Tag Archives: criminal lawyer miami

"Stand Your Ground" In the News Again

Ernesto Che Vino, the Miami-Dade homeowner cleared of assaulting two utility company workers under the state’s controversial self-defense law, is back behind bars — this time, police say, for raping his neighbor.

His case drew headlines in November 2010 when a judge, citing the state’s controversial Stand Your Ground law, ruled Vino was justified in pointing his rifle at two Florida & Power Light workers trying to shut off his electricity.

The utility company, which has the legal right to enter a property to shut off delinquent accounts, protested the decision. After the judge’s ruling, the company added undisclosed extra “security measures” when turning off powerr to homes.

Vino, 44, was arrested last week and charged with sexual battery. His 22-year-old neighbor told Miami-Dade detectives that Vino “covered her mouth with his hand to keep her from screaming,” then threatened to punch her before raping her, according to an arrest report.

Miami Rapper Bizzle Shot in front of Liberty City Car Wash

Robert Labranche was arrested 27 times, spent much of his early life in and out of jail and was so poor that he said he used to eat garbage while growing up in Liberty City.

But by the time he was in his mid-20s, Labranche had reinvented himself as a South Florida rapper named “Bizzle,” He was an entrepreneur known for paying it forward by helping to get kids in his community off the street.

He owned a car wash, an entertainment company, a window-tinting business and at one time ran a seafood restaurant. He was a father of two small children, whose last message about them would prove prophetic.

Labranche, 37, was shot multiple times Monday night outside his Liberty City car wash with his children in his SUV, parked just steps away. They were not injured and did not see their father killed, police said.

Labranche, whose music is popular in Miami-area strip clubs, created his own record label, Chowtime Entertainment in 2000. Two of his songs,  Lip-biting Animal, and  Naked Hustle, were considered strip-club anthems. He used social media to promote the songs, which were widely played in Florida nightclubs. He also organized massive parties aboard yachts and at clubs, featuring DJs and exotic dancers.

Pedro Bravo indicted for murder and kidnapping in disappearance of Christian Aguilar

On Tuesday, as more charges were brought against his son’s accused killer, Carlos Aguilar kept searching.

It had been 19 days since Christian Aguilar disappeared somewhere in Gainesville. More than two weeks had passed since police arrested the accused killer, a former high school friend of Christian Aguilar’s from Doral Academy Preparatory School.

Then came Tuesday, when a grand jury reaffirmed the murder charge against Pedro Bravo and added another — kidnapping.

But Christian Aguilar’s body was still missing.

Hours after hearing the grand jury’s decision announced, Carlos Aguilar returned to another patch of woods to search, again. The added charge did not deliver what he needed most.

“I haven’t found my son. What I’m looking for is to find my son, so I can get everything ready with my family,” Carlos Aguilar said. “That’s what I really need.”

Man With Face Tattoos Claims Misidentification

Adriana Johnson clearly remembers the January afternoon six years ago when she watched her father scuffle with a young man on a Liberty City street. She remembers the teen skirt down a side street, return with an AK-47 rifle and unleash a flurry of bullets. The memories, on Tuesday, were crisp:

Her mother bleeding from the leg, screaming that she had been shot.

The homicide detectives investigating the murders of her parents presenting her with a photo lineup. The instant recognition. The killer sported two distinctive tattoos inked on each cheek.

“Crosses. On each side of his face,” Adriana, now 16, told jurors Tuesday, on the opening day of the murder trial for Benito “Bo” Santiago.

The suspect’s conspicuous crucifix tattoos lay at the heart of the prosecution’s case against Santiago, 23, charged with two counts of first-degree murder.

On Tuesday, prosecutors said that Adriana and another witness identified Santiago, whom they knew from around the neighborhood, as the man who killed Grace Armstrong, 27, and Adrian Johnson, 28.

The second witness, prosecutor Kathleen Cortes told jurors, knew Santiago well — she had allowed him to sleep at her home from time to time.

But defense attorney Alan Greenstein said prosecutors have no physical evidence linking Santiago to the crime and eyewitness testimony is unreliable. The second witness, Patricia Wilcher, never housed Santiago in the months preceding the shooting because the teen was living in New York at the time, Greenstein said.

“She’s got the wrong man,” Greenstein told jurors.

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/08/21/2962054/trial-starts-for-man-in-liberty.html#storylink=cpy