Charles Dessus is being held without bond at the Orange County Jail. He is accused of shooting and killing 24-year-old Full Sail University student Brandon Benjamin as a party dispersed early Saturday morning out near UCF. Dessus, 18, made his first appearance in court on Wednesday, where the judge issued a no bond order.
Felix Cruz learned of the murder accusation against his roommate just hours earlier, watching the late night news. "I'm surprised. Still surprised," said Cruz.
That wasn't all he learned. He thought his buddy's name was Eezy Melendez. Cruz said he was giving his roommate a lift to get a money order, and before they made it out of the neighborhood, his car was surrounded by police.
"I was like, 'What's happening?' He said, 'I don't know,'" Cruz told us.
Dessus had only been living with Cruz and his family for four days. Cruz said he waited up for Dessus early Saturday morning. He said his new roommate didn't get home until around 3:30 a.m.
"He was good, told me he was at a college party, never told me anything happened," said Cruz. "I know who brought him. It was a pick up truck."
The driver of that truck told investigators that they were leaving the party when suddenly Dessus hung out the window and began firing his shotgun According to the police report, Dessus called the driver the next day, saying someone was shot, and he should paint his pick up, because police were looking for it.
Cruz said that since his roommate's arrest, he can't stop watching video of the shooting that police released to get help in finding the shooter.
"In the video, I can't say if it's him or not, because it was dark," said Cruz.