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Please allow me to introduce myself

...I'm a man of wealth and taste.

Oh wait, I'm a crime reporter. So I have neither wealth, nor taste.

But I do love a good story, and hope to send one or two your way. I (mostly) cover the eastern part of Broward County, where over the weekend, a homeless man was savagely beaten, a faulty dishwasher toasts a home and a house gets in the way of a car.

Have a news tip? Don't keep it to yourself. E-mail me at abeasley@miamiherald.com.

Also, I'll be happy to answer any question you have -- be it about crime or love -- as long as it's interesting. And no, don't ask me how to get out of speeding tickets. (But if you know how, don't hesitate to tell me).

Posted by Adam Beasley at 09:18 AM on February 25, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Don't Tase me, son

Ah, that joke never gets old.

But this does: A drunken party host who uses a Taser to shock his guests.

It was mostly fun and games until Kenny Chumsky (photo here) turned the stun gun on his mom Thursday, police say. The shock hit her in the leg, causing her to fall and hit her head on the garage floor.

The Port St. Lucie man was charged with aggravated domestic battery. His mom pressed charges because she was "tired of being abused," according to a police report cited at TCPalm.com.

Posted by Evan Benn at 07:22 PM on February 22, 2008 in Crime , Palm Beach County , Weird News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Police crash pot party

PotsmokerThis is one that goes down in the not-so-smart category.

A group of friends hanging out in a Wilton Manors apartment Wednesday night were surprised by some invited guests.

Someone - perhaps a neighbor - called police to alert them of a "marijuana party" in the apartment, located in the 2100 block of NE 26th Street.

When cops arrived, there was no mistaking that they were in the right place.

Not only could they smell pot from the street, but they saw a thick cloud of smoke billowing outside the apartment window. And that isn't all police say they saw.

Inside the open window was a 3-foot-tall glass water pipe sitting in the kitchen sink, according to police.

In the end, cops found 32 grams of pot and $1,373 in cash. All six people inside, including the 18-year-old who lived in the apartment, were arrested on drug charges.

Posted by Jennifer Mooney Piedra at 12:01 PM on February 22, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Who's drunker now?

Zubo A Titusville couple got into an argument in a Publix parking lot Thursday night over which one was sober enough to drive home.

Neither one won that fight. The hubby, Richard Zubowicz (left), pushed his wife to the ground, circled the car around the parking lot, then he ran over her with the car, Brevard County investigators say.

Becky Zubowicz was so tightly pinned, cops had to use a jack to get her out from under the car. She was taken to a hospital in critical condition.

Richard was in jail without bond, charged with domestic violence and DUI with serious injury.

Posted by Evan Benn at 11:53 AM on February 22, 2008 in Crime , DUI | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Armed robbery at Pines supermarket

Sedanos_2A trio of thieves recently robbed a Sedano's Supermarket in Pembroke Pines and got away with $29,000 in cash.

Police are still investigating the holdup, which happened at 9:45 p.m. on Feb. 17.

Here's how it all went down, according to a police report:

The store manager, Wilson Montero, was working in a back office when someone knocked on the door acting as an employee. He was even wearing a shirt and hat

Two men entered, one of them holding a handgun, while a third stayed outside acting as a lookout.

The robbers then tied Montero using packing tape and demanded he give them the combination to the store safe. But even with the code, they couldn't get it open.

So they untied Montero and forced him to open it. They grabbed the loot, tied Montero up again and took off from the grocery store at 17171 Pines Blvd. through the front doors.

The three robbers are still out there.

Anyone with information on this robbery is asked to call Pembroke Pines police at 954-431-2200 or call Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-8477.

Posted by Jennifer Mooney Piedra at 09:30 AM on February 22, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Naked, bald and caffeinated

Coffee Be on the lookout for a naked, bald man in a red Corvette with a cup o' joe at his side.

Cops say a perp fitting that description pulled up to a Dunkin' Donuts drive-thru in Lake Mary, a little north of Orlando, and ordered a coffee with cream Monday night. 

When the clerk handed him the order, she saw he wasn't wearing pants.

"I think 'shocked' would be the proper term for it," Lake Mary Officer Kim Fuehrer said to reporters of the clerk's reaction.

Our favorite part of this story*, reported by NBC affiliate WESH in Orlando, is the suspect's description. (You may remember our previous discussions here about descriptions of crime suspects in the media.)

Police "are searching for a suspect who is bald, has no pants, and apparently likes coffee from Dunkin' Donuts."

*Thanks to Herald Copy Desk Chief Jeff Kleinman for the story alert.

Posted by Evan Benn at 11:28 AM on February 20, 2008 in Crime , Weird News | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Orgies, softball and beatings

A life of drunken orgies, softball after-parties and inmate beat-downs. That's how Florida's former prisons chief, Jim McDonough, described the state's prison-guard culture in a recent interview with CNN.

McDonough said he resigned from his post earlier this month because he felt he brought sufficient reforms to the prison system in his two years at its helm. But when he got there, here's what McDonough said he found:

-Guards bought and sold steroids to bulk up and give them an edge in their highly competitive softball league.

-Guards used taxpayer funds to buy booze for big parties after softball games, something McDonough said had become "an obsession" among prison staff. "They seemed to be drunk half the time and had orgies the other half," he said.

-Guards brutalized inmates and other guards who threatened to report their behavior.

McDonough said he helped rid the prison system of this "cancer" by demoting and firing corrupt guards and prison officials. He has since accepted a job with a New York foundation that promotes criminal-justice reform.   

Posted by Evan Benn at 04:43 PM on February 19, 2008 in Crime , Gangs , Police , Sexual Assault , Weird News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Baby-beating death case in court

The Herald's Hannah Sampson reported on an emotional day today in Broward County court.

A 12-year-old boy accused of beating to death his 17-month-old cousin pleaded not guilty in juvenile court of second-degree murder. State prosecutors are close to working out a deal for the boy to serve three years in a juvenile facility followed by probation.

It was a brutal death - police say the boy used a baseball bat to beat the toddler because her crying kept him from watching TV - but the boy's mom says the courts should let him free.

"My son's only 12 years old," she told the judge Monday. "He's not guilty."

Posted by Evan Benn at 02:18 PM on February 18, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

No, you're not Rick James

0215082mugs5 An alarming trend spotted in The Smoking Gun's recent batch of strange and funny mugshots from across the country: Guys sporting T-shirts of a catchphrase that's five years old.

You remember the Rick James sketches from Chappelle's Show on Comedy Central. They coined a phrase that became popular with the kids.

0215082mugs6 So popular, in fact, that these two guys (here and here) were still getting a laugh out of it when they were recently arrested for unknown reasons.   

C'mon, fellas. Yer better than that.

Posted by Evan Benn at 02:07 PM on February 18, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Cellmates: Coming to newsracks near you

Cell A weekly publication called Cellmates has an interesting concept: Jail mugshots and charging details of local arrestees, taken straight from cops' public crime blotter reports.

For $1 at convenience-store newsstands, the magazines beckon readers to "Look Who's in Jail!" and "See What the Charges Are Inside!"

Our friend Kevin Deutsch at The Palm Beach Post first reported this on his paper's crime blog Tuesday. The mag is already circulating in PB County.

The Cellmates website, based in St. Petersburg, doesn't say what other parts of Florida the magazine covers or whether we can expect it to hit Miami-Dade and Broward anytime soon. Its answering machine, which describes Cellmates as the No. 1 Crime-Statistics Publication in Florida, also says the company won't accept payments from people trying to get their mugshots out of the magazine.

Cellmates puts the booking information together nicely, but you can do it for free online. Most law enforcement websites let you scan the new arrests, including booking mugs and charging details. Here's BSO's arrest search page (no need to enter a name, just click search to see recent arrests). Here's where you can see who's in custody in Miami-Dade's jail (you need to enter at least a last name). And here's the blotter for the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.   

 

Posted by Evan Benn at 11:54 AM on February 13, 2008 | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

 
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