible to make out what they’re saying to each other but one of them calls the other “cabrón,” or “a-----.”

“I don’t know what to do. What do I do?” Gonzalez tells the interpreter in Spanish. “He’s getting away. He got into the delivery truck and is trying to drive away but the vehicle keeps turning off because he can’t drive shift gear. He’s still in front of the house.”

Then the line goes silent for a while, until the operator says the authorities are already there and hangs up.

A Boca Raton police officer saw the truck leaving the neighborhood with Lachazo driving it, and stopped it, according to the police report.

Police said Lachazo admitted to them that he struck Udell with a mallet and doused her with a liquid chemical. Then the chemical spontaneously combusted. She was taken to Delray Medical Center and died the next day.

Miami Herald Real Time Reporter Devoun Cetoute covers breaking news, Florida theme parks and general assignment. He attends the University of Florida and grew up in Miami. Theme parks are on his mind in and out of the office.
Jimena Tavel es una periodista de nacionalidades hondureña, cubana y costarricense cubriendo noticias generales en el área de Miami. Se dedica a escribir historias que impactan a los Estados Unidos, América Latina y la inmigración entre estos dos lugares. Jimena Tavel is a journalist of Honduran, Cuban and Costa Rican nationalities covering general news in the Miami area. She focuses on writing stories that impact the United States, Latin America and immigration between these two places.
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