A veteran Florida probation officer and three of his supervisors were fired yesterday as a result of a failure of the state corrections system that missed several opportunities to put behind bars the suspected ringleader of one of Florida’s most gruesome mass killings, reports the Orlando Sentinel. Troy Victorino, a 27-year-old felon with a long and violent criminal history, met with his probation officer Thursday, just hours before investigators say he and three 18-year-old friends used aluminum baseball bats to bludgeon to death six people in a home Friday in retaliation for taking his Xbox video-game player.
The officer failed to arrest Victorino at the meeting even though he had been in court a week earlier on a felony battery charge, accused of beating up a friend. The probation officer then failed to submit documents within the required 48 hours of learning of the arrest that could have sent Victorino back to prison. “They knew he had been arrested five days earlier,” said department Secretary James Crosby Jr. “He was actually in the probation office. At that point, they could have called law enforcement and told them to come arrest him.” Asked why they didn’t, Crosby said, “We didn’t get a good answer to that.”