UPDATE 7:16 p.m.: The teens who videotaped the drowning of a disabled man in a Florida pond — while taunting him and never making an attempt to assist him — will now face charges, Cocoa Police Chief Mike Cantaloupe told WKMG-TV Friday.
Police will file a misdemeanor charge under Florida Statute 406.12 which requires anyone who "becomes aware of the death of any person" to report it to authorities, the station said, adding that whether the charges stick or not will be up to the state attorney's office.
Cantaloupe also told WKMG he plans to meet with legislators to get a law passed that requires bystanders to try to help those in distress. Read more here.
Original story below
Police said five teenagers not only did nothing to assist a disabled man who was crying for help in a Florida pond earlier this month, but they actually videotaped him drown and taunted and laughed at him in the process, Florida Today reported.
What's more, authorities can't bring any charges against the teens, the paper said. They range in age from 14 to 18.
The Brevard County State Attorney's Office called the July 9 incident in Cocoa, Florida, a "tragedy" and said the teens' lack of action had "no moral justification" but added it appears they didn't violate any laws, Florida Today said.
On the clip the teens — who've been interviewed by police but haven't been identified — can be heard giggling and taunting 31-year-old Jamel Dunn who struggled to keep his head above water.
Here's some of what they yelled at Dunn:
"You a f***in' junkie!"
"Get out the water, you gonna die!"
"We not gonna help your ass!"
"Ain't nobody's gonna to help you, you dumb bitch! You shouldn't of got in there!"
At one point Dunn was clearly heard crying out before his head went under the water — and that was the moment the teens seemed to enjoy most, as they responded with laughter and more mocking commentary.
"He just died!" one said amid cackling.
"This man ain't getting back up," one said soon after.
"Yeah, he dead, but he gone," another noted. "RIP."
The teens then left the area without alerting authorities, Florida Today said.
Dunn's fiancée filed a missing person report after he didn't come home in Cocoa, the paper said. But after his badly decomposed body was found July 12, Florida Today said a family friend saw the video on social media and turned it over to authorities.
Jamel Dunn (Image source: CBS News video screenshot)
"They didn’t call the police," Yvonne Martinez, spokeswoman for the Cocoa Police Department, told the paper. "They just laughed the whole time. He was just screaming ... for someone to help him.”
But since the teens weren't directly involved in Dunn's death and there aren't Good Samaritan laws that apply in this case, police told Florida Today nothing can be done to them.
So was there even a hint of remorse, even after authorities exposed the teens?
Hardly any, police told the paper.
Detectives said one of the teens just stared ahead during the questioning, Florida Today reported.
“There was no remorse, only a smirk,” Martinez told the paper, adding that the teen's mother sat next to him and broke down in tears over the situation.
There also are concerns over the teens' safety as word spreads about the incident, Florida Today said.
Simone Scott, who identified herself as Dunn’s sister, noted on social media she's upset over how her brother died.
"I agree they don’t have to help, but they should have called 9-1-1,” Scott posted, the paper reported, adding that she wrote "my brother is disabled and walks with a cane ... please make it make sense to me.”
Image source: YouTube screenshot
A family friend said Dunn was the father of two young daughters and was known to be giving to others, Florida Today added. His family posted a GoFundMe page to help cover funeral expenses.
Police told the paper that Dunn arrived at the pond after an argument with his fiancée.
“The kids were at the park that day smoking marijuana and apparently saw him walk into the water," Martinez told Florida Today. "He walked in on his own. They were watching him."
Dunn's fiancée, Rondanielle Williams, asked WESH-TV, "How could nothing in your heart tell you not to do anything when someone's crying out for help, and you're telling them that you're not gonna help them?"
Image source: YouTube screenshot
“They just started recording what happened and watched until he died,” Martinez said. “Everybody is just horrified by this.”
This story has been updated.