A North Fort Myers man was arrested and charged with attacking a police dog, according to NBC-2. I have to say the NBC headline (and mine) are a little misleading… the allegation isn’t that he attacked the police dog per se, but that he forcefully grabbed it. This was after the police had let the dog loose on him, and the dog had bitten his shoulder: sounds like he was trying to stop the dog from attacking him. He had to be taken to the hospital to be treated for his injuries, including the hole in his shoulder and the deputy punching him to let get him to let go of the dog.
It is a felony to injure a police animal, but a misdemeanor to strike one. This guy, Robert Dean Lawrence, was only charged with the misdemeanor for his actions toward the K-9, “Koa”. However, he’s got bigger problems, as the deputies were after him in the first place for a felony battery charge. He faces charges for felony domestic battery by strangulation, striking a police dog and resisting arrest.
At least he didn’t punch a horse.
Darren Kersey – Phone Charger
Police in Sarasota, FL arrested a homeless man for plugging his cell phone into a charger at a public park shelter. He was charged with theft of public utilities. He wasn’t able to bond out (being homeless), but the judge found no probable cause and released him at his first appearance hearing the next day. In other news, 9 children at the ball park were arrested for the same offense for drinking out of a fountain. (Not really, but it’s about the legal equivalent.)
A local ACLU member claims it’s just the latest shot int he city’s “war on the homeless.” He makes an interesting point that the arresting officer is a sergeant, therefore a supervisor, so that suggests this wasn’t some rogue officer. A review of Sarasota’s arrest list from Monday reveals about a dozen homeless people arrested, most for petty charges such as trespassing, open container, and even smoking in a public park. I did not see any drinking fountain charges… yet.
The Monday arrests also reveal that prostitute Amber O’Brien was picked up again with a new paraphernalia charge. Who’s that, you ask? Check out the back story on her on Bill Warner’s blog. And more here.