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An arrest means only that a law enforcement officer attests there is probable cause to reasonably believe that a crime has been committed. An arrestee is presumed innocent until proved guilty in a court of law.


Week of October 20, 2014 - October 26, 2014

~ Monday's Local/State News ~

Bank Robbery Reported
Friday Afternoon; Cops
Seek Suspect

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office reported a bank robbery that occurred on Friday, Oct. 17th, at about 3:45 p.m., at the Bank of America branch located at 4545 14th Street West, Bradenton.

Above, a surveillance photo of the suspect

A media release from the sheriff's office said at about 3:45 p.m. the suspect entered the listed Bank of America.

The suspect quietly got in line and waited his turn to get to a teller.

When the suspect got to the teller he said nothing but handed a note to the teller.

The teller handed the suspect money. The suspect took the money left.

The suspect absconded with an unknown amount of money at this time.

He was described as being a White male, 5’5” to 5’7” tall, bald, no facial hair, sunglasses, wearing a tan polo type short and blue jean pants.

Anyone with any information about this case is asked to call the Manatee County Sheriff's Office at (941) 747-3011 or CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477) -- or, to provide an anonymous e-Tip by computer, click here, or text MCSTIPS plus your message to 274637 (CRIMES).

Callers to the CrimeStoppers tip line and Tipsters who submit e-Tips by computer or by text message will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward.

Manatee Detective Arrests
Parrish Man, 59, for Molesting
Boy, 4, on Swing in Back Yard

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office has arrested Noel Salas Gison, 59, of 10114 41st Court East, in Parrish.

Noel Gison

According to the arrest report, Gison is a neighbor of the 4-year-old male victim.

On Wednesday, Oct. 15th, at about 6:30 p.m., the boy's mother was standing on the porch of her house about 0 to 15 feet from the incident location.

She saw Gison sitting next to the boy as the boy was standing in a swing in the back yard.

She then heard Gison asking the victim, "What's that?" and grabbed the boy's genitals with one hand.

The mother screamed "Stop touching my kid!" After the scream, Gison didn't say anything, got up and walked back into his house.

The boy was taken inside the house and was questioned about the incident by his father.

The boy told his father that Gison grabbed his "pee-pee" in the swing.

The 4-year-old victim was playing with two juveniles of the ages of 7 and 4 when the incident occurred, but all three were not interviewed because of their age.

Gison told a detective he did touch the lad, but said it was all accidental.

Gison was arrested and charged with Molestation of a Minor.

He later posted a bail bond of $2,500 and was released from the Manatee County Jail.

Woman Busted for Embezzlement
from Walmart Store

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Manatee County Sheriff's Office has arrested Kayla Marie Ramirez, 18, of 2352 21st Street East, Sarasota.

Kayla Ramirez

The arrest report said Ramirez was an employee of the Walmart store located at 8320 Lockwood Ridge Road, in South Manatee County.

On Wednesday, Oct. 15th, at about 10:45 p.m., Ramirez admitted to taking cash from her register on seven different occasions, totaling $1,750.

She supplied a written statement admitted to the thefts.

She was arrested and charged with Grand Theft by Embezzlement.

She was later released from the Manatee County Jail on her own recognizance, supervised.

Young Woman Killed
in Single Car Crash

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Florida Highway Patrol reported a single vehicle crash that resulted in a fatality. The incident occurred on Saturday, Oct. 18th, at about 4 a.m., on Cortez Road West at the 44th Avenue connection.

The FHP report said vehicle 1, being driven by Ashelgh Danielle Bond, 21, of Parrish, was traveling eastbound in the inside lane of SR 684 (Cortez Road) approaching the intersection with the 44th Avenue Connection.

The driver of vehicle 1, Miss Bond, failed to negotiate a left hand curve in the roadway. She over-corrected the vehicle to the right, causing the vehicle, a 2001 Toyota Camry, to rotate clockwise.

Vehicle 1 continued to travel in an easterly direction which caused the driver side of vehicle 1 to collide with a concrete utility pole.

After contacting the utility pole, vehicle 1 rotated counterclockwise coming to final rest facing in a northerly direction.

Miss Bond was pronounced dead at the scene.

Pedestrian Struck, Killed
on U.S. 41 Friday Evening

MANATEE COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Florida Highway Patrol reported a fatal accident between a pedestrian and a 2013 Chevy that occurred on Friday, Oct. 17th, at about 8:10 p.m., on U.S. 41 at Bradenton Avenue, Bradenton.

A vehicle being driven by Francis F. Peter, 47, of Bradenton, was northbound on US 41 in the right lane passing Braden Ave.

The pedestrian, since identified as Harry C. Ziegler, 55, of Bradenton, was walking from the west to the east side of the roadway.

The pedestrian entered the path of the Chevy and the Chevy's left front struck the pedestrian. The pedestrian came to final rest in the northbound left lane.

The Chevy came to a controlled stop in the right lane, north of the impact.

Mr. Ziegler was pronounced dead at the scene.

West Bradenton Crime Watch
Fundraising Rummage Sale

BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- Attention to all rummage sale attendees, as well as those of you who would like to sell your treasures.

The West Bradenton Crime Watch Inc, a non-profit organization, will have a Fundraising Rummage Sale on November 8, 2014, at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 3011 19th Avenue West, Bradenton, from 9 am to noon.

You can reserve a booth for $25 by contacting them at (941) 677-3815, or e-mail them at:

Your profits from your treasures are yours. You are responsible for your own table, chairs, etc., and for set up and take down. We request that all “leftovers” be either taken away when you leave, or we will have a Salvation Army Drop off at the church following the closing of the sale.

Help them raise funds for our award-winning Annual Safe Kids Fair, that teaches children and their families how to be safe in their homes and community (they have just completed their second fair with over 300 attendees), Safe Fair (for adults), and crime prevention classes.

Their neighborhood watch programs have partnered with the Bradenton Police Department for 5 years in bringing safety education to the residents of the City of Bradenton and has assisted in decreasing crime by an average of 20% over those 5 years.

Be a part of a fun day, as well as helping us bring safety to more children and families!

Reserve your booth today.

Miami Area Retail Theft Ring
Arrested in North Port Due to
Alert Citizen's Watchful Eye

SARASOTA COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office arrested four people found in possession of more than $4,000 in stolen merchandise thanks to the watchful eye of a concerned citizen.

Above, L to R, Moises Eskenazi, Olga Eskenazi, Felicita Henriquez, and Vanessa Equisquiza

Deputies responded to the Ross department store at 18139 Tamiami Trail in North Port Thursday afternoon, Oct. 16th, when a citizen reported seeing the suspects remove multiple articles of clothing that they had concealed.

When deputies stopped the suspect's vehicle, they noticed two women in the back seat ripping tags off of clothing and other merchandise in trash bags below their feet.

When the vehicle was searched, deputies discovered $4,287.28 in tagged merchandise.

Loss Prevention at Ross was able to identify 70 pieces of stolen items totaling over $2,000.

The remaining 72 items from TJ Maxx may be connected to a theft in Ft. Myers. When the suspects were arrested, each woman removed multiple layers of spandex and compressive clothing worn to conceal the merchandise.

Moises Eskenazi, 56, Olga Eskenazi, 59, Felicita Henriquez, 55, and Vanessa Equsquiza, 37, were each charged with Grand Theft, Shoplifting and Use of an Antishoplifting Device.

The driver was also charged with not having a Valid License. Combined, the three women have 13 prior charges of Shoplifting.

Suspect Arrested in September
Nokomis Race Trac Robbery;
Cops Seek Two Others

SARASOTA COUNTY, Florida [NMT] -- The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office arrested a man in connection with an armed robbery and kidnapping that took place at a Nokomis Race Trac gas station in September.

Demarcus Morris

On September 22, after exiting the gas station at 410 N. Tamiami Trail, the victim was approached by three males and held at gunpoint as they demanded he get into their vehicle.

The suspects drove the victim a short distance away when they demanded all of the money in his possession.

When the victim could only come up with $7.00 cash, the suspects drove him to the Suntrust bank at 1000 N. Tamiami Trail and demanded his PIN number.

While the transaction was being made, the victim was able to flee the vehicle and run to a local business for help.

Law Enforcement was able to quickly identify one of the suspects from the surveillance video obtained at the ATM. The other suspects are unknown at this time.

Today, Demarcus Morris, DOB 02/13/73, was taken into custody on charges of Armed Robbery With a Firearm and Armed Kidnapping to Facilitate a Felony. His arrest history includes Possession and Sale of Cocaine, Aggravated Battery on an Elderly Victim, Robbery and Violation of Probation.

Anyone with information related to this crime is encouraged to call Criminal Investigations at 941-861-1719 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers by calling 941-366-TIPS (8477), or online at

Creepy Clown Craze
Comes to Florida

JACKSONVILLE, Florida [NMT/WKMG] -- It's a creepy craze in California: Mysterious clowns are popping up across the state and terrorizing people in the towns, Orlando television station WKMG reported.

Above, allegedly one of the creepy clowns

The odd behavior has now made its way to Jacksonville. For some, it's funny, but others call it frightening.

Surveillance videos in the Springfield area show clowns caught on people's porches and sidewalks. In one video, the clown clearly knew he was being recorded.

The clown on a porch grabs a pumpkin, tears it apart, then stares at the camera before disappearing into the darkness.

Clowning is already quite the craze in California. It started with a photography project, and the pictures have gone viral. Creepy comics are terrorizing some people and humoring others as they pose in front of monuments and prowl the streets. Now the mysterious behavior is spreading.

Doug Vanderlaan's security camera recorded a clown out front of his Market Street home in Springfield.

"It was very weird," Vanderlaan said. "I guess some people are afraid of clowns. I wouldn't say I am, but if you are afraid of clowns, it would be alarming."

Word on the street is the Springfield sightings are just friends pranking friends ahead of some Halloween parties. The clowns know their targets: people who can take a joke and won't freak out.

As far as the pumpkin the jester destroyed, News4Jax was told the clown brought it himself so there'd be no hard feelings.

"I think that it may be some neighbors having fun," Vanderlaan said.

Will the clowns continue? That's still to be determined.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said so far it hasn't gotten any calls or complaints, WKMG said.

Gov. Scott: CDC Agrees to
FL's Preparedness Requests

TALLAHASSEE, Florida [NMT] -- On Saturday, Oct. 18th, Governor Scott announced that the CDC has agreed to two of the state’s requests for enhancing Florida’s Ebola preparedness efforts, including holding a conference call with healthcare workers on best practices and federal approval of the state’s repurpose of more than $7 million in federal grant funding. The CDC, has still not provided the additional 27 testing kits, or contacted the passengers that flew on the Frontier flight from Dallas to Ft. Lauderdale.

Above, the Ebola virus

Governor Scott said, “We want to thank the CDC for agreeing to hold a conference call with Florida hospitals on Monday, October 20th at 3:30pm. Our healthcare workers need to hear directly from the CDC on what happened in Dallas that allowed Ebola to be transmitted to two nurses, and what can be done to protect our healthcare professionals in Florida who are on the front lines. Florida hospitals also have questions of their own and the CDC must provide guidance.

“We appreciate the CDC’s preliminary approval to move forward with redirecting more than $7 million in federal grant funds to purchase the necessary equipment and supplies to protect healthcare workers who may come into contact with Ebola. The CDC indicated that we will receive formal approval next week, but based on this preliminary approval, we have already begun using these funds to enhance our Ebola preparedness efforts.

“While this is great progress, we’re waiting on the CDC to provide additional testing kits. With a population of more than 19 million people, tens of millions of tourists, and numerous ports and international airports, we must ensure Florida can rapidly test any future patients who have the potential for Ebola.

“The CDC still needs to identify, notify, and monitor all of the passengers that flew from Dallas to Ft. Lauderdale after nurse Amber Joy Vinson flew on the same plane. We know she had a low grade-fever when she traveled to Dallas, and the plane then came to Florida. While this risk is low, there have been reports she was potentially symptomatic, and the CDC should take any potential threat seriously – no matter how small. We’re continuing to hope for the best, while preparing for the worst and we expect the CDC to do everything possible to ensure our communities are kept safe.”

The CDC has agreed to hold a conference call with Florida hospitals on Monday, October 20th at 3:30pm. This call will cover critical areas of preparedness and training for our Florida hospitals. Officials with the CDC’s state and local readiness section will be hosting the call with Florida’s hospital executives. The call will provide guidance for proper use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), safe handling of medical waste and effective clinical strategies within the hospital setting.



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