» Sarasota School Playground Becomes Scene of Police Pursuit

Sarasota School Playground Becomes Scene of Police Pursuit

Lakeland, FL (Law Firm Newswire) November 21, 2012 – A man recently led Sarasota police on two separate car chases, including one through a school playground.

He is also alleged to have battered two people that same day.

“Criminals frequently display erratic and dangerous behavior when cornered by police,” Polk County criminal defense lawyer Thomas Grajek commented. “They can feel like they have nothing left to lose.”

At about 3:30 on a recent Wednesday afternoon, sheriff’s deputies tried to pull over a gray Chevrolet Malibu for exceeding the speed limit. The driver fled at high speed, and drove across the playground of Brentwood Elementary School. Deputies decided to call off the chase for the sake of public safety. The car was traced to 31-year-old John Kaafi, who matched the man’s description. A few hours later, deputies responded to a report of a battery at Kaafi’s Sarasota home, but he had left the scene by the time they arrived.

Around 3:30 a.m. the following morning, Kaafi’s child’s mother called police, saying he had come to her home and attacked her following a fight. She also said that he was under the influence of crack cocaine. An hour later, a patrol car spotted Kaafi’s gray Chevrolet speeding on a city street and attempted to pull him over. Kaafi again fled the police at high speed, endangering others on the road.

Deputies at that point felt they had to abandon the chase again. But then Kaafi turned down a dead end road, ditched the car, and fled on foot. Police then set up a perimeter around the area and called out helicopter and K-9 units. Kaafi was soon found by the K-9 unit hiding in a wooded area.

Kaafi was charged with two counts of fleeing police, one count of burglary, and one count of attempted vehicle burglary after police discovered he attempted to break into a truck while on the run. He will likely face additional charges.

Thomas C. Grajek
206 Easton Drive, Suite 102
Lakeland, FL 33803
Phone: 863.688.4606


View Larger Map

  • Arrest made in Polk County "SWAT"ting incident involving "anonymous" calls to police to lure SWAT team to high school.
    A Canadian juvenile was arrested in the recent Polk County “swatting” case.  “SWATting” is when an individual attempts to lure the SWAT time to respond to a location for a fake threat of some type. Polk County deputies allege the teen anonymously placed hoax calls to law enforcement officials in an effort to lure SWAT teams to respond to Ft. Meade high school over the past four-months.  Deputies say the investigation began in September, when an unidentified male called the sheriff’s office and Fort Meade High School and said he was going to “drive to Fort Meade High School in […]
  • Just in time for Christmas, Polk Sheriff Grady Judd's prostitution sting results in 61 arrests.
    Sheriff Grady Judd will hold a press conference today to announce the results of the latest Polk Prostitution sting from last week.  The sting was part of a  undercover operation targeting individuals who respond to online advertisements on Backpage.com.  The online ads are usually listings for escort or massage services, but once the person responds to the hotel, the undercover deputies try to make an arrest for an illegal activity.  These undercover officers can be very aggressive and often do most of the talking.  The sheriff was also targeting human trafficking which is a much more serious felony offense. There are some harsh […]
  • Medical marijuana amendment fails in Florida, pot still illegal to possess. What defenses do you have to a possession of cannabis case?
    Florida’s medical marijuana amendment did not pass yesterday in the election.  Even though a majority of the voters voted in favor of passing the medical marijuana amendment, receiving 58% of the vote, it fell 2% shy needed to pass.  In 2006, Florida voters decided all constitutional amendments needed a “super majority” to pass (60% instead of 50%). Ironically, that amendment that now requires a super majority, only passed with 57.8% of the vote.  Whether or not the issue is placed back on the ballot is unknown at this time.  John Morgan of Morgan & Morgan who spearheaded the campaign had previously […]

See other news sources publishing this article. BETA | Tags: , , , , ,



Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required