Palm Beach County
David Harris, 19, his brother Jesse Harris, 18, and Austin Taggart, 19, all from Jupiter, have been arrested in the beating death of 18-year-old Onesimo Marcelino Lopez-Ramos. Jupiter Police say their investigation is ongoing, but Lopez-Ramos may have been targeted because of his race.
Rep. Irv Slosberg, (D-Boca Raton) is railing against a bill that has passed in both houses of the state Legislature that exempt some postal workers from having to wear seatbelts while working. The bill would apply to letters carriers in rural areas, many of whom drive their own vehicles. Gov. Rick Scott is expected to sign the bill.
Narcisse Antoine, 33, of Boynton Beach has been acquitted of murder and attempted murder in a re-trial. The case involves the 2009 killing of Brandon Hammond and another man, Jeffrey Thompson, who survived being shot multiple times. According to the police report, Hammond and Thompson were thrown out of Club Mystique in Boynton Beach and began harassing Antoine as he left the club. Antoine, who pulled a gun and shot both men, was charged with murder and attempted murder. In the first trial, jurors deadlocked on the murder charge, but found him guilty of attempted murder. A judge sentenced Antoine to 40 years, but that conviction was overturned due to the improper instructions given to jurors, an appeals court ruled. At his new trial, he was acquitted on all counts.
The Florida Department of Transportation has confirmed gravesites are located alongside Interstate 95 in Fort Lauderdale. So what happens next? The highway was built through the western section of the Woodlawn Cemetery and now they have confirmed area resident’s suspicions that all of the graves were not relocated. Walter ‘Mickey’ Hinton, president of the Durrs Homeowners Association where the cemetery is located, is calling on Gov. Rick Scott to attend a meeting to address the issue with residents.
Former Sunrise City Manager Alan Cohen has landed a $150,000 a year job with Broward County as an assistant to County Administrator Bertha Henry. Cohen stepped down as city manager last November amid a controversy over a supervisor’s alleged bullying of subordinates.
According to published reports, Broward Supervisor of Elections Supervisor Brenda Snipes is seeking reelection to the position. Snipes, 72, has held the post since being appointed in 2002 by Gov. Jeb Bush after he removed Miriam Oliphant from the office.
Aren Evans Lenton, 23, has been arrested in the shooting of three people in North Miami on April 12. Two of those victims died and the third survived a single gunshot wound. Lenton is charged with two counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder.
The Village of Key Biscayne is suing the Miami International Boat Show, with its more than 700 boats. The lawsuit alleges the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), which produces the Miami International Boat Show, violated Florida’s open government public records laws. The village seeks to gain access to licensing agreements the organization may have with the City of Miami to hold the show at Miami Marine Stadium. There also are concerns with traffic and safety issues.
Sean Michael Stacey, 37, was last seen working outside the jail facility at the Monroe County Public Works. As a trustee, he wore a brightly colored orange jail jumpsuit and supervision was light. He went missing and was last sighted on High Point Key in civilian clothes. His orange jumpsuit was recovered nearby. Stacey is 6 feet tall, 200 pounds with blue eyes and short red hair. He has been in jail since September 2014 on burglary, grand theft and criminal mischief charges.
LOCAL PREFERENCE BAN
Republican lawmakers have passed a bill that would prohibit cities and local governments from giving preferences to local businesses when contracting for services. Marathon, Monroe County and Islamorada, like many other cities, give preference to local companies when awarding contracts for government projects that receive 50 percent funding from the state.
Rep. Holly Raschein, R-Key Largo, supports legislation that would restrict where private gun ranges could be constructed. At present, local governments cannot restrict the construction of so-called ‘backyard’ gun ranges, even in residential neighborhoods.