Palm Beach County
Gary Brown, CEO of Choice Medical Centers, was charged with simple battery after an altercation with his wife at their Boca Raton home. According to the police report, his wife called 911 after Brown allegedly poured a glass of juice on her and began yelling at her. He was supposedly upset after she questioned him about text messages sent to his phone. Brown, 58, is also accused of breaking glasses on the floor.
Stephen Jerome Budd, 52, was arrested in April on charges he molested students at Rosarian Academy, a private school where he taught fourth graders in 2006 through 2007. During his arrest, police seized computer equipment from his car, which, officers said, contained child pornography. That alleged discovery led to his arrest in August on an additional 59 counts. Now his attorneys want all of the evidence thrown out, arguing it was improperly seized.
TouchSuite, a Boca Raton company that sells computer-sales systems to retailers, will not leave Boca Raton and will hire 50 new employees over the next two years. The company had considered moving to Canada or Texas. State and local officials approved a $300,000 incentive package to keep them here, according to Gov. Rick Scott, who made the announcement.
A man whose identity has yet to be released was shot in the leg outside Sweeney’s Lounge, located in the 3200 block of West Hallandale Beach Boulevard in Pembroke Park this weekend. The shooting occurred around 9:35 a.m., on Saturday, according to the Broward Sheriff’s Office.
Angela Dione Rosier, 41, of Coral Springs and Tiffany Shenae Cooper, 33, of Deerfield Beach were sentenced to more than four years in federal prison for their roles in an identity theft and tax refund fraud scheme. They must also serve three years of probation and pay $129,390 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service and the medical services provider whose database they breach to obtain the information used in the scheme. Co-defendants Michael Ali Bryant Sr., 41 and wife Latina Rashawn Bryant, 43, both of Lauderdale Lakes and Marquis Onigirin Moye, 24, of Pompano Beach also pleaded guilty and face up to 12 years in prison when sentenced, U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer announced.
Authorities allege it was Nadia Verdoni who was driving the Ford SUV on Feb. 28 that struck and instantly killed motorcyclist Benjamin Pirofsky. The victim was traveling in the northbound lane of Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. Verdoni drove away from the scene but was tracked down at her home, where she was discovered drunk, and had placed a tarp over the damage to her vehicle, police said. She was charged with DUI manslaughter, leaving the scene and evidence tampering. Police are asking anyone with information to call Broward Crime Stoppers, anonymously, at 954-493-8477.
Regina James, 38, of Fort Lauderdale is facing up to 12 years in prison after pleading guilty in a $5.3 million identity theft and check-cashing scheme. She was one of seven people working for Wilson Lau, 76, and Kate Yuee Lau, 55, owners of American Quick Cash, an Oakland Park check-cashing store. James cashed more than 4,000 fraudulent IRS tax refund checks for people, using fake driver’s licenses. She would then paid the Laus 50 percent, the customer 40 percent and she kept 10 percent of proceeds, authorities said.
Four men are facing federal fraud charges in connection with a precious metals investment scheme, according to U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer. Arthur John Schlecht, 53, of Boone, N.C., and formerly of Miami-Dade County; Frederick Bart Gomer, 66, of Sunrise; Ricardo Jorge Padron, 52, of Miami; and Carlos Rodriguez, 35, of Miami were indicted on charges of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, prosecutors announced Feb. 27. They are accused of operating several brokerage firms offering investors the opportunity to buy gold, silver, platinum and palladium bullion, which would be stored for the investors in depository vaults.
Miami-Dade Democratic Party Executive Director Juan Cuba and a number of Miami-Dade officials from around the county are supporting a bid to land the 2016 Democratic National Convention. The venue would be the American Airlines Arena, home to the Miami Heat. The last political convention held in Miami was in 1972, when both the Democrats and the Republicans held their conventions weeks apart at the Miami Beach Convention Center.
In January, six same-sex couples filed suit against Miami-Dade County Clerk Harvey Ruvin seeking the right to marry. This week, Mathew Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, filed a motion in the case in support of the 2008 law, which defines marriage as being between one man and one woman. The motion was on behalf of conservative groups that include Florida Family Action, People United to Lead the Struggle for Equality and the Florida Democratic League. Ruvin has not commented and Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi has not said if she will defend the statute.
Andrew Zimmern, host the Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods America with Andrew Zimmern, recently was in Key Largo to film an episode of his show during the Winter Locals-Only Lionfish Derby. Lionfish are an invasive nuisance in South Florida waters. They have poisonous spines over their bodies and nothing will eat them, not even sharks – except humans, that is. Lionfish are regarded as a delicacy and the state’s eradication efforts should allow unrestricted harvesting of them because they are eating up everything in sight.
Marathon City Attorney John Herin’s Gray Robinson law firm will cover the $3,000 the city paid to former City Manager Roger Hernstadt after he accepted the manager’s job in Marco Island. Based on the advice of Herin, the city paid him for one week, even though he was at home preparing to relocate to Marco Island. Realtor and civic activist Bruce Schmitt had been critical of Herin over the issue.
Nadeige Pluviose, 32, of Key West was charged with aggravated child abuse after she allegedly threw a cup of boiling water on a 14-year-old girl who was sleeping at her home at the time. The child suffered third-degree burns to her face, neck and shoulders. The reason for the attack has not been clarified.