Jul 11
Marathon man charged with robbing, beating another

A Marathon man was arrested for robbing and beating another man Sunday night.

Just after 11 p.m., Sgt. Spenser Bryan and Deputy Orlando Alvarez responded to 3520 Overseas Highway where they met with the victim, who said he’d been beaten and robbed by 39 year old Kenyatta Scott. He said he was on 41st Street in Marathon when he was confronted by Scott, who demanded money from him. When the victim told Scott he had no money, Scott attacked him hitting him in the face and knocking him to the ground. Scott beat him with a belt, then checked the victim’s pockets taking the two dollars he had then leaving the scene on foot.

As the officers were investigating, Scott walked up with a belt over his shoulder. When Deputy Alvarez asked him why he had the belt, Scott said “I whooped him with it”. A witness who saw the incident take place corroborated the victim’s statement.

Scott was arrested. He was charged with battery and robbery and he was booked into jail.

Jul 11
Man charged with business burglaries

A Big Pine Key man was arrested early last Friday, charged with stealing alcohol from a Marathon restaurant and “breaking his dog out of jail”.

Deputies Orlando Alvarez and Rosary Ponce responded to the Sunset Grille on Knight’s Key at 2:30 a.m. Friday to a report from a security guard, The guard said a man with a dog had come on the premises, then had fled on foot when confronted.

The deputies found 46 year old Luke Meadows underneath the Seven Mile Bridge. Beside him they found a dog he said was his and two crates full of bottles of liquor. Meadows admitted to breaking in to the Sunset Grille and stealing the bottles of alcohol.

While the deputies were interviewing Meadows, he told them he’d “broken his dog out of jail”. When they asked for further details, he admitted to breaking in to the Marathon animal shelter and removing the dog – a German shepherd chow mix – from a locked cage in the shelter.

Meadows was charged with two counts of burglary and one count of grand theft. He was booked into jail.

Jul 11
Man charged with knife threats, boat burglary

A man was arrested after he broke into a houseboat on Summerland Key, then swung a knife at friends of the victim as they tried to retrieve items he stole from the boat.

The victim returned to her boat moored on Center Street on Summerland Key, at 10:20 p.m. last Wednesday and found someone had entered and taken money, two bottles of Miller Lite beer and a partial bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey. She went outside and looked down the street. She saw a man sleeping next to a bicycle. When she got closer she saw the items stolen from her boat in the basket of the bike. She called two male friends for help.

When the friends arrived, the sleeping man – later identified as 36 year old Ted Williams – woke up. Williams began to argue with them, then pulled out a knife and began to swing it at the two men. During the argument, Williams was yelling that his name was “Lucky”. The victim told him she was going to call the police, so Williams fled on his bike.

When Deputy Sean Moran arrived, he searched the area and found Williams climbing out of the water behind the Shell gas station. He fit the description of the suspect and had a tattoo on his arm that said “Lucky”. He was drinking a cold, half full bottle of Miller Lite. The Miller Lite bottle was marked with the same lot number and expiration date as the ones that were left in the refrigerator on the victim’s boat. A knife was found and recovered from the canal in the same location he was seen climbing out of the water.

Williams was arrested. He was charged with two counts of aggravated assault, burglary and theft. He was booked into jail.

Jul 04
Middle Keys-Alcohol Coalition Checks

On June 27, The Special Investigations Division conducted an operation checking businesses that sell alcohol in the Middle Keys. Fifteen businesses were checked including restaurants, convenience stores and bars. Three of the businesses served alcohol to a minor during our investigations. The three clerks who sold the alcohol were issued Notices to Appear before a Monroe County Judge.

The following are a list of the Businesses, and attendants who sold the alcohol:

  • Dionís Quickmart- 1415 Overseas Highway, Marathon. Attendant: Lissette Martinez, 44 years of age. Notice to appear issued (NTA).
  • Dionís Quickmart- 6203 Overseas Highway, Marathon. Attendant: Janet Mathieu, 70 years of age. Notice to appear issued (NTA).
  • Brass Monkey- 232 55th Overseas Highway, Marathon. Attendant: Peter Varney, 72 years of age. Notice to appear issued (NTA).

The Sale Clerk violations are up to 60 days in jail, a $500.00 fine, $235.00 in court cost, $75.00 in cost of prosecution, and $40.00 in cost of investigation.

The Licensee Violations are:

  • 1st-Offense $1000 fine and 7 day suspension.
  • 2nd-Offense $3000 fine and 30 day suspension.
  • 3rd-Offense Revocation of license.

The remaining businesses checked, were in compliance with the law. This operation was conducted in cooperation with the Monroe County Coalition for a Safe and Drug Free Community.

Jul 04
Missing mans body recovered

A missing Marathon man’s body was recovered from the water near Pigeon Key last Friday morning.

Detectives say 70 year old Jim Pierce left a note at his residence which was found by his girlfriend Wednesday night. The note indicated he planned to go to the Old Seven Mile Bridge to commit suicide. At about the same time as she called the Sheriffís Office to report finding the note, someone called from the bridge to report finding a pair of shoes and a loaded revolver on the bridge.

Last Friday morning at 8 a.m. the Sheriffís Office received a call from someone on the bridge whoíd spotted a body floating near Pigeon Key between the old and new Seven Mile Bridges. The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission responded and recovered the body and brought it to the U.S. Coast Guard station in Marathon.

Sheriffís detectives from the Major Crimes Unit responded to meet with a representative from the Medical Examinerís Office at the Coast Guard Station. They were able to confirm that the body was, indeed, Pierceís body.

Initial examination of the body indicates injuries which would be consistent with a self inflicted gunshot wound. An autopsy will be done to confirm the cause of his death.

Jul 04
Deputies bust rolling meth lab

Two men were arrested early Saturday, charged with possession and manufacturing of methamphetamine. They were operating what detectives described as a ìrolling meth labî in a van.

Detectives in the Sheriffís Special Investigations Unit received information the men might be making and selling methamphetamine in the Stock Island area in an old van. They passed the information on to road patrol deputies asking them to be on the lookout for the illegal operation.

Deputy Sean Moran and Reserve Deputy Jon Doughtry were in the area of the Tom Thumb convenience store on Stock Island at 1:20 a.m. They spotted an old van with its back doors open, two men were standing behind the van. As they pulled up in their patrol car, one of the men threw something into a nearby dumpster. It turned out to be a pill bottle with someone elseís name on it; it had 64 pills inside that were later identified as Risperidone.

Sgt. Evan Calhoun responded and asked permission to search the van. The vanís registered owner, 47 year old John Day, gave his permission to search. Inside the van the officers found marijuana and numerous items, including various chemicals and bottles of liquid, which are commonly used to manufacture methamphetamine. Detectives from the Special Investigations Unit responded and confirmed it appeared the men had been operating a ìrolling meth labî.

The Drug Enforcement Administration was notified and responded to assist with handling the dangerous chemicals and other substances in the van. Day and 24 year old Scott Gunter were both arrested. They were both charged with production and manufacture of methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell and possession of drug paraphernalia. Gunter was also charged with possession of marijuana. Both were booked into jail.

Jul 04
Two arrested for marijuana

Two Marathon men were arrested Sunday after a traffic stop revealed a felony amount of marijuana in their car and a large amount of drug paraphernalia.

Deputy Brad Colen was on patrol at 2:30 p.m. when he saw a green Cadillac on Aviation Boulevard fail to stop for two stop signs. He pulled the car over. The driver, 19 year old Dakoda Daniels, couldnít find his registration and insurance card and was acting nervously during the traffic stop. Deputy Mike Sielicki arrived at the scene as a backup officer.

During the course of the traffic stop the passenger, 18 year old Patrick Ryan, admitted to having marijuana in the car. A search turned up marijuana in a back pack on the passenger floorboard. More was found in the glove box, on the driverís side floorboard and in the rear passenger seat area. Drug paraphernalia was found throughout the vehicle as well, including a digital scale, a glass bowl with marijuana residue, a grinder and other items. $585 in cash and the vehicle were seized for possible forfeiture. Both men were arrested. They were charged with possession of marijuana with intent to sell, possession of a felony amount of marijuana and ten counts of possession of drug paraphernalia.

Jun 27
Arrests for burglary, weapon charges, drugs

A Marathon man was arrested Monday morning, charged with burglary and making threats with brass knuckles which also act as an electric weapon similar in function to a Taser. A second man was arrested on drug charges.

The victim told Deputy Brad Colen he was in his workshop in the area of Sylvia Avenue in Marathon at 7:30 a.m. when 39 year old Enrique Valdes walked in. The victim told Valdes to leave the shop. Valdes refused, using profane language. Valdes told the victim he would kill him, then pulled out a black colored device with a red light on it. The victim said he heard a zapping noise and recognized that Valdes had some sort of electric weapon.

Valdes left the shop and the victim called the Sheriff’s Office for help. When Deputy Colen arrived, he found several men, including the victim and suspect, still on the scene. Valdes was taken into custody. The weapon he used to threaten the victim was found hidden under a vehicle nearby. Valdes was charged with burglary with assault on the occupant, tampering with evidence and possession of a weapon by a convicted felon.

While investigating the weapon offense, deputies found several different types of drugs and drug paraphernalia. The items were in a bedroom located inside a nearby business. The bedroom belonged to 62 year old John Faella, who was on the scene with Valdes.

Faella had cocaine, marijuana and hash in his bedroom, along with numerous items of drug paraphernalia. He was arrested on numerous drug related charges and booked into jail along with Valdes.

Jun 20
Traffic stop ends in stolen boat recovery

A sharp eyed deputy stopped a truck towing a boat on a trailer in the early morning hours Saturday after he noticed the trailer had no functioning tail lights. He wound up recovering a stolen boat and trailer and arresting the driver.

The truck was northbound from the 97 mile marker in Key Largo at 3:45 a.m. when Deputy Vaughn O’Keefe stopped it for no tail lights. As he stopped it, he further noticed the license tag had duct tape on it obscuring the numbers and that the trailer appeared to have been attached to the truck in a hurry because the tow chains and wiring harness were not connected.

He found the driver of the Chevrolet truck, 38 year old Giovanny Lluis of Miami, had a suspended driver’s license so he arrested Lluis. Further investigation by Detective Sgt. Mark Coleman later in the day led to the identification of the boat’s owner, who lives in Miami. The owner said he keeps his boat in Key Largo and no one had permission to take it. He said the 2003 26 foot Hydra Sport with twin 200 HP engines on it is valued at $30,000.

Lluis was charged with grand theft and driving with license suspended. He was booked into jail.

Jun 20
Two caught stealing bales of cardboard

Two men from Miami-Dade County were caught in the act of stealing bales of cardboard from a Marathon business in the early morning hours Sunday.

Sgt. Joel Slough was on patrol at 3 a.m. Sunday when he saw a box truck backed into the rear alley behind K-Mart in Marathon. As he pulled up to check on it, he saw two men disappear from sight, hiding behind large bales of cardboard stacked in the alley.

The two men were detained. An investigation revealed some stacks of boxes had already been loaded into the box truck.

The manager of K-Mart responded to the scene. He said the men did not have permission to take the cardboard. He said they contract with a company to take the bales to a recycling center and usually get about $250 – 300 for each bale.

39 year old Mario Ortiz and 34 year old Elieser Hernandez were both arrested. They were charged with grand theft. The truck was seized for possible forfeiture.

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