by Kirby Congdon……. My lover and partner of forty-three years was different than any of my other friends. I was asked, “How did you handle it between yourselves? What kind of discussions did you have to resolve this distinction that was so public?” My partner and I replied with words to the effect that if your lover had been born with an excess of psoriasis that gave his face a visible proof of acne, was that something we had to resolve to make ourselves, as [continue reading…]
A Sheriff’s detective is asking for the public’s help identifying two young burglary suspects from an incident in August. The suspects stole two cases of beer and a pack of cigarettes from a home on Kingbird Lane, Big Coppitt Key. The homeowner contacted the Sheriff’s Office on the afternoon of August 15th. He told Deputy Shawn Steele he had captured the burglary on video. He said he reviewed his surveillance video after discovering an 18 pack of bottled Budweiser Select 55 beer, a 24 pack [continue reading…]
A Louisiana man died while diving in the Dry Tortugas Saturday. 67 year old Paul Wimberly of Natchitoches, Louisiana was in the Dry Tortugas snorkeling from the commercial vessel Playmate, operated by Sea-Clusive Charters. Wimberly’s dive partner said it appeared Wimberly panicked while underwater. She said he grabbed her and pulled her to the bottom with him. She was able to shed her dive equipment and do an emergency ascension to the surface.
With the recent rainfall on Big Pine Key, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is prepared to apply prescribed fire in three locations within the National Key Deer Refuge at the end of this week or this weekend (September 1-3, 2016). When weather conditions are within the fire plan know as a “prescription”, crews are able to safely and effectively apply prescribed fire in the Refuge. The interagency team is closely monitoring weather conditions at this time, preparing for the appropriate window for fire [continue reading…]
United Airlines will begin seasonal service at Key West International Airport, with flights to and from the airline’s gateway hubs at Newark Liberty International Airport and Chicago O’Hare International Airport. Beginning Dec. 16, 2016 and running through May 4, 2017, United will be the only carrier to offer daily nonstop service between the New York area and Key West. United’s Newark (EWR) is its largest hub operation in the New York City area and offers customers convenient connections throughout the Northeast and Midwest. From [continue reading…]
Are your closets overflowing with unused children’s clothes and other items? Now is the time to clean out your closets and make some extra cash, or donate your items to support a local non-profit! The Florida Keys Healthy Start Coalition is holding their annual Tot Swap Consignment Sale, to be held in Key West September 13-18. The sale will be held next to the Key West K-mart and is open to the public. Everyone is welcome to shop. Accepted consignment sale items include new or [continue reading…]
Dear Editor: This is in regards to the toxic sludge that’s heading our way. Many on the west coast are determined to send it south but that’s not the answer. The Everglades is choked out due to development and can’t handle it and the way they rerouted the flow of water doesn’t allow it like it did in the past. So what to do? After contacting the Corps of Engineers at each lock thru the water ways that come from Lake O to Ft Myers I learned [continue reading…]
The Monroe County Marathon Courthouse is a little more colorful with the recent installation of an eye-catching turquoise bench and sky blue loveseat created by California artist Colin Selig. He makes them from an unlikely source: salvage propane tanks once used to heat homes. His functional sculptures are part of the County’s 1% Art in Public Places program. “These benches create a lovely, quiet space for people who visit and work at the Courthouse,” said Elizabeth Young, Executive Director of the Florida Keys Council [continue reading…]
Sheriff’s detectives are hoping to help locate a Marathon man whose family and friends say they have not seen nor heard from him since June 16th. 48 year old Paul Thomas Murray, who lives on a boat in Boot Key Harbor in Marathon, told family members he was going to help a friend move a sailboat from Robbie’s Marina on Stock Island to Boot Key Harbor on June 16th. A short time after that, the sailboat he was supposed to help move, called the “Hornet” [continue reading…]
#1 Relay for Life Team Castaways Against Cancer Set Off on 17th Annual Kayaking Trip with the Support of U.S. Century The Castaways Against Cancer, a Relay for Life team ranked 1st in Florida, launched on their 17h Annual kayaking journey, dubbed the “Proof of Life” tour from Virginia Key in Miami, FL on Saturday, June 11. Paddling the equivalent of a marathon a day, the Castaways will paddle a total of 160 miles as a fundraiser supporting the American Cancer Society (ASC) and are [continue reading…]
The Sheriff’s Office began using body worn cameras on Monday. Most uniformed deputies will be required to wear the cameras as a routine part of their uniform. All members who will be using the cameras completed their training last week. The Sheriff’s policy requires they be worn by road patrol deputies and sergeants, school resource deputies, civil deputies, traffic deputies, airport deputies and sergeants and detectives when they are in uniform. Detectives may also wear them when in plain clothes.
A fight between neighbors this morning [Sunday, June 12] led to the arrest of a Key Largo man for aggravated battery and burglary. The victims, two men aged 52 and 20, told Deputy Gil Gonzalez they were hanging out at the home on Oakwood Avenue at 5 a.m. when a woman who lives nearby knocked on the door. They invited her inside. The 20 year old victim told Deputy Gonzalez they knew the woman. He said she had come to the house before when [continue reading…]
The video and photos show a man detectives want to talk to about the theft of a pair of Pelagic brand sunglasses from Bud and Mary’s Outfitters Store in Islamorada on the afternoon of May 31st. The sunglasses are valued at $296. Anyone who recognizes him and can help detectives to identify him should contact Deputy Caridad Bellon at 305-664-6480 or Detective Sgt. Mark Coleman at 305-853-3211.
Detectives in the Upper Keys are investigating three reports involving hidden cameras found in women’s restrooms. In all three incidents, miniature cameras hidden in coat hooks were found mounted on the walls in the women’s restrooms. They were found at Anne’s Beach on May 26th, the Circle K Store at the 99.8 mile marker of Highway U.S. One on May 28th and in the women’s bathroom at Harry Harris Park in Tavernier today [May 31st].
CRIME REPORT: An alert merchant in Key Largo quickly called the Sheriff’s Office after a Hialeah man attempted to use multiple fraudulent credit cards in his store to purchase high end merchandise. That call led to the arrest of the man who is now in jail on 60 felony counts related to the fraud. The manager of West Marine in Key Largo said 41 year old Rogelio Rodriguez walked into the store at about noon and asked to see one of the most expensive models [continue reading…]
KEY LARGO – Rowell’s Waterfront Park – at mile marker 104.5 on the Overseas Highway in Key Largo – opens Saturday morning, becoming the County’s 20th park. The 8-acre, kid- and dog-friendly park along Florida Bay has picnic tables, benches, a place to swim (at your own risk) and a launch for kayaks, canoes and standup paddleboards. It will be open seven days a week, from 7:30 a.m. to sunset. Admission is free. The property was purchased in December 2013 for $5 million. Since then, [continue reading…]
After having personally signed off on Monique Acevedo’s purchasing card expenditures [which led to the $413,000 School District embezzlement case in 2009] Mike Henriquez was again at the center of a “where has the money gone” scandal last year for setting up an accounting system for the HOB day care program that was so loose that nearly $22,000 couldn’t be accounted for. SEE RELATED: HOB DAY CARE SCANDAL: The Making of a Thief? A first year employee was fired. But Mike Henriquez was merely reprimanded. His [continue reading…]
The Sheriff’s Office had two more different types of scams reported Tuesday and would like to make everyone aware so they do not fall victim to these fraudsters. An Islamorada woman called the Sheriff’s Office Tuesday night to report being scammed by someone she believed worked for a legitimate loan company. The 60 year old victim said she was trying to obtain a loan from a company called “Easy Loans”. She said a representative called and agreed to give her a $3,000 loan. He told [continue reading…]
Wednesday May 4, 2016: Commercial vessel allegedly discharging gunfire at another vessel 40 miles west of Key West, Florida. Reporting vessel is running for safety at top speed. Coast Guard orders all unnecessary personnel on reporting vessel below deck… The incident reportedly began when a recreational dive boat drove through a commercial fisherman’s chum slick while southwest of the Marquesas Keys. Update [from U.S. Coast Guard Miami]: The Coast Guard responded to a report of the discharge of a firearm southwest of Marquesas Key, Florida, on [continue reading…]
A Key Largo man was scammed out of $2,500 because he believed his wife was kidnapped. The 30 year old man told Deputy Gil Gonzalez he received a call Friday at 10 a.m. from a man – “Mike” – who claimed to have his wife; Mike said the victim’s wife was involved in a car crash and had killed Mike’s son in the crash. Mike said after the crash he kidnapped her. He claimed to be a drug dealer and said he did not want [continue reading…]
Dear Editor: On January 20, 2016, the six (6) members of the City Commissioners voted to approve funding for the “White Boxing” of the Douglass School Band Room & Shop Building and held their vote on whether the building should house the Roosevelt Sands Health Clinic. The members of the Frederick Douglass School Black Educators Memorial Project (FDSBEMP) had asked for consideration to be given to the fact that Commissioner Clayton Lopez had met with and promised their group over a 5 year period that [continue reading…]
by Ray Jason……. Perhaps you awaken in the midnight stillness and find yourself lost in the labyrinth of an elusive but disturbing dream. As consciousness returns, you realize that it is not a dream that is troubling you – it is the reality of your life. You suddenly realize that the modern world is not providing you with joyous possibilities. Instead, it is ensnaring you in a digital desert. You recognize that your 1,243 Facebook friends are actually 1,243 Falsebook strangers. And you [continue reading…]
KEY WEST – American Airlines flight 4680 returned safely to Key West International Airport on Sunday afternoon after a bird strike led to a problem with the left engine. The Embraer 175 jet, which was operated by Republic Airways and destined for Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, was carrying 67 people. All were uninjured. “The flight crew did a great job of flying the aircraft safely back to the airport,” said Donald DeGraw, Director of Key West International Airport. “The airport’s fire department and mutual [continue reading…]
On Wednesday Judge Wayne Miller opted to allow alleged Duval Street shooter, Derek Michael David, 34, to return to freedom back in his home state of Louisiana. Miller did however increase his bail by $100,000 to $582,500 and set specific conditions on David’s right to remain free pending trial. The shooting happened on March 21st at about 1:25 a.m. in the area of Rick’s Bar. Surveillance video from the bar [see below] shows David dragging his visibly intoxicated wife, Jodie Marie David, down Charles Street and apparently knocking her to the ground. [continue reading…]
ALL 11 ABOARD SEAPLANE WERE UNINJURED Key West International Airport reopened at 7:33 p.m. Wednesday after temporarily being closed for about 90 minutes due to a seaplane that became disabled on runway 9 after its right float broke apart during landing. All 11 people on board (a pilot and 10 passengers) walked away, all declining medical treatment. “It’s the best thing we could hope for, no injuries,” said T.J. Henderson, Assistant Director of Airports.
Key West Police recovered nearly $4,800 in stolen prescription drugs Tuesday night after a Key West man allegedly robbed a local pharmacy at “gunpoint”. At 7:35 p.m. police responded to a call at the CVS at Overseas Market. When officers arrived, the victim told them a man had pointed a gun at her as she worked behind the pharmacy counter, demanding she hand over the schedule II narcotics. The suspect filled a backpack with the drugs and fled the store, running through a nearby Chinese [continue reading…]
Sheriff’s Detective David Brummer needs help identifying two suspects captured on video committing a business burglary on Big Pine Key Tuesday evening. Surveillance cameras at M & M Automotive on Avenue A, Big Pine Key shows the two men just after 7 p.m. walking around outside the business near vending machines and near some tires stored outside. They removed a key from a scooter stored at the business. They appear to be looking at tires perhaps to find a specific size. The business reported the [continue reading…]
New charges have been filed in the Duval Street shooting case and prosecutors want to put him back behind bars now — this time without bail. Derek Michael David, 34, was released on bail following a March 21st shooting that wounded three people. The shooting happened at about 1:25 a.m. in the area of Rick’s Bar. Surveillance video from the bar reportedly shows David at one point dragging a woman [his wife] down Charles Street and knocking her to the ground. Two men are seen running over [continue reading…]
Information in the following crime reports was provided by Becky Herrin of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department: A Key West man was charged with a robbery at a Tavernier convenience store earlier this month. Detective Jaques Rozek is the lead investigator of a robbery March 7th at the Circle K convenience store at the 92.7 mm of Highway U.S. One. The clerk at the store called the Sheriff’s Office after a man wearing a mask over his face entered the store and demanded money. The suspect [continue reading…]
Pierson Villalobos was sentenced to 30 years in Florida State Prison at the Marathon Courthouse on Tuesday. The Honorable Ruth Becker presided over the sentencing hearing and adjudicated Villalobos guilty of two counts of DUI Manslaughter for the deaths of Deborah Mangrum and Christopher Jennings on November 28, 2009. Judge Becker also sentenced the defendant to a lifetime driver’s license revocation, payment of restitution, cost of prosecution and cost of investigation.
On the morning of October 16th 2015, Tara Rosado’s three small children awoke in their home on Cuba Road in Tavernier and found the bodies of their mother and her boyfriend shot to death in their bedroom. Investigations by the Sheriff’s Major Crimes Unit reveal that the murder of the Tavernier couple was drug related. Detective Vince Weiner, working closely with Chief Assistant State Attorney Manny Madruga, arrested two Upper Keys men, 33 year old Jeremy Macauley of Tavernier and 34 year old Adrian Demblans of [continue reading…]
by Ray Jason……. This November, I heartily encourage all Americans to exercise their civic duty by going to the polls and voting for one of the dignified Presidential candidates that have amazed us this election cycle with their wisdom and compassion. Got ya! APRIL FOOLS DAY!!! Unfortunately, this is not a laughing matter. A large segment of the U.S. population is now very aware of the fact that our political and economic systems have become totally corrupt. And yet these knowledgeable people still cling [continue reading…]