|Why haven't you made this happen, Chief Oates?|
"We don't pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes."
The phrase above has been attributed to the late "cutthroat hotel magnate," Leona Helmsley. Helmsley was more commonly known as the "Queen of Mean."
Closer to home, it seems that Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine - aka Mayor Dickhead - has made some slight revisions to Helmsley's adage, and it goes something like this:
"I don't obey the law. Laws are for schmucks."
In a post on this blog last month, I looked into allegations that sometime in March, Mayor Levine entered the cab of a Coca Cola delivery truck that was double-parked on Washington Ave. and removed the keys.
I've now confirmed with several sources that the incident did, in fact, take place.
Sources familiar with the incident say that Levine was angered at the sight of the illegally parked soft drink delivery truck.
More than one source has confirmed to me that Levine climbed into the cab of the truck and removed the keys from the ignition, telling the driver he'd get them back after a police officer arrived and issued him a citation for illegal parking.
Last year the Miami Beach City Commission enacted a set of stringent new rules that spell out where and when delivery trucks can and cannot park.
But in the instance of the double-parked Coca Cola truck, Levine decided he would take the law into his own hands.
A source tells me that after removing the keys, Levine called someone at police headquarters at 1100 Washington Avenue and asked them to send an officer to write the driver a citation. (He took pains to avoid calling the complaint desk, because all calls there are recorded.)
But numerous law enforcement sources tell me that the officer should also have arrested Levine for violating two Florida statutes: 810.02 and 812.014.
Florida statute 810.02: Burglary.— Entering a dwelling, a structure, or a conveyance with the intent to commit an offense therein, unless the premises are at the time open to the public or the defendant is licensed or invited to enter....
Florida statute 812.014: Theft.— (1) A person commits theft if he or she knowingly obtains or uses, or endeavors to obtain or to use, the property of another with intent to, either temporarily or permanently:
(a) Deprive the other person of a right to the property or a benefit from the property.
(b) Appropriate the property to his or her own use or to the use of any person not entitled to the use of the property.
The Washington Avenue incident is just the latest instance of Levine bending or ignoring the rules.
In Dec. 2013, a few weeks after Levine was sworn in as Mayor, he got caught up in an ugly scene outside the Star Island home of Thomas Kramer. Police were called, and then according to an Internal Affairs follow-up report on the incident, this occurred...
|Click to enlarge.|
Levine complained about the officers' actions that night, but when Internal Affairs investigators tried to interview him, he refused to speak with them.
Remember, in Phil Levine's world, only "schmucks" have to follow the rules.
So here's a question for Miami Beach Police Chief Dan Oates: When are you going to stop playing footsie with Mayor Levine and have him arrested for burglary of the Coca Cola truck and theft of the keys?
After all, don't the laws apply to everyone?
Do your job, Chief Oates.