A number of DUI’s will be dismissed in Hillsborough County, Florida due to fallout from the former head of the Tampa Police Department DUI division who was fired for his involvement in a notorious Honey Trap that resulted in a lawyer’s arrest. Every pending case involving the former DUI division head where he was listed by the State Attorney’s Office as a possible trial witness will be screened for possible dismissal, while as many as ten DUI cases, some with blood alcohol level evidence of over double the legal limit have already been dismissed. But just looking at pending cases is not nearly enough, even cases in which the Defendant has plead guilty to DUI or lesser charges should be re-examined with Defendants given an opportunity to reopen their cases.
|Badge of Integrity?
Federal and state investigators are still looking at the actions of everyone involved in the drama of this scandal to determine what charges, if any, should be filed. Yet you, my reader, sitting there drinking your wine by the fireplace or possibly asleep within the relative safety of your home during the original scandal, you need not fear these allegations because they are unlikely to cause the Feds to come knocking at your door, nor even mine, one hopes.
A preliminary investigation by the Pinellas County State Attorney’s Office determined that the lawyer who was arrested for a DUI incident to a Honey Trap Set-Up scandal would not be charged. That investigation also revealed that the activities of the Tampa Police Department brought the DUI unit’s integrity into question with the likelihood of destruction of evidence to cover up the role of at least one Hillsborough officer involved in the scandal.
The Pinellas prosecutors should be commended for making the courageous choice of dropping charges against the lawyer, but the prosecutors in Tampa have not gone far enough in dismissing other cases tainted by this scandal.
The integrity of the Florida justice system demands that every case, even those in which the Defendant has already plead guilty, involving the former Tampa Police DUI division head should be re-examined. On motion of the State Attorney’s Office in Hillsborough County, Defendants should be allowed to withdraw Guilty pleas based on the failure of the Tampa Police Department to insure that DUI cases were handled in a fair and impartial manner.
|Guy Fawkes being arrested.
Will a painted sign of the British anarchist Guy Fawkes, a few bricks and some pipes found atop a downtown building be used by the Tampa Police as a pretext for the making of massive arrests at the Republican Convention? After all, the five thousand officers need something to do, if they do it to you call a Clearwater Criminal Defense Attorney.
Here’s the peaceful benevolent view of the role the officers will have during the Republican Convention from the chamber of commerce:
Another group that is busy preparing is police officers. Over 5,500 have been tasked with patrolling the convention and keeping the peace. Officers have gone through a specific training protocol that addresses how to handle protestors.
First a warning will be issued. If it is not heeded, an arrest will be made. All of the police are encouraged to take their time in dealing with protestors so that peaceful resolutions are met. Traditionally, police forces are viewed negatively during convention times and often face criticism. Though chances are slim that this can be completely avoided, the force in Tampa is going out of its way to paint itself in the best light.
All officers have been told that the primary concern during the protests is to protect the First Amendment right of freedom of speech. What they want to avoid is the “arrest first, figure out later” mentality…
Maybe that’s the gloss you’d expect from the Chamber of Commerce for any Tampa event, especially the bit about the right to freedom of speech. Do they really mean that? Doesn’t sound like Hillsborough Sheriff David Gee is on the same page. His take on what his police will do can be found in a letter to the public his office just issued:
Tactically, we are ready. Security plans for the venue and the perimeters are set. Boundaries, protests zones and parade routes are established for the thousands expected in downtown Tampa…. To the agitators and anarchists who want only to bring a dark cloud to this event, let me be clear: criminal activity and civil disturbances will not be tolerated and enforcement actions will be swift.
Rather than lend an ear to the freedom of speech, it sounds like the Sheriff stands ready for battle with the terrible swift sword of retribution. No wonder the Sheriff is reported to have emptied out the local jails for future arrests. Makes your favorite Clearwater Criminal Defense Lawyer wonder why the 1,700 folks were in the jail if they could be safely released or moved, but it’s clear evidence that Tampa Law Enforcement is preparing for the Republican Convention in the best way they know how: making mass police stops and arrests early and often.
From time immemorial Pickpockets and Thieves have thrived by diverting someone’s attention by any means then going in for the kill. Pickpockets aren’t only operating on St. Petersburg and Clearwater tourists they’re after anyone who is vulnerable in the Tampa Bay Area. And you’re vulnerable as soon as your attention is diverted, even if only for a moment while reading what your favorite Clearwater Criminal Defense Attorney is typing, so hold onto your wallet.
Clearwater Police say there’s been a spike on Clearwater Beach of Beach Blanket Bandits stealing cell phones, ipods, wallets and especially car keys while the victim walks the beach or swims. Possibly the downturn in the economy is creating more criminal activity than usual.
It’s best to keep as many valuables safely locked in the car as possible and if walking on the beach to keep valuables with you. In Florida any amount over $300 is a Grand Theft punishable by up to 5 years in prison; while an amount under $300 is Petty Theft. Anyone breaking into a vehicle with the intention of stealing is also guilty of a Burglary (A number of Beach Thefts occurred on the west side of the Clearwater Beach island, stretching from the 300 block of S Gulfview Boulevard on the south end to Rockaway Street farther north.).
Clearwater police see spike in beach blanket thefts
Here is a short excerpt from the always optimistic New York Times about Lush Workers who cut the pockets of those who are disoriented perhaps from that one drink too many at the end of the night. Many victims don’t report the crime because they’re too ashamed or inebriated:
The lush worker sounds like a monster in a bedtime story, a stooped creature with a razor blade in one stealthy hand. Don’t drink, children, or the Lush Worker will get you.
But he is actually a middle-aged or older man who has been doing this for a very long time. And he is a fading breed.
Lush workers date back at least to the beginning of the last century, their ilk cited in newspaper crime stories like one in The New York Times in 1922, describing “one who picks the pockets of the intoxicated. He is the old ‘drunk roller’ under a new name.” While the term technically applies to anyone who steals from a drunken person, most police officers reserve it for a special kind of thief who uses straight-edge razors found in any hardware store… the good ones practice at home with mannequins.
There’s even a Chicago-based group of pickpockets who like something out of Oliver Twist, calling itself ‘Cannon to the Wiz’ have been merging low-tech pickpocketing with the modern scheme of choice, identity theft. The group has been active since at least 2007, “marrying high-tech fraud techniques with the Dickensian art of pickpocketing,” Wired.com reported.
The Tampa Police Department does not have a rough estimate of how many lush workers are out working lushes, but they sent me this recent painting of a lush mush tush that occurred recently at Old Hyde Park in Tampa, Florida.
|Charles Delort, The Pickpocket
Is the lady part of the scam with the boy or is she merely an innocent flirt who enjoys being helped by older men on soggy afternoon walks?
Scholars, Art Experts & Lushes agree that the boy appears to be coming not from behind the couple but from the front, then smartly turns around to do the quick trick of cutting the man’s money bag, which easily is within the young lady’s view as she distracts the target, the innocent man, well maybe not so innocent, man. Also, their stances match, their facial expressions match and even the color of their clothes match. Recent DNA evidence from the FBI taken of pigment samples on the surface of the painting conclusively reveals that the young lady and boy are in fact brother and sister, thus proving a pickpocketing conspiracy.