Around the Region
Published: Wednesday, January 9, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 9, 2008 at 12:00 a.m.
Melrose man arrested on theft warrants
Alachua County deputies arrested a Melrose man on two theft warrants Tuesday afternoon, and Clay County officials are investigating whether the man may be connected to two armed robberies in the Keystone Heights area this month.
Juan G. Ramos, 25, was arrested around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday on warrants from October on grand theft of a vehicle and larceny, according to Sgt. Keith Faulk with the Alachua County Sheriff's Office.
Mary Justino with the Clay County Sheriff's Office said Ramos may also be a suspect in two armed robberies that occurred over the weekend in Keystone Heights. One robbery occurred on Friday at the Capital City Bank, 500 Green Way, and the other occurred Saturday at Alfies Liquor, 153 E. Walker Drive.
"We do not know for sure at this time whether this is our suspect," Justino said Tuesday.
- Alice Wallace
70-year-old charged with assault with gun
Chiefland Police arrested a 70-year-old man Monday after they said he threatened to first kill his wife then himself with a gun.
Officers charged Robert Lee McDaniel with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and took him to the Levy County jail, according to police.
Chiefland Police Chief Robert Douglas said officers received a report about a disturbance at a trailer park on NW 11th Avenue at about 12:30 p.m. and arrived to find McDaniel's wife. The woman said she and her husband of 52 years had been arguing when he grabbed a handgun from his truck, pointed the gun at her and threatened to kill her and himself.
The woman ran to a neighbor's for help and was not injured, according to police. A witness told officers McDaniel had chased his wife while armed with the gun.
McDaniel and his wife are listed as residents of Richmond, Ind., but spend winters at the Chiefland trailer park, Douglas said.
- Lise Fisher
Columbia County man dies in traffic crash
Lake City Police were investigating the death of a Columbia County man following a vehicle crash early Tuesday.
Officers were called to a single-vehicle accident at SunState Federal Credit Union, 1605 NW U.S. 90, shortly before 2 a.m., the police department reported.
When officers arrived, they found David Lee Billeaudeau, 51, dead inside the vehicle, according to the law enforcement agency.
Police still were trying to determine the cause of the crash and the cause of Billeaudeau's death Tuesday morning.
- Lise Fisher
Bradford residents charged in robbery
Clay County sheriff's deputies arrested four Bradford County residents after one tried to steal a woman's purse outside an Orange Park McDonald's Monday evening.
Tony Smith, 19, of Starke, and Michael Kiser, 19; Willie Tyrell Coleman, 18; and a 17-year-old, all of Lawtey, were accused of robbery and possession of a controlled substance, the Sheriff's Office reported.
Officers alleged Smith grabbed a woman's purse outside the McDonald's, 1083 Blanding Blvd., and tried to run away while a vehicle carrying the other men waited nearby. But the woman held on to her bag, even though Smith shoved her down. The incident occurred at about 6:30 p.m.
When Smith couldn't get the purse, he ran to the vehicle, which drove off. But a deputy located it at Old Jennings Road and Blanding Boulevard.
An officer also reported seeing a tube thrown from the vehicle, which deputies found and said contained cocaine.
The case is the ninth armed robbery in Clay County in the last week, the Sheriff's Office reported. Deputies have made arrests in four of the cases. So far, the suspects in the recent robbery have not been linked to any other cases in the area.
- Lise Fisher
Man charged with filing false police report
University of Florida Police arrested a man for allegedly filing a false police report Monday after he claimed he had been abducted from a campus parking garage last week.
David Jerome Washington, 20, was accused of the misdemeanor crime after he told officers he had been kidnapped from a parking garage near Shands at the University of Florida Thursday night. He claimed he had been put into the trunk of a car, taken to an unknown location where the suspects used his cell phone, and then left at Wal-Mart on NW 13th Street.
Officers released information about the allegations. But they also continued to interview Washington. During a follow-up interview Monday, police reported Washington recanted his abduction claims.
Police don't know why Washington, an employee at Shands, made the claims, said UF Police Capt. Jeff Holcomb.
- Lise Fisher
Five robbed outside Gainesville apartment
Robbers held-up five people outside a Gainesville apartment complex early Saturday, police reported.
Officers were called to Melrose Apartments, 1000 SW 62nd Blvd., after midnight about a report of an armed robbery, said police spokesman Lt. Keith Kameg.
Two men, wearing bandanas and dark clothing and each carrying a handgun, confronted the victims outside of a building at the complex, Kameg said.
The gunmen ordered the five to get on the ground and held a gun to the head of one person.
The pair fled with car keys, cell phones and money, Kameg said.
As the two ran way, one fired a shot into the air.
No one was injured during the robbery, Kameg said.
- Lise Fisher
Two charged with attacks in Live Oak
Live Oak Police arrested two men, alleging they tried to ambush another man at his home over the weekend and later attacked him at another residence.
Fabian Valez-Hernandez, 21, and Luis Victor Morales, 32, both of Live Oak, were charged with aggravated battery, burglary and criminal mischief, police reported. Officers received a report of a disturbance on Horizon Circle in Live Oak before 2 a.m. Sunday.
Police accused Valez-Hernandez and Morales of breaking into a home at 112 Horizon Circle, turning off the lights and waiting for the resident to come home. When he didn't, they left but found him afterward at another home.
The trio argued, but it escalated into a fight, according to officers. Valez-Hernandez held the man while Morales swung at the victim with a knife, cutting his hand and face.
The injured man was treated and later released from Shands Live Oak, police reported.
- Lise Fisher
State police: House won't help in Foley case
TALLAHASSEE - Florida's top law enforcement official appealed to U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for help investigating whether disgraced U.S. Rep. Mark Foley committed any state crimes, but has received no response.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Gerald Bailey wrote to Pelosi last month asking for access to Foley's House computers to advance its investigation. Foley, a Republican, resigned in September 2006 after reports he sent sexually explicit messages to boys serving as congressional pages.
In the letter, Bailey acknowledged that the House legal office had earlier refused access to Foley's computers. Bailey noted in the letter that Pelosi's predecessor, Republican Dennis Hastert, asked FDLE to investigate whether Foley violated any state laws.
- The Associated Press
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