floridaduh

The Bizarre World of Florida

So you’re out fishing and catch an 800-pound shark that’s too big for your pickup truck. What do you do? April 22, 2014

Filed under: Amazing,Funny,Interesting,OK Then .....,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 7:11 pm

Florida anglers who had hoped to avoid publicity after catching a giant mako shark from the beach last week might have succeeded had they not stopped for gas on the way home–with the enormous predator spilling from the bed of their pickup truck.

mako

News spread not long after West Calhoun, a passerby, sent a photo of the shark to the Pensacola News-Journal. The News Journal posted the image on its Facebook page, with no details, and the peculiar image was so widely shared and discussed that the newspaper tracked down one of the anglers and, a day later, reported that the catch could set a world record for shore-based fishing.

Cousins Earnie and Joey Polk hooked the shortfin mako in the dark morning hours, on a Gulf Coast beach near Navarre. The apex predator, reeled in with heavy tackle after an hour-long struggle, weighed 805 pounds and measured 11 feet.

“That’s probably the best fish we ever caught,” Earnie Polk said. “You’ll spend many, many hours to catch a fish of that caliber, or a fish of that size.”

The International Land-Based Shark Fishing Association, which encourages catch and release and accepts tape measurements with estimated weights, recognizes a 674-pound mako caught by Earnie Polk in 2009 as the current record. Earnie and Joey also teamed to make that catch.

For the sake of comparison, the largest mako caught on rod and reel from a boat weighed 1,221 pounds, according to the International Game Fish Association. That catch was in 2001 off Massachusetts.

Presumably, the Polks hoped to keep news of their latest catch quiet because the shark-conservation movement has become so vocal in recent years. Sharks are slow to reproduce and vulnerable to overfishing, and many species are believed to be in steep decline.

The image was shared nearly 3,000 times, and while many of the comments were critical of the Polks, some were in support of the anglers. Fishing for mako sharks off Florida, after all, is not illegal.

The Polks explained that they kept the shark because it had become so weary during the fight, and they did not think it could swim back to sea.

So they trucked the predator home and planned a family feast.

“It’s about $10 per pound at the fish market,” Earnie Polk said. “It sells right along with tuna and swordfish. Between all of us, there won’t be a bit of it wasted.”

 

Police arrest two parents who beat up a bus driver because he didn’t let their kids off fast enough

Two of the three suspects accused of attacking a West Palm Beach elementary school bus driver when he didn’t let children off fast enough were arrested Saturday, according to a Palm Beach County School District Police arrest report.

The driver, Joseph Beauzile, 40, of Boca Raton, told police he was approaching a stop on April 14 when the children from Westwood Elementary tried to rush off the bus. Since he wanted them in a single file, he stopped them, closed the door, and made them get in line.

fl-west-palm-bus-beating-20140421-001The delay was apparently too much for Shacaurra Burns, 25, of West Palm Beach. Beauzile said Burns forced her way onto the bus and pulled the emergency brake release, according to the report.

A student told police Beauzile closed the door and tried to lock Burns in as he called police, the report said.

But with Burns on the bus, a man later identified as Ryan Beckford, 33, of West Palm Beach, ripped the door open and started punching Beauzile, according to the report.

Another rider told police Burns got on the bus because she was in a rush while another told police one of the men, who remains at large, grabbed the bus keys and threw them outside.

fl-west-palm-bus-beating-20140421-002The investigator talked with a guidance counselor who helped identify the woman as Burns.

The police investigator watched surveillance video of the beating and said children on the bus began crying with “terrified looks on their faces” as one of the men held the driver down while the other repeatedly punched him.

The attack caused one student to jump out of a bus window, according to the report.

The investigator said he could hear Beauzile yelling at one of the suspects to give him back his keys in the video.

Police later showed Beauzile a photo lineup where he identified Beckford as one of his attackers.

Days after the attack, Beauzile told Sun Sentinel news partner CBS12 that he was still in pain.

He said the attackers hit him in his ribs, head and other places and said the attack has left him shaken.

“That’s why I think the school district has to do something about that because it’s not only me, it’s about the school, security of my kids, and my security,” he said.

Burns faces trespassing, battery and child abuse charges and is held in Palm Beach County Jail in lieu of $6,000 bail. Beckford is held on the same charges in lieu of $14,000 bail.

 

Vietnam veteran David W. ‘Pervert Dave’ Cummings led colorful, tragic life

Filed under: Amazing,Death,Interesting,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 7:03 pm

cummings_12992614_8colPerhaps the strangest thing about David W. “Pervert Dave” Cummings’ story is that no one knows how he got the nickname. It’s not clear he even knew himself — though the name never bothered him.

When loved ones took out an obituary last week in the Tampa Bay Times, they made sure to include the nickname. Soon, the obit of “Pervert Dave” was making its way through social media, yet another item in an endless stream of Florida weirdness.

“Oh no! Pervert Dave died!” a typical blog headline lamented (in this instance, from Cincinnati’s WLW-AM 700 radio).

The man behind the nickname lived a colorful, if dark and sometimes tragic life. Trained as an aircraft mechanic in the Air Force, he claimed to have been aboard three planes that were shot down in Vietnam. He was honorably discharged in 1970 for a character disorder, the details of which are not known. He suffered from post-traumatic stress.

Over a 13-month period in the late 1980s, Mr. Cummings killed two people. One was a guy known as Wheelchair Skip, an amputee roommate in Inglis he shot six times during an argument over money. He was also charged with driving under the influence manslaughter when a woman who was riding with him died after Mr. Cummings slammed into a tree.

He claimed self-defense in the shooting death of Furman W. Toney III, the amputee who had his own violent history. (Six months earlier, Toney had fired a sawed-off shotgun at an imaginary intruder, instead hitting a 5-year-old girl in the face; she was not seriously injured.)

Charged with second-degree murder in Toney’s death, Mr. Cummings languished in jail for about two years until a judge withheld adjudication.

He then pleaded no-contest to DUI manslaughter in the death of Dale Marie Williams, 31, and was sentenced to a year in prison.

Though he never had children, he married at least three times, including a short-lived marriage to a 17-year-old when he was 32. (While this seems to be a potential source for Pervert, friends say he was given the name much earlier in life.)

In recent years he retreated to an isolated home in the woods near Crystal River, where he carved wood, let his long beard turn gray and lived as serene a life as one might hope for — at least with a nickname like Pervert Dave.

Mr. Cummings, who found peace after a rocky early adulthood, died April 13 of liver cancer, according to longtime friend Karen Baker. He was 64.

“He was very remorseful over both (deaths),” said Baker, 56, also of Crystal River. She has good-naturedly handled the hordes of media inquiries following the obituary she placed.

As for the nickname everybody wants to know about, Baker said, “It’s just something he came back with from Vietnam. It was just a nickname given to him.”

David Walter Cummings was born in 1949 in Rochester, N.Y. He enlisted in the Air Force in 1968 and was later promoted to Airman First Class.

He contracted hepatitis C during a blood transfusion after one of his planes was shot down, according to Baker.

Once a civilian, he refused to set foot on a plane again, she said.

Mr. Cummings came to the Tampa Bay area in the 1970s. He worked at a Clearwater car dealership for many years.

“He could sit there and tell jokes and have everybody laughing,” Baker said. “But if it got personal, he would try to listen and help the other person.”

The lowest point in his life — causing the back-to-back deaths — led to a new beginning. On Dec. 31, 1991, Mr. Cummings married Debra Ann “Morgan” McGee, a member of several civic organizations who introduced her husband to appraising property and breeding Paso Fino horses.

Morgan Cummings died at 52 in 2004 (of cancer, Baker said). Mr. Cummings spent his time in a little house 5 miles from Crystal River.

He took leisurely motorcycle trips with buddies on a Harley-Davidson Road King once used by police.

He was adept at engraving images into wood, including a skeleton riding a motorcycle.

 

Suspected bike thief found snoozing in Walmart

Filed under: Robbers,Fraud,Drugs,Florida Nut,Really Dumb,WTF?,Controversy,Unusual,Dumb,Stupid — floridaduh @ 6:58 pm

An Englewood man accused of stealing a bicycle was later found by Walmart employees taking a nap in a bean bag chair, according to deputies.

sfl-flduh-bike-thief-snoozing-20140421-00119-year-old Roy Hornjak has been arrested and charged with Burglary of a Dwelling, Burglary of a Structure, Burglary of a Conveyance, Grand Theft, and Violation of Probation.

According to the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office, an Englewood resident reported on Sunday that a bicycle valued at over $300 was stolen from their garage and the suspect had also apparently entered their vehicle to light a marijuana cigarette, based on an odor in the car.

A family member later located the missing bicycle in the bike rack outside the McCall Road Walmart.

After viewing the video, Wal-Mart personnel located Hornjak asleep on bean bag chairs inside the store. He was asked to leave the store. Instead of leaving, Hornjak went to the Subway located inside Wal-Mart and fell asleep at a table.

When deputies were talking to him at Wal-Mart, Hornjak was found to be in possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

He is being held without bond at the Charlotte County Jail.

 

Couple used tree in public park for target practice

sfl-flduh-tree-park-target-20140421-001
A man and a woman have been charged with getting drunk and shooting at a tree at G.T. Bray Park in Bradenton, according to police.

About 11:10 p.m. Sunday, officers responded to reports of gunfire at the park, 5502 33rd Ave. Drive W.

As they arrived, officers stopped a car as it was leaving the park.

Inside, they found that the driver, identified as Ian Tucker, 29, was drunk and openly carrying a gun, according to a report.

“He explained that he and his female passenger had been shooting at a tree within the park,” the report states.

Tucker and the woman, Rachelle Lacasse, 29, were each charged with openly carrying a weapon, discharging a firearm in public or on residential property and improper exhibition of a weapon.

They were released from the Manatee County jail after posting bonds totaling $1,120 each.

 

 

Jailed man exposed himself to officer, wanted sex act

A South Florida man is accused of being a nuisance and then making some pretty serious threats to the arresting officer.

sfl-flduh-exposed-himself-sex-act-20140421-002Charles Bolen, 53, of Pompano Beach, was arrested Friday in Palm Beach Gardens.

He’s accused of yelling at customers in front of a Walgreen’s store on Northlake Boulevard, and threatening to hurt them.

Bolen then took his act down the street to Pep Boys, where he “demanded money for beer,” according to his arrest report.

Once he was convinced to leave the store, he told officers to “wait until I get across the street and you will see what I am going to do,” the report said.

That’s when the officer started to arrest him, prompting Bolen to say “you are not taking me to jail.”

As he was being taken to jail, Bolen told the officer he was going to “****” the officer’s “wife in the ***,” according to the report.

And the final insult came when Bolen was in his holding cell, when he “unzipped his pants” and told the officer to perform a sex act on him, the report said.

Bolen is charged with disorderly conduct and exposure of sexual organs.

 

Florida neighbors upset about new park because ….people might actually use it April 21, 2014

Filed under: Controversy,Interesting,Sad Story,Stupid,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 1:55 pm

After two years and some controversy, a new park was unveiled Sunday in Cape Coral — but not everyone is excited.

3526184_GCape Coral Christian Fellowship Church officially opened its new five-acre, state-of-the art park. From swings to jungle gyms, children of all ages took turns trying out the new toys.

“It’s a gift from our family to the families of the city. It’s open just like any city park, so we just want to encourage people to come out and take advantage of it — enjoy it,” said Chad Woolf, pastor.

But not everyone shares the joy.

“My big concern is losing quality of life, because the park is going to be rented out on occasions — so that means you’re going to have bands, you’re going to have noise and you’re going to have a lot of traffic,” said neighbor Bill Tirelli.

During its planning, the project faced some opposition from neighbors. Especially when the church announced it wanted to add an amphitheater.

That request was turned down by city leaders after neighbors protested saying it would cause too much noise. But kids say they’re still excited the park is finally here.

“I think it’s phenomenal. My family and I have been waiting a long time so that we could go and enjoy the park,” said Georgia Wadall.

The church says they still have some work to do before the park is complete. Neighbors tell us they’re waiting to see how the park affects their lifestyle.

 

 
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