Palm Beach County
Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw is proposing a nearly $25 million increase over his 2014 budget. The budget request of $554 million is a five percent hike. Bradshaw says increase is required to pay for vehicles, technology improvements, and rising health-care and retirement costs. Commissioners will make a final decision when they vote on the county’s $4 billion budget in September.
Music mogul Jeffrey Epstein is being sued over allegations he preyed on young women and had them provide sex to the rich and famous, including attorney Alan Dershowitz and Britain’s Prince Andrew. U.S. District Judge Kenneth Marra sided with the defendants’ attorneys and had the allegations stricken from the court record.
Flakka is a new, but extremely dangerous synthetic drug popular among teens. Deerfield Beach City Commissioner Gloria Battle is joining forces with the Broward Sheriff’s Office to hold an awareness community forum on the dangers of flakka and other synthetic drugs. It will take place 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 10, at Westside Park Gym, 445 NW Second St. The public is urged to attend this very important forum. For more information, call (954) 480-4481.
State Representative Hazelle Rogers (D-Lauderdale Lakes) is facing term limits and a number of people are eyeing her District 95 seat, which include portions of Sunrise, Lauderhill, Lauderdale Lakes and Tamarac. Patrick Jabouin, PhD, is the first to announce his candidacy and open a campaign account. Jabouin is a longtime resident of Sunrise and has been involved in political and community issues for decade. He is the president of the Caribbean Democratic Club.
In a letter sent to Hallandale Beach officials, Police Benevolent Association attorney Anthony Alfero has accused Police Chief Dwayne Flournoy of being unfit due to allegations he was involved in a bar fight, was stopped for suspicion of DUI and domestic violence in the past. City Manager Renee Miller is reviewing the matter and may ask the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the accusations.
Tamera Brown is accused of offering Hallandale Beach Police Officer Eric Bruce a bribe in exchange for her release during a DUI traffic stop. When she failed a sobriety test, Brown allegedly threatened Bruce’s job if he continued with the arrest. She is charged with DUI, attempted bribery and threatening a public servant.
Ernesto Gonzalez, 45, of Miami; Roberto Balseiro, 29, of Davie; Michael Canada, 35, of Plantation; and Lafayette Adams, 43, of Miami Gardens thought they were in the midst of a cocaine purchase at Port Everglades. It turned out to be a reverse sting by federal agents. Adams, a worker at the port, opened a sealed container to retrieve what he thought was $500,000 worth of cocaine. He delivered it Canada, who was to pay $70,000 for it. Lawyers for the men accuse federal agents and Homeland Security officers of entrapment.
Former Florida Highway Patrol trooper Kirk Chambers has pleaded not guilty to federal charges of conspiracy and extortion involving the sale of confidential accident reports. Prosecutors allege Chambers, who worked the north end of Miami-Dade County, took thousands of dollars in cash from tow truck drivers for information about car crashes and stranded drivers.
State Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fort Walton Beach) reacted to a lawsuit filed in opposition to the decision by House Republican leaders to end deliberation in the legislative session by sending a tweet that insulted black legislators. “This lawsuit reads like it was researched and drafted by Sen. Joyner … and spell-checked by Sen. Bullard,” Gaetz tweeted. Minority Leader Sen. Arthenia Joyner (D-Tampa), a respected civil rights attorney, filed the lawsuit. Sen. Dwight Bullard (D-Cutler Bay) represents Monroe and parts of Miami-Dade counties. Both are black. Gaetz’s tweet was widely interpreted as a racist insult aimed at blacks.
State Rep. Holly Raschein (R-Key Largo) and other South Florida lawmakers are concerned over the state House leaders’ decision to end legislative session deliberations even though several measures affecting the region were not heard. The Florida House and Senate are at an impasse and never reached agreements on Medicaid, wastewater and conservation projects.
Maryland businessman Lawrence S. Winkler, 48, of Potomac, Md., surrendered Thursday in Key West to be charged with grand theft. He cashed a $66,652 check from a Key West resort but never delivered the 96 televisions the money was used to pay for.
A Keys-based Florida Highway Patrol trooper, Christine Gracey, 49, has been honored with the Medal of Valor, the agency’s highest honor. In January, Gracey was involved in stopping Robert Schminky, 57, who was fleeing Monroe County Sheriff’s deputies after allegedly brutally pistol-whipping his wife. Schminky began shooting at sheriff’s office Sgt. Sydney Whitehouse and Gracey as she sat in her squad car. A bullet grazed Whitehouse’s leg, while Gracey was unharmed, although bullet holes hit the windshield where she was sitting. Schminky was taken into custody and charged with attempted murder.