The Alachua County Board of County Commissioners has agreed to help pay for the funeral of slain teenager, Robert Dentmond.
The Gainesville High School sophomore was fatally shot Sunday night after a standoff with Gainesville Police officers and Alachua County Sheriff’s deputies in the parking lot of the Majestic Oaks Apartments.
After his death, Alachua County NAACP President Evelyn Foxx requested that Alachua County assist in paying for his funeral expenses.
In a unanimous vote Tuesday, the commission decided to transfer $5,000 from the county’s contingencies fund to special expenses. Commissioner Robert Hutchinson said the money will be made out as a grant to the NAACP, who will then disperse it to Dentmond’s family.
Chestnut Funeral Home, located at 18 NW 8th Ave., is handling Dentmond’s funeral arrangements. Commissioner Charles Chestnut IV is a licensed funeral director at the funeral home, and therefore, chose to abstain from the vote regarding the funds.
At the meeting, Foxx expressed her gratitude to the board of commissioners, and said she hopes the funds will bring some closure to Dentmond’s family.
“Thank you from my entire community,” Foxx said. “It is the right thing to do.”
Hutchinson said the board has invited the Gainesville City Commission to split the funds with the Alachua County Commission, but whether they will do so remains to be seen.
The decision to contribute money to Dentmond’s funeral expenses was not unprecedented. Burials or cremations for low-income families are among the services provided by Alachua County, Hutchinson said.
According to an estimate provided by Chestnut Funeral Home, funeral costs can range from anywhere between $5,000 and $7,000. Dentmond’s family started a GoFundMe account to cover additional costs. The account has raised nearly $1,300 in 48 hours.