Duval County

Jacksonville Dave & Buster’s employee now charged with manslaughter after victim dies in fight

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Charges have been upgraded for a man who police say was involved in a fight at Dave & Buster’s after the victim died.

Action News Jax told you last week that police said Cordell Bentley Russell, 34, an employee at Dave & Buster’s in Jacksonville was involved in a serious fight at the business on Saturday, Jan. 21.


Russell was originally facing a charge of aggravated battery, but he is now also facing a charge of manslaughter after the victim died, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said.

According to an arrest report from Russell’s original arrest for aggravated battery, Russell was agitated after working all day on Saturday, Jan. 21.

Exclusive: Family identifies victim of fatal attack at Jacksonville Dave & Buster’s

A witness told police that someone told Russell to “‘put the food right there’ in a strong tone,” the arrest report said.

“I’m a grown (expletive) man, don’t talk to me like that,” Russell responded, according to the arrest report.

Details of what happened after that are redacted from the police report. Witnesses told police the victim was foaming at the mouth and his heart stopped.

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The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said the victim, who family identified to Action News Jax as Thony Roy, 28, was unresponsive when the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department arrived and they took him to the hospital.

A doctor told police at the hospital the victim in the fight had a pulse, “but that he was possibly ‘brain dead,’” the arrest report said.

JSO said Russell was identified as a person of interest by the officers who responded to the fight and later that day, patrol officers located and arrested Russell for aggravated battery.

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After the victim died, JSO’s Homicide Team #1 took over the investigation into the death of the victim.

“As a result of their detailed investigation, evaluation of available evidence, and the interviewing of multiple witnesses, the charges were upgraded, and suspect Russell was re-arrested for Manslaughter,” JSO said in a news release.

Russell’s next court date is set for Feb. 14 at 9 a.m., according to JSO’s online jail records.

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