Police say a man who identified himself as a mall housekeeper chased a man with a knife Thursday outside The Oaks Mall.
Frauly Tito Lopez-Benitez, 51, of Gainesville, told the man to meet him outside while he was ordering food at the mall, at 6419 West Newberry Road, according to a Gainesville Police arrest report.
When they were outside, Lopez-Benitez pulled out a black folding pocket knife from his pocket and pointed it at him, the report said. He started chasing the man with it, and the man called 911 while running.
He told police Lopez-Benitez had assaulted him before, the report said. Lopez-Benitez was found guilty of threatening the man with a shovel in 2014 because he believed the man owed him money, according to court records. Earlier that year, he was found guilty of hitting a different man and breaking the man’s windshield with a fence post.
Lopez-Benitez told police he was not carrying a knife and did not pull it out on the man, the report said. He also said he didn’t have a knife because of his job.
Police searched the hallway where the victim said Lopez-Benitez walked down and found the knife on top of a fire alarm strobe light, the report said.
Lopez-Benitez was charged with aggravated assault, the report said.
He remained in the Alachua County Jail Sunday in lieu of a $50,000 bond.