GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Ernie Kimbler, the owner of the Five Star Pizza on SW 2nd Avenue, in Gainesville, believes one of his employees is lucky to be alive. "It's awful. It's very disheartening," he said.
Police said 23-year-old Jacob Case was delivering a pizza order to the Granada apartment complex late last week. Nobody was there when he showed up, so he took the food back to his car. As he was getting in, police say somebody attacked him with a baseball bat, and took his wallet.
Kimbler said, "I guess he didn't stop when Jacob went down to his hands and knees after he got hit the first time. The guy hit him a couple more times."
Case was able to drive himself to the police department. He just got out of the hospital Tuesday. "He's doing a lot better,” Kimbler said. “Just needs some rest."
Kimbler says Case lives with hemophilia. "It's a little bit more serious than your average individual getting an open wound."
Fifty dollars in pizza -- that's what Kimbler said Case was going to deliver. In retrospect, Kimbler said he realized something about that call. Kimbler explained, "I'm pretty sure it was not a real order. I think it was a set up, unfortunately."
Detectives are investigating every angle of this violent beating. Ben Tobias, spokesman for the Gainesville Police Department, said, "Detectives are working leads on the case. We hope to have a resolution for it."
Five Star Pizza is offering a $3,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. "Obviously, you would like for them to turn themselves in,” Kimbler said
An account has been set up to help Case with medical expenses. Any additional money raised will go toward the reward that the pizza restaurant is offering. Click here to learn more (graphic image accompanies information).