Florida man left partially blind from beating after responding to Letgo ad

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PASCO COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – A Pasco County teen has been arrested in connection with two brutal beatings and robberies that left one victim partially blind, deputies say.

Steven Ambrosio was arrested Tuesday. Deputies say the 18-year-old committed two similar aggravated batteries and robberies back in May.

The first incident happened on May 12. An arrest report says Ambrosio contacted another man about an ad posted on Letgo – a mobile app that lets users buy and sell used items. The victim had posted on the app offering to buy iPhones. Deputies say Ambrosio responded and provided an identification number to an iPhone, which the victim agreed to buy for $650.

Ambrosio then asked the victim to meet him in front of Seven Springs Elementary School in New Port Richey around 2:30 p.m., the arrest report says. The victim told deputies he drove in from his home in Bradenton with $700 cash and met with Ambrosio along Mitchell Ranch Road.

When the victim asked to see the cell phone, deputies say Ambrosio pulled an unknown object from his backpack and hit him in the face. The victim said he fell to the ground and told Ambrosio the money was in his left pocket. Ambrosio took the cash and ran off, according to the arrest report.

The victim told deputies he was able to drive himself back home but later went to a trauma center for his injuries. The sheriff’s office says he was left partially blind due to retinal damage and suffered a broken orbital eye socket that required reconstructive surgery.

Deputies say the victim identified Ambrosio this week as the man who beat him back on May 12. According to the arrest report, Ambrosio committed a similar robbery and battery just two days later on May 14.

According to deputies, both robberies happened in the same area. The victim in the second case was hit in the back of the head with a hammer, the arrest report says.

After deputies took Ambrosio into custody, they say he denied having a Letgo account. He was arrested and charged with armed robbery and aggravated battery with serious injuries.

In the arrest report, deputies requested a high bond for Ambrosio, “based on the severity of the injuries sustained by the victim and the fact the defendant committed a robbery with a deadly weapon two days after this offense.”

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