While it’s important to celebrate the lives of heroic law enforcement officers, it’s equally important to learn from the circumstances surrounding the assassination of two Gilchrist County sheriff deputies on April 19, 2018.
Overview: At about 3PM on Thursday, April 19th, a lone gunman reportedly entered the Ace China restaurant in Trenton, Florida and deliberately killed two Gilchrist County Sheriff Deputies with a firearm. The shooter was reported to be found deceased inside his vehicle located outside the restaurant after apparently taking his own life by self-inflicted gunshot. No description or caliber of the firearm has been made available.
The deceased deputies are reported as: Sgt. Noel Ramirez and Deputy Taylor Lindsey
The shooter was identified as John Hubert Highnote, 59 of Bell, Florida. Site address listed by County tax collector as 359 NW 45, Bell, Fl. No motive for the assassinations has been reported.
An overlooked principal in the shooting is Ace China restaurant owner, Juan Rong Lin as listed by the Florida Dept. of State. It’s interesting that not one media or law enforcement source has been curious enough to interview Mr. Lin or his staff as to what happened inside the restaurant including a timeline of events that preceded the shooting.
Update 5/4/18: ACE CHINA reopened on 5/3/18. This was confirmed by phone call to the restaurant on 5/4/18 at 5:10 P.M. (352-658-8017). The lady who answered the phone confirmed the hours of operation and menu are the same. However a check with the Florida Dept of State reveals the no change in status. The restaurant remains listed as inactive with a dissolution date of 9/23/2016. (Source)
Did Arson Destroy Evidence in Deputy Assassinations?
Active Shooter Drill in March Preceded Assassination of 2 Deputies in April (Source)
District Attorney, Bill Cervone attends the news conference where Sheriff Schultz claims Gilchrist County Fire Rescue arrived and did their job. But Schultz failed to explain why Fire Rescue was told to stand-down on assessing the duputies and transporting them to nearest trauma center for official disposition. Instead the bodies of the two deputies remained inside the restaurant for ten hours to be transported to Gainesville at 1 AM the next morning. Considering the scene was a public restaurant a hazmat team would be expected on-scene to neutralize contamination from splattered blood and tissue.
News Helicopter captures shooter’s vehicle but no sign of fire-rescue who would normally be swarming the car in order to provide life-saving emergency medical procedures. Instead it was decided to place a tarp over the driver’s door and window.
WFLA is on scene at about 1AM on April 20th while the bodies of the deputies are finally removed from the restaurant, draped in American flags for transport to Gainesville. It remains unclear why Fire-Rescue was told, or decided to stand down on transfer of the deputies to the nearest trauma center for resuscitation and final disposition.
WFLA claims the holes in the glass were “bullet holes” resulting from shots fired from inside the restaurant, however the description and caliber of the firearm remains unreported.
Mystery Witness Provides Narrative
WFLA interviewed an anonymous witness who claimed to be working across the highway. After hearing shots fired he claimed a man rapidly exited the restaurant to drive away in a red truck. This was followed by the identified shooter (John Highnote) calmly exiting the restaurant with a visible firearm. He then claimed to have witnessed a woman enter the restaurant and pause after looking inside. He claims he also entered the restaurant and witnessed the deputies with head trauma. Finally, he claims that sheriff deputies arrived in about three minutes after his boss called 911. This witness made no mention of seeing arrival of fire-rescue or that restaurant employee staff were present.
Why Was The Most Important Witness Never Interviewed?
Why would multiple media outlets show up to cover a restaurant shooting without interviewing the service staff who were inside before and after the shooting?
As the most likely witnesses to events that led up to the shooting, it’s bizarre that every media outlet failed to interview the staff in order to report what really happened. It’s bizarre that in multiple press conferences, Sheriff Schultz failed to acknowledge the existence of restaurant employees as witnesses. It’s as if the Ace China staff were intentionally written out of a Hollywood movie.
News report shows a brief few frames of a fire-rescue vehicle but the Gainesville Sun reports the deceased deputies remained inside the restaurant until 1 AM the next morning. How can this inexplicable delay be justified as normal emergency medical protocol considering the expert capability of fire rescue and their fully equipped transport vehicles ?
“The men’s bodies were moved from the restaurant about 1 a.m. Friday, Tummond said.”
The Florida Dept of State records lists the status of the Ace China restaurant as “inactive” with the last annual report filed in 2015 with a dissolution date of 9/23/2016. Furthermore, the mailing address for the Trenton, Florida restaurant is traced to an out-of-state Bank: East West Bank branch located in Atlanta Georgia. (3490 Shallowford Road Northeast Suite 100 Atlanta, GA, 30341).
ACE CHINA, INC. (Inactive)
Document Number P14000064002
Evidence of foreknowledge as commemorative #Gilchriststrong T-shirts are ready for sale in less than 24 hours from alleged shooting
Place of employment “Gamestop”?
Noel Jr Ramirez vs Sgt. Noel Ramirez
The above tweet has been deleted from Action News JAX
Action NewsJax Report – Photo matches Noel JR Ramirez facebook
A tribute page for Lindsey who had no personal FB page
Conflict of interest? As Chief of Trenton Public Safety, Matthew Rexroat also appears as a patrol Sergeant on the Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Dept.
Even as the owner and staff of Ace China have not been positively identified or deemed worthy of interview by TV or print media, a GoFundme page is setup by a third party (Davey Padot) seeking support for the mysterious “Lin and Sunni ( Jennifer) at Ace China. Davey Padot, a Trenton Real Estate broker at Pristine Properties will receive all donations directly. ( Archive)
The “#Strong” meme appears to be a branding process alluding to Partnership for Strong Families (children services) and/or #StongCities Network – a UN program (Source)
Matthew Rexroat Commemorative Cap #GCSOSTRONG (Source)
Notice advanced cursive writing and composition in the thank-you note from first grader, “TES”
Deputies Taylor Lindsey and Noel Ramirez
An Archive.org URL search performed on 4/26/2018 reveals the “contact-Us” page at the Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) website was captured by the “Wayback Machine” a total of 9 times beginning 9/5/2015.
A Search for deputies Taylor Lindsey and Noel Ramirez lists deputy Taylor Lindsey assigned to patrol from 9/5/2015 through 7/22/2016, however “Taylor Lindsey” does not appear beginning 4/12/2017 and subsequent page captures.
In the case of Sergeant Noel Ramirez, his name fails to appear on any current or archived page capture.
This information suggests deputy Taylor Lindsey ceased employment at the GCSO sometime after 7/22/2016 and Sergeant Noel Ramirez was either never employed or ceased employment sometime before 9/5/2015.
Archive.org URL Search [ http://www.gcso.us:80/contact-us/ ]
- 10/21/2017 Taylor Lindsey (Not Listed) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 7/27/2017 Taylor Lindsey (Not Listed) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 4/23/2017 Taylor Lindsey (Not Listed) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 4/12/2017 Taylor Lindsey (Not Listed) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 7/22/2016 Taylor Lindsey (PATROL) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 6/16/2016 Taylor Lindsey (PATROL) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 5/22/2016 Taylor Lindsey (PATROL) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 3/19/2016 Taylor Lindsey (PATROL) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- 9/05/2015 Taylor Lindsey (PATROL) Noel Ramirez (Not Listed)
- OBIT: Taylor Fletcher Lindsey
- OBIT: Noel Beltran Ramirez Jr.
- Trenton Florida Website
- Trenton Florida Public Safety Department (Police)
- Gilchrist County Journal
- 4/26/2018: 2 Deputies Die in senseless shooting
- 4/26/2018: Candlelight Vigil to Honor Ramirez and Lindsey
- HEAVY: John Hubert Highnote and 5 Facts About the Shooting You Need to Know
- SunStop Market Announced
- SUNSTOP Market to Open 4/17/2018
Sunstop is located across the highway from Ace China and opened their doors 2 days prior to the alleged shooting. “The market features two separate dining areas, one inside the store and one outside. The inside dining area will have wifi for patrons to use while they dine.”
- Gilchrist County Observer
- Wilson Mobile Homes
- GVLSUN: Trenton aches after officers shot
- GVLSUN (Archive): Trenton aches after officers shot
- GVLSUN: Social media resounds with support for Gilchrist County
- EASTWEST Bank – ACE CHINA, Inc Mailing address (Link)
- HEAVY: Noel Ramirez & Taylor Lindsey: Tribute to Slain Deputies
- Noel Jr. Ramirez – Facebook
- Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office – Facebook
- GOFUNDME: The Children of Noel Ramirez
- Noel Ramirez (Police Officer)
- Taylor Lindsey (Police Officer)
- NY Daily News: “Fatally shot by responders outside the restaurant”
- NEWS4JAX: Sheriff: 2 Gilchrist County deputies killed while eating at restaurant – Sgt. Noel Ramirez, Deputy Taylor Lindsey described as ‘men of integrity’
- HERALD: Coward’ shot and killed two Florida deputies eating lunch at restaurant, Gilchrist sheriff says
- WLTX: ‘Coward’ kills two Gilchrist County deputies through restaurant window while they ate — “The only things these men were guilty of was protecting you and me, wanting to get something to eat and wanting to do their jobs,” Gilchrist County Sheriff Robert D. Schultz said.
TV20 WCJB Stories:
- 4/20: Trenton community reacts to fallen deputies
- 4/20: Former Ace China worker sets up GoFundMe for the restaurant
- 4/20: Two Gilchrist deputies dead after shooting
- 4/20: UPDATED: Tragedy in Trenton details
- 4/20: Governor Rick Scott responds to NCFL shootings
- 4/20: Relief efforts pouring in for Gilchrist County community
- 4/20: Quality Cleaners offers free next day service to first responders
- 4/20: GCSO sets up benefit account for the families of the two fallen deputies
- 4/20: Gilchrist County recovering after Trenton Tragedy
- 4/20: How does a community heal after this tragedy?
- 4/20: Shooting at Forest High School leaves 1 injured, gunman charged with Terrorism
- 4/20: Heroes recognized in Marion County
- 4/20:City of Newberry holds vigil for fallen Gilchrist County deputies
- 4/21: Procession held across NCFL for fallen Gilchrist County deputies
- 4/21: Donation account and GoFundMe account started for deputies’ families
- 4/21: Restaurants offer free food for law enforcement agencies after Trenton shooting
- 4/23: Police Agencies React To The Recent Aggression Towards Uniformed Men and Women.
- 4/23:Gilchrist County public schools will close Tuesday, Levy County public schools schedules change for services of fallen deputies
- 4/23:Funeral Service Information for Sergeant Ramirez and Deputy Lindsey
- UPDATE: (Parkland) Investigators say school design contributed to Florida massacre
- 4/24: North Central Florida restaurants are honoring officers by offering free meals
- 4/24: Thousands honor Gilchrist County fallen deputies
- 4/24: The Final Call for Sergeant Noel Ramirez and Deputy Taylor Lindsey
- 4/24: Inside the funeral service of the fallen Gilchrist County deputies
- 4/25: Forest High School students to honor teachers, staff following shooting
- 4/25: Students gather in Ocala to rally against gun violence
- 4/26:Body of the man who killed Gilchrist County deputies remains unclaimed
- 4/26: Fundraisers for fallen deputies
- 4/27: Shield Republic selling shirts to benefit fallen Gilchrist County deputies
- 4/27:Marion County Sheriff’s office releases statement on Forest High shooter
- 4/27: Marion County rallies behind #ForestStrong
- 4/27: Forest High School shooter was investigated for a school threat back in 2013
- 4/27: GCSO Sheriff Schultz gives details about deputy shooter
- 5/2: T-shirt fundraiser for fallen Gilchrist County Deputies’ families
- 5/3/2018: “We Back the Blue” signs for sale in Williston
- 5/3/2018: Friends and family speak out about fallen Gilchrist County deputies
- 5/4/2018: Fire confirmed at Gilchrist County shooter’s home
SUN 4/27/18: Gilchrist shooter remains a mystery
Why does a description of the shooter’s firearms remain a mystery?
“Highnote left his home in Bell April 19 with two rifles, a handgun and ample ammunition, Schultz said.”
Sheriff Schultz makes a curious comment that implies the shooter departed the Ace China restaurant and then returned:
“Schultz said after killing Ramirez and Lindsey, Highnote returned to Trenton’s Ace China restaurant, got into his vehicle and shot himself.” Archive)