OMG PD: $18K Citizenship Scam; Man Killed For 'Fornicating'
We compile the odd, unusual "oh my gosh" police items from throughout the Tampa Bay region.
Detectives are searching for two women who they say scammed a senior citizen out of $18,000 outside a Largo Walmart last month.
The two suspects approached the victim in the parking lot of Walmart, 1111 N. Missouri Ave., around 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 27, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
Detectives say the women talked about a desire to obtain American citizenship and claimed that they needed $60,000 for documents to obtain it.
They convinced the senior to help them by driving to a nearby bank and withdrawing $18,000, which was eventually provided to the suspects, officials said. The two women then fabricated a story and left the area.
A 70-year-old Brandon man faces a second-degree murder charge after deputies say he confessed to fatally shooting a man having sexual intercourse with his wife in the couple's home.
Ralph Lewis Wald, 70, was arrested after he called 911 and told a dispatcher with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office that he just shot the victim for "fornicating" with his 42-year-old wife.
Wald told authorities he had gotten up shortly before midnight Sunday to get a drink in the kitchen, when he saw the two in the living room having sex. Ward said he returned to his bedroom and grabbed his firearm, shooting the victim several times.
A 19-year-old has been charged with shooting his father last week in Sarasota, police said Tuesday.
Steven R. Phelps Jr., 19, was arrested Monday and charged with attempted murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
Sarasota Police say Phelps shot his 38-year-old father twice in the early hours of March 5 after riding up to him on a bicycle. The father initially thought his son was just trying to scare him after firing several shots that missed, investigators said.
A school resource officer found a semi-automatic pistol in a 16-year-old student's car Thursday at Boca Ciega High School, Gulfport Police say.
The gun was loaded with one bullet, according to a media release.
The student was arrested and charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds, a felony.
A 12-year-old boy was arrested last week and charged with throwing a deadly missile and criminal mischief after authorities say he threw a Gatorade bottle from a school bus.
According the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, the Weightman Middle School student "intentionally and maliciously" threw the nearly full bottle from the window while the bus was in motion at about 3 p.m. on Wednesday, March 6, near Overpass and McKendree roads in Wesley Chapel.
The bottle struck and shattered another vehicle's windshield, causing injury to the vehicle's passenger, according to the arrest report.
A man who authorities described as "deaf and mute" was robbed of $9 during an incident that occurred early Wednesday morning on Nebraska Avenue, according to a report from the Tampa Police Department.
Police say an officer used sign language with the victim to help positively identify the suspect after police found him walking down the street following the incident.
Imagine answering your phone and being told that if you don’t send the caller a certain amount of money, they’ll kill your son. It might sound like something terrible or the plot of a Hollywood drama, but the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office says it’s happening in Land O’ Lakes.
“They get the victim acting on their emotions to go immediately to a store and send the money instead of calling their relative,” a Sheriff’s Office spokesperson writes in a press release.
In recent incidents, the callers have told victims that a family member was involved in a traffic accident in which they were at fault. In one case the caller told a man that he was holding his son in his basement and if his demands weren’t met, he would “bury him in a hole.” In that case, the victim was with his brother who was able to contact family members and discover that no one was actually being held hostage.
In another case, a woman in Land O’ Lakes wired $300 to an account before she realized that it was a scam.
Authorites warn people not to send money but to try to contact their family members first, and then law enforcement.
A 43-year-old man who poured gasoline on himself and threatened to ignite a lighter was shot by officers after he tried to attack them with scissors, according to a written press statement Sunday night.
Arthur Allen Dixon Jr. was treated by paramedics outside his mother's St. Petersburg home and transported to Bayfront Medical Center as a trauma alert. He died from his injuries a short time later.
A mother was arrested and charged with child neglect after police found her 3-year-old special needs child wandering a Bradenton street Tuesday while she was high on marijuana, according to authorities.
A Manatee County Sheriff's deputy who showed up at the woman's home was "overwhelmed" by the odor of marijuana when she came to the door, according to a sheriff's office report. The woman's eyes were bloodshot, "and she was somewhat lethargic," officials said. She later tested positive for marijuana.
According to the deputy, the woman said she has a double-key lock she uses to keep the child from getting outside, but she forgot to lock it when she went to sleep.
A Lutz woman faces a DUI charge after authorities say she was driving impaired with two young children in the car Thursday night.
According to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, Leah Ann Deyoung, 37, "denied drinking and stated with slurred speech she rinsed her mouth with Listerine," according to an arrest report.
A deputy said her eyes were bloodshot and glassy and she had a strong odor of alcohol on her breath. She performed poorly on a field sobriety test and twice refused to take a breath test, authorities said.
Police are looking for a driver who they say drove his car into three officers and a fire rescue truck during a traffic stop on Coquina Key in St. Petersburg on Monday night.
One of the officers was treated for a minor concussion at a local hospital, St. Petersburg Police said.
The suspect's car approached an intersection that had been blocked off following an accident that knocked down power lines, according to officials. Officers approached the driver "and immediately detected a strong odor of marijuana emanating from the interior of the car."
As officers helped a passenger out of the car, the driver restarted the car, placed it into gear and accelerated forward, striking three officers with the still-open car door and careening into a fire rescue truck parked nearby before fleeing, according to police.
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