A teenager accused of stabbing his neighbor to death in New Jersey in what lawyers say was a bid to become famous on TikTok has been arrested again this week in Florida for allegedly threatening a motorist with a weapon.
Zachary Thomas Latham, 18, allegedly brandished a firearm at another motorist on Saturday night on a parkway near Southwest Florida International Airport in Ft. Myers, according to the Ft. Myers News-Press. After the alleged incident, a motorist flagged down a trooper, who located a Nissan Infinity driven by Latham and discovered a black airsoft BB gun, which resembles an AK-47, in the vehicle.
Latham was arrested for felony aggravated assault in the incident, according to jail records, and was slapped with a second count of aggravated assault for attempting to intentionally ram the other driver’s vehicle, the News-Press reported. He was released from Lee County Jail Monday afternoon on a $40,000 bond, according to jail records, and will be arraigned Feb. 22.
In May, Latham was accused of stabbing corrections officer William T. "Timmy" Durham to death following a months-long dispute that proliferated on social media, according to NJ.com. The teen was charged with aggravated manslaughter and assault after the fatal encounter, Cumberland County prosecutors said at the time.
Escalating tension between Latham and his neighbors reached a boiling point on May 4 when the teen is alleged to have swerved his vehicle towards Durham’s 17-year-old son, who was riding his bicycle in their Vineland, New Jersey neighborhood, NJ.com reported at the time. Latham was later confronted by Durham and his wife, who filmed the encounter.
Latham then entered his home and allegedly returned armed with knives and a taser. In the melee that began in Latham’s driveway and moved into his garage, Durham was stabbed several times and died at the scene, according to prosecutors. The teen then called emergency responders, claiming he had been assaulted.
“There’s blood all over the place,” he said in a 911 call. “I just got assaulted and jumped. … I got beat up really bad and I have blood all over me. … They came with trucks, came on my property with guns and then when I … I fought them off ... they drove away.”
Latham was taken to a local hospital for injuries he sustained in the incident and was subsequently released.
The Durhams family’s attorneys insist that Latham was obsessed with social media fame and that he had filmed and posted a number of the exchanges with the family to TikTok. One of the videos had gained upward of 3 million views, according to NJ.com.
“That is how you handle neighbors,” Latham reportedly said in one of his uploaded videos, which lawyers for the Durham family says has since been removed from the video-sharing platform.
In other videos, Latham allegedly threatened to dox the family and reveal their home address. Commenters allegedly encouraged Latham’s activities, including one user who suggested the 18-year-old “go after” Catherine Durham.
Latham, who served as a New Jersey National Guard private, turned 18 weeks before the deadly incident. He has been banned from the New Jersey neighborhood as part of his pretrial release.
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