Thursday August 25, 2022


A man from Okeechobee was arrested after deputies say he attempted to meet with a minor after messaging them through social media.

On Monday, the Okeechobee Sheriff’s Office received a call from a concerned mother. The mother told deputies that an unknown adult male was attempting to speak with her child through social media. The mother and child gave permission to investigators to use the child’s social media to further investigate the matter.

Investigators say they used the minor’s social media account to talk to 31-year-old-Brian Peterson. Believing he was still speaking with the minor, Peterson asked to meet the minor in-person at an undisclosed location.

At the location, investigators said they met with Peterson, and after a brief struggle, he was arrested on several charges. Peterson’s charges are using computer services or devices is prohibited; by any person who knowingly uses an online computer service to solicit a child, electronically transmitting harmful material to a person known or believed to be a minor and resisting an officer without violence.

The sheriff’s office says Peterson’s actions may not be an isolated incident. If you believe Brian Peterson has victimized your child, please call Detective Cauley at 863- 763-3117 Ext. 5102


The Collier County Sheriff’s Office has arrested an Immokalee man they say stole generators from license plate reader trailers in the Immokalee area.

Deputies arrested Rene Garcia, 29, on Tuesday night after an investigation into the thefts. The Collier County Sheriff’s Office was already holding Garcia for attempting to flee from a traffic stop for failing to obey a traffic signal that same day. Deputies say Garica also did not have a valid license.

The sheriff’s office says, on August 16, they discovered that two generators were stolen from license plate reader trailers. Both generators were equipped with Apple AirTags.

Deputies with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office assisted with the recovery of the generators when deputies in Collier County determined at least one of the generators was on Damon Street East in Lehigh Acres.

LCSO deputies contacted the person who had the generator, who told them they had received it from a man they knew as Rene, later identified as Rene Garcia. The man told deputies that Garcia used the generator to help pay down his debt. He told deputies that he did not know it was stolen.

Collier County deputies say the second generator also pinged in Lehigh Acres on Amherst Street. LSCO again assisted and went to the location to find the generator. The property owner said Garcia had dropped off the generator to be repaired and did not know it was stolen. The man also picked Garcia out of a photo lineup.

Garcia is facing charges of dealing in stolen property, larceny-petit theft, and grand theft for the stolen generators. He also faces charges of fleeing law enforcement and resisting arrest without violence for fleeing from Collier County deputies on Tuesday.


Quarterback Austin Simmons will soon be warming up as his teammates getting ready to take the main field of Anquan Boldin Stadium where Pahokee opens its regular season tonight against Cardinal Newman.

, according to Pahokee coach Emmanuel Hendrix, Austin Simmons is a “phenom.” And Hendrix is not exaggerating. But the unique part of Simmons’ story isn’t just that his fans in Palm Beach County who are treated to his rare talents. Simmons already has starred in varsity sports in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties.

And he’s 16.

The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Simmons is home schooled and taking on-line courses. He is a sophomore athletically but has completed his high school core classes and finished 15 college credits.

This allows him to play football at Pahokee while living with his dad in Canal Point, and play baseball in Dade County while living with his mom in Miami.

“Austin is in a category by himself because of the amount of work he puts in,” said Oliver Bozeman who runs Bozeman Academy, and has coached Simmons for the last five years.

Depending on the day, Simmons could be taking classes at 7 a.m., working out mid-morning, back online around noon and on the practice field at 3 p.m.

All of which aligns with one of the traits his coaches agree separates Austin from his peers – football IQ.

“Austin has a football IQ of a college quarterback right now,” Bozeman said. “He understands coverages. He understands the disguising of coverages. Austin knows where to go with the ball.

Coach Hendrix say Simmons is “a more athletic Peyton Manning,”

When asked about his future, Austin says, He doesn’t really know but he see his future in both sports.

Simmons believes he’s a better pitcher than quarterback and points to his fastball that topped out at 93 mph last month. Others point to the fact he is left-handed, a valuable commodity, especially in baseball.

Simmons already has an offer to play baseball at Georgia Tech and has received love from football coaches at Louisville, Florida State, Tennessee, Arkansas, Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt and others. He really enjoyed his first recruiting trip, which was to Louisville. So whether he plays two sports in college or goes pro in one sport is to be determined. But one thing is certain, the NCAA’s Name, Image and Likeness legislature could have a major impact on that decision