Holiday residents help law enforcement root out 'neighborhood menace'
7:37 PM, May 29, 2013
HOLIDAY, Fla. - Nick Pasvantis grew up in a quiet well-kept Holiday neighborhood.
But as he grew, the captured images went from happy and playful to something far more serious.
Now there is a mug shot for a Memorial Day weekend arrest after he dropped his pants and taunted neighbors who have continually called him out for dealing drugs.
"I'm the one he mooned," laughed Gretchen Shultz, who lives next door. She can afford a little levity, now that Nick has been arrested.
But she told me that between the 25-year-old and the rest of his family that live two houses further up the block, it's been a nightmare.
"You're afraid to do anything," she said, detailing her fears. "You're going to get shot. You're going to get some sort of retribution, and it got to the point where we're just not going to take it any more, you know?"
Finally, she took a deep breath and exclaimed, "So yeah, it (the arrest) felt good."
"The neighbors judge you here," said Paula Audino, Nick's mother. "I've been here my whole life, and they judge you."
Paula told me she and her family have lived in the house at 3420 Chickadee Drive for 16 years. She was insistent that this is nothing more than a neighborly beef that has gotten out of control.
"He's not a drug dealer," she said of her son. "He graduated high school here in New Port Richey, a very popular young man."
"Yes," she admitted, "he does do some drugs, I don't know what drugs he does do…"
Neither do the members of the Sheriff's Strategic Targeted Area Response (STAR) team, but they were happy to have the added insight from residents and their support during the arrest.
"Get to know thy neighbors," said Cpl. Chris Thomas of the Pasco Sheriff's Office. "Know your suspicious people in the neighborhood, suspicious cars. We love that, neighborhood involvement!"
But now Nick's mom says he's done with this neighborhood.
"He's done," said Ms. Audino. "He's done with people trying to point fingers that he's a monster when he's a simple guy."
A simple guy the neighbors say they will continue to keep an eye on, because they figure he's got no place else to go.