tampabay.com

Crime journal

By Times Staff Writer
Published February 13, 2008


TAMPA

EX-manager to plead guilty in theft of $1.2M

A former manager for Quest Diagnostics has agreed to plead guilty to stealing more than $1-million from his Tampa employer, according to court records filed Tuesday. David Alan Smith, 47, of 6143 Bridleford Drive in Wesley Chapel was indicted in December on eight counts of fraud. Federal investigators said Smith stole almost $1.2-million from Quest by submitting invoices for fake companies to his employer. Smith worked as a facilities manager for Quest Diagnostics at 4225 E Fowler Ave., where he was in charge of approving vendor invoices and sending them to the corporate office for payment. According to Smith's plea agreement, he created shell companies and used fake addresses for them. For one of Smith's created entities, he used an address that prosecutors said was an on-ramp to the Lee Roy Selmon Crosstown Expressway. Investigators say Smith was stealing money from Quest as long ago as 2001. He could get a maximum of 124 years in prison.

Homeless man's death investigated

Tampa police are investigating the homicide of a 44-year-old homeless man they discovered bleeding late Monday near a storefront. Police found the man lying on his back with blood coming from his mouth around 11:30 p.m. near a Columbus Plaza storefront at 5016 E 10th Ave. He later was pronounced dead. The man's identity was being withheld by Tampa police Tuesday pending notification of next of kin. It is unclear how long the man had been there, but a medical examiner soon determined his was the victim of a homicide. A Tampa police incident report states the officers and Tampa Fire Rescue officials tried unsuccessfully to resuscitate the man. Detectives are investigating.

SHADY HILLS

Pasco couple died from blunt trauma

Pasco County detectives have talked to a "person of interest" in the investigation of a couple found dead Monday night in their home near the Suncoast Parkway. Authorities said David and Sherrill Wright, both 54, died from blunt trauma to their bodies. Pasco sheriff's spokesman Doug Tobin did not identify the person of interest, but he said the public should not be alarmed: "We know where that individual is." There have been no arrests in the case.

CLEARWATER

Riverview man faces sex charge

Clearwater police arrested a 37-year-old Hillsborough County man Monday on charges of sexual battery and drug possession. David A. Herberger, 37, of Riverview had at least two sexual encounters with a preteen girl he knew, police said. The abuse took place three years ago, but the investigation began after the girl's mother contacted police on Jan. 24. In a call monitored by the police, Herberger admitted to the crime, officials said. Herberger was being held in the Pinellas County Jail without bail Tuesday on charges of capital sexual battery, possession of paraphernalia and possession of marijuana.

Woman's body found in bay

A woman's body was found floating in Tampa Bay on Tuesday behind Imperial Cove Condos, 19029 U.S. 19 N, authorities said. The woman, not yet identified, appeared to be 55 to 60 years old. Police said there was no evidence of a crime.