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Local/State News for week ending 4/4/2009

Manatee Detective Arrests Man
for Possession of Child
Pornography

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- Detective Todd Sellitto, of the Manatee County Sheriff's Office Child Protection Investigations Unit has arrested Edward Tobey, 69, of the 12500 block of Cortez Road West, Bradenton.


Edward Tobey

According to the arrest report, an agent with the U.S. Postal Inspections Service contacted Det. Sellitto on March 27, 2009, and relayed information regarding Tobey that he had been investigating Tobey regarding Soliciting Child Pornography.

The U.S. Postal Service Inspections Service had set up an undercover sting on the Internet, advertising "taboo movies," "home movies," "pedo movies" and "PT movies" on certain websites.

Tobey sent an e-mail to the undercover agent on Dec. 3, 2008, saying "I am very interested in what you have to offer."

Following that, the undercover agent asked by e-mail what type of movies Tobey was interested in, and what the age range was.

Tobey replied, "Simply, I'm interested in amature (sic) movies of underage women."

After being sent an order form and an address to which the request and money should be sent, Tobey sent $40, along with the message: "Please send "Young Lust" and "Thanks Sis."

On Wednesday, April 1, 2009, Det. Sellitto and the undercover postal agent were watching Tobey's address when the two movies, specially marked for identification purposes, arrived by mail.

After Tobey accepted the delivery, he was arrested and charged with two counts of Possession of Child Pornography.

He posted a bail bond of $2,000 and was released from the Manatee County Jail.

Federal charges are pending.


Man on Drugs Arrested for
Child Abuse of Son, 16

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office has arrested Michael Eric Cook, 38, of the 7000 block of 60th Street NW, Bradenton.


Michael Eric Cook

According to the arrest report, on Wednesday, April 1, 2009, at about 9:30 p.m., Cook and his unnamed 16-year-old son became involved in a verbal argument.

Cook was upset due his son not making him dinner, the report said.

The boy told deputies Cook grabbed him by the throat, choking him and then pushed him backwards. The boy stumbled and Cook, still having the boy by the throat, pushed his head into a table.

The boy said he got up and ran outside and Cook chased after him. The boy ran down the road and Cook got in his truck and chased the boy.

The boy hid in bushes until Cook drove by and then ran to a neighbor's house to call his grandmother.

The boy said Cook "had been taking pills all day."

When asked about that, Cook said that he took one Xanax. However, Cook could not remember how many milligrams it was, but said it was blue in color.

"Cook could not follow simple directions, could not remember how old he was and could barely stand or walk," the deputy wrote in the arrest report.

Cook was arrested and charged with Child abuse.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $50,000 bail bond.


Masked Teen Robs Juvenile
Girl At "Gunpoint"

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- An unsuspecting juvenile girl was on the way home from work when a masked teenager robbed the girl at "gunpoint" on Wednesday, April 1, 2009, at about 9:20 p.m., according to a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office. The incident occurred in the 500 block of Country Lane, in Bradenton.


Above, a lookalike red 1990s Land Rover Discovery

The report said the juvenile was driving home from work. When she turned onto her street, she noticed a red SUV parked on the corner.

She pulled into her driveway and as she was getting out of her vehicle was approached by a masked "gunman," then noticed the red SUV parked in the street in front of her house.

The robber then pointed a "gun" at her and demanded her money. She said she doesn't carry a purse so she gave the robber her wallet. The robber then told her to lay her head in the passenger seat and count to 100, then he fled.

A neighbor heard a scream and observed the SUV drive down the street at a high rate of speed, in reverse. He saw the red SUV and said the vehicle's tag was a Florida State tag, but the letters were covered up with duct tape. He described the vehicle as a late 90's Land Rover Discovery and said there were two occupants inside.

When asked about the "gun," the juvenile girl said she was positive it was a paintball gun.

The robber was described as a White male teenager of unknown further description, except to say the teen was wearing a mask over the upper portion of his face and was also wearing gloves. The vehicle was a 1990s red Land Rover Discovery, the report said. There was no description of the other person in the vehicle.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Woman Arrested for Aggravated
Battery After Battle with Hubbie

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- The Bradenton Police Department has arrested Peppie Lozano, 39, of 3980 Pinebrook Circle, Bradenton.


Peppie Lozano

The arrest report from BPD said on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at about 9 p.m., Peppie and her husband are legally married and have children in common.

Peppie and her husband were engaged in a verbal argument about the children.

During the argument, her unnamed husband told police, Peppie threw a beer can at him, hitting him in the face. Peppie then hit him several times in the face with her hand.

Then, outside the residence, Peppie threw a pocket knife at her husband, hitting him in the leg. The man sustained no injuries because of that.

Her husband filed a complaint with BPD and Peppie was arrested shortly after midnight on Wednesday, April 1, 2009, and charged with Aggravated Battery.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Peppie remained in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $2,000.


Man with "Diagnosis" Arrested
for Unlawful Sexual Acts

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A Manatee County Sheriff's Detective has arrested Julio Mena-Flores, 42, of the 500 block of 60th Avenue Drive East, in Bradenton.


Julio Mena-Flores

According to the arrest report, Mena-Flores had unprotected sex with at least two women over the course of the last four years.

One of the women is currently incarcerated in the Manatee County Jail.

Investigators interviewed Mena-Flores, who stated he had been diagnosed in Mexico 20 years ago and moved to the United States to get medicine for his condition.

Due to the new HIPAA laws (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), NewsManatee cannot reveal Mena-Flores' diagnosis, except to say that he was arrested under Chapter 384 of the Florida Statutes, which pertains to Sexually Transmittable Diseases (STDs).

Mena-Flores was charged with 10 counts of Unlawful Sexual Acts and remains in the Manatee County Jail without bond.

[Ed. Note: NewsManatee anyone who has had any sexual contact with Mena-Flores to see a physician and get tested for an STD.]


Found Wallet Leads To
Vehicle Burglary Discovery

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- When someone found a wallet that appeared to have been discarded, a Manatee County Sheriff's Office follow-up led to the discovery of a vehicle burglary in Ellenton, a Sheriff's report said.

On Thursday, April 2, 2009, at about 2 a.m., a wallet belonging to a young girl was found at the 2700 block of US 301 North.

Then, at 2:30 a.m., COPS North deputies located the victim's home and confirmed that a vehicle burglary did take place.

The burglary happened in the 1000 block of Mark Ave., only a few blocks from where the wallet was located.

The wallet was confirmed to have been taken from that burglary and was placed into property and evidence for processing.

At this time, there are no suspects.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


U.S. Marshals, MSO, SPD
Make Fugitive Murder Bust

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- On Thursday, April 2, 2009, at about 3:20 p.m., a cadre of U.S. Marshals, Manatee County Deputies and Sarasota Police Officers arrested a man wanted for murder in another state.

The suspect, Ben Underwood, 19, was located at a residence in the 2900 block of 24th Street West, Bradenton, and taken into custody.

Underwood was wanted by officials in Elkhart, Indiana.

He is being held without bail, pending extradition to Indiana.


Palmetto Woman Sentenced
for Theft of Government Funds

TAMPA, Florida [NMT] -- On Thursday, April 2, 2009, U.S. District Judge Susan C. Bucklew sentenced Lynn Weber, 55, of Palmetto, Florida, to 5 months in federal prison and 5 months of house arrest for stealing government funds. Weber was also ordered to pay $62,960.00 in restitution. Weber had pleaded guilty to the offense on December 24, 2008.

According to court documents, a woman named Eleanor Edwards, was a recipient of Veterans Administration Dependency and Indemnity Compensation, which is paid to eligible surviving spouses of veterans who have not remarried. Ms. Edwards died on November 25, 2003. On February 7, 2008, it was determined that $1,324.00 in benefits were still being paid to Ms. Edwards each month via U.S. Treasury checks. The checks were being mailed to an address in Parrish, Florida, where Ms. Edwards's son resided with his girlfriend, Lynn Weber.

A query of Ms. Edwards’s Veterans Administration claim folder showed that the mailed checks had been cashed with “Eleanor Edwards'” signature and the name “Weber” on the backs.

The back of the checks also contained information regarding a local check cashing establishment which showed that Weber had presented identification and cashed the checks.

Law enforcement went to the store listed on the checks and store employees at the store identified Weber as the person who had cashed Ms. Edwards' checks.

Weber had stolen approximately $62,960.00 belonging to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

This case was investigated by Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of the Inspector General. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Amanda C. Kaiser.


Project LIfesaver Recovers
Elderly Missing Man
in Five Minutes

SARASOTA, Florida [NMT] -- An elderly Sarasota man who went missing was located within 5 minutes of Sarasota Police Officers activating Project Lifesaver equipment.

According to a press release from SPD, on Thursday, April 2, 2009, at about 11 a.m., the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office received a call of a missing endangered adult.

Gregory Hayes, who suffers from a medical condition that causes him to wander off, was missing.

The Sheriff's office responded to 602 Four Bays Drive and initiated a search.

The son of Mr. Hayes told sheriff's deputies that his father was a member of Project Lifesaver with the City of Sarasota Police Department.

Officer Snodgrass of the Sarasota Police Department was notified immediately.

Officer Snodgrass responded to the home of Mr. Hayes and, using the Project Lifesaver equipment, Officer Snodgrass initiated a search.

Mr. Hayes was located within 5 minutes.

Mr. Hayes had entered an abandoned apartment complex, climbed the stairs to the second floor and entered an apartment where he was found unconscious and in need of medical attention.

Nokomis Fire and Rescue responded and transported Mr. Hayes to the hospital.

If Mr. Hayes had not been wearing the Project Lifesaver bracelet, this search could have taken hours or even days and his recovery may have been too late.

Project Lifesaver is available to all residents of Sarasota County through the Sarasota Police Department.

If you know of someone that has some type of medical condition such as Alzheimer's, Autism or Down's Syndrome that may benefit from this program, please contact Officer Snodgrass at The Sarasota Police Department at 941-954-7056.


Two Students Arrested After
Weekend Vandalism Spree

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A Charlotte County Sheriff’s School Resource Officer has arrested two Port Charlotte High students in connection with last Saturday night's vandalism spree at the school


Above, L to R, Jonathan Piedlow and Codi Pinschmidt

Arrested were Jonathan Piedlow, 16, 3382 Harbor Blvd., and Codi Pinschmidt, 15, 21051 Kearney Ave., both of Port Charlotte. They are charged with Burglary and Criminal Mischief, both felonies, and Petit Theft. The SRO reports that Piedlow, Pinschmidt, and a third boy only known as "Kurtis" left Town Center Mall Saturday, March 28, 2009, around 9 p.m., and went across the street to the school. They gained access to the PCHS pool where all three swam, and then threw portable bleachers and a small shed into the pool. They took two bottles of chocolate syrup and squirted them on soda machines at the pool.

From the pool they went to the baseball/softball field press box, stole four PCHS Pirates flags and a fire extinguisher, and then discharged it. From there they broke into two portables by smashing windows to gain entry. They ransacked the teacher’s desks and stole various items. Then they went to the football field ticket booth and kicked in the door, and then broke into a portable concession stand, and finished their spree by damaging the metal frame and netting at the baseball batting cage.

School officials said the damages totaled $1,600.

Piedlow and Pinschmidt were transported to the Charlotte County Jail Wednesday, booked and then released to their parents, pending a court date.

The SRO said he is still looking for the boy only known as “Kurtis” who is a White male with shoulder length blond hair. Anyone with information concerning “Kurtis” is asked to please call the CCSO at 941-639-2101, or Crime Stoppers at 800-780-TIPS (8477).


Former Charlotte County
Corrections Officer Indicted

FORT MYERS, Florida [NMT] -- Yesterday, April 2, 2009, United States Attorney A. Brian Albritton announced the return of an indictment charging William Wilson, 25, of North Port, with Deprivation of Civil Rights Under Color of Law. If convicted, Wilson faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.

The indictment alleges that in May 2008, while employed as a corrections officer at the Charlotte County Correctional Institution, Wilson assaulted an inmate and gouged out the inmate's eye while the inmate was restrained. The victim subsequently lost the eye.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Chief Assistant United States Attorney Douglas Molloy.


Escaped Inmate Found
Walking Near Road

MASCOTTE, Florida [NMT/WKMG] -- An inmate who escaped from the Lake County Correctional Institute has been captured, Orlando television station WKMG reported.


Michael Howarth

Michael Howarth, 41, was found by Mascotte police while walking near state Road 50 -- about 12 miles from the prison. He initially gave officers a fake name but later admitted he was an escapee, police said.

Howarth was working at a wastewater treatment plant at the correctional facility when he escaped late Monday night.

Howarth is serving a 20-year sentence for Burglary and Grand Theft, WKMG said.

The escape will likely mean added prison time for Howarth.

 

 

~ THURSDAY'S LOCAL/STATE NEWS ~

Stolen Car Perp Punches, Chokes
Sheriff's K-9 During Arrest
After Pursuit

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A man who was just released from prison was found driving a stolen car. He bailed from the vehicle but was pursued by Manatee County Sheriff's Deputies. During the pursuit, he punched and choked a Sheriff's K-9, but was finally arrested.


Above, K-9 Dep. Pino and Henry Sailes

According to a report from the sheriff's office, on Tuesday, April 1, 2009, at about 1 a.m., deputies located a stolen vehicle. A traffic stop was conducted at 5600 7th Street Court East, Bradenton.

The driver, Henry Sailes, 41, of 3310 5th Street East, Bradenton, ran from the vehicle.

A perimeter was established and, with the help of the sheriff's helicopter, Sailes was located.

Sailes was ordered to surrender by K-9 Deputy Bertolino, but he refused.

K-9 Dep. Pino was released by Dep. Bertolino.

Sailes continued to resist and he punched and choked K-9 Dep. Pino.

After a brief struggle, Sailes was secured.

The K-9, Pino, received a laceration above his right eye that did not require medical attention.

Sailes was arrested and charged with Battery on a Police Dog, Resisting Arrest without Violence and Probation Violation. He was not charged with the stolen auto offense.

Sailes was just released from prison for a variety of offenses which included Injuring a Police K-9, Resisting Arrest with Violence, and Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer.

Henry Sailes has been in and out of prison since 1988. He has served 11 years of nearly 20 years of sentences, which included Burglary, Grand Theft, Petit Theft (3rd conviction), Dealing in Stolen Property and Possession of Cocaine.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail without bail because of the Probation Violation.


Bradenton Cops Arrest Man
for Possession of Heroin,
Marijuana, Resisting

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- Bradenton Police have arrested Jimmy B. Walker, 24, of 2218 18th Street East, Bradenton.


Jimmy B. Walker

According to the arrest report from BPD, police were called to an apartment complex on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at about 6 p.m., on a report of a disturbance.

Upon arrival, a woman told officers a Black male, later identified as Walker who was standing near the front of the building, had been harassing her by loudly knocking on her door repeatedly, after being asked to leave.

Officers confronted Walker and received permission to search him. He said he lived at the complex. However, he didn't.

While searching Walker, an officer attempted to handcuff Walker and he fled.

One officer tried to use a Taser on Walker, but it failed. Another one immediately tried to Tase Walker and it was successful.

Subsequent to being detained, Walker was found to have several Dilaudid pills (heroin) in his possession and some marijuana.

Walker admitted to smoking marijuana and said he used the Dilaudid pills because he had a skull fracture. He said he got the pills from a Mexican, not a physician.

Walker was arrested and charged with Trafficking in Heroin (Over 4 grams, but under 30), Possession of Marijuana and Resisting Arrest without Violence.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $10,870.


Man Accused of Attempting
Gay Sex Act with Boy, 13,
Now Charged with Same
Attempt on Boy, 9

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- On Monday, March 30, 2009, NewsManatee reported Brandon Travon Edwards had been accused of molesting a boy who was 13 years old (see report below in Monday's Local News). Now Edwards has been accused of attempting to molest the 13-year-old's 9-year-old brother.


Brandon Travon Edwards

According to a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office, on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, the brother of the 13-year-old boy came forward and said he and his brother share a bed in the same room of a residence in the 5000 block of 12th Street East, Bradenton.

On Saturday, March 28, 2009, at about 3 a.m., the 9-year-old felt Edwards rubbing his buttocks inside his clothes. He woke up, saw it was Edwards and brushed Edwards' hand away.

The 9-year-old woke his 13-year-old brother up and asked the brother to trade places with him, which the brother did.

Then, a few minutes later, the boy told detectives, he heard his brother say, "he wasn't into that gay stuff."

The next morning, Edwards allegedly punched the 13-year-old, breaking his nose and causing it to bleed.

At the time, Edwards told detectives he was a "wild sleeper" and he must have touched the 13-year-old accidentally.

When confronted at the jail for a re-interview on Tuesday, Edwards refused to talk without his attorney.

Edwards has additionally been charged with Lewd and Lascivious Molestation and two counts of Child Abuse.

His bond has been increased to $300,000; he remains in the Manatee County Jail.


Woman, 21, Raped By Neighbor;
Rapist Still At Large

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- According to a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office, a 21-year-old woman was raped by a neighbor on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at about 9 p.m.; that man is still at large.

The report said the unnamed victim had just finished using powdered cocaine with her friend at a residence in the 5800 block of 12th Street East.

A neighbor (the suspect) came over to talk to her friend as the victim left to go to the store.

The neighbor followed her and grabbed her from behind. He pushed her into a field and behind a shed and sexually battered her.

The woman who was violated fled back to her friend's house and he called the sheriff's office.

Once on scene, deputies attempted to get information, but the victim was hysterical.

She was transported to Manatee Memorial Hospital.

Rape Crisis responded along with Detective Ives, who was unable to conduct a detailed interview because the victim had to be sedated.

A rape kit was collected and placed into Property and Evidence.

The investigation is ongoing.

The rapist was only described in the report as a Hispanic male, 6' tall and weighing 150 pounds.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Man, Woman Robbed By Gunmen
During Armed Home Invasion

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A Manatee County couple was robbed by 5-6 Black male gunmen in their home in the 3000 block of 25th Street West, Bradenton, on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at about 11:30 p.m., according to a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

The report said the male victim, Jorge Suarez, 37, was returning from the store. He noticed a dark colored Jeep Cherokee sitting in front of his neighbor's yard.

As Jorge was walking to his house, he was confronted by one Black male dressed in all black, wearing gloves and a mask and armed with a rifle.

The gunman told Jorge, "Your money or your life," and forced Jorge into the house where the other victim, Rosemary Suarez, 52, was.

Several other Black males, also armed and dressed the same as the first, exited the vehicle and joined the first man as they went into the house.

The robbers forced the victims to the rear of the home and locked them in a bedroom.

The culprits ransacked the house and also a vehicle parked outside.

They took a laptop computer and 2 stereo amps valued at $1800, and fled in an unknown direction.

About one hour later, deputies from a COPS East unit located a possible match to the vehicle used.

As they attempted to stop the vehicle, the occupants fled.

K-9 and Aviation responded and were able to locate three of the occupants.

The male victim responded to the scene to look at the vehicle. He stated it was the same make and model vehicle the robbers were driving.

Lt. Cunningham was notified and authorized the vehicle to be impounded for processing.

At this time it is unknown if the vehicle or its occupants are involved; the investigation is ongoing.

Neither of the victims was injured.

The perpetrators were not further described, except to say they were armed with two long guns and pistols.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Shots Fired at Three Men By
6-8 Black Males, 2 Hispanic
Males; No Injuries

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office reported shots were fired in the direction of three Hispanic men in the 600 block of 61st Avenue East, Bradenton.

The report said on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at approximately 10 p.m., the victims, ages 20, 21 and a juvenile, were standing outside talking when they noticed 6-8 Black males and two Hispanic males walking by.

The suspects walked to the cul-de-sac and began taunting the victims.

One of the Hispanic suspects pulled a sawed-off shotgun from his pants and handed it to one of the Black males.

The Black male pointed the weapon towards the victims, but up in the air, and fired 3 shots.

The suspects then fled north from the scene.

The area was searched and no suspects were located.

Three shotgun shell casings were located, photographed and collected.

The culprits were not further identified in the report.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Court Bailiff Arrests Man
Wanted on Drug Charges

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A Charlotte County Sheriff’s court Bailiff arrested Joshua Paul Ruff, 26, at the Court House Tuesday after he showed up to face Sale and Delivery of Marijuana charges for an undercover Narcotics purchase on Dec. 2, 2008. Narcotics detectives had been looking for him in connection with a Mar. 19 drug raid on his home at 22480 Hernando Ave., in Port Charlotte.


Above, L to R, Joshua Paul Ruff and Nicole Hope Terhaar

Detectives served a search warrant on his home and located Nicole Hope Terhaar, 21, and her two-year-old daughter inside; Ruff was not located.

A search of the home and garage found baggies of marijuana, bongs, marijuana pieces, a marijuana roach, roach clips, a grinder, a scale, all within reach of the two year old child and out in plain view around the child’s toys.

Terhaar was arrested Mar. 19 on charges of felony Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Proximity to an Infant Toddler, Possession of Marijuana, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.

When arrested yesterday Ruff was also issued the same charges as Terhaar. He was transported to the Charlotte County Jail. Bail bond was set at $12,000 and he made bond.

Anyone with knowledge of illegal drug activity is asked to please call the CCSO Narcotics Unit at 941-575-2157 or Crime Stoppers at 800-780-TIPS (8477).


CCSO Seeks Fugitive on Warrant
for Scheme to Defraud for
Phony Bingo Party, Theft

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Charlotte County Sheriff's Office issued a warrant today for the arrest of Hernan Tadeo Vizcaino, 50, on charges related to a Bingo parlor fraud for a New Years Eve Bingo party. His last known address was 1400 Mineo Dr., Apartment 14C in Punta Gorda Isles.


Hernan Tadeo Vizcaino

Economic Crimes Unit Detective Dolly Faul said there were 52 people who bought prepaid tickets for the Dec. 31-Jan. 1 party at Port Charlotte Bingo, 4200 Tamiami Trail, and totaling $4,380. Of those who bought the bogus tickets, 21 patrons actually filed affidavits for their loss of $2,014 with the Sheriff's ECU.

According to Det. Faul, two weeks prior to the party, Vizcaino took all the kitchen items valued at $30,000 plus $4,000 cash and Bingo equipment. Vizcaino was behind in his rent a couple months and the plaza owner started the eviction process for the $17,000 per month rent.

The owner changed the locks on the business and when ticket holders showed up for the party, they found the doors locked.

Det. Faul said they believe Vizcaino may have fled the state and could be in Texas or Mexico.

Anyone with information about the location of Vizcaino is asked to please call the CCSO at 941-639-2101, or Crime Stoppers at 800-780-TIPS (8477).


Man Who Fled in 1996
from Probation on Child
Sex Charges Located
in Georgia, Returned

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office investigation has ended in looking for a man who fled in 1996 on child sex charges. John Edward Aurelius, 62, was located in Chatsworth, Georgia, and returned to the Charlotte County Jail Tuesday afternoon, April 1, 2009.


John Edward Aurelius

Aurelius was arrested by Punta Gorda Police and then found guilty for a Lewd and Lascivious Act by inappropriate touching that occurred on a 10-year-old girl in November 1991 in his Taylor Road apartment.

Aurelius was sentenced to four years probation but fled the area in 1996 and a warrant has been out for Failure to Appear and Violation of Probation for 13 years.

Aurelius did not register as a convicted sex offender in Georgia.

The CCSO Warrants Unit, the Sexual Offender detective and a Crime Analyst investigation led to Aurelius possibly living in Georgia under several names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers.

A CCSO Crime Scene Technician matched local fingerprints for Aurelius with prints from a Georgia driver’s license, and they had a positive match.

The CCSO Warrants Unit contacted the U.S. Marshal’s Task Force in Georgia. They conducted surveillance on Aurelius’ home, 1690 Duvall Rd., in Chatsworth where he had been living under the name of John R. Dates.

He was arrested and booked into the Murray County Jail in Chatsworth, Georgia.

He waived extradition and was returned to the Charlotte County Jail.


Pharmacy Clerk Kills
Would-Be Robber

ORANGE COUNTY, Florida [NMT/WKMG] -- Orlando television station WKMG reported a man was shot and killed by a clerk after trying to rob a pharmacy, an Orange County Sheriff's Department spokesman said.

According to the sheriff's department, the man attempted to rob the JR Pharmacy on the 2100 block of Whisper Lakes Boulevard when a clerk shot him.

The man was declared dead at the scene.

A worker at a nearby business said they heard shots fired inside the pharmacy, WKMG said.


 

~ WEDNESDAY'S LOCAL/STATE NEWS ~

Manatee County Sheriff's Office:
Woman Arrested for Attempted
Murder After Stabbing Incident

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office reported a woman was arrested for attempted murder after she stabbed another woman in the neck and shoulder. Another woman was also arrested for tampering with evidence. The incident occurred on Monday, March 30, 2009, at about 5:45 p.m. in the 6100 block of 5th Street East, Bradenton.


Above, L to R, Jeanette Faust and Tiffany Brown

According to the arrest reports, Jeanette Faust, 42, and Marvidex McCray, 35, got into a verbal argument over Faust’s mentally handicapped dependent, Tiffany Brown, 26.

Faust pushed Marvidex McCray and Marvidex pushed her back.

Faust then pulled out a knife from her pocket and began to stab at Marvidex, striking her on the right side of her neck which caused a 2-inch laceration.

Bertha McCray, 53, stepped in between Faust and Marvidex during the attack.

Faust continued to stab Marvidex, which caused additional cuts to her left shoulder.

Faust then turned at Bertha McCray, who took off running. Faust chased after Bertha, but was unable to catch her.

Faust and Brown then fled the scene on foot. Faust and Brown were later located getting out of a car in Manatee Woods, in the 300 block of 34th Avenue Drive West. Brown had the knife in her hand but handed it to an unidentified Black male who fled on foot.

K-9 tracked but was unable to locate the Black male.

Marvidex McCray was transported to Manatee Memorial Hospital by EMS and treated for her wounds.

During Brown's arrested, she resisted Deputies.

Bertha McCray later passed out and was transported to Manatee Memorial Hospital by EMS.

Tiffany Brown was charged with Tampering with Evidence and Resisting Arrest without Violence. She remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $15,750 bail bond.

Jeanette Faust was charged with Attempted Murder, Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon and Resisting Arrest with Violence. She remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $155,000 bail bond.


Man Arrested for GaySex
Attempt on Boy, 13

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- Manatee County Sheriff's Deputies have arrested Brandon Travon Edwards, 22, of the 1500 block of 13th Avenue East, Bradenton.


Brandon Travon Edwards

According to the arrest report, on Saturday, March 28, 2009, at about 3 a.m., Edwards drove to the home of a 13-year-old boy and let himself in, after an evening of drinking alcohol. The home is in the 5800 block of 12th Street East, Bradenton.

Once inside, Edwards proceeded to the boy's bedroom and got into bed with him.

He then fondled the boy's buttocks under his clothes.

The unnamed victim woke up, looked at Edwards and shoved his hand away and demanded, "Quit touching me! I ain't into that gay shit!"

A minute later, Edwards repeated the process and again the boy shoved Edwards' hand away.

A minute after that, Edwards repeated the fondling, only this time he also allegedly stuck a finger in the boy's buttocks.

This time, the boy told Edwards to stop or he'd tell his mother.

The following morning, the victim confronted Edwards about what he had done. During that confrontation, the victim was punched in the nose by Edwards.

Two witnesses, who were in the home when the sexual fondling took place, told deputies they heard the boy demanding that Edwards stop touching him.

When Edwards was interviewed by detectives, he admitted to the sexual fondling, but said he "sleeps wild" and must have accidentally touched the victim's buttocks. He also admitted accidentally touching the victim's rectum, but denied doing it on purpose.

Edwards was arrested and charged with Sexual Battery.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $75,000 bail bond.


Man Arrested for Sex with
Girl, 16, Who Is Possibly
Now Pregnant

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office has arrested Andrea Pisano, 29, of the 8800 block of Manor Loop, in Bradenton.


Andrea Pisano

According to the arrest report, beginning in November 2008, Andrea had sex with a 16-year-old unnamed girl.

The girl's father told deputies the girl had stayed at Andrea's house on November 24th without permission. When her father questioned her, she told him that "she and Andrea had sex and that she may be pregnant."

Since then, up to the beginning of March 2009, Andrea and the girl have had mutual oral sex about seven times, the girl told deputies. It always occurred in Andrea's home, the report said.

After his arrest, Andrea wouldn't talk to detectives.

Andrea was arrested and charged with two counts of Unlawful Sexual Activity with a Minor.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $20,000.


Bradenton Police Arrest Man
for Sexual Battery of Wife

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- In a "he said, she said" situation, Bradenton Police have arrested Calvin Moore, 38, of 624 11th Avenue East, Bradenton.


Calvin Moore

The arrest report from BPD said Calvin Moore and the unnamed victim of a sexual incident are married, but separated.

They were both at a party for the victim's godmother on Friday, March 27, 2009.

They began to talk about having sex and trying to "work things out" and, when they left the party, they met back up at the victim's home in the 500 block of 10th Avenue West, Bradenton. Once there, the issue became a "he said, she said" matter.

The victim said Calvin asked her for sex one more time, but she refused. He said he was going to have sex with her anyway.

She tried to flee, but Calvin grabbed her and put his hand over her mouth to prevent her from fleeing.

The woman told detectives Calvin then digitally penetrated her vaginally and rectally.

She told him if he'd let her go, she'd have sex with him.

He let her go and she fled and called police

But Calvin called police also, saying his wife had battered him. He said when they got to her home, they began watching a movie and then he gave the woman oral sex, but she would not reciprocate.

He said the victim got mad about a girl he was seen talking to several nights before. The conversation became heated, he said, and she jumped him from behind. He tried to get her off, but she clawed at him and scratched him.

Calvin finally got her off of him and he fled, he said.

Upon examination by detectives, the woman had scratch marks on her, but there was no mention in the report of scratch marks or other wounds on him.

Calvin was arrested and charged with Sexual Battery.

He posted a $50,000 bail bond and was released from jail.


Two Arrested for Burglary;
One for ID Theft, More

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- The Bradenton Police Department has arrested Juan Garcia, 39, a homeless man, and Roberto Gomez, 41, of 1117 26th Avenue West, Bradenton.


Above, L to R, Juan Garcia and Roberto Gomez

According to the arrest reports of the two men, on Sunday, March 29, 2009, at about 8:30 p.m., both men were seen by witnesses removing a refrigerator from a house in the 1300 block of 21st Street West, Bradenton.

Police were called by the witnesses, who had a birds-eye view of the incident.

The witnesses detained one man, later identified as Juan Garcia. As police arrived, they saw one of the witnesses chasing Gomez. The officer took Gomez into custody.

The witnesses told an officer that the owner of the house was on his way and wanted to press charges.

Both men were arrested and charged with Burglary.

However, when Garcia was questioned, he gave a false name, which was later discovered by police.

Garcia was additionally charged with Identity Theft, False Statement in Obtaining a Driver License/ID card, and Giving a False Name to Law Enforcement.

Gomez remains in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $11,000. He was charged the next day with using someone else's identification.

Garcia remains in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $11,370.

The arrest report of Garcia noted he has numerous aliases and is awaiting review of his immigration status.


Bradenton Police Arrest Man
for Urinating in Public

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- Bradenton Police have arrested Johnny Vasquez, 46, a homeless man.


Johnny Vasquez

The arrest report from BPD said on Monday, March 30, 2009, at about 6 p.m., an officer was summoned by a passer-by that she'd seen Vasquez urinating at a public bus stop. The incident occurred in the 1600 block of 9th Avenue East, Bradenton.

The officer looked over at Vasquez and he was in fact urinating on a telephone pole.

At the time, the officer wrote, there were four children directly across the street looking at Vasquez urinate. The children were approximately six to eleven years old.

Vasquez was approximately 50 feet away front the front door of a residence.

The officer approached Vasquez as he was putting his penis back into his pants.

The officer noted that there appeared to be urine on the telephone pole and the ground.

Vasquez was arrested and charged with Indecent Exposure in Public. His bail bond is $200 and he remains in the Manatee County Jail.


Woman, 70, Pistol-Whipped
in Armed Home Invasion
Robbery in Peridia

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office reported a 70-year-old woman was pistol-whipped during an armed home invasion robbery on Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at about 3 p.m.

According to the report, Martha Tomas, of the 4000 block of 53rd Avenue East, was seriously injured in the incident.

The culprit knocked on her front door. Thinking it was her son, she opened the door.

The robber produced a handgun and struck the woman in the head, then demanded money.

The victim complied. Then the man struck her again in the head.

He took the woman's purse as he fled the residence.

The woman suffered several serious lacerations and was flown to Bayfront Medical Center via Bayflite medical chopper.

The robber was described as a male, no race or age given, last seen wearing a blue jacket and dark pants.

At last report, a sheriff's K-9 unit and the sheriff's helicopter were attempting to locate the perpetrator.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


FREE Vessel Safety Checks
Announced by Coast Guard
Certified Examiners

PALMETTO, Florida [NMT] -- FREE Vessel Safety Checks will be given during the month of April at the Green Bridge ramp next to Regatta Pointe Marina in Palmetto.

On the four Saturdays in April, USCG Certified Vessel Examiners will be set up in the morning to perform a courtesy examination of your boat to verify the presence and condition of certain safety equipment required by State and the Federal regulations. These Vessel Examiners are trained specialists and members of the US Coast Guard Auxiliary. They will also make certain recommendations and discuss certain safety issues that will make you a safer boater.

The items checked will be Display of Numbers, Registration or documentation, Life Jackets, Visual Distress Signals and expiration dates, Fire extinguishers, Ventilation, Backfire Flame control, sound producing device, Navigation lights, Pollution and Marpol Trash placards (if required), Navigation rules and basically compliance with Federal, State and local regulations.

This is not boarding or a law enforcement issue. No citations will be given as a result of this encounter. We will supply you with a copy of our evaluation so that you may follow some of the suggestions given. Vessels that pass will be able to display our distinctive VSC decal. This does not exempt you from law enforcement boarding, but you can be prepared to make this a positive encounter.

So be prepared, arrive a little earlier, have your registration with you and get you annual vessel safety check. It’s free, just for you and your family! Let’s be safe on the water and come back alive!


Red Cross Volunteer Wins
$505 in Drawing

MANTEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- As part of the Heroes for Red Cross fundraising campaign that ran during the month of March, Red Cross Board member, Marianne Moyer, and staffer, Erin Craig, hit the streets selling 50/50 Chance Drawing tickets. The Heroes Campaign is a grass-roots fundraising campaign where members of the community pitch in to raise funds for their local Red Cross Chapter.

Marianne and Erin did just that! They worked at the street fair in downtown Bradenton on Saturdays and they had a table at the Village of the Arts in Bradenton.

Their hard work paid off and they raised $1,010! Of that $1,010, $505 goes to the person who purchased the winning ticket, and $505 benefits the American Red Cross Manatee County Chapter. That $505 will aid Red Cross in devlivering life-saving services in Manatee and Hardee Counties.

The winner of the other $505 was Tom Badger. Badger has been a Red Cross volunteer for a number of years and conducts monthly tours of the Red Cross to help educate people about Red Cross Services.

Thank you to Marianne and Erin for their hard work. And congratulations to Tom Badger!


CCSO Narcs Raid Home,
Arrest Three People

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Narcotics Unit raided a Port Charlotte home Tuesday morning, March 31, 2009, at 7 a.m. and made three arrests. Based on intelligence information, the search warrant was served at 2073 Delta St.


Above, L to R, Cynthia Wolverton-Jones and Adam Jones

Cynthia Lee Wolverton-Jones, 40, and her son Adam Richard Jones, 19, and a 17-year-old juvenile boy, were in the home at the time of the raid. Detectives searched and found marijuana, roach clip, grinder, rolling papers and a paper plate that tested positive for marijuana (THC). While Wolverton was being detained, she offered the juvenile a cigarette, which is illegal. Wolverton told detectives she knows the teens use marijuana and she, “turns a blind eye to what the boys do.”

All three were charged with Possession of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Wolverton was additionally charged with felony Child Neglect. They were transported to the Charlotte county Jail for processing; Wolverton-Jones bond was set at $6,500 and Adam Jones at $2,000; the juvenile will be released after he is processed at the jail.

Anyone with knowledge of illegal drug activity is asked to please call the CCSO Narcotics Unit at 941-575-2157 or Crime Stoppers at 800-780-TIPS (8477).


Massive Manhunt Under Way
for Escaped Prisoner

CLERMONT, Florida [NMT/WKMG] -- A massive manhunt is under way for an inmate who escaped from the Lake Correctional Institution early Tuesday morning, Orlando television station WKMG reported.


Michael Howarth

Michael Howarth, 41, was last seen inside the institution at about 11:30 p.m. wearing a white T-shirt and blue pants.

Howarth, a minimum-security inmate, was incarcerated in 1992 on charges of burglary and grand theft and has three years remaining on his sentence.

"He is a convicted felon and has escaped prison, so I would consider him dangerous," Lake County sheriff's Cpl. Jim Vachon said.

Officials said Howarth and another inmate were working at a waste-water treatment plant, which is located on prison property but is not fenced in. Howarth was last seen Monday at 11:30 p.m. and was discovered missing during a check at about 12:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Law enforcement officials said Howarth legally changed his name in 1996, so he may be using the alias Mike Distasio.

Helicopters and bloodhounds were being utilized in the search, WKMG said.


 

~ TUESDAY'S LOCAL/STATE NEWS ~

Manatee Detective Arrests Man
for Rape, More of Girl, 12, Who
Had Mysteriously Disappeared

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The mystery is solved. The 12-year-old girl who disappeared over this past weekend was raped by a man who picked her up near her home, after she left her house for a walk.


Kenneth R. Ross

Detective Todd Sellitto, of the Manatee County Sheriff's Office Child Protection Division has released an arrest report detailing the activities of Kenneth R. Ross, 46, of 3600 Lake Bayshore Drive, Bradenton, regarding the once missing 12-year-old girl, also from Bradenton.

According to the report, on Saturday, March 28, 2009, the girl got into a verbal argument with her grandmother. The girl was upset and left her home on foot wearing a gray sports bra, blue jeans and no shoes. That was at about 10:15 a.m. on Saturday. She didn't return and her family reported her missing.

During the investigation, it was discovered that the girl would be in grave danger because she was seen by witnesses getting into a red Jeep which had pulled over to meet with the girl on Manatee Avenue West. The vehicle was allegedly being driven by a White male, approximately 40-50 years old. That was at about 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, only 15 minutes after she had left her home.

A statewide Amber Alert was subsequently issued by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

On Sunday, March 29, 2009, at about 4:30 p.m., the girl returned home. She said she had been dropped off at a Wendy's restaurant near her home and walked home from there.

Detectives Sellitto and Dugan interviewed the girl, who told them she had been picked up by a man known to her only as "Kenneth" on Manatee Avenue West. She said she knew his name was Kenneth because she saw his Florida Driver License.

The girl said Kenneth drove her to his residence, where she drank whiskey he provided her with and watched pornographic movies. She described the movies as being on DVD. Some of the DVDs were commercially produced and some appeared to be homemade, with black marker writing on them, the report said.

Detectives say the girl admitted Kenneth digitally penetrated her several times during the night. She said she gave Kenneth oral sex and Kenneth gave her oral sex. She said that Kenneth inserted his penis in her vagina and in her rectum.

The girl said sometime on Sunday, Kenneth told her not to tell anyone what had happened. Then he dropped her off by her house and she walked home.

While following up on leads, Det. Sellitto located a vehicle that matched specific descriptions of the vehicle Kenneth had driven when he picked up and later dropped off the girl.

The girl was driven by the location and she immediately pointed out that vehicle. The vehicle was registered to Kenneth Ross.

During a surveillance of Kenneth's residence, he came outside with several DVDs in his hands. Kenneth said they were his and he was heading to the dumpster to throw them away. He was taken into custody and his residence was secured by deputies.

Back at the Child Protection Division offices, Kenneth Ross admitted to detectives that he had picked the girl up, and that he had oral. digital and vaginal sex with her, the report said. He also admitted to showing her porn.

The girl picked Kenneth Ross out of a photo lineup and within a few seconds positively identified him as the man with whom she had spent the night.

Kenneth Ross was charged with 5 counts of Lewd and Lascivious Battery, one count of Lewd and Lascivious Molestation, Interference with Child Custody, Giving Alcohol to a Person Under 21, and Exposing a Minor to Harmful Motion Pictures.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $192,500.

[Ed. Note: Parents, please take specific note that it only took about 15 minutes for a child to be picked up by a child molester and subsequently raped.]


Man in "Raging Fit" Arrested
for Assaulting Sister; Tasered

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- Manatee County Sheriff's Deputies have arrested Marvin "Marty" Lamar Pearson, 54, of 3152 9th Street West, Bradenton.


Marvin "Marty" Lamar Pearson

According to the arrest report, on Sunday, March 29, 2009, at about 3:10 a.m., Marty's unnamed sister is visiting from out of state. Mary borrowed $20 from his sister and left the house. He returned over three hours later.

When he returned, he was in a "raging fit, sweating and acting abnormal," according to the sister and an unnamed witness.

A short time after Marty came home, he began to yell at the victim and told her to leave his house.

His sister attempted to remove her belongings before she left, at which time, Marty pushed her out the door and to the ground, which caused injuries to her forearms.

When his sister tried to come back into the house, Marty armed himself with a hatchet and began to chase her out of the house and into the yard.

His sister was able to get away from Marty, at which time he dropped the hatched, locked himself inside the house and started breaking things inside.

Arriving deputies heard glass breaking inside. Marty then came out of the house, but retreated back inside when he saw deputies walking toward him. He locked the door and refused to come out. Deputies heard Marty continue to break things inside the house while yelling at deputies and his sister.

A deputy was able to get a side door open. While Marty was distracted at the kitchen sink, entry was made and Marty was Tasered to prevent harm to himself and deputies. He was taken into custody without further incident.

Marty denied his sister's and the witnesses accusations and said she had choked him for no reason.

However, the witness confirmed the sister's story and said she never touched Marty.

Marty was arrested and charged with Aggravated Domestic Assault and Domestic Battery.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $100,000 bail bond.


Bradenton Police Arrest Burglar
After He Flees, K-9 Bites Him

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- The Bradenton Police Department has arrested Hunter J. Hendricks, 18, of 1107 Harvard Avenue, Bradenton.


Hunter J. Hendricks

The arrest report from BPD said on Sunday, March 29, 2009, at about 8:45 p.m., a police officer was dispatched to a burglary in progress at 1515 10th Street West, Bradenton.

When he arrived, he observed an individual, later identified as Hendricks, leaning into the broken window of a van owned by Gulf Coast Auto Glass.

When ordered to stop, Hendricks ran to the northeast. He stopped only after a K-9 was released, that bit Hendricks.

The officer then arrested Hendricks.

Hendricks told the officer he went to the business with the intent of breaking out all the windows and damaging the vehile. He said he did this because a friend of his works for the business and had an argument with the manager, the report said.

After being treated for injuries consistent with the dog bite at Manatee Memorial Hospital, Hendricks was taken to the Manatee County Jail.

Hendricks was charged with Burglary to an Unoccupied Conveyance and Resisting Arrest without Violence.

Hendricks remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $10,750 bail bond.


Bradenton Cops Arrest Man
for Burglary with Help from
Sheriff's K-9 Unit

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- Tyshaun J. Clark, 22, of 4821 34th Street West, Bradenton, has been arrested by the Bradenton Police Department.


Above, L to R, K-9 Dep. "Ranger" and Tyshaun J. Clark

The arrest report from BPD said on Saturday, March 28, 2009, shortly before 11 a.m., Clark and two minors were seen breaking into a residence in the 1900 block of 26th Avenue West, Bradenton. Not long afterward, they exited the residence with items taken from the home.

All three jumped the back fence of the residence and fled on foot after a Manatee County Sheriff's Deputy and witnesses began to chase them.

Clark was apprehended by Manatee County Sheriff's Deputy Franklin and his K-9 Deputy "Ranger."

Clark was positively identified as one of the three seen entering and exiting the residence, which was unoccupied at the time of the burglary.

The report said Clark and the two juveniles ransacked the residence; the value of the property taken was around $300.

Property from the residence was dropped by the trio as they fled.

A chisel (burglary tool) was found on Clark subsequent to his arrest.

Clark was charged with Burglary to an Unoccupied Dwelling, Child Abuse (Cause Child to Commit Delinquent Act), Battery on a Police K-9, Criminal Mischief, two counts of Resisting Arrest without Violence and Possession of Burglary Tools.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a bail bond of $33,250.

It is unknown if the two juveniles were also arrested; the report didn't say.


Palmetto Police Arrest Man
for Breaking Victim's Hand

PALMETTO, Florida [NMT] -- Palmetto Police have arrested Jesus Villanueva, 33, of 610 11th Street West, Palmetto.


Jesus Villanueva

According to the arrest report from PPD, on Saturday, March 28, 2009, at about 8:20 p.m., Villanueva armed himself with a 2 1/2 foot stick and hit the victim with it in his hand.

That caused the unnamed victim a broken hand.

The victim was transported to Manatee Memorial Hospital by EMS.

Villanueva was arrested a short time later by PPD and charged with Aggravated Battery.

He remains in the Manatee County Jail on a $15,000 bail bond.


Wrong Turn in Palmetto
Gets Man, Girlfriend
Robbed at Gunpoint

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A man and his girlfriend were robbed at gunpoint on Saturday, March 28, 2009, at about 9:30 p.m., after they made a wrong turn, according to a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

The report said Oscar Rosas, 35, told deputies he and his girlfriend, named only as Rebecca, 29, in the report, were robbed at gunpoint in the 600 block of 16th Street East, Palmetto.

Rosas said he made a wrong turn and pulled into the dead end street.

They were approached by two Black males, who were armed.

One of the men reached into the car, took the keys from the ignition, and then demanded their money.

Rosas said he gave them the money he had in his pocket.

The robbers then walked off towards the North through Lincoln Park.

The highwaymen were described as 2 Black males in their teens to 20s, with medium builds, both wearing black T-shirts and shorts. Suspect #1 was under 5' tall, had medium dreadlocks and was armed with a chrome revolver. Suspect #2 was 5'02" tall, bald, and was armed with a black semi-automatic handgun.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Man Arrested on Child Abuse
Charges, More, After Drugs
Found in Urine of Boy, 3

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- On the afternoon of Monday, March 30, 2009, Charlotte County Sheriff’s Major Crimes detectives arrested David Steven Weaver Jr., 34, at the Charlotte County Jail, on a charge of Aggravated Child Abuse. Weaver was arrested Mar. 25 by CCSO Narcotics detectives after they raided his home and found a Methamphetamine lab. The Department of Children and Families notified the CCSO that a urine test was conducted on Weaver’s 3 year old son and it tested positive for Amphetamines, Opiates, and Ecstasy.


David Steven Weaver, Jr.

Narcotics detectives made an undercover meth purchase at Weaver’s home on Mar. 11 then on Mar. 25 executed a search warrant for Weaver’s home at 7241 Alan Blvd., and 7208 Gewant Blvd., both in the Charlottes Ranchettes area east of Punta Gorda. The meth lab was in a large garage building on the property at the rear of his home.

The DCF investigation revealed that Weaver had taken the child into the meth lab where he manufactured Methamphetamines. MCU detectives met with the child’s mother who said on or about Feb. 15, Weaver took the boy into the garage and called her to come get their son because he couldn’t get any work done. The mother went to the garage and when she opened the door, smelled a very strong odor of ammonia emitting from the area where the boy was located. The mother took the child out into fresh air and away from the garage. She said later that night the child was coughing.

MCU detectives said they had reasonable cause that Weaver, “did conduct an intentional act on his son which could have been reasonably expected to result in physical or mental injury to the child.” Weaver remains in the County Jail without bond.

Narcotics detectives said the meth lab had all the various equipment to manufacture, including filters, fuel, acetone, Sudafed, grinders and three hot plates used to cook various chemicals, and several other components to make the illegal meth. Also found were Valium, Soma and Klonopin pills.

Weaver’s original charges on the meth lab raid were Sale and Delivery of Methamphetamines, Unlawful Possession of Listed Precursor Chemicals, Possession of Valium, Klonopin, Possession of Prescription Medications without a Prescription and two counts of two counts of Possession of Methamphetamine.


CCSO, PGPD, FHP Arrest
12 Men for DUI

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A dozen men were arrested and booked into the Charlotte County Jail over the weekend, all charged with DUI; four of them were involved in crashes. CCSO deputies arrested 10 of the 12 for DUI while Punta Gorda Police and Florida Highway Patrol each had one arrest.

Half of those arrested are from Port Charlotte, four from North Port, one each from Punta Gorda and Englewood, and one arrest on an out of state resident from Virginia.

CCSO reports law enforcement will continue to look for those driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs.

In 2007 there were 612 DUI arrests in Charlotte County; in 2008 there were 654 arrests for DUI.


Boy, 13, Shot While Fleeing
Fight At Party

ORANGE COUNTY, Florida [NMT/WKMG] -- A 13-year-old boy was shot while running from a house in Pine Hills after a birthday party got out of control, Orlando television station WKMG reported.

According to the Orange County Sheriff's Office, a fight broke out at the home late Saturday night and several shots were fired.

The boy was struck in the leg and suffered injuries that were not life-threatening, deputies said.

Investigators have recovered several guns and a car believed to be linked to the shooting but no arrests have been made, WKMG said.


 

~ MONDAY'S LOCAL/STATE NEWS ~

Caged Dog Shot, 2 Pistol-Whipped,
5 Forced to Strip, During Armed
Home Invasion Robbery

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- Five people were forced to strip and made to gather in a bathroom during an armed home invasion robbery in the 4900 block of 37th Street East, Bradenton, shortly after midnight on Friday. In addition, a caged dog was shot and two people were pistol-whipped, according to a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

The report said on Friday, March 27, 2009, at approximately 12:10 a.m., Mark Hinkle, 38, said his dogs started barking for some unknown reason.

Hinkle went to the front door and looked out the front window and did not see anything suspicious. Hinkle went back to his bedroom and closed his bedroom door.

Hinkle said his caged dogs began barking again, so he got up to investigate a second time. When he opened his bedroom door to see what was causing the dogs to bark, two unknown Black males forced their way through the door, while two other Black males were in the hallway.

The first Black male struck Hinkle in the head with a handgun and told him to get on the ground. Five robbers then gathered everyone in the house out of their bedrooms into the hallway. Once in the hallway, one of the robbers asked where the money was.

Hinkle told them the money was on the dresser in his room. Hinkle said they took the $372 he had on the dresser.

Three of the robbers were armed with a different assortment of firearms -- a short sawed off rifle, a revolver and an automatic pistol.

The robbers also struck two of the victims, one being a juvenile, in the head with their pistols.

Everyone in the house was told to undress and go into the bathroom. Once everyone was in the bathroom, the robbers went throughout the residence looking for items.

While leaving the residence, one of the robbers shot one of Hinkle's pit bull dogs in the head that was caged up inside the residence.

The robbers left the residence through the front door and left in an unknown vehicle, in an unknown direction.

All the victims said the five robbers were all wearing gloves. One of the robbers yelled out, "Somebody is going to get shot tonight if you don’t do what we say."

EMS was called to check out the victims who had been struck by the robbers. Nobody wished or needed to go to the hospital for their head wounds.

The pit bull was taken to a 24-hour clinic for treatment of the single gunshot wound to the head. Deputies were later told the dog would survive the gunshot.

As of this report, the only items taken by the robbers was a total of $472 in cash and four cellular telephones.

The robbers were described as five Black males, 20-30 years old, 6 feet tall, and weighing 180 pounds. All suspects were dressed in all black clothing and three were wearing black masks covering their faces.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Intoxicated Man Arrested for
Hitting Brother with Rake,
Battery on LEO; Taser Used

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A Taser had to be deployed on an intoxicated man after he refused a deputy's orders and tangled with her, a report from the Manatee County Sheriff's Office said. The incident occurred in the 5400 block of 8th Street Court West, Bradenton.


Kurtis Johnson

The report said on Friday, March 27, 2009, at about 11:30 p.m., Keith Johnson, 44, and his brother Kurtis Johnson, 51, had an argument, during which Kurtis was intoxicated.

Kurtis hit Keith in the face with a rake causing severe redness.

Upon Deputy Wilmon’s arrival she gave Kurtis a lawful order to stay in front of her patrol car. Kurtis refused and pushed Dep. Wilmon's driver’s door shut upon her leg.

Dep. Wilmon gave Kurtis another lawful order; he again refused and pushed Dep. Wilmon in the chest.

Deputy Wilmon ordered Kurtis to back up and at that time she deployed her Taser, gaining immediate compliance from Kurtis.

Kurtis, of 1010 67th Street Court East, Bradenton, was arrested and charged with Domestic Battery and Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer.

Neither Dep. Wilmon nor Kurtis Johnson sustained any injuries.


Woman Arrested for Punching
Other Woman

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office has arrested Constance L. Zaborowski, 47, of 2817 47th Avenue West, Bradenton.


Constance L. Zaborowski

According to the arrest report, on Thursday, March 26, 2009, at about 9:20 p.m., deputies were called to the above address reference a disturbance.

Upon arrival, the deputy saw that Contance had Tanya Miske by the hair and appeared to be pulling it as she sat on the couch.

Tanya told the deputy she and Constance had gotten into an argument that became physical when Constance came out of the bedroom and began punching Tanya in the head.

Constance was arrested and charged with Battery.

She posted a $750 bail bond and was released from jail.


Deputies Arrest Man for
Assaulting Pregnant
Girlfriend

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- Manatee County Sheriff's Deputies have arrested Jose Luiz Zerrano, 19, of 2807 Tulane Avenue, in Bradenton, stemming from an assault incident on February 21, 2009.


Jose Luiz Zerrano

According to the arrest report, on February 21, 2009, Zerrano pushed his girlfriend onto the bed and then pushed her head into the bedroom wall.

The report said Jose knew she was three months pregnant with his child.

Jose left the scene prior to arrival of deputies.

However, on March 26, 2009, Jose was located at 1008 60th Avenue West and arrested.

He was charged with Aggravated Domestic Battery and Resisting Arrest without Violence.

Zerrano posted a $3,250 bail bond and was released from jail the next day.

The deputy noted in the arrest report that Zerrano had violated a judge's order of no contact with the girl.


"Suspicious" Daylight Armed Robbery
on Manatee County's West Side

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- A robbery described as "suspicious" by Manatee County Sheriff's Office Public Information Officer Dave Bristow occurred on Thursday, March 26, 2009, at about 5:30 p.m. in the vicinity of the intersection of 34th Street West and 60th Avenue West.

The sheriff's office report said Aimee Bertone, 30, and another person were walking near that location when a vehicle pulled up, driven by a White male with a shaved head and tattoos, 30-35 years old. He ordered the pair inside the vehicle.

Once inside, the man put a knife to Bertone's companion's neck and ordered her to hand over money and pills.

According to the report, the man got $800 and 180 Oxycodone pills from Bertone, had the pair get out of the vehicle, then sped away.

It is unknown how the robber knew Bertone would be carrying that amount of money and pills.

Bertone immediately reported the robbery.

Shortly afterward, the Violent Crimes Task Force, numerous deputies in cruisers, a K-9 Unit and the sheriff's helicopter arrived on scene.

The culprit could not be located.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Motorist Victim of Armed
Robbery Saturday Morning

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office reported a man in his car was the victim of an armed robbery early Saturday, March 28, 2009, at about 12:30 a.m.

The victim, Matthew Jones-Roosa, was driving his vehicle eastbound on 53rd Avenue West when he came to the stoplight at 43rd Street.

While stopped at the light, he had his windows down and heard a clicking noise. The victim looked to his left and saw a White male holding a gun to his head; the suspect demanded the victim's money.

According to the victim, he handed the gunman $575 in cash. The gunman fled northbound on 43rd Street West on a bicycle.

The area was searched for the suspect with negative results.

Jones-Roosa was not injured, the report said.

The gunman was not further described, except to say he was wearing dark clothing.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Palmetto Police Department
Forms Citizen’s Academy

PALMETTO, Florida [NMT] -- Palmoetto Police Chief Garry Lowe is proud to announce the formation of a Citizen’s Police Academy.

The Academy will be held every Tuesday evening, from 7:00 pm until 10:00 pm, from April 21st thru the week of June 9th.

Academy participants will learn about the different units and operations at the Palmetto Police Department, as well as take part in interactive demonstrations designed to give them a better understanding of what it is like to be a police officer.

The Palmetto Police Department’s Citizen’s Academy is open to all City of Palmetto residents over 18 years old. Attendees must also pass a background check. The Academy class size is limited to the first 14 applicants.

To apply for the Palmetto Police Department Citizen’s Academy or for more information, contact Lieutenant Scott Tyler at (941)723-4587 x360.


FREE Walk-In Vision Screenings
in Ellenton During April

ELLENTON, Florida [NMT] -- Not seeing as well as you used to? Think you might have a cataract? Do you have a family history of glaucoma? Come in for a FREE vision screening between 10:00 and 11:00 a.m. and find out about the options available.

Dr. Michael Manning, a comprehensive ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon, will meet with you one-on-one to discuss your results and answer any questions you may have.

The free screenings will be held at The Eye Associates' Offices in Ellenton, at 7915 US Hwy 301 North, Suite 101.

The free screenings will be held on:

Wednesday, April 1, 2009 from 10:00am to 11:00am
Wednesday, April 15, 2009 from 10:00am to 11:00am
Wednesday, April 22, 2009 from 10:00am to 11:00am
Wednesday, April 25, 2009 from 10:00am to 11:00am

You may call 941-729-2020 for more information. Or, you can logon to www.TheEyeAssociates.com. Or, you can click on their support ad at the top of our Home page.

NOTE: This is a screening and does not take the place of a comprehensive eye examination.

[Ed. Note: The Eye Associates diagnosed our publisher, Mike Quinn, with a cataract and performed the operation flawlessly. Since then, there have been no complications.]


Myakka City Burglary Shows
No Signs of Forced Entry

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office reported the burglary of the home of William Cone in the 600 block of Logue Road, in Myakka City.

The report said on Thursday, March 26, 2009, between 9 a.m. 6 p.m., unknown person(s) entered the location by unknown means and stole several large items.

There were no signs of forced entry and the scene was processed for latent prints.

Cone said he had a friend staying with him for a few days, but advised he has not seen him since the day before the burglary.

He also added that the friend did not have a key to the residence.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, .

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.


Woman's Ring Stolen During
Home Invasion Robbery
in Sarasota

SARASOTA COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- Sarasota County Sheriff’s Detectives are investigating a robbery that occurred Friday, March 27th, 2009, at approximately 12:20 p.m. at 3731 Sarasota Square Blvd. at the Palmer Club apartment complex, Sarasota.

The victim arrived at her residence in the Palmer Club complex after shopping at the Target store located at 8401 South Tamiami Trail and the Publix store located at 8409 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.

Two individuals approached the victim under the guise of being pest control workers employed by the complex.

The two individuals entered the victim’s residence and a short time later sprayed the victim with a liquid substance from a small container. The suspects then instructed the victim to immediately wash the substance off. As the victim washed the substance off, the two suspects forcibly removed a ring from the victim’s finger and fled.

The male suspect is described as Hispanic, average build, aged late 30s to early 40s, with curly black hair. He was last seen wearing a green polo type shirt and dark pants. The female suspect is described as Hispanic, slim build, 18-19 years of age, with black hair in a ponytail. She was last seen wearing a white shirt and Capri style pants.

Anyone with information is encouraged to call District II Criminal Investigations Bureau at 941-861-4900 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers by calling 941-366- TIPS (8477), or online at www.sarasotacrimestoppers.com or via text message by texting TIP109 plus a message to CRIMES (274637).


CCSO Detectives Investigate
Robbery Attempt, Bomb Threat
at Port Charlotte Winn-Dixie

CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Charlotte County Sheriff's Office reports the Winn Dixie, 3280 Tamiami Trail, in the Promenades Mall, Port Charlotte, was closed Sunday afternoon, March 29, 2009, due to a robbery attempt and bomb threat.

CCSO Major Crimes detectives were on scene and the Bomb Squad was called out.

The CCSO Watch Commander said a man in his late 40's walked into the store at 1 p.m. Sunday afternoon with a plastic container. He set it on the customer service counter, demanded money, or he said he would blow the place up.

When the man was refused money, he left the container on the counter and ran out the door.

CCSO Mid-County Office is located behind the Winn Dixie at the mall and within a few moments, a perimeter was set up in the area and a CCSO road deputy located the suspect riding a bicycle near the Port Charlotte Cultural Center a few blocks away.

The suspect was taken into custody.

Major Crimes detectives arrested Brian Lee Grant, 48, of Port Charlotte. He was charged with Attempted Robbery and the bomb hoax.

Mother, 23, Accused of Starving
Daughter, 4 Mos. Old, To Death

ORLANDO, Florida [NMT/WKMG] -- A 23-year-old Orlando mother was arrested Thursday on charges of starving her 4-month-old daughter to death. Orlando television station WKMG reported.

Police found Lauren Gress' daughter, Brianna Morges-Gress, without vital signs in November 2008.

Brianna and her twin brother were born one and a half months premature and Gress told police that Brianna had medical issues that prevented her from eating properly.

On March 18. Brianna's cause of death was determined to be malnutrition and dehydration by the Orange-Osceola Medical Examiner's Office. The medical examiner also determined that no medical condition contributed to the death and it was ruled a homicide, the Orlando Police Department said.

A warrant was issued for Gress' arrest on Tuesday, and she was arrested at work on Thursday.

Gress has been charged with Aggravated Manslaughter of a Child and Child Neglect. She is being held on $12,000 bond. She is under psychological evaluation at the Orange County Jail. WKMG said.

 

 

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NewsManatee Archive Created 4/4/2009 2:00:06 PM


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