Thief drives off with car used by state attorney


Published: Thursday, December 1, 2005 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, December 1, 2005 at 12:51 a.m.
State Attorney Bill Cervone had an unpleasant surprise over the past holiday weekend.
Cervone went outside his northeast Gainesville home only to discover that the car he uses for business trips, a green Ford Crown Victoria belonging to the State Attorney's Office, was missing.
A car thief apparently was trying to hotwire a neighbor's car. When that failed, the thief tested the lock on Cervone's personal car, found it unlocked and found keys to the Crown Victoria inside, Cervone said.
Cervone said he thought he had locked the car with an automatic lock device, but apparently it didn't work.
Gainesville Police located the stolen car in the southeast part of town, parked in front of an apartment. Cervone said police did "a terrific job" on the case. Officers arrested one man, and the car was back at his home when he returned from the Gator football game.
As for the car's condition, that's a different story.
"It's fairly well trashed inside," and smelled from what Cervone said was the odor of marijuana that "may be a little overwhelming."
  • Don't be late: A Gainesville woman didn't want to be kept waiting for a trip to a relative's home Thanksgiving Day, according to deputies.
    Angry with her boyfriend for sleeping in, deputies said the woman cut him with a steak knife, the Alachua County Sheriff's Office reported.
    The man had cuts on his right forearm and left hand but refused medical treatment, said Sheriff's Office spokesman Sgt. Keith Faulk.
    The boyfriend told deputies David Visconti and Patrick Tombler that his girlfriend started the argument, officers reported. She threatened to cut him, he told police, and ended up "pushing and pulling" him and he was cut during the struggle.
    The woman was charged with aggravated domestic battery and later released from Alachua County jail on her own recognizance.
  • With honors: He was among the winners of the 2005 Florida (substance abuse) Prevention Leadership Award.
    But Lt. Ed Book of the Gainesville Police Department had no clue he was nominated for the honor he received at the 2005 Statewide Prevention Conference in Orlando last month. Book was among 43 honorees awarded for drug prevention efforts in communities across the state. The Corner Drug Store nominated him for the award, he said.
  • Highway help: Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Gabriel Martin had a lesson in staying calm, cool and collected on Thanksgiving morning.
    Martin was on patrol at the Ellisville rest stop on Interstate 75 when a motorist told him that truck driver Lonnie Bean Jr., 67, of Houston, was having a heart attack in his tractor-trailer, the FHP said. Martin rushed to the man's side.
    "I was trying to keep cool, but I was very nervous," Martin said. Martin stayed with Bean until paramedics arrived. Bean was treated and released from Lake City Medical Center the next day.
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