Police release mugshots of 3 arrested in throat slashing

Veteran who survived having throat cut in robbery back in hospital

Booking photos of Jennifer Schulte, Douglas Cercy and Ray Jones
Booking photos of Jennifer Schulte, Douglas Cercy and Ray Jones

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – After asking media outlets not to show images of a woman and two men arrested in April in a throat slashing robbery case, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office released the trio's mugshots on Wednesday.

Douglas Cercy, 34, Jennifer Schulte, 37, and Ray Jones, 21, have been charged with attempted murder, kidnapping and robbery in the attack on Melvin Clark, 86, who was found lying on Maxville Macclenny Highway by a good Samaritan, who called for help and stayed with Clark until he was airlifted to a hospital.

Clark survived the ordeal but his condition took a turn recently and he is back in the hospital, his stepdaughter told News4Jax.

News4Jax obtained mugshots of the three accused of attacking Clark when they were first arrested in April, but the sheriff's office asked that we not use them because detectives had not been able to interview Clark and have him positively ID the three as his assailants.

Police said Wednesday that the mugshots of Cercy, Schulte and Jones were now releasable.

The three are being held without bond, pending arraignment May 25. 

According to the arrest warrants, Schulte somehow got Clark’s phone number and called him from the Hospitality Inn on 103rd Street on the Westside. Clark drove there, and that’s where he was kidnapped, police said.

Clark was forced to drive to an ATM at Country Federal Credit Union on Lima Street to withdraw money. The warrant says Cercy had a fake gun pointed at Clark.

JSO obtained surveillance video from the ATM, and investigators were able to identify Schulte from it.
An hour later, Clark was found on a road in the Maxville area with his throat cut.

Schulte told police that after forcing Clark to withdraw the money, they told him to drive west on I-10 and then Cercy directed him to get off the interstate and drive down a dirt road.

She told police Clark was forced out of the car and told to get on his knees.

She said she could hear him begging for his life before he went limp and she saw blood coming from his neck.

Schulte told investigators she didn't know whether it was Cercy or Jones who slit Clark's throat.

Investigators also learned that Cercy had called his sister shortly after Clark was found and told her he “had cut an old man's throat near a truck stop on Highway 301.” He admitted to the sister that he'd forced the man to withdraw money from an ATM in the Baldwin area and that he'd stolen the man's SUV, police said.

Cercy told his sister he was worried that his face had been caught on surveillance video and that he had to leave town.

The trio was later caught at a Boca Raton bus station after tips and the discovery of Clark's stolen SUV led investigators to South Florida.