Palm Beach County
Bradley Harper, the former president of the F. Malcolm Cunningham Sr. Bar Association, has entered the race for circuit court judge. He becomes the fifth attorney seeking the seat of retiring Circuit Court Judge Barry Cohen. Other candidates are Luis Delgado; Assistant Palm Beach County State Attorney Esther Feistmann; defense attorney Robert Gershman and securities lawyer Gregory Tendrich.
The Leon County Sheriff’s Office has confirmed a body discovered next to a small pond inside a Tallahassee park is that of missing Jorge Altuna, of Boca Raton. Altuna was a senior at Florida State University and was reported missing a day before the discovery. Police do not suspect foul play.
SHOOTING IN THE SHORES
Darrell Telisme, 24, of West Palm Beach, is charged with weapons violations and murder. After fighting with Stan Stainsclasse, 23, the day before, Telisme shot and killed Stainsclasse inside a Palm Beach Shores house early the next morning. Telisme confessed and told authorities the two had a history of disputes.
An FBI investigation into a planned home invasion led them to Jordan Campo, who allegedly ran the South Florida arm of a marijuana distribution ring. Agents confronted Campo at his home, where Campo consented to a search. Agents found and seized high-grade hydroponic marijuana extract obtained from California and Colorado. A gun and safe with $25,000 were also confiscated. Campo acknowledged dealing in the drug, but pleaded not guilty after being indicted.
WHOOMP, THERE IT IS!
Deerfield Beach-based DM Records lost a copyright infringement lawsuit to legendary music artist Al Bell. DM Records was accused of using the music from the hit songs Daisy Dukes and Whoomp, There It Is, without authorization. Bell’s company, Bellmark Records, released those songs in the early 1990s. It filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1997 and DM Records acquired its assets, but not the rights to those songs. Due to the $2.2 million judgment, DM Records has now filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection.
Alejandro Amor, the former owner of Miami-based FastTrain schools located around South Florida, has been convicted of federal student aid fraud. Federal prosecutors alleged that Fast Train was a front to steal more than $6.5 million in student aid by submitting over 1600 fraudulent claims. Fast Train operated seven schools in low income, minority neighborhoods. The schools that were closed down in 2012.
THE RIGHT THING
Broward County Rep. Shevrin Jones, (D-West Park) and State Sen. Chris Smith, (D-Fort Lauderdale) have filed bills to mandate body cameras for all police departments. At this juncture, body cameras for police officers should be a settled issue. How to pay for them and managing the files should be the only things up for discussion.
ORANGE BOWL PARK
The Orange Bowl Committee has funded the renovation of Ives Estates Park in North Miami-Dade and the opening of Orange Bowl Field. The Orange Bowl Legacy Gift projects have provided approximately $10 million worth of improvements to parks around South Florida.
St. Louis Rams wide receiver Steadman Bailey was shot during what police believe may have been a random act of violence in a Miami Gardens incident. He was shot twice in the head and is expected to survive. Steadman grew up in Miramar and is serving a suspension from the team for violating the NFL’s banned substance policy.
As reported last week, Opa-locka City Manager Steve Shiver is out. Shiver was fired because he contacted the governor’s office to seek assistance with the city’s financial mess. Mayor Myra Taylor alleges that Shiver failed to consult commissioners prior to doing so. Assistant City Manager Tom Marko was also forced to resign, a day after Shiver. Marko sent a memo ondicating the city is owed millions and is broke, to boot. He also alerted city officials that $800,000 had been improperly used from the Law Enforcement Trust Funds and other accounts.
A Monroe County School Board member is accusing Superintendent Mark Porter’s administration of covering up the disappearance of $20,000. The money is missing from the daycare program at Horace O’Bryant School. Porter is under pressure to step down and according to sources, could be fired at any time as calls for a criminal investigation grow. He denies the allegations, but apologized for the handling of the situation.
Cheryl (Eckard) Meads collected a $96 million reward for her role in exposing GlaxoSmithKline crimes of placing contaminated pharmaceutical products on the market. Because of her efforts, the giant drug maker pleaded guilty to criminal charges and was ordered to pay a $750 million fine. The $96 million Meads received was her share under federal whistleblower laws. Meads and her family relocated to the Florida Keys, where the couple is redeveloping eyesores and rundown properties. Some of the proceeds from their endeavors are slated to go towards various charities, while creating hundreds of jobs.