Former Classmates Hold Out Hope For Missing UF Student
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – While the search continues for a missing South Florida teen in a wooded area of Gainesville, his friends, former classmates and teachers at his old school are hoping for the best.
The last time anyone saw 18-year old University of Florida freshman Christian Aguilar was last Thursday afternoon when he reportedly got into a fight with his friend 18-year old Pedro Bravo. Bravo reportedly left Aguilar in a parking lot in the 4900 block of NW 13th St (US 441) in northwestern Gainesville. Investigators suspect Aguilar then wandered into some nearby woods. Police believe he may have been disoriented and/or seriously injured, and unable to seek medical attention.
On Monday, Bravo was arrested and charged with depriving a victim of medical care.
Both Aguilar and Bravo graduated from the Doral Academy Charter School.
Tuesday, counselors were at the school to help students who knew their former classmates.
“Honestly, it’s really hard,” said Allison Cubillos. “It’s really, really overwhelming, taking all this in and especially that someone can just hurt someone and leave them stranded in the woods.”
Many students said they were fearful for Christian and they can’t believe his former best friend Bravo has been arrested in connection with his disappearance.
“It’s just so shocking that Pedro would do that to one of his closest friends, that’s what shocks all of us the most because they were all close friends,” said Cubillos.
One student, who did not wish to be named in this story, said she was in National Honors Society with Aguilar, Bravo and Bravo’s then girlfriend Erika Friman. She said they were a tight group and that Bravo was “a good guy.”
“He was a nice guy. He was very funny as well. People have told me he was the ‘odd one out’ of the group of friends but I never really saw that because they did accept him in the group and they always hung out together,” she said.
Christian Aguilar’s father Carlos and some students at the school say the fight may have been over Friman who Aguilar was currently dating.
“It’s not her fault at all, it really isn’t,” said Cubillos. “It just happened. Pedro and Erika were going out, they ended their relationship and then Chris got involved but it’s not her intention to hurt Pedro.”
The students are staying connected to each other on Twitter and have even asked celebrities and sports stars like Lebron James to spread the word online. They’ve also raised more than two thousand dollars for the Aguilar family’s expenses while they stay in Gainesville.
On Twitter, they’re organizing a candle vigil for Aguilar. It will be held at 7:30 p.m. at North Trail Park at 780 127th Avenue in Miami.