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Cops Corner

Dog owner strikes up argument with Longboat officer over ordinance

What started as a warning for having a dog on the beach turned into an argument and refusal to sign a citation. This and other Longboat Key Police reports in this week's Cops Corner.

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Friday, Oct. 27

Drunk and disorderly 

7:08 p.m., 4700 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive 

Citizen Dispute: Longboat Key Police Department was dispatched for a reported dispute. The manager of a resort said there was an intoxicated guest that would not listen to staff and was causing a disturbance in the lobby. When the officer arrived on scene, the intoxicated man went back to his room willingly. 

Saturday, Oct. 28 

Plumbing problems 

11:20 a.m., 5900 block of Emerald Harbor Drive 

Citizen Assist: An officer was dispatched to a sewer issue, but called the complainant first to check in. On the phone, the complainant said he was having sewer issues and needed to reach Public Works, not the police department. He also said he had already contacted Public Works, so the officer determined that no police assistance was necessary.

Sunday, Oct. 29 

Doggy dispute 

2:09 p.m., Beer Can Island 

Dog on the beach: While on marine patrol, a Longboat officer noticed a vessel anchored around Beer Can Island, and a dog on the beach close to the vessel. The officer talked to the owner and advised the owner about the ordinance prohibiting dogs on Longboat beaches. Initially, the owner took the dog back to the vessel without incident. But after the officer left the scene, he looked back and saw the dog had returned to the beach. The marine patrol officer then went back to the vessel owners and further explained the policy. The dog owner became argumentative, claiming no signs were posted. The officer proceeded to state that signs are not required, but there are signs at the beach access and on Beer Can Island. The owner refused to sign the citation that the officer issued her, so her boyfriend had to sign for it. 

Swimmer safety 

3:42 p.m., Firehouse Lane 

Boat-Miscellaneous: Officers on marine patrol were sent to investigate a man hanging off a buoy near Whitney Beach, possibly in distress. A sergeant made it to the beach first, and found that the man had already made it back to the beach, and was not in distress. 

Monday, Oct. 30 

Early work exception 

7:11 a.m., 3000 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive 

Noise Complaint: Dispatch sent Longboat PD to a reported noise complaint due to construction work before 8 a.m. But the sergeant on duty looked into the matter, finding that the company had been granted an exception to the noise ordinance in order to complete concrete pouring. 

Wednesday, Nov. 1 

Tire troubles 

8:22 a.m., 2500 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive 

Traffic Hazard: An officer noticed a vehicle blocking a bike lane and partially parked in the northbound lane of Gulf of Mexico Drive. The officer activated his lights and approached the vehicle. On the driver’s door, the officer found a note left by the owner. When the officer called the owner, the owner said she had a tow truck on the way. But the officer warned her that the vehicle was a traffic hazard, and police would have it towed if the other tow truck didn’t arrive in a timely manner. A few minutes later, the owner arrived on the scene and said the vehicle wasn’t completely disabled, it just had a low front tire. The officer issued her a citation for parking in the bike lane, and advised if the situation were to happen again that she should call emergency services. 

Thursday, Nov. 2

Suspicious sailboat

9:35 a.m., 600 block of Cedar Street 

Suspicious Vessel: A resident reported a suspicious sailing vessel that was resting against his dock. Marine patrol officers arrived on scene, and spoke with the resident who said he woke up to the sailing boat aground and resting on his dock. While the officers were on scene, the owner of the boat showed up and said the boat dragged anchor in the middle of the night. He said he would move it at the next high tide. Both the boat owner and homeowner were in agreement, so police were no longer needed. 



Carter Weinhofer

Carter Weinhofer is the Longboat Key news reporter for the Observer. Originally from a small town in Pennsylvania, he moved to St. Petersburg to attend Eckerd College until graduating in 2023. During his entire undergraduate career, he worked at the student newspaper, The Current, holding positions from science reporter to editor-in-chief.

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