crime

Police in Tampa, Fla., say they have arrested the man they believe is responsible for a string of killings in the Seminole Heights area, thanks to a tip received by a police officer doing paperwork at a local McDonald's.

The officer was apparently alerted that a man at the fast food restaurant had a gun.

People are fascinated by true-crime stories. It's evident in the television programs and documentaries that are strewn across the network and on-demand landscape. The topic is especially hot right now in the podcasting realm. 

South Florida's Mike Boudet has taken this fascination and turned it into an award-winning podcast that rivals podcasts like Serial and S-Town in popularity and reach.

Boudet, who's been enthralled by the justice system since youth, is the creator of Sword and Scale.

A former bookkeeper has been sentenced to 30 months in prison for embezzling $85,000 from a Florida chapter of the Girl Scouts.


Key Deer Poacher To Serve Federal Time

Oct 31, 2017
FWC

One of two men caught illegally poaching three endangered Key deer was sentenced Tuesday to 12 months in federal custody. The other received supervised release for a year.

U.S. District Court Judge Jose E. Martinez handed down the sentences to Eric Damas Acosta, 18, who received the prison term plus two years of supervised release after he gets out; and Tumani Anthony Young, 23, who received 12 months of supervised release with electronic monitoring. They were in federal court on Simonton Street in Key West.

Facebook via Miami Herald

It was a Nixonesque moment — a politician asked about questionable campaign tactics — when Michael Grieco told the Miami Herald to “look right into my soul.”

 

Greico, a first-time commissioner elected in 2013, handed in his resignation at City Hall on Oct. 24. He faced a charge of accepting an illegal campaign contribution, but he avoided admitting guilt and said he didn’t do it.

 

Miami Herald

Emory Jones just needs to look at his left arm for a reminder of what happened at Avon Park Youth Academy. There is a faint scar in the shape of a snake above his elbow from when an officer beat him.

Miami Herald

For the last two years, the Miami Herald has been looking into systemic abuse within the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), the division designed to rehabilitate minors who get into trouble with the law.

Before our current era of creepy clowns (and the problems they cause for professional clowns), there was a killer clown who frustrated Florida detectives for nearly three decades.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Thursday night, Florida executed Mark Asay, who was declared dead at 6:22 p.m. He broke Florida’s year-and-a-half hiatus for the death penalty as the first person executed since January 2016.

Florida Department of Corrections

The state of Florida is poised to execute the first person in more than a year and a half this Thursday, August 24. 

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Roughly 260 sex offenders have registered as their residence the intersection of Northwest 36th Court and 71st Street, on the edge of Hialeah and Miami.  The closest house is four blocks away and the only buildings here are squat warehouses.

Monroe County Sheriff's Office

Marine thefts are a chronic problem in the Keys. Fishing gear, dive equipment, engines — sometimes even entire boats - are stolen from marinas, canals and backyards in the area.

Those thefts happen year-round, but there's a noticeable uptick in summer, especially during the annual two-day recreational lobster mini-season, when thousands of boaters come to the Keys. This year's mini-season is Wednesday-Thursday, July 26-27.

The Hamptons condo and apartment complex in Tampa is quintessential Florida. Lush and modern, the stucco homes are painted in a soft rainbow of pastels. All around are palm trees, Spanish moss and lily pads.

"It is a very quiet place. You have a lot of children that live here. A lot of professionals live here, retirees," said resident Michael Colon, 66.

But on May 19, that tranquility was shattered in an improbable case that involves four young roommates at the complex.

Two of the men are dead and the other two are in jail.

Monroe County Sheriff's Office

A Key West man was arrested early Wednesday after a Monroe County Sheriff's Deputy discovered "a large amount of cocaine hidden in a Cookie Monster doll," according to a press release from the sheriff's office.

Deputy Orey Swilley was parked along the Overseas Highway in Marathon when he saw a black car drive by with the license plate obscured, according to the sheriff's office.

The deputy pulled over the car and when the driver rolled down the window, the deputy could smell marijuana. When he searched the car he found a backpack, with a blue Cookie Monster doll.

A federal appeals court has upheld a lower court ruling that the confession of Brendan Dassey, whose case was part of the Netflix documentary series Making a Murderer, was involuntary. Dassey was found guilty of helping his uncle kill a young woman in 2005, and has been held in a Wisconsin prison.

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