The legal inquiry into Broward Sheriff Gregory Tony was moved out of Broward County, sources tell REDBROWARD. According to one source, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis authorized the move from Broward State Attorney Harold Pryor’s office in the 17th Judicial Circuit to State Attorney Amira Fox of the 20th Judicial Circuit. Fox’s office covers Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties. REDBROWARD was told most special prosecutions are conducted from the Fort Myers office.
For months, sources told REDBROWARD that new Broward State Attorney Harold Pryor appeared disinclined to consider serious charges in the Tony matter.
In March, REDBROWARD was first to report a Federal grand jury in Miami heard evidence on matters related to Broward Sheriff Gregory Tony and others in Broward County.
In April, The Florida Bulldog confirmed a Federal investigation into matters surrounding Sheriff Tony. The website reported the Federal Bureau Of Investigation (FBI) was investigating bid rigging allegations involving a contract between BSO and North American Rescue.
REDBROWARD revealed concerns of a “turf war” grew strong when news broke of an inquiry into North American Rescue CEO Bob Castellani. In 2019, the South Carolina-based sold “bleed kits” to the Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO). Castellani was a key supporter of Broward Sheriff Gregory Tony’s re-election.
REDBROWARD was told the inquiry sent to the State Attorneys Office of the 20th Judicial Circuit does not include the bleed kit matter.
Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick admits her father called one of her Democratic opponents on a telephone belonging to her medical services company. Yesterday, REDBROWARD revealed Emmanuel Morel told Sun-Sentinel editors and reports about a phone call he received from Cherfilus-McCormick’s father, Gabriel Smith. A third candidate, Elvin Dowling provided details of the exchange which occurred during a Sun-Sentinel interview of Democratic candidates for U.S. Congress CD 20.
According to Dowling, “Emanuel Morel informed us all that he received a call on Sunday evening from someone identifying themselves as the father of Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick. He said that the person threatened him against running against his daughter (over the course of two separate phone calls that were apparently witnessed by members of Mr. Morel’s campaign staff). Mr. Morel stated that he felt his life was threatened and that he has contacted the FBI who is investigating the calls as we speak.” When asked by a reporter about the call, Cherfilus-McCormick denied any knowledge of any phone calls to Morel.
When Morel produced a telephone number, Cherfilus-McCormick said the number looked familiar. According to Dowling, “At first she stated she did not and then stated that she has a lot of numbers connected to her campaign that were similar in nomenclature and it could be one of hers but she was not sure.”
On Thursday, Emmanuel Morel appeared on the Race And The Races webcast hosted by Narnike Grant and Sandra Cherfrere. Just minutes into the show, Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick joined the show. She said she was “at a wedding” but wanted to respond to Morel.
Cherfilus-Mccormick said, “No one at my campaign has contacted or spoke to [Morel].”
She said, “The number you put out is actually another employee’s number…she’s been getting threats and had to cancel her line.”
Cherfilus-McCormick said she discussed the matter with her parents. “No one threatened you. And because of that, we are pursuing legal, um, against you for slander and for going on every show and talking.”
Then, Cherfilus-McCormick attacked Elvin Dowling for tipping off REDBROWARD about the matter. “Elvin Dowling called some kind of Republican blogger who insert themselves into a Democratic primary is disgusting,” she said.
Under questioning, Cherfilus-McCormick told Narnike Grant that her parents did speak with Morel. She said Morel was discussed at a weekend meeting between her parents and Haitian ministers. According to Cherfilus-McCormick, someone at that meeting said, “someone should talk to Morel.”
When Cherfilus-McCormick insisted no one from her “campaign” called Morel, host Sandra Cherfrere asked if the phone belonged to a Trinity Health employee. Cherfilus-McCormick stated the phone was assigned to “nurses or staff” and the Caller ID would appear as “Trinity.”
She admitted the call came from that number.
The Sun-Sentinel interview occurred Wednesday afternoon. Elvin Dowling contacted REDBROWARD at 5:48PM on Wednesday. REDBROWARD called the Trinity cell phone at 7:10PM. A telephone company recording stated the number was no longer in service. The REDBROWARD story was published minutes later.
How could the Trinity employee receive “threats” if the number was already out of service before the world knew the number?
Why were Cherfilus-McCormick’s parents calling another candidate in the first place?
While they may not be campaign employees, Cherfilus-McCormick’s father and mother wore campaign shirts at a candidate debate on Friday evening at the University of Fort Lauderdale.
“I just sat in a Sun Sentinel Endorsement interview with the Editorial Team (Steve Bousquet, Daniel Sweeney, et. al.). On the interview were all of the CD-20 candidates not currently holding office (myself-Elvin Dowling, Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick and Phil Jackson). During the meeting, Emanuel Morel informed us all that he received a call on Sunday evening from someone identifying themselves as the father of Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick. He said that the person threatened him against running against his daughter (over the course of two separate phone calls that were apparently witnessed by members of Mr. Morel’s campaign staff). Mr. Morel stated that he felt his life was threatened and that he has contacted the FBI who is investigating the calls as we speak. The reporters then asked Ms. McCormick if she knew anything about this. She immediately began telling a story pof how there was a meeting of Haitian ministers and that she simply spoke with them and urged them to consolidate their votes for her. Mr. Morel happens to be of Haitian descent. She stated that she had no knowledge of her father making the calls. Mr. Morel then stated that he had the phone number from which the calls originated [954-288-1222]. The reporters asked Ms. McCormick if she recognized the number. At first she stated she did not and then stated that she has a lot of numbers connected to her campaign that were similar in nomenclature and it could be one of hers but she was not sure.”
That telephone number is no longer in service.
Even though he was in a meeting, Emmanuel Morel confirmed the tip.