Tag Archives: Florida

Opposing Candidate’s Lawsuit: Pinellas County Sheriff Robert Gualtieri Hiding Incriminating Public Records

The following post was shared with the CopBlock Network by James McLynas, a candidate for sheriff in Pinellas County, Florida. In the post, which was shared via the CopBlock.org Submissions Page, McLynas discusses a lawsuit he has filed which accuses current Sheriff Robert Gualtieri, whom he is running against in the upcoming election, of hiding incriminating information contained within public records in violation of the Florida Open Records Laws.

The post was originally published at James McLynas’ personal campaign website under the title, “Pinellas County Sheriff Robert Gualtieri Sued for Hiding Incriminating Records From Opposing Candidate.

10-20-2016 – Pinellas County Florida:

On October 20, 2016, Pinellas County Sheriff Candidate James McLynas filed a lawsuit against current Sheriff Robert Gualtieri and the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) for intentionally refusing to provide public records to McLynas in violation of Florida Open Records Laws and the Florida Constitution.

The suit enumerates several allegations and was filed by prominent attorney Jerry Theophilopoulo (also known as Jerry “T”). Those factual allegations include:

  • That the PCSO and Sheriff Gualtieri targeted McLynas for retribution after McLynas filed multiple legitimate complaints against PCSO deputies.
  • That Sheriff Gualtieri and the PCSO also had McLynas falsely arrested on multiple bogus charges to silence McLynas shortly after McLynas threatened to run for Sheriff in 2013 to expose Gualtieri’s corruption.
  • That in order to hide the specific records that evidenced Gualtieri’s personal involvement in the false arrest of McLynas, Sheriff Gualtieri and the PCSO implemented new and unique public records policies ONLY for McLynas to prevent him from obtaining those records he requested that incriminate Gualtieri.
  • That the PCSO literally posted a “WANTED” type poster with McLynas’ confidential driver’s license records (a crime) barring McLynas (and only McLynas) from being able to access the PCSO record’s department in clear violation of Florida Statute Title X, Chapter 119 and the Florida Constitution.
  • That PCSO and their lawyers lied to McLynas in writing that “no records existed” when McLynas asked for specific records regarding PCSO’s illegal Stingray cellphone surveillance used on McLynas, when the records did in fact exist and were created by PCSO during the illegal Stingray surveillance.
  • That Sheriff Gualtieri and the PCSO would try and charge McLynas a “transparency tax” by lumping multiple separate records requests together and then intentionally overcharging McLynas sometimes thousands of dollars and not allowing McLynas to see ANY of the records he individually requested unless he paid for ALL of them.
  • That PCSO also made up huge bills for fees for multiple records requests without providing McLynas with the “one free hour” of records processing time per request that everyone else is provided.
  • That under the direction of Gualtieri, many of McLynas’ records requests were literally ignored and not properly responded to as is required under Title X, Chapter 119 records laws. These records have still not been provided sometimes years later.

The suit also alleges that Gualtieri and the PCSO refused to provide these records to prevent McLynas from using the damaging documents in the upcoming Sheriff’s election where McLynas and Gaultieri are the only two candidates.

Included with the lawsuit are over 50 pages of exhibits and documents proving the allegations, including numerous emails from the Sheriff’s department literally saying and doing the things they are accused of right in the emails and exhibits.

Under Title X, Chapter 119, Sheriff Gualtieri can also be charged with criminal penalties, suspended and removed or impeached if it is determined that he knowingly violated these laws while withholding the public records from Candidate McLynas. There is also a $500 per occurrence fine, which would add up to well over $100,000 in this case.

However, there are larger issues here that should concern ALL citizens of Pinellas County and even the State of Florida:

  • Did a Sheriff retaliate against an innocent man as retaliation for reporting deputy misconduct?
  • Did Sheriff Gualtieri then have McLynas falsely arrested after McLynas pushed back threatening to run for Sheriff to expose Gualtieri?
  • Is this an example of an incumbent Sheriff having his opposing candidate falsely arrested to destroy the political opposition?

It seems pretty clear that Sheriff Gualtieri went through some extraordinary lengths to prevent McLynas from seeing these records that McLynas says will prove Gualtieri’s personal involvement in the vendetta and political sabotage of McLynas.

Why would Sheriff Gualtieri take such a personal interest in a mere records request, or enact so many new policies directed specifically at McLynas if the records showed nothing at all? The answer to that is; he wouldn’t have. Gualtieri would not have tried so hard to conceal those records and violate Florida law to hide them if they were harmless. Those records still have not been produced by Gualtieri.

Even if only half of what McLynas and his lawyer have alleged in the lawsuit is true, Gualtieri does not need to remain Sheriff of Pinellas County and instead should be sitting in the same jail cell he tried to put McLynas in for running against him.

COPY OF LAWSUIT: https://www.scribd.com/document/328327343/Pinellas-County-Sheriff-Robert-Gualtieri-Sued-for-Hiding-Incriminating-Records-From-Opposing-Candidate

COPY OF EXHIBITS A-L: https://www.scribd.com/document/328333331/Pcso-Exhibits-a-l

COPY OF EXHIBITS M-W: https://www.scribd.com/document/328333484/Pcso-Exhibits-M-W

– James McLynas

 

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Florida Policeman Pleads Guilty To Firing Gun at Another Cop; Tampering With Evidence in Road Rage Incident

Miami-Dade Police Officer Jonathan Lang has agreed to plead guilty to shooting at another car during a road rage incident in July 2014. The other car, which Lang had cut off prior to firing a gunshot into the back of their car, was driven by Miami-Dade Corrections Officer Georgina Illa.

Via NBC 6 Miami:

Lang’s story started when corrections officer Georgina Illa said a driver in a white car cut her off on the Turnpike near Southwest 153rd Street. Illa said as she went to pass the car, someone threw out a cup of some liquid and then pulled out a gun and shot.

The bullet went through Illa’s taillight, through her trunk, and then lodged in the rear seat of the car. Illa said she flagged down an officer driving nearby, who then pulled the suspect’s car over. Illa said she also stopped and that’s when one of the officers on the scene told her a Miami-Dade Police Officer fired his gun.

After the accident and before his van was searched, Lang showed up to the impound yard, opened the door to his van, and took the gun. The gun was never found, although he was caught on surveillance camera taking it. (That video can be viewed below.)

Via NBC 6 Miami:

In the surveillance video, first obtained by NBC 6, a white Mazda SUV that authorities say was being driven by Lang arrives at an tow truck lot in South Miami-Dade just two hours and 35 minutes after Lang signed a document giving the investigating FHP sergeant the legal consent to search the vehicle.

And just 11 minutes later, a man wearing a baseball cap shows up and the lights flash on the car. FHP officials said it indicates he had the remote, and he quickly opens the passenger door, grabs something and exits.

The FHP trooper wrote in his request for a search warrant: “The unidentified subject removed an unknown item…and ran east bound through the…parking lot. There is reasonable evidence the vehicle was accessed by persons known to Mr. Lang.”

The FHP officer believes the property taken from the vehicle was the firearm and it was returned to Lang in order to conceal the evidence, the request reads.

When the investigating trooper did get the warrant to return to the car his records show he found ammunition but no weapon.

While the photos show pictures of weapons from Lang’s cellphone obtained in a search warrant for his house, once inside troopers receipts show there were weapons but not the elusive one, the one FHP believes was taken from the SUV at his moment we can now see.

The obvious question, of course, is why he was not in jail that soon after the incident and therefore able to go down and remove evidence from the vehicle. Just as obviously, that’s really only a rhetorical question, since he’s a cop and the normal rules involving violent criminals don’t actually apply.

On Tuesday (October 25th), Officer Lang accepted a plea deal in which he pled guilty to discharging a firearm from a moving vehicle, assault and tampering with evidence. The exact terms of the deal were not announced, but it is expected to result in a very firm slap on the wrist. (Of course, that’s not a sure thing because he shot at another cop, but the odds are still good.)

Local Media Coverage:

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Florida Cop Allowed to Remain on Force After 2009 DUI Found Passed Out In Car In Middle of Street

Officer Anthony Mathew Green of the St. Petersburg Police Dept. was allowed to retain his job in exchange for promising to abstain from drinking for five years after being convicted of DUI in 2009. In that incident Officer Green not only ran into multiple cars but also fled the scene.

He apparently managed to keep clean for those five years or at the very least to avoid getting caught, but two years after that commitment expired he was right back in the alcohol-soaked saddle again. This time he was found passed out and literally asleep at the wheel in his car on a local street.

Via the St. Petersburgh Times:

St. Petersburg police Officer Anthony Mathew Green, 36, was found asleep behind the wheel of his personal car, stopped in the middle of the southbound lane of Gulf Boulevard at Madeira Way in Madeira Beach, just before 11 p.m. Monday.

Green was immediately suspended without pay, Police Chief Anthony Holloway said at a news conference Tuesday.

Green will go through an internal investigation and the court system before the chief makes a decision about his job. If he’s convicted, Holloway said, “I can tell you he’s not going to be here.”

“He was out there drinking again, and we’re not going to tolerate it again,” the chief said.

In an arrest report, Pinellas County sheriff’s deputies wrote that Green’s eyes were glossy and balance unsteady, and he refused to take a sobriety test or blow to have his blood alcohol-level tested.

People arrested on DUI charges who refuse to blow are automatically suspended from driving for a year, Holloway said.

Green was booked by 3:30 a.m. Tuesday and held on $500 bail.

He was off Monday, but normally patrols the southern parts of St. Petersburg during the day.

According to investigators: In Green’s first DUI charge from December 2009, he was trying to pass a vehicle near the 3500 block of Fourth Street. Instead, he drove over a raised concrete median and struck a sedan. He kept driving north on Fourth and hit another vehicle at 38th Avenue N. Again, he didn’t stop.

No one was injured in either crash, but Green was tested to have 0.179 and 0.173 blood-alcohol levels, more than twice the legal limit allowed for Florida drivers.

After he was convicted on one count of driving under the influence and one count of leaving the scene of the accident, Green agreed to abstain from alcohol for five years. He was randomly tested for drug or alcohol use, according to his personnel file. He was also suspended from work for six weeks and had a restricted driver’s license for six months that limited him to only drive during work, allowing him to continue his duties as a patrol officer.

He also agreed to “no violations of alcohol or criminal activity,” according to his personnel file.

During Green’s court proceedings, he was on administrative leave, but a new policy Holloway created this week makes it so any officer who is arrested cannot get paid while the case moves through due process.

“He’s not going to sit at home and collect his salary,” Holloway said.

The officer can get back pay if found not guilty and to have not broken police policy.

It’s interesting that Officer Green was given just a $500 bail for a second DUI, especially under the circumstances. I highly doubt anyone else working in a job in which driving is an integral part would have gotten that low of a bail or that “second chance” in the first place. That’s especially true when their job also involves arresting other people for driving drunk. Not to mention that for six months he was driving around without a driver’s license and pulling over people for traffic infractions, no doubt including DUI’s.

However, I will say that their policy of suspending officers without pay rather than giving them the typical paid vacation when they face criminal charges is a small step in the right direction down there in St. Petersburg.

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Despite Arrests the “Threat” from Creepy, Scary Clowns has Spread and Multiplied Across the United States

I’ve previously reported on the harrowing and expanding threat that clowns have begun to represent to this country and citizens throughout it. Fortunately, my warnings did not go unheeded and not long ago South Carolina Police Chief Ken Miller promised to get tough on clowns. In order to do so, he indicated he would begin enforcing a law that was already on the books against wearing masks in public. (technically clown makeup isn’t a mask, but you can’t engage in semantics at a time like this.)

Initially, this policy that effectively outlawed clowns seemed to have made some important headway. As fellow CopBlock Network contributor Joshua Hotchkin reported a couple weeks ago, four arrests were made across two states soon after. For a brief moment, the country was able to breathe a sigh of relief, believing that the Great Clown Invasion of 2016 had been thwarted. Predictably, that didn’t last long, though.

That was far from the end of it, as we all know now. Since those initial arrests there have been at least eight more of these painted tormentors have been hauled in on various charges across numerous states. More troubling, the sightings of menacing clowns have not stopped, but in fact have multiplied and spread to at least ten states nationwide.

Another very troubling detail to have emerged within the latest sightings is that the majority of these clowns are reported be driving vans. You might ask yourself what is so dangerous about that and, on the surface, it’s a reasonable question. However, anybody who has been to the circus knows that clowns can use their magical powers to fit at least a dozen of their cohorts into a really tiny car. Just imagine how many clowns are hiding out in something as big as a van. There might be hundreds in there just waiting to spring out and lay waste to your neighborhood. Hell, three or four of them vans would be all they need to overrun a small town.

Check out this report from the New York Times:

The reports to the police had one thing in common with the circus act involving an improbable number of clowns emerging from a small car.

They just kept coming, and coming, and coming, across multiple states. Clowns in vans. Clowns in the woods.

Clowns lurking in the shadows. Clowns chasing people or doing crimes.

Just let that sink in for a minute. What hope is there to stop such a relentless, determined group of pseudo humans bent on destroying society as we know it?

Obviously, the other side of this threat is the speed at which these clowns are able to reproduce. Anybody who has ever worked around Carnies or attended a Ren Faire, the two groups most likely to have been recruited by the Clown Army, has surely glimpsed some aspect of this phenomenon. Both of those sub-genres are known for engaging in 24 hour orgies that only stop (sometimes) when it’s time to perform their drunken acts on some sort of makeshift stage.

Suspected Clown Arrested

Suspected Clown Arrested

There are perilous times ahead for sure. An entire school in Reading, Ohio had to be locked down after a woman reported a clown related attack. One day prior in a nearby town, a young clown was arrested for making threats to school children. Fortunately, the Heroes in Blue protecting Colerain Township were able to nip that one in the bud before it reached full maturity.

Since they originally emerged from their lair in South Carolina, other clown sightings have been reported in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and even on the West Coast in California. Luckily, in Maryland a known and longstanding gang of clowns, who were brazen enough to flaunt themselves at public events, has been forced by the publicity to withdraw from such activities. We can score one for the good guys out there.

That’s obviously just a minor dent in their numbers, though. Earlier this week, several of the Clowns even released a Facebook Live video mocking their pursuers:

Sadly, before I conclude this latest update I even have to report that this scourge upon ‘Merica has very much hit home for me. Last night, KTNV News, the local ABC affiliate for Southern Nevada, reported that a clown had been trying to “friend” students from Chaparral, a Las Vegas high school.

This is dangerous on several levels. First, it’s near me and so that makes it important. Possibly even more troubling though, this means they are learning to use social media. Once these clowns start organizing on the internets, they’ll pretty much become unstoppable. We should all accept that this is probably just a matter of time, at this point.

Fortunately, ABC 7 in Denver is reporting that the FBI and Homeland Security have finally become involved. (The article also includes a handy timeline of the Clown Invasion.) Hopefully, this not a case of too little, too late already. Obviously, this is the (no-clown) human race’s best chance of surviving. “Help us Homeland Security, you’re our only hope!”

Send thoughts and prayers.

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Update: White House Secret Service Agent Caught in Online Pedophile Sting Sent to Florida for Trial

Last year, CopBlock Network contributor

Now he’s been moved to Florida to face the first in a series of trials in a related, but separate case. Although details are being kept “on the downlow,” he is accused of trying to lure an underage girl in West Palm Beach into having sex with him.

Via the Sun-Sentinel.com:

Moore was indicted on three federal charges of attempted production of child pornography, attempted receipt of child pornography and using a computer to persuade, entice or coerce a minor to engage in sexual activity between January and May 2014.

Moore, who worked as a uniformed Secret Service officer based at the White House, has been locked up since he was arrested in November on a related federal charge in Delaware.

Moore “sought to use mobile technology to sexually exploit multiple minor, teenage girls from one of the most secure places on the planet. He did so while in the presence of other highly trained law enforcement officers and just yards from the President of the United States, his family, and senior administration officials he was then protecting. … The brazen and self-absorbed nature of his conduct is simply breathtaking,” federal prosecutors wrote.

Moore was recently moved to the Palm Beach County Jail after the Federal Public Defender’s Office, which represents him, announced that he wanted to face the most serious allegations against him first in Florida.

“The charges brought against Mr. Moore in the Southern District of Florida are much more serious than the charge pending against Mr. Moore in the District of Delaware. Mr. Moore would like to resolve his case in the Southern District of Florida prior to resolving the case pending against him in the District of Delaware,” his lawyers wrote.

Moore, who now has a beard, was dressed in dark blue jail scrubs and was handcuffed and shackled during his brief court appearance Tuesday. He spoke only briefly with U.S. Magistrate Judge Dave Brannon and is expected to remain locked up while both federal cases are pending. No trial dates have been scheduled yet.

Investigators said Moore, who is married with children and lived in Maryland before his arrest, was communicating with at least two undercover officers and at least two minors, according to court records in the Delaware case. When he was questioned, investigators said Moore estimated he was talking to about 10 individuals he believed were underage girls.

Federal prosecutors in Delaware said Moore, whose duties included guarding the White House, frequently engaged in online sex chats while he was supposed to be working.

Investigators said that, in one chat, Moore asked an undercover officer he thought was a 14-year-old girl to send him something “exciting” because “work sucks today.” He was checking IDs for people entering the White House complex that day, according to court records.

In another online conversation, he sent a photograph of his penis to one of the undercover officers who was posing as a teenage girl, according to court records. In another, he sent a non-explicit video of himself in uniform from the White House, authorities said.

Moore also destroyed digital evidence of his misconduct after he found out he was under investigation and was about to be arrested, according to federal prosecutors and agents from Homeland Security Investigations.

He learned of the investigation when officials from the Secret Service went to his home and told him he was being suspended, in violation of how prosecutors and investigators had asked the Secret Service to handle the matter, according to court documents.

Those last two paragraphs are rather interesting. Instead of doing what the prosecutors asked them to, the Good Agents at the Secret Service went to Moore’s house and effectively tipped him off that he was being investigated and would be arrested soon. Moore made good use of that information by attempting to destroy the evidence of his creepy behavior.

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Update: South Carolina Police Chief Declares Clowns Illegal, Vows to Arrest Any Sighted; Threat Spreads to North Carolina, Ohio

Last week, I reported on the dangerous, laser wielding clowns that have pretty much done nothing but (reportedly) stand around wooded areas flashing wads of cash in South Carolina. Since then, there have been several developments and the clowns seem to be both multiplying in number and spreading to other areas. Among those developments are one in which a clown may have actually threatened a child and one in which a (possibly innocent) clown was threatened with a machete.

In South Carolina, Greenville Police Chief Ken Miller held a press conference declaring that they are taking this “very seriously” and that anyone spotted dressed as a clown would be arrested based on a law which makes it illegal to wear masks. This clown prohibition was justified by additional recent scary clown sightings that have occurred since the original reports. Since such mask bans are rarely enforced, Chief Miller’s clown ban does bring up some legal questions of selective enforcement and profiling by law enforcement.

Via TheState.com:

“It’s illegal. It’s dangerous. It’s inappropriate, and it’s creating community concern so it needs to stop,” MIller said.

Police have responded to four clown-related calls since Monday, two of which occurred at Shemwood Crossing Apartments. Another was reported on Deoyley Avenue in the Pleasant Valley community Tuesday afternoon.

In the most recent sighting Wednesday night, officers responded to Park Haywood Apartments on Congaree Road after a woman reported seeing a middle-aged white man in clown-like facial makeup and red hair standing outside the laundromat. The woman told police the clown stared at her as she walked out but didn’t speak to or follow her.

The Sheriff’s Office has received two documented reports of clowns appearing in Greenville County on Aug. 19 and Aug. 29, said Master Deputy Ryan Flood.

In addition, Police Chief Lance Crowe of the Travelers Rest Police Department reported that they had two more reported clown sightings at an apartment complex. One sighting was claimed to have happened at a building number which turned out to not actually exist once officers investigated. The other creepy clown was supposedly seen in an area outside the same apartment complex. However, when officers responded several people standing outside at that location claimed to not have seen any clowns that day.

Greenville Police Chief Ken Miller announces that clowns will be arrested on sight

Greenville Police Chief Ken Miller announces that clowns will be arrested on sight.

It’s unclear at this point if police suspect the clowns of having some sort of magical powers that would enable them to make entire buildings disappear, render themselves temporarily invisible, or wipe out the memories of witnesses through some sort of hypnosis. I also haven’t been able to get local police to comment on whether they suspect some of the people they encountered standing outside may in reality be clowns disguising themselves as regular people in order to throw them off. At this point, it’s unclear if Chief Crowe will be instituting his own clown ban as a result of these sightings.

Chief Miller is not at this time sure if this is a case of the same clowns being sighted multiple times or if they have worked out some sort of schedule in which different clowns rotate in and out. Also according to Miller, the one thing that all of the clown sightings have shared is that none of the clowns have made any attempt to communicate with anyone, outside of some potential signals with their lasers. Instead, they just stand in an area where they can be seen from a distance and “watch the reaction of individuals.”

However, a reported clown sighting in Ohio last week is the first known sighting involving some sort of documented claim of a physical attack by the clowns. A kid on his way to school was allegedly chased by a knife wielding clown and only escaped after throwing a rock at his masked assailant. Although, there’s an obvious connection in timing to the South Carolina incidents, there has also been some speculation that this may be a rogue clown, who plays by his own rules.

Via the New York Daily News:

Either a creepy clown has broken from the pack — or there’s a brand new one.

A 14-year-old Columbus, Ohio boy on his way to school Tuesday morning was chased by a black-clad man wielding a knife and wearing a clown mask, NBC News reported.

The petrified boy was able to get away from the freak by hurling a rock at him and running to a bus stop, police said, noting that officers were canvassing the area Thursday afternoon.

The boy got to school and immediately reported the incident to his teachers but no arrests had been made as of Friday morning.

Denise Alex-Bouzounis, a spokeswoman for the Columbus Police Department stated that they are too are taking this clown menace very seriously. (Once again, there was no immediate announcement of a clown ban similar to Greenville’s, however.)

Meanwhile, in North Carolina a man reportedly turned the tables on the clowns, chasing one back into the woods with a machete after yet another sighting near an apartment complex in Greensboro.

Via the New York Daily News:

A witness told police that a person wearing a scary clown mask, red curly wig, yellow dotted shirt, blue clown pants and clown shoes exited the woods by an apartment complex around 10 a.m. Tuesday.

Another witness chased down the clown with a machete, but was unable to catch up to it before it disappeared into the woods.

Officers searched the area but couldn’t find anyone matching the clown’s description, Greensboro Police told the Daily News, and suspect this might be a copycat effort after similar reports over the past week.

A clown was seen in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, on Monday trying to lure children into the forest with treats.

Most of the clowns seem to follow a somewhat familiar pattern of living in the woods and appearing in or around apartment complexes. The woods would seemingly be a logical place for them to hide out and the apartment complexes offer access to lots of people. In addition, these clowns do seem to be rather more agile than typical clowns since several reports have included descriptions of them outrunning witnesses that have attempted to pursue them, which is difficult to do in oversized, floppy shoes.

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South Carolina Police Issue Warnings to Public of Scary Clowns With Lazers and “Lots of Cash”

Police in Greenville, South Carolina are cautioning residents to be on the alert after multiple sightings of clowns described as “mysterious” and “scary.” In addition, unconfirmed reports have claimed these clowns have been known to carry lazers and large amounts of cash, prompting police to speculate that they may be trying to lure children into the woods for some unknown ritual.

The suspects have been described as having luminous noses and overly large shoes, which may or may not contain equally oversized feet. They have displayed a propensity to make strange noises (often very quietly) and seem to congregate near street lights. Reports have also indicated that they have an affinity for gathering near basketball courts, although no confirmed sightings have pointed toward any desire on their part to actually play sports.

So far, at least one potential hideout has been uncovered, although it was not occupied by clowns when police conducted a search of the location. Their exact agenda and motivation is currently unknown, but police are not taking this potential threat lightly.

Via the Telegraph.co.uk:

Ryan Flood, a master deputy with the Greenville County sheriff’s office told the Telegraph that they were taking the reports very seriously.

“These kids have notified their parents they saw these clowns near the woods. The clowns had lasers and a lot of cash,” he said. “Our view is to take it seriously in case there is someone dressed as a clown trying to lure them away.”

Mr Flood said that their investigations and patrols had found no evidence to support the claims yet: “We haven’t found any clown costume stuff or irregular footprints or other indicators,” he said.

But police have begun daily patrols near Fleetwood Manor Apartments, where a number of parents said their children had come home with stories of speaking to clowns.

There have been “a lot of complaints to the office regarding a clown or a person dressed in clown clothing taking children or trying to lure children in the woods,” the administrators of  Fleetwood Manor Apartments wrote to residents in a note slipped under their doors.

Donna Arnold, one of the residents, said she called the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office because her son told her he had seen a clown behind the basketball court.

“I thought my child was seeing things,” Mrs Arnold told a local news channel. “And then the next day I had about 30 kids come up to me and say, ‘Did you see the clown in the woods?”

The sightings began earlier this month when a resident, who is not named, told the police that her son had seen clowns  “whispering and making strange noises” in the nearby woods, according to an incident report.

The resident said she later saw “several clowns in the woods flashing green laser lights.” The figures then ran away into the woods. And then, the following night, at about 10.30pm the woman said that her elder son heard “chains and banging” at their front door.

A day later, on 20 August, at around 2.30am another resident said she came across a “a large-figured clown with a blinking nose”, standing under a post light near the garbage dumpster area.” She said the clown waved at her so she waved back and kept walking.

Police however also interviewed children who told them clowns tried “to persuade them into the woods further by displaying large amounts of money.”

The children said they believed that the clowns lived in a house near a pond at the end of a trail in the woods.

The responding Greenville Sheriff’s deputy reported that upon investigating they found the house, but no clowns or any signs of suspicious activity.

Mr Flood said the last clown citing was as recent as Monday night. “We got a call from a juvenile and they stated a subject not dressed in a clown costume was seen taking photographs of children. And then shortly after a subject, who may have been the same person, came out of the woods in a clown costume and went to the same spot,” he said.

Greenville police have introduced a “see clowns, say something” campaign in hopes of getting to the bottom of this potential threat. However, they have expressed concern that the publicity generated by media coverage of the Clownspiracy, as it has been dubbed (by me), may interfere with their investigation by prompting copy cat incidents by unemployed clowns and other bored people within the area.

One example of such an instance is the video of clowns caught on neighborhood surveillance cameras below, which caused a minor scare in Florida back in 2014. However, it was eventually exposed as a publicity stunt to promote a traveling carnival that was scheduled to visit the area.

On the other hand, this is also reminiscent of the threat from Anarchists to scare innocent children during Halloween of 2015. That was, in fact, confirmed to have happened in numerous cities not just in the United States, but throughout the world. In addition, others such as serial killer John Wayne Gacy and the Insane Clown Posse have dressed as clowns in order to lure children away for nefarious reasons. It would be unwise to overlook such a warning again. As they say, better safe than sorry.

If you do spot a suspicious clown, especially if they are armed with laser beams and/or are carrying large amounts of cash, contact the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office at 1-864-467-5300 immediately, if not sooner.

Creepy Clowns Caught on Surveillance Video in Florida

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Sloppy Drunk Florida Cop Drops His Gun While Fighting Security Guard And Holding Baby

A cop from Fort Lauderdale, Florida “somehow” ended up in a drunken brawl with a security guard while holding a baby. In the process of hitting that security guard twice in the face during a drunken tirade and then getting slammed to the ground, Officer David Knapp also managed to have his gun fly out of its holster.

Knapp later testified he didn’t know how or even why he ended in a private parking area after making a trip to the bathroom. He did theorize that his temporary amnesia could have been because he was really tired, because of head injuries he suffered while getting his ass kicked by the security guard, or possibly even because of all that booze he drank beforehand.

Fortunately for Officer Knapp, prosecutors there in Fort Lauderdale have promised not to get to the bottom of it. Ironically enough, due to him having been really drunk his only “punishment” for drinking (a lot) while carrying a firearm, endangering his child, trespassing, and assaulting someone will be a twenty day suspension. (Try that without a Shiny Badge and see how it works out for you.)

Via the Sun-Sentinel:

According to an internal police investigation, Knapp was stumbling around the parking garage after a day at the beach with his wife and child. The couple shared a bottle of champagne at Coconuts Restaurant in the afternoon, shopped at Beach Place and then stopped off at the Ritz-Carlton bar, where Knapp had three Johnnie Walker Black Label drinks.

Knapp took his child with him to the bathroom and wound up in a restricted portion of the hotel’s parking garage. A valet spotted him about 9 p.m. and notified security.

Knapp refused to answer loss prevention officer Fernando Ramirez’s questions, flipped him the bird and then struck him twice in the face — all while holding his child — when Ramirez continued to request identification from Knapp, investigators said.

“When Officer Knapp struck Mr. Ramirez a second time, Mr. Ramirez grabbed the child from Officer Knapp’s arms, to prevent the child from falling, and took Officer Knapp to the ground,” Major Karen Dietrich said in the Internal Affairs report.

“During the physical altercation, Officer Knapp’s off-duty weapon flew out of his holster and landed on the ground,” Dietrich said.

It wasn’t until Knapp had been subdued and Ramirez checked for identification that he discovered Knapp was a police officer. While Ramirez held Knapp down, other hotel employees who arrived took care of the child, whose age and gender were not released.

Knapp’s wife was unaware of what had happened, unable to reach him by phone and wondering why he hadn’t returned from the bathroom when hotel personnel brought the child to her.

Knapp, who suffered head injuries during the altercation, told investigators he had no recollection of the incident. When asked why, Knapp said, “It could be anything from being tired to being, uh — having had alcohol to having unfortunate injuries due to the event.”

Ramirez declined to press battery charges against Knapp and prosecutors decided not to press the case because they said the evidence showed Knapp was too drunk for them to prove he intentionally struck Ramirez.

Knapp, a patrol officer, was hired in October 2007 and earns $81,474 annually. He told investigators he was embarrassed by the situation and “I’ve never been like that before.”

They did however make him pinky swear to at least put his baby down next time before he starts slapping innocent people reacting to his drunken behavior around.

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Multiple Collier County (FL) Sheriff’s Deputies Beat And Tazer Man During Arrest

The following post was shared with Nevada Cop Block by Andrew Sheets of Charlotte County, Fl. CopWatch, via the NVCopBlock.org Submissions Page. The post consists of a video of a man named Robert Harris being arrested, along with a very short description of where the video came from.

The first video is comprised of what appears to be two separate dashcam videos. Harris is initially not in view of the camera and the first portion contains only audio of the interaction between the officers and him.

The second portion of the video is dashcam footage from a different police vehicle, which shows multiple officers beating and tazing Harris. Additionally, at one point a K-9 officer arrives and begins telling the other officers to get off of his legs with the apparent intention of having the dog bite Harris.

The second and third videos embedded below consist of those same two videos split into individual videos.

Based on the conversation within the first video, it appears Harris was stopped on suspicion of trespassing because he had come out of a storage area after dark. The officer speaking to him at that time states that there have been robberies there.

Meanwhile, Harris maintains that he had been working for someone within the storage area.

Date of Incident: April 1, 2016
Department Involved: Collier County (FL) Sheriff’s Office
Facebook Page: Collier County Sheriff
Twitter Profile: @CollierSheriff
YouTube Channel: Collier County Sheriff
Department Phone No.: (239) 252-9250
Department Address: 1195 County Rd 858, Naples, FL 34120

“They beat this guy just because he stood up for his rights. I received this video from the victim himself, who is in the process of suing the Collier County Sheriff’s Office. His name is Robert Harris and his personal YouTube channel is located here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX3gl_9OMZMDZmaqIS3nSyA

– Andrew Sheets

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Two Victims of Police Harassment & Abuse Run For Sheriff in Florida To Expose Corruption

The following post was shared with the CopBlock Network by James McLynas, via the CopBlock.org Submissions Page. The post discusses the candidacy for sheriff in Pinellas County that McLynas and Greg Pound and the reasons why they decided to run for that office. As you can see within the post, McLynas maintains that both he and Pound have been victims of police abuse by current Pinellas County Sheriff Robert Gualtieri and/or his deputies.

Note: other than editing for spelling/punctuation errors and minor formatting changes to accommodate this site, this post is being published as it was received.

James McLynas has a web page on Facebook outlining some of what he has been through and other issues with the Pinellas County Sheriff.

June 24, 2016
Pinellas County Sheriff Robert Gualtieri – [email protected]

In Pinellas County Florida near Tampa, there is an interesting election race brewing for sheriff. Current Pinellas County Sheriff Robert Gualtieri is being challenged by two fathers named James McLynas and Greg Pound. You may already know Sheriff Gualtieri from recent national news coverage where he claimed his deputies tried to save three black teen girls after his deputies chased them into a pond. However, video and audio showed the deputies standing around casually discussing listening to the girls scream and drown and doing nothing.

Neither McLynas nor Pound have a law enforcement background, aspired to enter politics, or just decided one day they wanted to be sheriff. Both men claim that Sheriff Gualtieri and the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office are corrupt and have abused their power and authority to falsely attack, harass and arrest both men for filing complaints about dirty cops and demanding that the Sheriff take action to discipline the rogue deputies.

Both men are also claiming that the Pinellas County Child Protective Investigation Unit, which is also a branch of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, had filed multiple false CPI reports against them, fabricated evidence and kidnapped their children from them using these lies and false reports as punishment for speaking out about the Sheriff’s corruption, dirty practices and filing complaints against abusive deputies. Two of the senior officers McLynas complained about were terminated after the department initially protected the officers because McLynas refused to back down from the complaints.

In the Pound case, the Pinellas CPI removed Greg Pound’s four children from his home after a relative’s dog bit one of the children. Even though the relative was only there for a short visit and the dog was put down, CPI refused to return the children and continued to attack Mr. Pound. The more he complained, the more they attacked until ultimately they permanently removed his children from him and his wife’s custody and gave his children out to be adopted.

They then moved to ban Pound from ever again having contact with his own children or he would go to jail. Greg Pound was never permitted to see his children again. Mr. Pound was then arrested again by the Pinellas Sheriff’s department for “stalking” because he would stand at the side of the road where his children’s school bus would pass and hold up a large sign that said he loved them.

Mr. Pound is deeply religious and a devout Christian and the Pinellas County Sheriff’s characterized this as a mental defect.

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After his four kids were taken from him permanently, Pound and his wife had another child, but the Pinellas Sheriff came to take that child away too, even though there was never any allegation of abuse. Mrs. Pound fled with the child and the Sheriff arrested Greg Pound for refusing to tell where they fled to even though he repeatedly told them that he did not know where they were. He spent weeks in jail for that. To this day, years later, even though Greg Pound still loves his wife and child, he has not had contact with them to prevent them from being arrested and having the child taken from the mother.

Mr. Pound ran for Sheriff in 2012 in protest, and during that election process they arrested Mr. Pound for “trespassing” at an election event he was invited to attend after refusing to allow him into the venue. Whenever Mr. Pound was permitted to speak, he would detail the corruption of the Sheriff, and the Sheriff was not going to allow him to do that. In another incident, the Sheriff “Baker Acted” Mr. Pound, which is a process where they take you to a psych ward and hold you for three days for being a danger to himself or others. It appears the only one he was a danger to was Sheriff Robert Gualtieri and his career. Mr. Pound regularly protests in front of the Pinellas County courthouse in a little area that they passed a law just to keep him in.

In Mr. McLynas’ case, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s started attacking and falsely arresting Mr. McLynas and trying to take his child from him because his ex-wife started dating multiple officers from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s office to enlist their support in the custody case. Laura McLynas had James McLynas falsely arrested for Domestic Violence claiming he had scratched and pushed her. After four months of being kicked out of his own home, not being able to see his children and being prosecuted for the domestic assault, Laura McLynas admitted that she had made the whole thing up, admitted she hit Mr. McLynas multiple times and lied to have him arrested to gain the upper hand in the custody case. Sheriff Gualtieri refused to prosecute her for the domestic violence or the false report.

You would think it might have stopped there, but not when Pinellas County deputies were being offered sex for police favors. All in all there were over 150 false police reports, 22 false child protective investigations and four false arrests of Mr. McLynas over the next four years. His ex-wife used Domestic Violence Injunctions to block his rights to see his daughter and to take over his new home, where he lived alone having moved away after the first false arrest. She would then use his forced absence from his home to burglarize and vandalize the home making it unlivable. She also stole multiple cars and a boat, and smashed a vintage 1960 Alfa Romeo sports car with a sledgehammer and stole all of his tools he used to earn a living. The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office refused to investigate or prosecute these crimes, despite multiple witnesses to the crimes, including the police who helped her.

Pinellas Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Martin, one of the deputies “dating” Laura McLynas, filed false charges against McLynas, stalked him and threatened him. Text messages from Martin proved that he had contacted the judge in the McLynas custody case to get the judge to also attack McLynas. In those documented text messages, Pinellas County Deputy Paul Martin texted Mrs. McLynas and stated:

Deputy Paul Martin 5-2-2012 -“Wish I could fix things for you”

Deputy Paul Martin 5-16-2012 – “Time for him to get fucked with for a change. Delete this text. I made some calls. Nothing will go anywhere. He can make all the complaints he wants. File all the motions he wants. From this point forward he will be ignored and nothing will go anywhere. Fuck him.”

Again Sheriff Gualtieri refused to take action.

The Pinellas County CPI repeatedly filed false reports and refused to make any harmful allegations against the wife for her abusive conduct. Mr. McLynas was falsely accused by CPI of beating his wife and kids and abusing them even during periods of time when he had no contact. When that didn’t work, CPI falsely accused him of sexually abusing his daughter, when even the mother denied that would have ever occurred. Laura McLynas then had the 60lb, 4’ tall 10yo daughter of the couple arrested in handcuffs by the PCSO and taken to jail for supposedly assaulting her. The mother then Baker Acted the child with the help of PCSO. If they couldn’t get the father, James McLynas to break, maybe they could do so my attacking his innocent daughter.

McLynas claims that PCSO tries to get you to lose your temper so they can claim you are a threat and shoot you. What better way to anger someone than to kidnap their children.

banner govJames McLynas was more fortunate than Greg Pound. He kept meticulous records, took videos of every encounter and was able to get the crooked judge thrown off of his case. After the father demanded a guardian ad-litem and a court ordered Psychological Evaluation the court’s investigation proved that none of the 150 false police reports, 22 CPI reports and 7 DVI’s were true and were all lies to assist the wife in gaining an upper hand in the custody case. The court ordered that the Pinellas Sheriff’s CPI turn over a full library of all CPI reports in the McLynas case to be provided to the Guardian Ad-Litem and he court appointed PHD Psychologist to revue. The Pinellas Sheriff’s office then tampered with the reports and redacted anything in the reports that was favorable to the father, and added numerous entries that were favorable to the mother. However, these reports did not match the copies that James McLynas had obtained at the time each one as filed. CPI was busted and the judge refused to allow them to testify. Complaints were filed, but Sheriff Gualtieri took no action.

A final hearing was set for October 31, 2013 and a month before the hearing McLynas informed Sheriff Gualtieri directly that he was going to run for Sheriff to expose his abuse and corruption. But the Sheriff wasn’t done quite yet.

On the day before the custody hearing, Sheriff Gualtieri filed five fraudulent and false felony charges against James McLynas, and then illegally used a Stingray tracking device without a warrant to ensure he would be found and arrested so he could not attend his custody hearing. October 31, 2013 was also the same day they fired Deputy Paul Martin and the arrests were payback. The Sheriff also lied in discovery and document requests that the illegal Stingray use even took place and claimed no such documents existed, but they were later uncovered and obtained.

During the final custody hearing, the court heard evidence from the guardian ad-litem and court appointed psychological evaluator. They testified that ALL of the police reports were false and that the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office lied, falsified reports and CPI tampered with the evidence. The judge agreed and also stated that that the father’s arrest the day before the hearing “was no coincidence”. The court ruled in the McLynas custody case that the mother was deeply psychologically disturbed and was a “homicide threat” to the couple’s daughter. Laura McLynas, the insane “homicide threat to the daughter” was the same parent that the Pinellas County Sheriff tried so hard to help get custody. There was no documentation of the danger Laura McLynas posed in any of the CPI reports.

James McLynas was awarded 100% custody of his daughter while he was incarcerated and the two have been together, happy and safe for the last three years. This was the first time in the history of the Florida courts that a man was awarded 100% custody while in jail. The false criminal charges against James McLynas were also dropped.

However, McLynas decided that he could not stand by and allow the corruption of Sheriff Gualtieri, his deputies and the Child Protective Investigations Unit to continue. True to his promise to Sheriff Gualtieri, James McLynas entered the next election in 2016. James McLynas and Greg Pound are now officially qualified candidates for Sheriff of Pinellas County and both have almost the exact same horrific story of lies, false charges and abuse to tell about the incumbent Sheriff Gualtieri and his department. What are the odds of that happening…unless it was really happening? They say that if you keep kicking dogs, one of them is bound to bite back. Well it seems Sheriff Gualtieri kicked two dogs too many and now he has to face the consequences.

James McLynas

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