Pinellas County

Pinellas County, Florida criminal law news and events

Mentally Ill Pinellas Teen Charged with First-Degree Murder

Eighteen-year-old Benjamin K. Bishop of Oldsmar was charged this weekend in Pinellas County with killing his mother and her boyfriend in their Oldsmar home. He faces two counts of first-degree murder. According to the sheriff’s report, Bishop has a history […]... [Read More]

Mental Competence Challenged in St. Petersburg Murder Case

Bradley Bolden is accused of killing a private security officer at a St. Petersburg apartment complex last year. The officer was found shot dead near the apartment pool and tennis courts. Lawyers are now arguing over whether Bolden may be […]... [Read More]

St. Peterburg Woman Charged with DUI, Child Neglect in Parked Car

Barbara Brummette, of St. Petersburg, was arrested and charged with driving under the influence (DUI) and child neglect after Pinellas County sheriff’s deputies allegedly discovered her over the weekend, passed out in her car. Though the car was parked and […]... [Read More]

Charges Upgraded from Manslaughter to Second-Degree Murder in St. Pete Death

Scott Greenberg was originally charged with manslaughter relating to the death of his girlfriend earlier this week but the charges have now been upgraded. He told police he had accidentally choked Jennifer Zale  to death while they were having sex […]... [Read More]

Three Charged with First-Degree Murder in Death of Pinellas Park Fisherman

Thirty-nine-year-old David Rhea, a commercial fisherman from Pinellas Park, was shot and killed in his home last May. Three men then demanded money from Rhea’s mother and fled the residence. Cody Dials, Randy White and Zachary Perrine have now been […]... [Read More]

Pinellas Park Man Charged with First-Degree Murder of Girlfriend

Luis Antonio Santiago was charged this weekend with the first-degree murder of his girlfriend, Belinda Joyce Thomas, in Pinellas Park. A friend reported that Santiago, smelling of alcohol and crying, pounded on his door and confessed to the killing. The […]... [Read More]

Local Man Sentenced to More than 40 Years in Prison for St. Petersburg DUI Manslaughter

A Pinellas County Circuit Court judge sentenced Demetrius Jordan this week to over 40 years in prison for DUI manslaughter, related to the deaths of four men on Aug. 1, 2010. Shortly after midnight on that date, Jordan, who was […]... [Read More]

DNA Leads to Arrest in Clearwater Murder Case

A 23-year-old Clearwater man has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of Adrianne Robert earlier this month. Thomas Frederick is also charged with stealing Robert’s car after the murder. Robert was found dead by her roommate early July […]... [Read More]

Pinellas Sheriff Announces Crackdown on Synthetic Marijuana

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri announced a plan to aggressively enforce Florida’s newly expanded ban on many of the chemicals found in “synthetic marijuana.” He acknowledged, however, the difficulty in fighting the drugs because manufacturers frequently tweak their formulas to […]... [Read More]

Former Tampa Middle School Principal Charged in Double Homicide

Anthony Giancola, ex-principal of Tampa’s Van Buren Middle School, has been charged with killing two people and injuring nine others in Pinellas County last week. He was charged with two counts of first degree murder and four counts of attempted […]... [Read More]

Lutz Doctor Sent to Prison for Illegal Oxycodone Distribution

Sanjeev Grover, a Lutz physician, was sentenced this week to five years in federal prison for distributing the painkiller oxycodone outside the scope of his practice. Grover also was ordered to relinquish his medical license with the state and his […]... [Read More]

Hearing Granted in Pinellas Babysitter Manslaughter Case

As reported in the Tampa Bay Times, a Pinellas-Pasco judge granted a hearing for Stephanie Spurgeon to determine if there is evidence to support a dismissal or new trial in a manslaughter case pending against her. Spurgeon, a Palm Harbor […]... [Read More]

Clearwater Man Charged with DUI with Child in Car

Salvador Rojo Medina was charged this weekend in Clearwater with driving while intoxicated. Clearwater police first alerted to Rojo Medina’s car when he reportedly threw a beer can out the window of his truck window while driving eastbound on Sunset […]... [Read More]

Brunvand Seeks Federal Civil Rights Investigation of Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office

As reported in the Tampa Bay Times, five Tampa Bay area defense lawyers, including Bjorn Brunvand of this office, are seeking a federal civil rights investigation of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office over allegations that narcotics detectives have trespassed and […]... [Read More]

Intent Key to Defense in Trial of Teen Accused of Killing St. Petersburg Police Officer

Nicholas Lindsey’s defense attorneys admit that their client shot and killed  St. Petersburg police Officer David S. Crawford. The Tampa Bay Times looked at the teenager’s trial defense strategy this week, talking with several local defense attorneys including Bjorn Brunvand. […]... [Read More]