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Cops Corner

Landlord sees power in dispute with tenants

The owner of a rental house sees electric current in a line and randomly shuts off power to a home. This and other Sarasota Police Department reports in this week's Cops Corner.

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  • | 5:00 a.m. November 29, 2023
  • Sarasota
  • Cops Corner
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Friday, Nov. 10

Power play

10:35 p.m., 2300 block of Temple Street

Civil dispute: The owner of a rental property was randomly turning off the power to the residence because she said she could see the electricity running through the power line. The skeptical complainants told the officer they had been having ongoing issues with the landlord because she turns off the power to the home at random times during the day and night. They said they believe she does this because she wants them to vacate. 

The owner admitted to turning off the power, but said it is because the power company told her to do so if she “saw current” in the power line.  She also stated the power play was not out of spite, although she did want the tenants evicted.

After both parties were told the matter is civil in nature, the officer told the owner she could not deprive the tenants from having power, and she said it would not happen again.

Some spicy Creole

3:21 p.m., 1600 block of 36th Street

Disturbance: After a considerable language barrier was resolved, officers were able to determine a dispute between a man and woman was over a cell phone. The complainant had been yelling at a male in a vehicle before an officer arrived on the scene. Although she spoke only Haitian Creole, an officer was able to determine she was angry with the father of her child — the man in the car — about a text he received. How that led to the man absconding the woman’s phone was not explained.

Needing more information about the dispute, a second officer who speaks fluent Haitian Creole was contacted by phone and was able to translate the dispute for the responding officer. Together, they determined the man had the complainant’s cell phone and she wanted it back. She explained that if her phone was returned that would end the dispute.

The man returned the phone and then left the scene to give the complainant an opportunity to “cool off.”

Saturday, Nov. 11

Family fracas

10:17 p.m., 500 block of North Pompano Avenue

Fight: Uncooperative witnesses brought a quick conclusion to an investigation about a physical altercation at a home. The responding officer spoke with one possible victim who advised he was attending a party at the address when a man he described as the “homeowner’s wife’s sister’s husband” arrived intoxicated and began a physical altercation. The fight appeared to have caused damage to the front porch railing. 

While interviewing the victim, the homeowner demanded law enforcement vacate his property. The interview was moved to the street where the victim then said he did not wish to pursue charges or make a report of the incident. There was a second alleged victim who also was uncooperative with the investigation. The subject in the case was gone upon the officer’s arrival. With that, the investigation into what may not have been a fight started by the brother-in-law was concluded.

Thursday, Nov. 16

Harassment by graffiti

10:05 a.m., 1500 block of 24th Street

Criminal mischief: A complainant told an officer she believed she was being harassed, possibly by her ex-boyfriend, by threatening spray paint on her rented residence. Over the prior three days, she said the home had been "tagged" with graffiti. The officer observed two pieces of graffiti on the house, both smiley faces with X's for eyes. One appeared to be fresh and the smell of spray paint was evident. 

The complainant said the second incident must have occurred after 11 p.m. the previous night and that at sometime between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. there was a loud knocking at the door, but she was too afraid to answer it or see who it was. She said she believes an ex-boyfriend against whom she has an injunction for domestic battery is responsible, although she has no evidence to positively identify a suspect. 

After canvassing the area, the officer confirmed her home was the only one that had been vandalized. The officer called the property owners to ask if they wished to pursue charges, but as of the time of the report had not heard back.


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