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Cops Corner: Best of 2018 on Longboat Key

Here are 2018's best police reports from around Longboat Key.

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  • | 10:20 a.m. December 26, 2018
  • Longboat Key
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JAN. 2

Exit interview

3:55 p.m. 5300 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Disturbance: An officer was called to a business on a report of a disturbance. An employee told the officer that a recently fired co-worker had returned a company van, went inside and argued with the employee. He then threw the keys to the van into some bushes and left. The keys were recovered and the business was added to a list of locations seeking extra police patrols. 

JAN. 8

Real (estate) mistake

7:04 p.m., 500 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Suspicious circumstance: A real estate agent found an unexpected man sleeping in a for-sale property’s master bedroom and notified the owner, who called police. An investigating officer knocked on the door but got no response. The officer tried to reach the owner through the Realtor but was unsuccessful. While looking around the outside of the property, he received a call from the Realtor, who said she had entered the wrong condo unit by mistake, and all was well.

JAN. 22

I have misplaced my pants

5 p.m., 3000 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Missing property: A man called police to report his shorts and wallet were missing inside a residence. By the time the officer arrived, the man reported finding his shorts and wallet, but made no further comment.

JAN. 30

Medium-rare emergency

8:09 p.m., 2400 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

False alarm: Police responding to a fire-alarm report learned upon an officer’s arrival that a steak was the source of the smoke. There was no emergency.

FEB. 5

One dog, two dog parks

4:03 p.m., 4000 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Bayfront Park

Disturbance: Police were called to Bayfront Park regarding an owner who was allowing her bigger dog to play in the area for small dogs. Though no town ordinance requires use of one enclosure or the other, the officer told the dog owner signs at the dog park recommend small dogs and large dogs play separately. The dog owner remarked the situation was ridiculous, but moved to the area for large dogs.

FEB. 22

No manners

7:38 p.m., 5300 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Disturbance: A man who appeared drunk at a restaurant and was taking food from other patrons’ plates refused to leave when asked by management. The man departed he was when told police were on the way. He was last seen walking north in the parking lot, with his family following behind.

FEB. 26

Consumer reports

10:50 a.m., 800 block of Tarawitt Drive

Suspicious person: A construction crew on Jungle Queen Way called police to report the sound of a woman screaming somewhere to their east. When police arrived, members of the crew said they thought a light-colored Cadillac Escalade was involved. When police found a silver Escalade in a nearby driveway, officers spoke to the resident inside. She said she was loud because she was upset over waiting on hurricane repairs, and that it was not a police matter.


Party time

12:54 p.m., Greer Island

Public service: An officer was sent to the bayside of Greer Island to check out what appeared to a caller to be a loud boat party. When the officer arrived, he found five anchored boats, and a group of “elderly and very polite’’ boaters. No loud music was being played, nor was there evidence of a public nuisance.


Not so much fun

2:09 a.m., 2000 block of Harbourside Drive

Suspicious circumstance: Two women on spring break called police to report a man was following them. The women told police they had accepted a ride to Longboat Key with a man they didn’t know. During the ride, they got scared and asked to get out of the car, but related the man was following them. The women didn’t know where they were but wanted to go back to Siesta Key, where they were staying. The officer waited with them until a ride-service car arrived.



3:09 p.m., 600 block of Buttonwood Drive

Suspicious circumstance: During excavation for landscaping and lanai work, a box and bag of remains were found. Detectives and crime scene investigators responded to the site to take photos, which were relayed to the Medical Examiner’s Office. The remains were determined not to be human.


Easy riders

8:10 p.m., 2400 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Traffic: A pair of motorcyclists were pulled over concerning their speed – 30-32 mph in a 45 mph zone. The riders said they were taking it easy because of one of their passengers’ medical condition. The officer said he appreciated that and asked them to pull over occasionally to let traffic pass.


That’s rude

7:26 a.m., 2300 Gulf of Mexico Drive

Disturbance: A crew retrieving granite from a condo unit drew the attention of a resident couple and the manager of the community. The couple said the crew walked in behind them through an ordinarily locked door, at which time the couple told the crew they really needed permission from management to enter the lobby. The crew uttered an obscenity and “you people have issues’’ and went on about their business. Police arrived after the crew left. The couple told the officer no threats were made, just that the crew was rude.


No walk in the park

9:12 a.m., 1000 block Longboat Club Road

Civil disturbance: A man called police to report an incident between him and another man. The caller said he was walking his dog when an official of his homeowners group began following him with a recording cell phone, saying: “I hope you’re picking up after your dog.’’ This set off an argument between the men, but no threats or violence. The official said bags of dog feces had been found under nearby shrubs in the past and not properly disposed of. The dog owner felt he was being unjustly provoked. Both men, who conceded they have had disagreements in the past, were advised to keep their interactions civil and avoid confrontations.


See a C-note

7:37 a.m., 500 block Bay Isles Parkway

Found property: A grocery store manager called police to report finding a $100 bill 48 hours previous, with no one returning to claim it. The police department took the bill for safe-keeping and gave the manager a case number and police department business card in case someone comes looking for lost money.

MAY 17

Blame the dog

6:34 p.m., 500 block Forest Way

Animal rescue: Police responding to a report of a dog inside a closed car learned from the owner that the small dog had activated the locking mechanism with the owner’s purse and keys inside. The officer stood by while AAA roadside assistance was called. Within 15 minutes, the dog was out and appeared fine.

MAY 19

Pool duty

7:19 a.m., 1000 block of Longboat Club Road

Suspicious circumstance: Police were called to look into a report of dog feces in the condo community’s pool. When an officer arrived, he spoke to a resident who said the pool hours are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., and someone had thrown the feces into the south end of the pool overnight. The caller said she had no proof but suspected she knew who was responsible. The officer spoke to the person the caller suspected, but he denied throwing anything into the pool. The officer said the department would make directed patrols of the area more often. A pool service was called to clean the pool.

MAY 21

Slip up

12:29 p.m., 100 Sands Point Road

Public service: Police were called to a marina because a boat unknown to management was moored in a member’s slip. The owner was reached by police and told an officer he was on a charter with the owner of the slip, but they took the owner’s boat instead and he left the charter boat behind. The charter operator was advised to leave word of such an arrangement in the future.

MAY 27

For grandma

6:58 p.m., 1600 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Trespassing: A man found inside the former Colony Beach & Tennis Resort property said he was a guest at a nearby resort and had walked there to photograph the abandoned site. He told an officer his grandmother told him about her experiences at the Colony and the man wanted to show her photos of its current state. He was issued a verbal trespassing warning and told of the dangers of the property. He said he would not return.


Junk mail

12:21 p.m., 200 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Suspicious package: A woman received a suspicious package in the mail at her office from an unknown sender, prompting her to call police. The package contained a small, nylon bag filled with brown mulch and soil, along with a printed note that read “You’re a dirt bag.’’ The woman told police she doesn’t know who could have sent it.


No way to recycle

10:53 a.m., Police headquarters

Larceny: A woman who stopped in to the police station reported her blue Manatee County recycling bin was missing. She told officers she moved to her address in 2015 and wasn’t sure there had ever been a bin there. But she recently started to recycle and noticed the blue bin wasn’t there. She filled out a statement form and left.


Open government

9:40 p.m., 500 block of Bay Isles Road

Security check: While performing a security check at Town Hall, an officer discovered the front door partially open. Everything inside appeared in order. The officer secured the door and ensured all other doors were secured.


Not naked

3:25 p.m., 3900 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Suspicious person: Two officers were called to the beach in response to a report of a naked man sunbathing. Upon their arrival, they found a 74-year-old man pulling black shorts over a tan Speedo-style swimsuit. The man said he had never removed his swimsuit and knew doing so was against the law.


Russian interference 

2:08 p.m., 100 block of N. Shore Road

Beverage violation: While on patrol of Greer Island, an officer discovered a half-full bottle of Russian Standard Vodka, three unopened Budweiser Lime containers and three unopened Modelo beers on the beach. No one nearby claimed ownership. The officer collected the containers, emptied their contents, photographed the empties and disposed of them. A nearby group of young adults then left the beach.


Ain't nothin' but a found dog

8:14 a.m., 6000 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Found animal: Officers were sent to a marina on a report of a found dog. The small, poodle-type dog was walking loose in the parking lot when employees found it. Police checked the area but didn’t find its owner. The marina employee offered to keep the dog there for the time being.


First a warning, then directions

4:58 a.m., 3400 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Traffic: While on patrol, an officer spotted a sedan that failed to maintain a single lane. While following, the officer reported seeing the car stray from its lane about four times in less than a minute. After pulling the car over, the officer noted no signs of driver impairment. The driver said he was lost, looking for Siesta Key and was struggling to find his phone. The 55-year-old man was given a warning and directions to Siesta Key.

AUG. 14

Nothing to worry about

7:53 p.m., 3100 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Suspicious person: Police were notified about  a man, dressed in jeans and a brown shirt walking south along Gulf of Mexico Drive from the 3100 block, talking to himself and gesturing. The man told officers he takes medication for a medical condition that can produce involuntary motions. Officers reported the man was coherent and respectful during their conversation. Asked if police could be of further assistance, the man declined help and said he was walking to a store.

AUG. 25

Gate, what gate?

12:34 p.m., 7300 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Traffic incident: A driver who told police he was focused on a boat on the water below instead of what was taking place in front of him on the Longboat Pass Bridge crashed into the lowered drawbridge gate, causing $500 in damage. The bridge tender called police and reported the Toyota SUV involved in the incident was parked at the south end of the bridge. Personnel reset the gate but said the warning lights would need replacing. The driver was cited for careless driving.

AUG. 27

Get the lead out

10:08 a.m., 4400 block of Exeter Drive.

Suspicious circumstance: Police met with a homeowner who returned to her residence and found a lock on her front door wouldn’t work. A locksmith discovered debris in the mechanism that appeared to be from a pencil. The woman noted to the officer she has had issues with a neighbor previously. She told the officer she has ordered a video surveillance system for her entry.

AUG. 29

A long walk

6:20 p.m., 6700 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Suspicious person: A woman wearing plastic trash bags, walking south on Gulf of Mexico Drive, raised the suspicions of a caller to police. Officers found the 56-year-old woman, who said she had fashioned the bags into makeshift rain gear as she walked from Coquina Beach to the University Parkway area in Sarasota. With no criminal wants or warrants, she was given a ride to the south end of the island to continue her journey.


Trouble on the low seas

12:58 a.m., 700 block of Broadway

Disturbance: A man staying aboard a boat spotted his missing kayak tied to a nearby vessel and made his way over to investigate. A woman aboard said she had borrowed it from a shoreside spot and forgot to bring it back. Over the course of the conversation, the man said the tone changed and the woman pointed a flare gun at him. The man didn’t want to press charges and refused to sign a statement, saying he only wanted the incident documented. He was advised to stay away from the woman.

OCT. 14

Steering him right

3:51 p.m., near Jewfish Key

Public service: A boater told a marine patrol officer his vessel’s power steering system was leaking and low on hydraulic fluid. The officer transported the boat operator to a marina, where the boater purchased supplies to make repairs. The officer returned the boat operator to his family, where he fixed the problem and got underway.

OCT. 29

Reading is fundamental

5:04 p.m., 500 block of Bay Isles Road

Suspicious person: Police were called regarding a man talking to himself. The responding officer found the man, who said he was reading aloud from a book he had borrowed from the Longboat Key Library.

NOV. 2

Charging too long

11:52 p.m., Bayfront Park

Parking: An electric vehicle was issued a parking ticket after an officer found it still connected to a charging post after Bayfront Park’s closing hour of 11 p.m.

NOV. 6

Signs of the (high) times

12:12 a.m., Police Headquarters

Code enforcement: Several officers were notified by a commander that signs promoting Dr. Green Relief Cannabis Cards had been placed in various locations around the town, in violation of the town’s sign code. Officers collected 29 of the signs and brought them to the police department for safekeeping. Police tried to contact the sign’s owners, but the 1-800 number on the sign did not connect to the company. Chain of evidence paperwork was completed and the signs were inventoried.

NOV. 22

Um, who wants Chinese?

4:58 p.m., 500 block of Bayport Way

Fire alarm: Police and fire-rescue units responded to a report of an activated residential fire alarm, but quickly discovered a main-course emergency. A turkey left in the oven too long sent smoke into the residence, setting off the smoke detectors. Fire-rescue personnel reset the alarms.

DEC. 5

Oo-oo, that smell

11:25 p.m., 4700 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive

Narcotics: An officer responding to a report of a suspicious vehicle first spoke to a witness who reported smelling marijuana coming from a white van. The officer spoke to the van’s driver, who said he worked at that location. The officer also reported smelling marijuana and received consent to search the van. He reported discovering a small bag in a backpack, the contents of which the officer reported tested positive for marijuana –- 3 grams. The man was issued a notice to appear in court on possession charges.

Dec. 6

Beach blanket . . . whatever

1:32 p.m., 500 St. Judes Drive

Suspicious circumstance: A business owner called police to report overnight activity captured on a security camera. She told an officer the video from the night before depicted three men and three women getting out of an unknown make/model car in her lot around 9:20 p.m., carrying blankets and heading toward the beach. They returned about four hours later and drove off.


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