FAU Police officer arrested in shooting of Boynton Beach woman resigns; victim paralyzed

(PALM BEACH POST)   A Florida Atlantic University police officer responded to an online ad under the “escorts” section on Monday, where a woman called “Stephanie” promised that satisfaction was her main concern.

But something went wrong between the two, and the escort ended up handcuffed by the officer, before she was shot once in the abdomen and once in her neck.

Today, Jimmy Dac Ho, 47, is sitting in jail, while the woman — Sheri Carter — is in Delray Medical Center, paralyzed from her waist down.

Ho was placed on administrative leave on Tuesday, when the department learned of his arrest, said Deputy Chief Keith Totten, of FAU police. Ho turned in his letter of resignation this afternoon and it was accepted, FAU Police said.

Police say the shooting happened on Monday, when Boynton Beach Police were told by a friend of Carter that she was concerned about Carter’s well being. When police entered Carter’s home at the Marina Village condominiums in the 600 block of Casa Lona Boulevard, they found her shot and unconscious.

Subsequent interviews with neighbors revealed to police that Carter runs an independent escort service from her home and that she lists herself as “Stephanie” on Backpage.com, according to the police report.

Her last escort ad was posted on Monday, where she offers “a quiet, clean and discreet incall location.”

The ad lists Carter’s phone number and guarantees that her photos are “100% real and accurate guaranteed or your time spent with me will be completely free!!”

Through phone records, detectives found that Ho was in contact with Carter prior to the last text message she sent at 4:21 p.m., to her boyfriend, where she said that her client was acting “weird and scary.”

When they knocked on Ho’s door, detectives noticed that he looked “worried,” according to the arrest report.

“The defendant quickly then blurted that it was self defense and that she struggled with him over the gun,” the detective stated in the report.

Ho told the detectives that he was a police officer and that he felt that Carter had “ruined his life.”

First, Ho told police that he went to have sex with Carter for money, the report states. Then, he said that Carter wanted money but he didn’t have any.

After waving his rights, Ho told police that he was scared that Carter was trying to rob him, according to the report. He said that he handcuffed her when he thought she was going to use a knife. When he tried to take the handcuffs off, she struggled and he shot her in the abdomen, according to the report.

“He said that he remembered a second shot, which struck her in the neck,” the detective detailed in the report.

When Ho allowed a search of his house, police found evidence taken from Carter’s home, the report stated.

In addition to attempted first-degree murder, Ho faces false imprisonment charges.

Deputy Chief Totten said that Ho had been an officer with FAU police since 2006. Although Ho has had incidents in the past, Totten said none “would lead us to believe that this was capable.”

Meanwhile, Pembroke Pines Police confirmed on Tuesday that Ho had been arrested by the agency in 2004 for battery “in reference to domestic violence.”

Staff researcher Niels Heimeriks contributed to this report.

~cynthia_roldan@pbpost.com

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/crime/fau-police-officer-arrested-in-shooting-of-boynton-1224506.html

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