Man accused of dumping cleaning chemicals on woman’s head during spat

Mario Geovani Riestra

An Ocala man was arrested after he allegedly poured a bucket full of cleaning chemicals on his ex-girlfriend’s head when she came to pick up the child they share custody of.

Mario Geovani Riestra, 26, was charged with simple domestic battery after the incident, which happened Monday at his residence in the Laurel Park Apartments at 100 NW 23rd Ave. Riestra told an Ocala Police officer he and the victim started texting each other about the victim picking up their child and the messages turned into insults from both parties, according to the police report.

Riestra said the victim came to the apartment to pick up the child and they started arguing outside the front door. He said he went back into the apartment and came out to confront the victim again. Riestra said he then reached inside the front door and grabbed a bucket full of cleaning chemicals and threw the contents at the victim, the report said.

The victim said she sent a message to Riestra saying the child had a medical appointment and she was going to pick him up. She said she let the child stay an extra day with Riestra. The victim said she and Riestra got into argument via text that continued in person when she arrived at the apartment. She said Riestra pretended to go inside the apartment to get the child, but when he opened the door, he threw the liquid contents of a cleaning bucket over her head, according to the report.

A neighbor who was walking her dog nearby at the time of the disturbance said she saw and heard the couple arguing but didn’t see him throw the bucket of chemicals over the victim’s head. The witness was unable to provide any information about what the argument was about or any other specifics, the report said.

Upon arriving at the scene, the officer observed a liquid that smelled like cleaning chemicals dripping from the victim’s head and shirt. An emergency medical services team arrived and told the victim to immediately take off the clothes and rinse her eyes and skin for at least 20 minutes, according to the report.

Riestra was taken to the Marion County Jail, where he was released Wednesday on $500 bond. He’ll appear in Marion County Court on Oct. 28.