Sent to you by donellfactory via Google Reader:
It's safe to say that that sleepy little town of Windermere has seen it's share of controversy as of late.
In 2009, the eyes of the national media turned to the affluent Orange County community near Orlando after it was reported that Tiger Woods had crashed his SUV. That was just the beginning of what would become one of the biggest celebrity sex scandals in recent history.
Last year, the town's police chief, Daniel Saylor, was arrested after agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said he utilized his position to hinder an investigation into sexual battery allegations against a friend. Saylor, 44, was charged with one count of giving unlawful compensation for official behavior, a second-degree felony, and one count official misconduct, a third-degree felony.
And on Tuesday night, a town council meeting was abruptly interrupted when the husband of the town manager and Mayor Gary Bruhn got into a shouting match. The meeting was quickly adjourned and police officers evacuated the building, but before the room was cleared, Mayor Bruhn ended up on the floor. Officials on Wednesday said it is not clear whether Bruhn fell or was pushed as he exchanged words with Roland Bernier. But he crashed into a table and fell to the floor, where he was briefly unconscious. Paramedics arrived and transported him to a nearby hospital. The hospital was later placed on lock-down.
The altercation comes a day after the FDLE released its findings into an investigation of the town's police department. The FDLE report revealed that money, weapons and confiscated drugs were missing from the police department's evidence and property locker. The same day, the FDLE announced additional charges levied against Daniel Saylor.
Earlier Tuesday evening, Mayor Bruhn addressed the council for about 15 minutes or more, suggesting the council fire Town Manager Cecelia Bernier. He cited several of the FDLE findings regarding mismanagement of evidence, missing evidence, and an accusation that Bernier even voided traffic citations for people she knew.
"Our residents' safety was compromised by tickets being voided, cases dropped and our reputation tarnished," he said.
The mayor offered a motion that Bernier be removed. No one would second the motion so it died, which means that for now, Bernier retains her position.
The council wanted to talk about the issue some more and never voted on it. That's when Bernier's husband went to the podium and made some heated statements.
Roland Bernier left the police department Tuesday night after being questioned. He wouldn't answer any inquiries from the media. It is still unclear if he will be charged or arrested. The case has now been handed over to the State Attorney's Office.
When asked on Wednesday if charges should be filed, Chief McCoy replied, "That is up to the State Attorney."