Santiago Gonzalez, a Coral Springs, Florida firefighter, was arrested Thursday as part of a drug trafficking investigation, news sources report. Gonzalez, 49, was booked into the Broward County Main Jail on armed drug trafficking charges. It is unclear whether he qualified for bail. It is also not yet known whether he has retained a criminal defense lawyer
According to reports, Gonzalez works for the Coral Spring Fire Department. No other members of the department are involved in the investigations, police say. It is unclear whether the department released a statement regarding Gonzalez’s arrest.
The details surrounding the investigation and Gonzalez’s subsequent arrest are currently unclear. Early reports suggest Gonzalez is involved in a drug trafficking case. It is unclear whether police will identify additional suspects as that investigation continues, or if Gonzalez worked alone.
Unfortunately, South Florida officials are arrested fairly regularly. Alex Lindsey and Michael Mulcahy, both Boynton Beach police officers, were arrested in 2011 and fired from the department this past month, reports say. Both men were arrested on unrelated charges of official misconduct. It is unclear whether they have hired legal representation.
According to reports, Lindsey worked for the Boynton Beach police department starting in 2008. In December 2010, he allegedly falsified a police report, writing that he found a 9 mm handgun on suspect Jeffrey Pugh at a crime scene during the suspects’ arrest. Surveillance video from within the department showed that Lindsey did not find the gun until after he had transported Pugh to the department.
Lindsey confessed to falsifying the report following his arrest and said had lied because “he had been in trouble once before for failing to find contraband on a female prisoner that had been transported to the Palm Beach County Jail,” and arrest affidavit says.
Reports say Mulcahy has worked for the same department since 2006. In 2007, the department gave Mulcahy two verbal reprimands because he failed to report property that belonged to a suspect that he had arrested, reports say.
In November 2010, Mulcahy and another officer reportedly falsified a police report regarding the methods they used to enter a suspect’s motel room. The duo’s report claimed they had knocked on the motel room’s door and the suspect opened it. However, the suspect says he only opened the door after the officers asked him to do so.
Lindsey and Mulcahy were both placed on administrative leave following their arrests as the investigation into the misconduct went forward. However, they have both since been fired and are currently awaiting trial. According to reports, five Boynton Beach officers were arrested in 2011 for a variety of charges, but Lindsey and Mulcahy were the only ones fired.
Officer Kenneth Magielski of the Boynton Beach department was one of the five officers arrested in 2011. According to reports, Magielski was driving under the influence in Palm City when he collided with a gate at the Stuart West development. It is unclear whether anyone was injured. Officers charged Magielski with DUI and DUI with property damage. He was placed on administrative leave but has since returned to work at the department.