On Friday, November 6, 2020, at approximately 11:45 pm, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office responded to an address off of Clear Lake Loop in Fort Myers in reference to a complaint of animal cruelty towards a cat. LCSO detectives obtained and executed a search warrant for the residence. Detectives and Crime Scene Technicians examined the scene and located blood on a wall inside the residence. The blood was determined to be of animal origin. After a thorough investigation, detectives learned the suspect, Antonio Rodriguez bludgeoned and disposed of the cat. Based on the facts revealed during the investigation, Rodriguez was arrested and charged with violation of Florida Statute 828.12(2) Aggravated Animal Cruelty. Based on the facts revealed during the investigation, Rodriguez was arrested and charged with violation of Florida Statute 828.12(2) Aggravated Animal Cruelty. Detectives booked Rodriguez into the Lee County Jail, where he is being held without bond, pending his initial court appearance. “This violent act against a defenseless animal is sickening” stated Sheriff Carmine Marceno. “You have my word: my team will continue to protect those who don’t have a voice. Anyone who intentionally harms an animal will go to jail”
(Photo Credit: LCSO booking photo)
Two youths and an adult have been arrested in Fort Myers after deliberately endangering a police helicopter by pointing a laser light into the cockpit. On October 31, 2020, members of the Lee County Sheriff’s Office Aviation Unit were responding to a call in Central District when a man shined a green laser light into the cockpit of the helicopter. With the help of the Forward Looking Infared camera, the Tactical Flight Officer was able to locate where the laser light was coming from.
Aviation deputies observed three individuals walking through a neighborhood and intentionally pointing a laser at the helicopter.
The helicopter team tracked the subjects and advised LCSO ground units they were standing in a driveway getting candy at 6190 Arbor Avenue.
Patrol deputies quickly responded and took Alexander Harry, Xavier Satchell, and Adam Schlesier into custody and charged them with Misuse of a Laser, which is a third-degree felony.
“I can’t begin to explain how dangerous it is to put our aviation crew members in jeopardy by pointing a laser light at their eyes,” stated Sheriff Carmine Marceno on social media. “Any person who intentionally tries to harm my family members will go to jail.”
“Our patrol and aviation units worked together to arrest four subjects for this crime in the last 72 hours. Those who want to play this game will find themselves in the Lee County Jail,” stated Sheriff Carmine Marceno.
It was scheduled to open in January, but permit delays and a global pandemic delayed the opening of SW Florida’s only cat café to June. Last week, however, the Gulf Coast Town Center café was finally able opened its doors and welcome its first customers. The Cattyshack Cafe is a coffee shop and lounge with a separated area (Mulligan Room) dedicated to interacting with adoptable rescue cats and kittens. The entry fee into the Mulligan Room is $15 per person for a 50 minute reservation. Almost everything is cat themed from the drinks to the decor. Owners Andrew Townsend and Amber Redfern visited 20 cat cafes in six states and saw what worked and what didn’t work. They then put those lessons to use in Cattyshack. Lee County has an issue with feral and unwanted cats and kittens awaiting adoption. Cattyshack cafe seeks to address this problem and according to their website there has been quite a few success stories in the first few days of opening with a total of 49 adoptions in the first four days including kittens, adults and even a 9 year old senior, Kiki. It is not just the cats who the owners hope will benefit from visiting the café – owners Andrew and Amber hope that humans will see benefits too. They hope that renters will find solace in sharing a coffee with a feline companion if they can’t keep a cat at home, and also claim it is a very relaxing place for those seeking some peace and tranquility. Not to mention that it is a unique venue for business events. Cattyshack Cat Café is located at 9901 Gulf Coast Main St., Suite D-140, in Gulf Coast Town Center, near Outback, Sports Clips and The Cigar Bar. To learn more, visit facebook.com/CattyshackCafe or cattyshackcafe.com.
Title photo – Facebook Cattyshack Cafe
Title photo – Facebook Cattyshack Cafe
Earlier this week, a man was seen diving into the fish tank at the Bass Pro store in Fort Myers. He managed to escape the tank and flee the store before employees could apprehend him, and although he was spotted on security footage, nobody was able to identity him. We have been sent a copy of the footage showing the incident, shown below. The majestic skills of the cliff divers of Acapulco it is not! According to reports, it will now cost the store $3,000 to decontaminate the fish tank. The store were understandably far from impressed :“This incident is illegal, dangerous and highly discouraged. We work with law enforcement to investigate all individuals who personally attempt or are involved with such activities.” Luckily the as yet unidentified alleged perpetrator wanted to give police a helping hand by posting a video of the incident on Facebook with the caption ‘Yup well would you look at that ..?#FloridaCheck ‘. Needless to say, Lee County Sheriff’s deputies are now looking for the social media over-sharer – Daniel Armendariz. Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Armendariz, is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477). All callers will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $3,000. Tips may also be made online or by submitting a tip on the P3Tips mobile app.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case of an abused alligator. The alligator was found impaled by arrows and bound by rope on April 28 near a backyard pond on Oak Hill Loop off Cross Creek Boulevard in south Fort Myers. The animal was taken for treatment but there have been no leads on the suspect, according to PETA. “Someone shot this alligator twice in the neck, tied the animal up, and left him or her to suffer and die,” said PETA Vice President Colleen O’Brien. “PETA urges anyone with information to come forward immediately so that the abuser can be held accountable and stopped from hurting anyone else.” Just one day after this alligator was found, the Lee County Sheriff’s office announced a new Animal Cruelty task force. “The link between animal abuse and human abuse is clear and frightening,” stated Sheriff Carmine Marceno. “In addition to protecting defenseless animals, addressing animal cruelty will likely prevent future acts of violence against people in our county.” “We have arrested and successfully prosecuted cases of animal abuse in Lee County,” added Sheriff Marceno. “This task force strengthens our ability to investigate, locate and arrest those committing these acts of cruelty.” Anyone with information is asked to call Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS. Crime Stoppers is also offering a reward of up to $3,000 if an arrest and conviction are made. Main Photo : Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers