Fort Myers man charged in December shooting
A Fort Myers man remained in jail Tuesday after being sought in a December drug deal that ended with one person being robbed and shot.
Eric Bernard Otto, 22, of 3628 Crestwood Lake Drive, Apt. 307, was booked Monday into the Lee County Jail on one count each of robbery with a weapon and aggravated battery person uses a deadly weapon.
He was being held with no bond.
According to police, Otto met a woman in December at a pain clinic in Fort Myers. They had a discussion about buying and selling leftover prescription drugs at the end of the month and then exchanged telephone numbers.
Over the next several days, the two reportedly brokered a deal in which the woman would sell Otto her leftover Oxycodone pills for cash. They agreed to meet Dec. 11 at 9:30 p.m. at the Bob Evans on Del Prado Boulevard, South.
The woman sent her fiance to the deal, Lt. Tony Sizemore, spokesman for the Cape police, reported. He was to exchange 15, 30 mg Oxycodone pills for cash. The man parked in the parking lot and Otto got in the passenger seat.
“The victim handed the pills to Otto, who then attempted to exit the van prior to the payment,” Sizemore wrote in a prepared statement. “The victim grabbed Otto by the shirt and was pulled outside of the van as Otto exited.”
Once outside the vehicle, Otto reportedly shot the man in the stomach.
Otto fled the scene and the victim drove himself to a nearby gas station for help, according to police. The clerks at the gas station contacted the police.
Cape detectives took over the investigation and developed Otto as a possible suspect, Sizemore said. Probable cause existed for his arrest, but Otto could not be located. On Monday, authorities located Otto at a home in Fort Myers.
He was taken into custody and transported to the jail.
“It is all too easy to dismiss this case as just a drug deal gone badly,” Sizemore wrote in the statement. “While this is true, the transaction occurred in a place where many Cape Coral residents go with their families.
“For a suspect to be so brazen as to shoot a man in such a public place, we needed to capture him,” Sizemore added.
Otto has a court date scheduled May 9.