floridaduh

The Bizarre World of Florida

Kids left in car for hours after grown-ups jailed January 7, 2015

sfl-child-neglect-case-photo-20150106

Three young children spent seven hours alone in a car in a Wal-Mart parking lot after their parents were arrested and accused of shoplifting at the store, authorities said.

According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, Tosheba Hope, 30, and Gerald Moultrie, 24, were arrested about 7 p.m. Monday at the Wal-Mart, 3001 N. State Road 7, and accused of grand theft.

After being arrested, the two failed to mention that three children — ages 2, 7 and 9 — were waiting for them in their parked car, said Gina Carter, a Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman. Hope is the mother of the three children; Moultrie is the father of one of them, she said.

The children were discovered about 2 a.m. Tuesday by a store employee who then searched for their parents inside the store. The children were upset and crying, but not physically hurt, Carter said.

When store employees couldn’t locate the parents inside, they alerted authorities, who then realized they had arrested the pair hours earlier, Carter said.

In a 911 recording released by the sheriff’s office Tuesday, a woman told the dispatcher that “the kids are calling for their mom.” Their voices barely audible on the recording, they are heard giving their ages to the woman who relayed the information to the dispatcher.

The 911 caller said announcements were made in the store and she “walked the store, walked the store, walked the store” in search of the mother. While reporting the abandoned children to 911, the woman offered them water, juice and chips.

On Tuesday, the children were in the care of relatives, according to Florida Department of Children and Families spokeswoman Paige Patterson-Hughes.

Hope, of Lauderhill, and Moultrie, of Miramar, were charged with grand theft, but it’s likely that they will also face child neglect charges, authorities said. The investigation is ongoing.

According to a sheriff’s arrest report, Hope and Moultrie picked up tools and vehicle accessories valued at $660 and failed to stop at a cash register to pay for them. As they left the store, a Wal-Mart employee stopped them, it said.
The two had a first-appearance court hearing Tuesday on the theft charges before Broward Judge John “Jay” Hurley. Both were released from jail without paying a bond. Attempts to reach the two by phone were unsuccessful.

Hope told the judge that she had three small children and was “probably pregnant” with another.

 

No sitter? No problem! Dad toted tot to armed burglary

A 22-year-old St. Petersburg man carried his 5-month-old son to an armed burglary Monday, according to police.

37a2e563-2ea2-4d5b-8d30-468_14454559_8colCorey James Earl Mathews faces charges of residential burglary, aggravated assault and child neglect — and a charge of violation of probation that stems from a previous accusation of battery against a police officer.

According to police, a man returned to his home in the 300 block of Ninth Avenue N about 5:45 p.m. Monday and saw Mathews standing at the back of the house with his baby in a car carrier. When the man approached, Mathews yelled to an accomplice at the back door, police said.

Mathews then walked away with the baby. Outside in the alley behind the house, the man told police Mathews put down his son, pulled out a knife and threatened the man’s life. Police later caught up to him at Joyce Terrace N and 4th Street N. He was still holding the baby, whom was turned over to Mathews’ mother.

Police believe they know who Mathews’ accomplice is, but have not charged anyone else. No further information was immediately

 

Couple Charged With Murder After Baby Found Starved To Death At Golden Corral January 2, 2015

The parents of a 22-day-old girl have been charged with murdering their child.
According to the Polk County, Florida Medical Examiner, the baby, Betsey Kee Stephens, “died of malnutrition as a result of starvation.”
Lakeland Police responded to assist emergency crews with an unresponsive infant at the Golden Corral located at 4705 US Hwy 98 North on Dec. 23. at 6:10 p.m.
Ruby-StephensThe baby’s parents, Ruby Stephens, 23, and Roy Stephens, 48, from Tennyson, Indiana, said they were in Lakeland visiting family.
Earlier in the day, they checked into the Comfort Inn located at 3520 US Hwy 98 North, according to police.  The mother told police she had checked Betsey’s feet and they appeared to be cold.  She covered them with a blanket.
The Stephens told police after checking into the hotel, they drove to the Golden Coral restaurant to meet family and have dinner.
After arriving at the restaurant, Ruby said she checked Betsey’s feet again.  She told police they were unusually cold and the infant did not respond.  She called 911.
Betsey was declared dead at Lakeland Regional Medical Center.
The Stephens also had a 1-year-old boy and a 2-year-old girl with them at the time of the incident.  Both children are now in the custody of the Florida Department of Children and Families.
Preliminary investigation indicates Betsey was dead for over three hours before 911 was called.
Both parents are charged with first-degree murder.
 

Dad passed out in car with son left in backseat December 9, 2014

An East Naples dad is accused of passing out drunk behind the wheel with his five-year-old son in the back seat.

6153645_GCollier County Deputies say Yuri Sanchez passed out at a green light Saturday night along Rattlesnake Hammock Road near Collier Boulevard.

Investigators say Sanchez woke up and took off when Good Samaritans approached his Honda and called 911.

Deputies say Sanchez then headed north on Collier Boulevard but he was driving in the southbound lanes.  Deputies managed to catch up to him a short time later.

It was determined through sobriety tests that Sanchez had a blood alcohol level of point-one.nine.

In addition to the the DUI charge, Sanchez faces a child neglect without bodily harm charge.  The child too, was unrestrained in the back seat.

 

Man hurled chair at granny during feud over dirty shoes September 22, 2014

A Deltona man who didn’t like his grandmother telling him to take off his shoes hit the woman with a kitchen chair, Volusia County deputies said.

sfl-flduh-chair-granny-dirty-shoes-20140919-001And when investigating deputies asked Justin Penner’s father, Mark Penner, what happened during the incident Thursday about 2:20 p.m., the dad said, “All he did was hit her with the chair,” deputies wrote in their report. The victim is Mark Penner’s mother.

Penner, 29, was charged with aggravated battery on a person 65 year of age or older. Penner is being held with no bail allowed in the Volusia County Branch Jail, records show.

Jean Penner, 77, flagged down deputies while in a parking lot on Saxon Boulevard and reported she had been battered in her Normandy Boulevard home, sheriff’s reports state.

Jean Penner said she lives in constant fear of her grandson who lives with her, investigators said.

The elderly woman reported she told Justin Penner not to walk in the residence with his shoes on because he was tracking in dirt. Justin Penner got upset and threw a kitchen chair at her, striking her in the left leg, deputies said.

After hurting his grandmother, Justin Penner left the home with his father but was arrested when he returned home, deputies said.

 

Dad gets bar beatdown after leaving kids in car to drink August 24, 2014

A local man is accused of leaving his three children in a car while he drank beer at a bar, according to the Ocala Police Department.

sfl-flduh-dad-bar-kids-car-20140821-001Police say they arrested Joshua Delong, 28, after they found him bloody and on the ground outside of Dr. B’s Bar on Northeast Eight Place.

The security guard at Dr. B’s Bar called police after Delong tried to drive away with the kids, ages 5, 7 and 8, in the car, according to the arrest affidavit.

The security guard, Christopher Chung, told police he tried to talk Delong out of driving because he thought Delong was drunk, police said.

Chung told police that’s when an angry patron hit Delong, according to the arrest affidavit.

Delong later told police that several men inside the bar accused of him of leaving his kids in the car, dragged him outside and beat him.

Prior to Delong’s arrest, a witness called police to report Delong’s three young children left alone for four hours in a gold Cadillac with the windows up and the key in the ignition, according to police. The children had been honking the horn and yelling “daddy” in the car.

A good Samaritan, Heather Weiss, stayed with the children and kept them calm until officers arrived, police said.

Delong told police that he left his children in his mother’s care and that his wife dropped them off at the bar without his knowledge. Delong’s wife and mother denied the claims, police said.

Delong was treated for his injuries at Orlando Regional Medical Center and then booked at the Marion County Jail. He was charged with three counts of child neglect.

 

Girl, 4, and her toddler brother found wandering alone near a busy road…and the parents ‘can’t see what the fuss is about’ July 26, 2014

A woman discovered two children near a daycare center’s dumpster on Tuesday – and their father was nowhere to be found.

article-2706043-1FFB5F8B00000578-80_634x692Veena Iyer told Boca Raton officers she saw the boy, 1, and girl, 4, walking around Tuesday afternoon before she contacted authorities, according to an affidavit obtained by MailOnline.

‘It should be noted this area is next to a public roadway,’ the affidavit said.

Iyer told police the children took her to their family’s home – but their parents were not there.

‘They were in their pajamas, no shoes, nothing, seemed very tired and hungry,’ Iyer told WPBF. ‘I said, “Who is watching you?” and [the girl] said, “Nobody.” I asked her, ‘Where is your dad?’ She said, “I don’t know. He took my mom to work.”‘

Father Stanley Fitzpatrick, 41,  was eventually found by Boca Raton police officers and told them he took his wife to a bus stop before he stopped to talk with a friend, according to the affidavit.

The children’s mother told a WPBF crew of the situation ‘It’s not really that serious. ‘The cameraman [is] supposed to come out if the child drowns, if the child was severe hurt. They were not hurt. They did not drown.’

The affidavit revealed the family’s home was in ‘substandard conditions.’

‘[Officers] observed moldy food in the refrigerator, the dishwasher left open with dishes and knives in it, and there were no locks on the cabinets,’ it said.

Officers also reportedly only found 4 diapers in the home and discovered the children slept on a mattress together on the floor.

It also alleged that the 1-year-old boy ‘had such bad diaper rash that he was flinching when officers changed his diaper.’

Fitzpatrick was arrested on two counts of child neglect, police said.

 

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 21,684 other followers