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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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Woman is called too ill to go to prison
Drop the case against the ex-Tampa officer's wife, prosecutors say.
By Kevin Graham Times Staff Writer
Published October 19, 2007
Ragan Suzanne Seely, 40, suffers from breast cancer.
TAMPA - Diagnosed with advanced breast cancer, the wife of a former Tampa police officer is too ill for federal prison, prosecutors told a judge Thursday.
She and her husband pleaded guilty to writing bad checks to landlords.
Court records say a CAT scan in June revealed Ragan Suzanne Seely, 40, has a lesion on her skull base that causes bone deterioration. Her doctor said it's likely the result of metastatic disease from stage IV breast cancer.
"Her condition appears to be deteriorating," federal prosecutor Robert O'Neill wrote in a request to dismiss the case against Seely.
U.S. District Judge James Whittemore said Thursday he wants to make sure he follows proper procedures in granting prosecutors' request. He told attorneys to research the law.
"I'd like to get the order entered quickly," Whittemore said.
Seely and her husband, Brian Charles Seely, pleaded guilty in April 2006 to fraud. Prosecutors said the Wesley Chapel couple wrote bad checks for down payments and rent on different homes between August 2000 and January 2005. Prosecutors said Brian Seely used his position as a 17-year Tampa police veteran and military reservist to gain the trust of landlords.
The Tampa Police Department dismissed him from the force in November 2005. Whittemore sentenced him in July 2006 to six months home detention, five years of supervised release and more than $38,000 restitution.
Before Ragan Seely's conviction can be set aside and her case dismissed, Whittemore must annul his finding of guilt. Ragan Seely then has to withdraw her guilty plea so the indictment against her can be dismissed.
The Mayo Clinic lists stage IV as the most advanced form of breast cancer. Treatment may shrink or control the cancer, but it usually doesn't cure it.