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The Billy Pulpit
Miamicentric News of the Day...
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Police: Florida man shot, killed roommate after argument over pork chops

Police: Florida man shot, killed roommate after argument over pork chops | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
HOLLY HILL, Fla. - A man has been charged with second-degree murder after Holly Hill police say he shot and killed his roommate in an argument how to prepare pork chops.

Police said Thomas Mathew Hahn, 55, of May Avenue, shot his 35-year-old roommate after his roommate arrived home at 10 p.m. Tuesday and an argument ensued, according to preliminary investigation reports.

Hahn then went to his room, grabbed a .22 caliber Ruger rifle and shot the victim twice in the head.

Hahn told officers that his roommate had come home drunk and the two began arguing about dinner. He says they've argued in the past, with the arguments often becoming physical...

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Fired Doral Police Chief Says His Dismissal “Based On Lies" (VIDEO)

Fired Doral Police Chief Says His Dismissal “Based On Lies" (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
ORAL (CBSMiami) – Speaking out about his firing the day before, former Doral Police Chief Ricardo Gomez said Wednesday his dismissal was “based on lies”. The “lies” Gomez referred to during the news conference were in a Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) report that made several accusations against the then-police chief. In that report, Gomez said, city officials “perjured themselves”. He went on to say the way he was treated was as if he “was a member of Al-Qaeda heading to Guantanamo.” The FDLE investigation determined that “Gomez may have violated policy, but committed no crimes, and cleared him of any wrongdoing in this investigation,” according to a memo released by the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s public corruption unit. Gomez was fired by Doral’s new city manager, Merrett Stierheim, less than one week after taking office. Stierheim then named Lt. Mike Perez as interim chief... (click pic to watch video)
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Palm Beach Cops Shoot Rifle-Wielding Naked Man On Singer Island

Palm Beach Cops Shoot Rifle-Wielding Naked Man On Singer Island | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
PALM BEACH SHORES, Fla. -- The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office is investigating an early morning officer-involved shooting in the Palm Beach Shores community on Singer Island. Palm Beach Shores Police Department officers said they received a 911 call around 2:45 a.m. from a woman who said there was a naked man with a gun walking around the La Cote apartment complex. When officers arrived, they said the man was holding a scoped rifle and began pointing it at officers. Lt. Steve Langevin of the Palm Beach Shores Police Department said one of the officers then shot the naked man, who is a resident of the La Cote complex... (Click pic to watch video)
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Miami Airport TSA Screening Chief Juan Garcia Fired From Miami Police Dept. for Trying to Buy Sex

Miami Airport TSA Screening Chief Juan Garcia Fired From Miami Police Dept. for Trying to Buy Sex | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
The Transportation Security Administration workers who keep Miami International Airport safe from terrorists, criminals, and Solange Knowles's Afro (no, really, they thoroughly searched her hair last month) earned a dubious distinction in October. According to an analysis by ABC News, the TSA had fired more agents for theft at MIA than at any other airport in the nation.

So who exactly is in charge of the guys screening baggage at MIA? Turns out one of the top administrators is a former Miami cop who left the department in 2000 after he was caught trying to solicit sex from an undercover officer.

Juan Garcia is the assistant federal security director for screening at TSA's Miami headquarters, charged with overseeing the metal-detector-operating, body-patdown-performing agents outside the gates. But until 2000, he was an 18-year veteran of the Miami Police Department who'd worked his way up to major. That all changed the night of June 24, 2000.

Garcia had spent the evening with fellow cops at a farewell party for a departing assistant chief. But just after 10:30 p.m., Garcia slowed his maroon Impala to a stop near NE Third Avenue and 79th Street and motioned to a woman lurking on the corner.

He offered her $60 and asked for a "fuck and a suck," according to internal affairs records.

Unfortunately for Garcia, the woman turned out to be an undercover officer named Ella Moore. The major was arrested and charged with soliciting a prostitute, and IA charges of conduct unbecoming an officer were also filed...

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Scandals threaten FAMU's accreditation, could impact students' financial aid eligibility

Scandals threaten FAMU's accreditation, could impact students' financial aid eligibility | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida A&M University is being placed on a year-long probation in the wake of a series of scandals at the school, including the hazing death of a drum major.

FAMU officials were informed Tuesday by the Southern Association of College and Schools that its accreditation is in jeopardy.

If FAMU's accreditation is revoked then students won't be eligible for federal financial aid...

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Miami Hurricanes Defensive Back Thomas Finnie Charged In UM Laptop Theft Sting

Miami Hurricanes Defensive Back Thomas Finnie Charged In UM Laptop Theft Sting | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
CORAL GABLES (CBSMiami) – Coral Gables police have made a second arrest in the theft of a laptop computer at the University of Miami and the suspect is a football player.

Miami cornerback Thomas Finnie is facing a grand theft charge and has been suspended indefinitely from the football program.

It all began Tuesday Dec. 4th at the Pearson Dorm on UM’s campus when someone stole a laptop belonging to former redshirt defensive back Robert Wright.

Thomas Finnie surrendered to campus police Tuesday and was eventually taken to the Miami-Dade County Jail.

He’s charged with Occupied Burglary and Grand Theft.

Finnie has appeared in 23 games over his first two seasons with the Hurricanes...

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Wynhood: Man, Pregnant Woman Shot Blocks Away From Wynwood Art Basel Festivities

Wynhood: Man, Pregnant Woman Shot Blocks Away From Wynwood Art Basel Festivities | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
As art-bloated partiers wound down the last dregs of Basel Week on Sunday with a final stroll through Wynwood's murals and galleries, a horrific shooting went down just a few blocks south.

At 7:45 p.m. last night, a man and a pregnant woman were shot multiple times in front of a convenience shop at NW 17th Street and rushed to the hospital. The pregnant woman was reportedly hit in the head and stomach and left in critical condition.

The woman, in her early 20s, and a man in his late teens were leaving the 17th Street Meat Market -- located about a half mile south from the heart of Wynwood's art district on NW Second Avenue -- when multiple shots rang out...

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Bal Harbour Police Chief Suspended With Pay Pending Federal Probe Over Millions In Seized Drug Money (VIDEO)

Bal Harbour Police Chief Suspended With Pay Pending Federal Probe Over Millions In Seized Drug Money (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Bal Harbour’s police chief has been suspended with pay after the U.S. Justice Department released their report on alleged misconduct by the department.

The federal probe found that the department allegedly misspent millions of dollars seized in drug arrests and stings, according to CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald. The report also cited police Chief Thomas Hunker for professional misconduct.

According to the report, the police department’s vice squad didn’t play by the rules and used some of the seized drug money for first class plane tickets, luxury car rentals and to pay informants across the country.

Actions by the police department came under scrutiny last year after audit, and subsequent probe, turned up a host of problems include missing records, questionable expenses and hundreds of thousands of dollars paid to snitches, according to The Miami Herald...

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Miami-Dade County Commission Votes To Give Convicted Felon Demetrio Perez Jr. $110 Million In Bonds

Miami-Dade County Commission Votes To Give Convicted Felon Demetrio Perez Jr. $110 Million In Bonds | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

You'd think that after Demetrio Perez Jr. pleaded guilty in 2002 to defrauding a trio of frail elderly tenants in his low-income Little Havana apartments, Miami-Dade politicians would steer clear of the felonious former school board member. But then they couldn't grease up to Perez and his deep pockets whenever an election rolls around.

 

How else can you explain Miami-Dade County Commissioner Bruno Barreiro and seven of his colleagues voting unanimously and without discussion last week to issue $110 million in municipal bonds to help Perez's private charter school business?

 

Perez's scheme to scam the little old ladies in his low-income apartments wasn't his only scandal. Shortly after he pleaded guilty, a Miami Herald investigation alleged he also pocketed more than $1 million in rent payments from public school funds that were meant to benefit a program for at-risk children.

 

Perez seems to have a similar racket going on with his Lincoln-Martí charter school in Hialeah. In 2010, the Herald reported that the school paid his real estate company $744,000 in rent -- roughly 25 percent of the school's entire $3 million budget.

 

So why are commissioners still supporting this guy? Well, in part because his school's treasure trove lets him shower campaign donations. Perez's biggest beneficiary was -- surprise! -- Barreiro, who received $10,000 in bundled contributions before the August primaries...

 

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Florida woman poses as Walmart employee while cohorts empty three unmanned cash registers

Florida woman poses as Walmart employee while cohorts empty three unmanned cash registers | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Lee County detectives hope someone from the public can help identify the suspects who brazenly emptied three cash registers in the middle of the day at a Lee County Walmart.

 

On December 4, deputies were called to the Walmart on Colonial Blvd. in reference to a theft. According to the Loss Prevention Officer, a white female holding a clipboard posed as a Walmart employee while two other subjects removed money from three unmanned cash registers. One of the subjects had a key that opened the registers.

 

The woman holding the clipboard is approximately 5'-5'' to 5'-7" tall and was wearing a dark blue shirt and tan pants. The second suspect is a black male in his late 30's. He's approximately 6' to 6'-3" tall and was wearing a white striped shirt and jeans. The third suspect is a black female, approximately 5'-8" to 5'-10 inches tall and was wearing a blue shirt and jeans. The suspects were seen leaving in a silver Ford Escape SUV.

 

Lee County detectives believe the same suspects are involved in similar incidents in North Port and Port St. Lucie...

 

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South Florida Family Hoping To Get Marine Veteran Son out of Mexican Prison, Home Safe (VIDEO)

South Florida Family Hoping To Get Marine Veteran Son out of Mexican Prison, Home Safe (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

For four years, Lance Corporal Jon Hammar Jr. fought in Iraq and Afghanistan, wielding a machine gun and proudly serving his country...

 

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Florida Man Convicted of Sex Trafficking Minors

Florida Man Convicted of Sex Trafficking Minors | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
A 20-year-old Lauderhill man was convicted of sex trafficking of minors after prosecutors said he lured young girls to work for him as prostitutes in exchange for his protection, the Department of Justice announced Monday. Officials said three victims, who were runaways between the ages of 12 and 14 at the time, testified that Jones prostituted them. Two of the girls said they engaged in sexual activity with the man hours after meeting him. Evidence presented in court showed Jones paid others to rent hotel rooms in their names and then used the rooms to prostitute the girls. Jones’ customers, who found the girls listed on a website called Backpage.com, would then engage in sexual activity with one or more of the minors, the Department of Justice said... (Click pic to continue reading)
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Wounded Warriors Take To Softball Field To Raise Awareness, Hope (VIDEO)

Wounded Warriors Take To Softball Field To Raise Awareness, Hope (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

MIAMI (CBS4) - You might call them a team of heroes. Members of the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team all lost limbs while serving overseas, but that didn’t stop from becoming first class athletes, and this weekend you can see them play right here in South Florida.

 

This weekend the Miami Dade Police Department is hosting a tournament for the team. It kicks off at 10 a.m. Saturday at TropicalPark. The team will take on the University of Miami Baseball Team at 7 p.m.

 

The highly skilled players are chosen from all over the country. And travel year-round. On the practice field they look like any other softball team, but the bond among the ballplayers goes beyond their love of the game.

 

Each player on the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team served in either Iraq or Afghanistan and each has a permanent reminder of his sacrifice...

 

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Kaitlyn Peake's curator insight, February 10, 1:42 PM

This shows that softball is supports many good causes, such as  the Wounded Warrior Project. I chose this because I play softball and my second cousin is a spokesman for WWP.

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UPS truck crashes into building in Orlando, Florida

UPS truck crashes into building in Orlando, Florida | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
ORLANDO, Fla. — Orlando police said the driver was trapped in the truck's cab for about 30 minutes.

Officials said the UPS driver was hauling two trailers when he was cut off on East Landstreet Road around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday.

The driver said to avoid hitting the car, he swerved and hit a building.

Police said the driver was taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center with minor injuries...

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Panamanian Woman Busted Smuggling Three Pounds of Cocaine In Breast Implants

Panamanian Woman Busted Smuggling Three Pounds of Cocaine In Breast Implants | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
Congratulations, cocaine smugglers. You've successfully moved the War on Drugs from island-hopping airplanes to Caribbean submarines to the most daring transportation method yet: Huge breast implants.

A Panamanian woman flying out of Bogota, Colombia has been arrested in Spain after cops became suspicious of her fresh boob job. They eventually found three pounds of yeyo inside her ta-tas.

The woman, whose name has not been released, drew the suspicion of customs in Spain with the "blood stained gauze" stretched across her chest, the AP reports. When police further investigated, they found "pale patches" beneath her skin...

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As many as six Miami cops will be arrested by FBI for providing security to illegal gambling operation (VIDEO)

As many as six Miami cops will be arrested by FBI for providing security to illegal gambling operation (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The FBI is investigating a ring of Miami police officers who have been providing protection services to a bookmaking operation in Liberty City, CBS4 News has learned.

Six officers are expected to be arrested, with three or four others likely to face departmental discipline including termination. The officers’ arrests are expected in the next few weeks.

The investigation began almost two years ago, when the Miami-Dade Police Department followed up on a tip about a possible gambling house in Liberty City.

As Miami-Dade police started watching the storefront business in the area of 62nd Street, they noticed a Miami Police cruiser with a Miami police officer inside parked next to the business.

It soon became clear the officer — who was off-duty at the time — was there to provide protection for the gambling house, according to sources familiar with the investigation.

As MPD continued its surveillance, more off-duty officers were spotted taking turns guarding the operation.

In addition to providing security at the bookmaking operations, sources tell CBS4 Investigator Jim DeFede the officers also acted as bodyguards when money needed to be moved to and from the gambling houses...

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FBI investigating Miami cops in bookmaking case

FBI investigating Miami cops in bookmaking case | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
At least a half-dozen Miami Police officers have been targeted by the FBI for their alleged roles in providing protection for a Liberty City sports gambling operation that was uncovered more than a year ago, according to authorities familiar with the case.
 
At least one Miami officer has been relieved of duty in connection with the investigation into the bookmaking business, which has been shut down, authorities said.
 
The Liberty City gambling house investigation began more than a year ago when Miami police, under then-Chief Miguel Exposito, told the FBI what it had learned. Surveillance, in an unincorporated area of Liberty City, led to the spotting of a Miami officer who allegedly showed up regularly to protect the illicit business.
 
The Miami Police Department, with roughly 1,100 sworn officers, has seen numerous officers suspended and ultimately fired in recent years because of their involvement in criminal activity, from ripping off drugs and money from dealers to fencing contraband such as stolen Bluetooth headsets.
 
Unrelated to the Miami police probe, the FBI is also investigating a handful of officers in other law-enforcement departments around Miami-Dade County in connection with identity-theft and tax-refund scams.
 
The officers are suspected of swiping personal identity information, such as Social Security numbers and dates of birth, to file fraudulent tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service — a crime that has penetrated all aspects of society, including hospitals...
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City of Doral Ousts Police Chief (VIDEO)

City of Doral Ousts Police Chief (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The City of Doral has hung up a “Help Wanted” sign for a new police chief.

Tuesday morning Doral Police Chief Ricardo “Ricky” Gomez was fired. City officials did not immediately release why Gomez was terminated.

Last year, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement launched an investigation into Gomez after a letter to the city manager accused him of rigging bids to buy office furniture and misappropriation of taxpayer money.

The FDLE investigation determined that “Gomez may have violated policy, but committed no crimes, and cleared him of any wrongdoing in this investigation,” according to a memo released by the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s public corruption unit.


Public corruption prosecutors decided not to charge him...

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Riviera Beach police officer placed on leave, accused of assaulting man while off duty (VIDEO)

Riviera Beach police officer placed on leave, accused of assaulting man while off duty (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. -- A Riviera Beach police officer was placed on paid administrative leave Monday after allegations that he assaulted a man.

The Riviera Beach Police Police Department is investigating the allegations made by a man who said he was assaulted by Officer Russell Byrd at Byrd's home, according to police spokesperson Rose Anne Brown.

Officer Byrd was off duty at the time of the reported incident, Brown said...

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South Florida reacts to decision that Miami Herald building is not a landmark: “The Herald was good when I was a shorty…" (VIDEO)

South Florida reacts to decision that Miami Herald building is not a landmark: “The Herald was good when I was a shorty…" (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
COCONUT GROVE, Fla. - South Floridians are reacting to the Miami's preservation board’s decision against calling The Miami Herald's soon-to-be-empty bayfront home a protected landmark.

The board voted 5-3 against protecting the building Monday. The newspaper is moving to the former headquarters of the U.S. Southern Command in suburban Doral next year.

“It's an old building,” said longtime Miami resident Calvin Williams. “It’s time for a change.”

Williams told Local 10’s Baron James he claims a stake in the newspaper’s storied history.

“The Herald was good when I was a shorty,” said Williams. “I used to throw newspapers for them.”

The Herald's parent company sold its downtown property to the Genting Group for $236 million in 2011. Genting has proposed building a resort with a casino at the site...

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Former South Florida police officer scheduled for execution for murdering 9 people 27 years ago

Former South Florida police officer scheduled for execution for murdering 9 people 27 years ago | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Manuel Pardo was a decorated Florida highway patrolman and police officer who went horribly bad, slaying nine people during a three-month crime spree after he had been fired for lying.

 

Now, almost 27 years later, Pardo, 56, is scheduled to be executed Tuesday night at Florida State Prison in Starke barring a last-minute stay, fulfilling a request he made to jurors at his 1988 trial.

 

Pardo's attorneys are trying to block his execution, arguing in federal appeals that he is mentally ill, something his trial attorney believed more than two decades ago.

 

Pardo, a former Boy Scout and Navy veteran, began his law enforcement career in the 1970s with the Florida Highway Patrol, graduating at the top of his class at the academy. But he was fired from that agency in 1979 for falsifying traffic tickets. He was soon hired by the police department in Sweetwater, a small city in Miami-Dade County.

 

In 1981, Pardo was one of four Sweetwater officers charged with brutality, but the cases were dismissed.

 

In 1982, The Miami Herald reported that Pardo saved a 2-month-old boy's life by reviving him with CPR. Another story, written by famed South Florida columnist and novelist Carl Hiassen, noted that Pardo arrested a man for stealing valuable parrots and cockatoos to use as live sacrifices for a Santeria ritual. Pardo also spoke to the paper and said he was proud of other officers who earned certificates from a community college.

 

But he was fired four years later after he flew to the Bahamas to testify at the trial of a Sweetwater colleague who was accused of drug smuggling. Pardo lied, telling the court they were international undercover agents.

 

Then over a 92-day period in early 1986, Pardo committed a series of robberies, killing six men and three women. He took photos of the victims and recounted some details in his diary, which was found along with newspaper clippings about the killing in his home. Pardo was linked to the killings after using credit cards stolen from the victims. He had become fascinated with Adolf Hitler, collecting Nazi memorabilia. His dog, a Doberman pinscher, had a swastika tattoo...

 

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Florida group fears school board nondiscrimination policy change will allow cross-dressing teachers in classrooms (VIDEO)

Florida group fears school board nondiscrimination policy change will allow cross-dressing teachers in classrooms (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

ORLANDO, Fla. - The Florida Family Council is protesting a change in wording to the nondiscrimination policy for Orange County Public Schools.

 

The group gathered in front of the OCPS School Board building at 10 a.m. Monday to protest the change.

 

The Orange County School Board is set to vote on updating its nondiscrimination policy to include "gender identity or gender expression." One of the policy changes protects the students, another the teachers and employees and a third proposed policy change includes bullying and harassment.

 

Parents with the Family Council said they fear the policy change will open the door to having cross-dressing teachers in classrooms, which they believe could be unsafe for students...

 

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Miami-Dade officer takes first steps as a 'bionic man' after being struck by drunk driver (VIDEO)

Miami-Dade officer takes first steps as a 'bionic man' after being struck by drunk driver (VIDEO) | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

MIAMI (WSVN) -- A Miami Police officer has become a "walking miracle" thanks to a new advancement in technology.

 

Senior Miami-Dade Police officer Leo Fernandez is getting a chance to live a normal a life by becoming the first amputee in South Florida to receive a robotic foot.


Fernandez lost part of his leg in 2002 when he was hit by a drunk driver during a routine traffic stop on the Palmetto Expressway.

 

It took three long years of rehab before Fernandez was able to go back to work on the police force. He said life became a struggle both mentally and physically. "The worst is really dealing with the loss of the leg. You want to be able to do everything like a normal person. That's what triggers the depression."

 

Fernandez said the old prosthesis was extremely hard on his body and put too much pressure on his back and knees. Those problems have ended after receiving the new robotic foot called Biom. "It's actually got batteries and a computer brain inside of it," Fernandez said. "What it does is it pushes off the ground like your muscles would do normally..."

 

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Daniel Poruban's curator insight, March 21, 2013 9:26 PM

A reliable article from a reliable news source from the USA.

 

I thought this article was relevant as it shows how technology is not only advancing the Police Force into a new stage, but also giving officers who have suffered the loss of limbs a second chance at their career as a Police Officer. This technology is at its early stages, however it could be improved an not only provide an alternative for an actual limb, but make the rooting one even more advanced allowing for the completion of tasks which would otherwise not have been possible.

 

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Florida man crashes wedding, shouts, throws beer cans at party

Florida man crashes wedding, shouts, throws beer cans at party | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it

During a beachfront wedding on Marco Island, police said a drunken local disrupted a couple’s nuptials by running back and forth behind the altar, shouting obscenities and lobbing unopened beer cans, at one point hitting the best man in the back, police said.

 

Now Bradley John Stiner, a 22-year-old Marco Island resident, faces a misdemeanor battery charge and the scorn of a wedding party whose memories have been tarnished.

 

Police said Stiner started acting up during the Friday evening beachfront wedding by running behind the altar, drawing the wedding party’s attention. Attendees at first ignored Stiner, but soon Stiner drew closer and started shouting, “Hey tourists, get off my beach, I’m local,” an arrest report said. Stiner then shouted obscenities and threw full beer cans, hitting several attendees, the report said. Several party members chased after Stiner, causing the wedding to break up...

 

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Florida man faces 20 years in prison for smuggling birds from Cuba in his pants

Florida man faces 20 years in prison for smuggling birds from Cuba in his pants | The Billy Pulpit | Scoop.it
(AP) — A Miami man faces up to 20 years in prison for allegedly trying to smuggle birds from Cuba into the United States in his pants. The U.S. Attorney's office says Alberto Diaz Gonzalez pleaded guilty Thursday to attempting to import undeclared wildlife from the Caribbean island. He is scheduled to be sentenced in February. Diaz returned to Miami from Havana on Oct. 20. Court documents show he told U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials in Miami that he was not carrying any wildlife. But authorities say when officers searched Diaz, they found 16 Cuban bullfinches hidden in his pants. They say Diaz admitted the birds were from Cuba and that he planned to sell them... (click pic to continue reading)
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