Crime

Charlotte County man charged with animal cruelty for not seeking medical treatment for dog

In April, Edmund Bittner, 48, of Port Charlotte brought his dog, a German Shepard named "Callie," to the Animal Welfare League. Callie was 12- to 13-years-old and Bittner asked the shelter to euthanize the dog.

Prosecutors: Bradenton man kept stolen, loaded gun in toddler’s room

Florida woman accused of setting unfaithful boyfriend’s home on fire

  Suspected credit card skimmers found at gas station in Sarasota

  Sarasota woman accused of killing her mother by using combination of sedatives, painkillers

Officer accused of killing Oklahoma police chief in Florida

  Teen, adult remain hospitalized in critical condition after shooting in Sarasota

Continued Coverage

  Nothing found in lake despite new tip about Jennifer Kesse’s disappearance

  MCSO searching for two suspects who stole items from several vehicles in a Bradenton community

  Police arrest 24-year-old man as suspect in shooting involving officer in Venice

Hospital in Hardee County evacuated following bomb threat

  Suspect arrested in kidnapping of UFC fighter’s stepdaughter in Florida

More cases tied to Florida man accused of groping kids at Disney

  18-year-old high schooler charged over video sent to minors

Deputies say 18-year-old Armando Flores admitted sending a sexual video to friends after they tracked a video circulating through the school to him.

Woman out for a morning run attacked in Charlotte County

The woman was running near Ollie’s Pond on York Avenue around 6:45am Thursday when she was attacked by a man who was wearing a gray hoodie, gray pants, and a knit ski mask.

  Bradenton man accused of robbing taco shop at gunpoint

Police say around 9:30pm, 18-year-old Sir Darrius Da’Shawn Searles entered Poppos Taqueria on Manatee Avenue West through a rear door, held two employees at gunpoint and made off with $1,200 in cash.

Florida man demands mug shot be removed from Facebook; deputies replace it with booking photo

The sheriff's office says deputies with help from Arcadia Police took Michael Meacham of Arcadia into custody Thursday for the theft, which took place on Sunday.

  North Port man accused of operating illegal tattoo parlor out of home

  Thousands of dollars in monetary gifts stolen from a couple after their wedding in Bradenton

  Three Molotov cocktails thrown through window of Bradenton apartment

  Three Bradenton men found guilty of four murders and multiple drug and firearms offenses

  VIDEO: Florida deputy arrested for throwing student to the ground

Florida grandma faces DUI manslaughter in grandchild’s death

Florida teen and her siblings rescued from “deplorable conditions” after she calls hotline to report parents, suicidal thoughts

On October 31, deputies say the teen called an Abuse Hotline and said she was thinking about killing herself because of the home she was living in and alleged physical and emotional abuse by her mother.

Police: Man jailed for stealing electric shopping cart; driving it to a bar

The man told police he thought he would get a DWI if he drove his own car to the bar

14-year-old fatally shot by friend while playing with gun

Sheriff’s officials say a 17-year-old Florida teen is accused of aggravated manslaughter in the fatal shooting of his 14-year-old friend.

Man charged with killing teen who was protecting younger sister

A Florida man accused of killing a teenager during a home invasion is charged with second-degree murder and burglary.

  Florida teen charged with offering $100,000 to kill school employee

Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco announced during a news conference Friday that deputies arrested 18-year-old Nicholas Godfrey and charged him with solicitation to attempt murder.

Man charged with child abuse after allegedly slapping child across the face

Venice Police were called to a home around 10pm Sunday after a caller reported 26-year-old David Kimo Rufino Jr. had slapped a child, leaving red marks and scratches on the child's face.

Drugs found while searching Charlotte County man’s home

Inside the 56-year-old's home, they say they found 80 grams of methamphetamine, 15.18 grams of cannabis, 7 Quetiapine Fumarate pills, which is not a controlled substance and is obtainable only by prescription, and a firearm and ammunition.

  Woman pleads guilty to giving counterfeit Botox injections in Manatee County home

Diane Danca pleaded guilty to practicing medicine without a license and possession of a controlled substance. She'll be under community control for the next two years as part of the deal.

  Man accused of killing 15-year-old Florida boy who was protecting 5-year-old sister charged with second degree murder

The sheriff’s office says they began canvassing the neighborhood and discovered that Ryan Cole had broken into a home on Starlite Lane. Inside, they found 15-year-old Khyler Edman deceased.

Sarasota man sought in connection to theft of $1,000 in merchandise

The sheriff's office says deputies with help from Arcadia Police took Michael Meacham of Arcadia into custody Thursday for the theft, which took place on Sunday.

North Port man arrested, accused of being “serial groper”

Deputies arrested 22-year-old Dominic Sforza on three counts of battery. The sheriff's office says a tip led them to Sforza, who's accused of inappropriately touching women in public places, including the parking lots of large stores.

  Search continues for suspect responsible for murder of 30-year-old man in Bradenton

The 30-year-old was shot and killed nearly two weeks ago at an apartment building in the 2400 block of 11th Street West in Bradenton.

  Driver charged with DUI after crashing into Sarasota Bay

Police say the woman drove west on 10th Street and right into the water. She was able to get out of the car and police say she was drunk.

Bradenton man accused of trying to kill former roommate after being kicked out over bedbugs

Deputies have arrested a 51-year-old man who they say attempted to kill his former roommate after he was kicked out over bedbugs that were found in his room.

  VIDEO: Deputies searching for man who stole items from a garage in a Manatee County neighborhood

Deputies searching for a man who stole items from a garage in the Mill Creek neighborhood in Bradenton.

  Several homes hit by gunfire in Bradenton

Police say that they responded on scene at the 1900 block of 6th Avenue East around 5:45 p.m. after receiving reports of gunfire. Police say that when they arrived on scene they learned about suspects that were seen shooting into a vehicle at that location.

Man arrested after hitting girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend with car

Deputies say that Isaac Loviglio dropped off his girlfriend and her children at the Safe Children’s Coalition at the 5700th block of Manatee Avenue West so that they could visit with her ex-boyfriend and the children’s father, Kaliff La Pread.

  Bomb threat forces evacuations of courthouse, administration building in downtown Bradenton

The sheriff’s office says someone called in a bomb threat to the Manatee County Courthouse. The courthouse as well as the Judicial Center and County Administration buildings were evacuated as the bomb squad checked all three facilities.

Deputies: Aggressive panhandler threatened driver who wouldn’t give her a dollar

Deputies say they were driving into the intersection of 14th Street West and 30th Avenue West when they say they heard 46-year-old Melanie Leff yelling at a silver four-door car that was stopped at the red light.

Woman set on fire inside Taco Bell; suspect arrested

Authorities in Florida say a woman poured gasoline on another woman and set her on fire inside a Taco Bell restaurant.

  VIDEO: Bradenton Police release video, ask for help identifying murder suspect

Michael Briles was killed in a home on 2400 block of 11th Street West around 10pm on October 17th.

Teen-aged Florida gamer accused of making violent, disturbing threats

Detectives received tips about the threats made by the teen and requested records from several companies to connect him to a home in Winter Haven, where he was staying with an adult family member while they visited a friend.

  Sarasota man accused of abusing 13-month-old child arrested again, this time for sexual battery

William Murphy, 42, was arrested Wednesday and charged with sexual battery on a victim under the age of 12.

North Port Police investigating stabbing on Vivian Road

Officers were called to a home where a woman reported she had been beaten and stabbed in the leg. Police arrived and established a perimeter until the suspect, a man inside the home, came out.

  Troopers locate vehicle involved in crash that killed 15-year-old skateboarder in Manatee County, still seeking driver

Troopers say it happened around 2:45am. The skateboarder, Thomas Jaren Croumbley, was attempting to cross Upper Manatee River Road near Waterlefe Boulevard when he was struck by a vehicle believed to be a 2012-2015 Toyota Tacoma.

  Man pleads no contest to killing neighbor during dispute in North Port

Officers say 66-year-old John Krug Jr. killed his neighbor, 62-year-old Carl Stacey Berryman, on the 3500 block of Erie Court in September 2018. When police arrived on scene, they found Berryman dead in his driveway with a gunshot wound to the back of his shoulder.

  Middle School Teacher in Venice Arrested For Another Count of Sexual Acts with Students

Police say Matthew Minton was involved with more than one underage victim. He’s been charged with another count of sexual battery on a teenager.

Woman gets 50-year sentence for crash that killed 3

A judge in Florida sentenced a 31-year-old woman to 50 years in prison for causing a drunk driving crash that killed a family of three.

  95 arrested in Sarasota as part of operation targeting drug and firearm sales

Police say a total of 109 people were involved in the illegal possession or sale of firearms and/or illegal narcotics between January 2019 and September 2019 during Operation SURGE.

Sarasota man sentenced to 30 years in prison for sexually assaulting young girl

According to police reports, the girl came forward about what happened to her after a family member found a private journal entry that the child had written that detailed the sexual abuse by Jonathan Raucci.

Hospital staff count over 50 bruises on 13-month-old child, Sarasota man arrested

The sheriff's office says a staff member at Sarasota Memorial Hospital alerted them after medical personnel found bruising to the victim's scalp, head, ears, neck and cheek.

  Video shows man making off with Halloween decoration in Manatee County

The sheriff’s office says on Tuesday, October 15, between 9:50pm and 10:15pm, a man went to three homes in the Willow Walk subdivision in Palmetto and stole the decorations. The man is described as tall and thin and he can be seen in the video above.

Police: Bradenton man who claimed victim committed suicide charged with murder

Police say that they responded to a home on 6th Street in Sarasota on Saturday around 10:00 a.m after receiving a call about a possible suicide that had taken place.

  Sarasota County daycare worker takes plea deal over child abuse

Jamie Smithmyer, 26, will be on probation for 24 months after pleading guilty. She was arrested in February after video showed Smithmyer being very aggressive with some of the young children at the Manasota Beach Early Learning Center in South Venice.

  Sarasota man who molested four pre-teen girls while his daughter had a sleepover sentenced to 50 years in prison

The State Attorney’s Office says 60-year-old Behzad Izadi allowed his daughter to have sleepovers at his home where he would encourage her friends to drink alcohol, smoke marijuana and take Xanax, all of which he provided.

  28-year-old man arrested for allegedly selling narcotics in Bradenton

Deputies have arrested a 28-year-old man for allegedly selling narcotics in Manatee County.

  GRAPHIC: Police in Florida remove 3 kids, 245 animals from ‘deplorable’ home

Edgewater police said in a news release that it was "immediately evident neither the children, nor the animals were being cared for properly" when officers arrived at the home on Royal Palm Drive on Sunday.

Florida man accused of killing suspected ‘peeping Tom’

A Florida man now faces a manslaughter charge in last year’s beating death of a prowler with a track record of “peeping Tom” arrests.

  Police investigating hit-and-run in Manatee County that caused chain reaction crash

Troopers say Sunday around 1:45 p.m. at U.S. 301 and 53rd Avenue East in Bradenton, a black-colored Nissan sedan failed to stop for the light, crashing into the back of a 2016 Toyota Camry, which was pushed into a 2012 Toyota Camry, which was pushed into a 2014 Buick Encore.

North Port woman accused of trying to ship meth to Key West

Deputies in Charlotte County started investigating on October 15 after they were alerted about a suspicious package at a UPS Store in Port Charlotte and found it had methamphetamine inside. The package was seized before it could be shipped to an address in Key West.

Two arrested in Venice for alleged meth trafficking

Police say their special investigations team arrested 30-year-old Adam Neider and 46-year-old Matthew Gillard.

Florida teacher, coach accused of having sex with student

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office said in a release 28-year-old Megan Parris was charged with unlawful sexual activity with a minor. Parris taught math and helped coach the New Smyrna Beach High School girls' basketball team.

  Police investigating murder of 30-year-old man in Bradenton

Police say they are investigating a homicide in a home on 2400 block of 11th Street West around 10pm Thursday night. The victim has been identified as 30-year-old Michael Briles of Bradenton.

  Middle school lockdown leaves students “petrified;” 13-year-old arrested over alleged threat

Thursday morning, one parent called 911, a tip was received on the Fortify app, and several parents called the school about the threat. As news of the threat spread, several parents came to the school attempting to pick up their kids.

Florida nanny gets 20 years for sexually abusing child, having his baby

News outlets report 28-year-old Marissa Mowry was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty to sexual battery and agreeing to be designated a sexual predator.

Florida man with HIV faces charges for not disclosing status

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office filed the charges Thursday against Gentry Burns, who was in jail on unrelated charges.

Florida mom guilty of killing teen she accused of molesting daughter

43-year-old Connie Serbu was found guilty Thursday of second-degree murder. She faces a possible life sentence at a Jan. 3 hearing.

Florida man arrested on molestation charge at Disney park

Deputies say one of the victims told security that a suspect touched them as he walked by inside Ye Olde Christmas Shop. Disney security were told about another incident at the pre-show area of the Haunted Mansion.

  13-year-old arrested, accused of making threat that prompted lockdown at Manatee County middle school

The sheriff’s office says Wednesday night, the suspect and victim, both students at Nolan Middle School, as well as an unknown number of others, were on the live streaming House Party app. Deputies say the suspect and victim were insulting one another and verbally threatening one another.

  Deputies: Stolen trailers, skid steers, golf carts and even a tiny home found at Bradenton man’s home

In all, two skid steers, two golf carts, a 4x4, a construction generator with lights, four trailers, and a stage set were recovered and returned to their victims.

  Bradenton man pleads guilty to killing woman, setting her on fire

In April 2018, the body of 50-year-old Veronica Polite was found on fire on a dirt path near the 4600 block of 18th Street East.

Eight store clerks in Sarasota County cited for allegedly selling vaping products to minors

The sheriff's office partnered with the Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, Bureau of Law Enforcement to send undercover agents into 29 stores in Sarasota, Venice and Englewood on Monday.

  No jail time for former Punta Gorda Police officer who shot, killed 73-year-old woman during citizens training exercise

As part of a deal, Lee Coel, whose case was moved to Lee County, will plead no contest to second degree manslaughter and receive 10 years probation and not serve any prison time in the death of Mary Knowlton.

Florida man arrested in sex assault of girl met on Snapchat

News outlets report 22-year-old Austin Wyatt Altman was arrested Saturday on charges including sexual battery on a child and violating probation. Pasco County deputies say Altman picked her up from her house on Saturday and brought her back to his Spring Hill home, where he assaulted her.

  Bradenton woman arrested, accused of using metal broom handle to discipline child

Tuesday, detectives began investigating an alleged child abuse incident that took place on October 6, when they say Tabitha Rhodes used a metal broom handle to strike her 13-year-old child.

  Police find three gas skimmers at two different gas stations in Bradenton

The first skimmer was found at the Marathon gas station on 1832 Manatee Avenue East and the other two skimmers were found at the BP gas station on 2790 Manatee Avenue East.

  Bradenton woman arrested in hit-and-run crash that left driver injured

The driver of the Ford Mustang was injured and had to be taken to the hospital while the driver of the Jeep Cherokee, despite having a blown out back tire and significant damage, fled.

Deputies: Naked man wreaked havoc on business, then showered

A Florida man who was found nude inside a plumbing business is facing charges after being accused of using a forklift and a hammer to wreak havoc before taking a shower there.