The Bizarre World of Florida

OMG! …. Officials want South Florida to break off into its own state October 23, 2014

Filed under: Amazing,Bizzarre,Controversy,Dumb,Funny,OK Then .....,Silly,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 1:07 pm

Officials in the City of South Miami have passed a resolution in favor of splitting the state in half so South Florida would become the 51st state.

os-officials-propose-20141021-001Vice Mayor Walter Harris proposed the resolution and it passed with a 3-2 vote at the city commission meeting on Oct. 7.

Harris told the commission that Tallahassee isn’t providing South Florida with proper representation or addressing its concerns when it comes to sea-level rising.

“We have to be able to deal directly with this environmental concern and we can’t really get it done in Tallahassee,” Harris said. “I don’t care what people think — it’s not a matter of electing the right people.”

Mayor Philip Stoddard agreed with Harris’ reasoning, saying during the meeting that he’s advocated for secession for the past 15 years but never penned a resolution.

“It’s very apparent that the attitude of the northern part of the state is that they would just love to saw the state in half and just let us float off into the Caribbean,” Stoddard said. “They’ve made that abundantly clear every possible opportunity and I would love to give them the opportunity to do that.”

But the vote wasn’t unanimous. Commissioners Gabriel Edmond and Josh Liebman voted against the resolution with Edmond, a history teacher, being the most vocal about it.

“I just want you guys to be careful because if you vote for this you’re setting a precedent that if other people in this city don’t like our representation or feel we’re not responsive to them they might say ‘we want to break away from the city of South Miami’.”

The resolution lists the northern border of what would be the state of South Florida as being Brevard, Orange, Polk, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties.

Orange County is particularly important because that’s where the South Florida Water Management District begins, Harris said. It was even suggested that a Central Florida city could possibly be the state of South Florida’s capitol.

In total, the proposed 51st state would include 24 counties.

The resolution’s 3-2 approval paved the way for it to be sent to the governing bodies of the proposed South Florida counties for consideration. In order for secession to be enacted, however, the measure would require electorate approval from the entire state and Congressional approval.

Click here to read a copy of the resolution.


“Don’t bring a machete to a pork chop fight”

Filed under: Bad Temper,Bizzarre,Controversy,Dangerous Nut,Dumb,Fight,Florida Nut,WTF? — floridaduh @ 1:00 pm

An argument over pork chops turned violent and bloody between relatives Monday night.

635495145535312385-porkFellsmere police arrested Billy Wall for stabbing his nephew with a butcher knife two times in the abdomen. The two were apparently arguing over how many pork chops each person would get to eat.

Officers responded to the victim’s house on Lincoln Street just before eight o’clock. The victim, Charles Williams, came stumbling out the front door as police arrived. Wall was tracked down and arrested at his neighbor’s house a block away.

That neighbor, Carolyn Bibbs, told WPBF 25 News reporter John Dzenitis that Wall came to her door covered in blood and asking for a change of clothes.

“He was drenched with blood because I seen it all down his leg,” Bibbs said. ”I ain’t givin’ him no clothes to put on.”

Police said Wall claimed self-defense as he was being put in handcuffs.

“He kept saying ‘I stabbed him’,” Bibbs said. “He say, ‘He try to get a machete at me and cut me with a machete and I stabbed him.”

Wall was arrested on aggravated battery charges. The Indian River County Sheriff’s Office processed the scene and officers recovered the machete. The knife has yet to be recovered.

Family members told WPBF 25 News that Williams had to undergo emergency surgery because of liver damage. Thankfully, the blade barely missed an artery and Williams is expected to survive, according to his family.


Woman Sets Boyfriend on Fire

Filed under: Abuse,Bad Temper,Bizzarre,Controversy,Dangerous Nut,Dispute,Dumb,Fire,Scary,WTF? — floridaduh @ 12:56 pm

An argument turned vicious in Florida when an incensed woman poured fingernail polish remover over her roommate then ignited it.

meatballs23n-2-webThe fight, according to a witness, erupted after Carlos Ortiz Jr., 42, threw out Melissa Dawn Sellers’ spaghetti and meatballs, according to Clearwater police.

“She was setting little objects on fire, then that turned into pouring nail polish remover all over him, and then all of a sudden, the lighter sparked and he lit on fire,” said Ines Causevic, a friend of the victim, Bay News 9 reported.

Sellers had been staying with Ortiz after losing her job at Wal-Mart.

Causevic said she doused her friend with water and pulled off his shirt, which was on fire.

He is hospitalized in critical condition with burns to his face and torso, the station said.

“When he got up, his face was like melting off,” Causevic said. “His lips were burning.”

Sellers, 33, was charged with aggravated battery.

She has a prior conviction from 2008 for battery.


Mom, dad and girlfriend turn in suspected ATM bandit

Filed under: Bad Luck,Controversy,Florida Nut,Robbers,WTF? — floridaduh @ 12:50 pm

Saying it was simply ‘the right thing to do,’ police say the girlfriend, mother and father of a West Melbourne man told detectives he was the hammer-wielding robber captured on surveillance photographs choking a 20-year-old woman at an ATM machine Monday evening.

sfl-flduh-girlfriend-atm-bandit-20141022-001Police charged 44-year-old Scott Patrick Deason with armed robbery and false imprisonment after family members spotted the photographs released to the media and tipped off detectives.

“The girlfriend called and the parents confirmed it was their son. It was very quick,” said Lt. Richard Cordeau.

“The suspect was asleep in the bedroom at the time. When they saw the photos, they decided to call. They just felt like it was the right thing to do. The girlfriend did express some remorse to the victim,” Cordeau said. Deason was uncooperative.

The robbery happened about 8:30 p.m. Monday at the Bank of America at 3003 W. New Haven Ave, prompting a countrywide search and even unfounded reports of man being seen as far away as Cocoa.

Police said Deason demanded the woman withdraw a large amount of cash and “threatened harm if she did not comply.” The woman, who has declined to be interviewed, started the panic alarm on her nearby car and the suspect fled. “He did not get any money,” said Cordeau of the West Melbourne Police Department. “The victim is physically okay but understandably upset. As he fled on foot she saw what looked like a hammer in his hands,” Cordeau said.

Police later released surveillance photos hoping the public might help identify him. It was those clear photos showing the robbers uncovered face that moved his mother, father and girlfriend to call 9-1-1 to report Deason as a possible suspect in the case. So far police do not have a motive for the failed robbery.

Deason was arrested at his home and taken to the West Melbourne Police Department for questioning. Police also added that residents should continue to be on the alert about their surroundings.

“As always, you should be vigilant about where you are. Fortunately in this case, the victim was able to activate the panic alarm on her vehicle…we believe that’s why he fled,” said Cordeau.


Cosmetic surgery fraudster gets 20 years for IRS scam

Filed under: Controversy,Disgusting,Disrespectful,Fraud,Really Dumb,Robbers,WTF? — floridaduh @ 12:48 pm

A Clermont woman who spent $4 million from fraudulent income-tax returns on cosmetic surgeries, luxury cars and an Orlando restaurant was recently sentenced to federal prison.

sfl-flduh-cosmetic-surgery-scam-20141022-001Orlando-based U.S. District Judge Roy B. Dalton, Jr. sentenced Tanya Fox to 20 years behind bars for conspiracy, five counts of wire fraud, 10 counts of theft of government property and 10 counts of aggravated identity theft, authorities announced Wednesday.

Fox, who was found guilty of the charges in July, was immediately taken into custody.

She spent money from fraudulent tax returns to purchase a BMW 7 Series, an Infiniti M35, a Chrysler Crossfire and a Volkswagen Beetle, according to testimony.

The government seized those vehicles.

But another vehicle, a Maserati, was repossessed before it could be seized.

“Fox also used the proceeds from these offenses to have cosmetic surgery on two occasions and open a restaurant in the Orlando area,” according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Details about those surgeries and the location of that restaurant were not released.

The government alleges that Fox, between January 2010 and June 2013, opened bank accounts in the name of false tax-preparation businesses and used other people to help withdraw fraudulently obtained tax-return money.

Fox used the Social Security numbers, dates of birth and names of patients at the health department to file the returns and obtain nearly $4.1 million.


Undersized lobster tail prompts over-sized bail

Filed under: Bad Luck,Controversy,Dumb,Interesting,OK Then .....,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 12:46 pm

A Miami man’s haul of 267 wrung lobster tails, 246 of which were undersize, landed him in jail over the weekend with a bond set at $1.4 million.

sfl-flduh-undersized-lobster-tail-20141022-001Monroe County sheriff’s Deputy Wilfredo Guerra was on patrol about 4 a.m. Saturday near Fiesta Key Marina when he spotted Jorge Vargas, 59, pulling traps onto a white Carolina skiff, wringing off lobster tails and placing them into a mesh bag, according to the sheriff’s office.

Guerra watched as Vargas threw bag after bag filled with wrung lobster tails onto the shoreline and returned to the bay for more, according to authorities.

Finally, Vargas headed his boat to the marina and docked. When he got into his truck to pick up the bags of lobster tails, Guerra confronted him.

deputy guerra with tailsVargas was cited for possession of undersize lobster, possession of over-the-limit lobster and possession of wrung lobster tails.

He was booked into Monroe County jail. Records revealed that Vargas had been cited twice before over the past three years. His previous hauls in the Florida Keys had been equally gigantic — more than 300 wrung lobster tails as well as possession of stone crab out of season.

While Vargas was in jail, a warrant was issued for him Monday for failure to appear in court for a 2011 case. The judge set his bond at $1.4 million.

Separating, or wringing, the tail from the body of a lobster is prohibited in state waters, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Recreational trapping is also prohibited, and the bag limit during regular spiny lobster season (Aug. 6 to March 31) is six per person per day.


Semi with 44,000-lbs. of Miller High Life beer swiped October 22, 2014

Filed under: Bad Luck,Controversy,Robbers,Sad Story,WTF? — floridaduh @ 1:19 pm

A truck driver broke down in tears on Tuesday while telling Channel 9 about the thieves who drove off with his semi full of beer from an Orange County truck stop.

sfl-flduh-miller-high-life-beer-20141021-001The victim’s truck and at least one other were swiped Monday from a truck stop on South Orange Blossom Trail.

Van Thomas was trying to live the American dream. After years as a trucker, he bought a semi three weeks ago and made a company of his own.

Thomas was traveling from Texas to Pompano Beach and was on his last stop before a delivery in Orlando when his entire truck and alcohol cargo was stolen.

“I don’t mean to cry about it but I’m just trying to do the best I can and make a better life,” Thomas told WFTV.

Inside the truck was 44,000 pounds of Miller High Life, which comes out to about 9,700 four-packs.

“It’s just so devastating to me,” said Thomas.

It’s not the first time a semi has been stolen in Florida. About 180,000 eggs were stolen earlier this year in Fort Myers. A truck with Hershey chocolate was also stolen in December in Volusia County, and a truck with Slimfast was swiped near downtown Orlando.

Just when Thomas thought he lost everything, he received a phone call telling him the truck and most of the cargo had been located.

“Oh, my God. That’s beautiful,” he said.

The call came in from detectives that the truck had been found in Miami.

There’s no word on whether the robbers knew “The Champagne of Beers” was inside at the time of the theft. Detectives are still trying to figure out who stole the two trucks and if they are part of a bigger ring.



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