Category Archives: Criminal Law

Cape Coral on Enhanced Traffic Enforcement this Weekend

capecopsCape Coral will be conducting traffic enforcement operations this weekends, likely targeting Veterans, Coronado, and Kismet. Be sure to be safe out there. The Fox article got my attention because it says checkpoints in the headline, but I think that might be a misnomer. It’s probably just targeted enforcement as opposed to full checkpoints where they randomly stop drivers. Regardless- drive safely!

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Widow of Pulse Nightclub Shooter Acquitted

Noor Salman, 31, was acquitted at trial on her charges of Obstruction and Providing Material Support to a Terrorist Organization for her alleged connection to the shooting at the Pulse nightclub that her husband, Omar Mateen, carried out in 2016. Her attorneys argued that she was an abused spouse, that Mateen concealed much about his life from her, and that there was no way she could have known he would attack Pulse nightclub. Ultimately, a jury agreed that the government did not prove her contributions and found her not guilty. Whether or not she could have done something to stop it is another story: but her failure to stop him would not be criminal.

The Sordid Tale of a former Kentucky Judge turned Sex-Trafficker

tim nolan mug shot

Tim Nolan

Cincinnati.com went long on Tim Nolan, the former judge (and attorney, school board member, and Trump activist) who has pled guilty to charges of human trafficking. Go check out the full article by Scott Wartman. In sum, the former judge- who had prided himself of being tough on crime, turned out to be a criminal. He has pled guilty to 21 counts of human trafficking going back to 2004, and will be sentenced Thursday for what will probably amount to a life sentence (20 years). He took advantage of young women, many living in his properties, often using drugs or physical force or the threat of eviction to induce them for sex.

The case was weird, not only because of Nolan’s political ties. At one point there were allegations he paid a witness, with whom he had had a relationship, but whose daughter was one of his victims. There was talk that he might blame mental illness, or his brain tumor, for his behavior, but ultimately decided to enter a guilty plea. He reportedly had a disdain for lawyers… which in itself suggests his contempt for the rule of law and due process, but is particularly galling for a lawyer himself.

Be sure to check out the article on cincinnati.com.

Man Goes to Jail for a Facebook Like

A Pasco judge found a New Port Richey man in contempt of court for liking a Facebook post: someone had put his ex wife’s picture on a “father’s rights” page alleging that she was abusive. The judge found that he had violated her order against disparaging or threatening the other party in the family law case stemming from their divorce and custody fight. She initially sentenced him to 60 days, but relented a few days later for time served. The limits on social media, and regarding First Amendment ramifications, are something the courts have to grapple with more and more.

Alleged Drunk Driver Runs Himself Over

 

isaac bonsu

Isaac Bonsu

A man in Fairfax, Virginia, was suspected of drunk driving and fled from the cops. Isaac Bonsu abandoned his flight, and jumped out to run, leaving the car behind. Unfortunately, he didn’t put the car in park… as he ran around the car, it rolled forward, knocking him down and allowing the cops to detain him and put him in custody. Amazingly, this was in Virginia and not Florida.

Fairfax police released the video this week: and it’s AMAZING!

Friday Fun- Robber Attempts to Stick-Up 7-11 Convenience Store with only his Finger

7-Eleven attempted robbery 3It’s like something out of a movie. A Cohen Brothers movie!

A few days ago, a young man walked into a Bonita Springs 7-11 with a shirt wrapped around his face. He wanted to hold the place up, but didn’t have a weapon, and tried to use his finger to scare the clerks. Maybe he meant to put it in his pocket, but whatever the case, he 7-Eleven attempted robbery 1wasn’t too scary because they could see that all he had was a finger that he was waving around! He didn’t get any money, but trying to rob a store is still a crime and deputies are still on the lookout for the attempted robber!

7-Eleven attempted robbery 2

What We Know about the Zombicon Shooting Case So Far…

news 2bonilla3Prosecutors filed a motion this week for Pretrial Detention: that’s a request to keep the man they say was the Zombicon shooter behind bars until his trial date. I spoke to NBC-2 yesterday, that motion summarizes many of the facts the State says make up their case against Jose Bonilla:

jose bonilla

Jose Bonilla

  1. 5 tips to Crimestoppers identified him
  2. He gave multiple statements to investigators denying involvement in the shooting
  3. However, one of his alleged gangster buddies intimated that he may have been responsible
  4. A jailhouse informant in Collier County wore a wire and Bonilla allegedly made admissions about his involvement

You can read the full text of the motion, here: img03022018_0001

news 2bonilla1b

Part of the Redacted Motion

The motion has been redacted for release, so we can’t see what the state says are the specific statements that he gave to investigators, or that may be on the recording with the informant. However, at the end of the motion, the prosecutors summarize their argument, and indicate that he admitted that “he is responsible for the shootings at the Zombicon event” and that he repeated some admissions afterward to investigators. I’m going to add a Stand Your Ground tag to this, as it also appears he may have claimed his actions were justified due to someone else pulling a gun, but we don’t know specifics yet.

More details will come out when the discovery becomes public record, but not for a few weeks. Monday, the court will hold a hearing on the Pretrial Detention motion, where he will likely continue to be held with no bond. You can watch the NBC-2 video here.