FIRE KILLS PASTOR
Anthony Scott, a 57-year-old recently engaged pastor, was killed in a fire at his Riviera Beach home on West 37 Street. Flames broke out in the house last week and Scott was overcome by smoke when he tried to put out the fire and save personal items.
Peggy Decina, 69, has filed an age discrimination lawsuit against an agency that provides services and advocates for the elderly. Decina worked for the Area Agency on Aging of Palm Beach and the Treasure Coast for about a week in 2010. Her lawsuit alleges she was fired a day after the agency found out she had breast cancer.
DEBIT CARD SCAM
Mihai Amauta has been convicted of installing scanning devices on bank ATM machines in South Florida. When customers used the machines, his scanners would obtain their account information and passwords. A search of his home and a storage warehouse turned up more than $45,000 in cash, drawings for constructing the scanners, as well as parts and material used to make and code hundreds of debit cards.
NOT A COP
Matthew Risner, 30, of Juno Beach has been charged with battery and impersonating a police officer in connection with an incident of jealously. He is accused of knocking on a man’s door and claiming to be a Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputy. According to the police report, when the man opened the door, Beach asked if the man was involved with his girlfriend. Beach then punched the man in the mouth and fled, the report said.
One man was killed and another wounded during an apparent robbery attempt in Lauderhill. Police said unknown assailants in an SUV drove up to a home where a group was gathered outside and opened fire. The shooting took place in the 100 block of Northwest 34th Avenue. There were no suspects by early in the week.
A group led by former Deerfield Beach Mayor Jean Robb has been collecting signatures to have a measure placed on the ballot allowing voters to decide the fate of a 10 percent utility tax. City commissioners authorized the tax, which was to take effect in October. However, through some error, the tax was added to residents’ electric, gas and water bills in September. This is the latest in a string of management mishaps in Deerfield Beach and, once again, City Manager Burgess Hanson is mum.
COPS INVESTIGATING JOHNSON
Fort Lauderdale police have opened a criminal investigation into allegations against Percy Johnson, former treasurer of the Broward County Democratic Party’s Council of Club Presidents. Johnson is accused of writing $2,200 in unauthorized checks to himself and his sister. The organization approved an offer from Johnson’s attorney, Johnny McCray Jr., for Johnson to repay the money in $200 installments. But the deal may be too late. Detectives with the Fort Lauderdale police department have been quietly gathering bank and other records in the case. They also have taken statements from several people and invited Johnson to speak with them, which he refused.
A former Coconut Creek High School assistant wresting coach has been acquitted of having sex with a student. Shadrick Fields, 31, was arrested in 2010 and his first trial ended in a hung jury. According to the police report, BSO Det. Julie Bower was contacted after the teenager’s mother discovered the relationship. Fields’ attorney, Johnny McCray Jr., told jurors the student had accused his client because she did not want her mother to find out she was involved with another student. McCray pointed to inconsistencies in the teenager’s accounts and jurors acquitted Fields after 55 minutes of deliberation.
Miami Fire Department spokesperson Ignatius Carroll said an unidentified Miami firefighter was robbed of a gold chain and shot at while working. Police said the firefighter was testing hydrants near a firehouse at the intersection of Northwest 15th Avenue and 42nd Street. An armed assailant demand the chain he was wearing and the fireman complied then ran off. The robber fired several shots at him but missed. Police are asking anyone with information to call Miami police at 305-603-6370 or Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477.
MISSING KID FOUND
North Miami police were looking for 11-year-old Ishmyel Jean, who was reported missing last week. Family members said after he was disciplined by his mother, Ishmyel was allowed to walk to his grandmother’s home a block away in the 1100 block of Northwest 126th Street. Jean was found days later with a family friend at an Occupy Miami rally.
Michael Robinson, 28, is charged in a violent home invasion robbery in Aventura that left a man hospitalized with head injuries and a gunshot wound to his leg. A female accomplice has also been arrested but because she is a minor her name is not being released. Two other male suspects remain at large. Police said they went to an apartment and demanded money and when the man resisted they beat and shot him.
Jiahai Yuan, a 21-year-old University of Miami student from China, has been arrested and charged with burglarizing dorms and assaulting students inside them. Coral Gables police said he was caught when he broke into the dorm room of two women early last Sunday. The women awoke to find him fondling them. Yuan allegedly repeated his assault on two other women in another dorm room. Police said he has confessed. Book ’em, Danno!