Bid-A-Wee man arrested after association leader injured
August 03, 2011 08:01:00 PM
Randy Martin, 55, was arrested July 29 about 30 minutes after allegedly beating Jimmy Smith with an 8-inch black club as Smith was mowing his lawn. Both men live in the Bid-A-Wee neighborhood, and Smith is president of the neighborhood association.
Martin is charged with aggravated battery, aggravated assault and battery on a person over 65 years old.
According to police reports, Smith, 66, was emptying grass from his lawn mower when Martin pulled up in front of the yard in his Corvette and made a sexually explicit remark. Smith told Martin to leave.
But Martin got out of his car holding the club and raised his shirt to show he had a pistol holstered on his hip, authorities reported.
“I need to take care of you,” Martin told Smith, according to an arrest affidavit. Investigators charge that Martin then beat Smith with the club and his fist on the face, hand, leg and arm. Smith sustained a fractured thumb and some cuts in the fight.
In May, Martin sent a letter to the editor of The News Herald alleging Smith “abused his authority.” Smith and Martin had been at odds over the placement of gates at Bid-A-Wee beach. Neither Martin nor Smith would comment for this report.
Smith has since filed for a restraining order against Martin, requesting he be prohibited from coming within
“It leads me to believe that he has reached his breaking point and will kill me ...” Smith wrote in the application for the restraining order.
They then went to look for Martin and arrested him at his home. Martin was also injured according to the report. There were no witnesses to the incident.
The police simply took the word of the 1st person they contacted, made up their mind and went to look for the 'perp'. The amount of investigation consisted of seeing some injuries to Smith and accepting exactly what he said as the absolute truth.
If the police had spoken to Martin first and saw his injured wrist they probably would have arrested Smith. As often happens in cases where there are no witnesses the first person to talk to the police gets the best shot at having their story accepted. Martins story is entire different but short of a trial you won't hear it.
Due to the language Smith attributes to Martin I have not reproduced the text of the complaint here as it would be X-Rated and of course there were no witnesses to confirm any of the details in the report, it was simply written by Officer Kelly based on the unsupported information given by Smith.
I do note that Officer Kelly says in part: "As I approached the door Mr. Martin was standing inside the house behind a glass door holding a wash cloth on his right arm."