By: Anne Geggis
Crime reports and arrests are a mainstay of Mitchell Pellecchia’s online publications that he runs in Parkland and Margate. But one item is notably missing from the “Margate Street Crime” covering March 10 to March 16 in the city he lives in — the domestic battery charge involving him.
Pellecchia, 57, who publishes Parkland News.net and Margate News.net, referred questions about his March 12 arrest — and another six days later for misdemeanor drunken driving, his third DUI offense in 10 years — to his attorney Josh Rydell, who is also vice mayor of Coconut Creek.
The domestic battery charge involves his wife of 32 years, according to an arrest report. His wife suffered bruises when Pellecchia slammed her against a wall and dragged her.
In the latest incident, the arrest report shows that he was “staggering and unsteady on his feet” as he left Margate City Hall an hour after a Margate City Commission meeting began on March 18. The police pulled him over at a gas station that’s a six-minute walk from City Hall.
“As the defendant stepped out of the vehicle, he was staggering and swayed back and forth as he spoke to me,” the arrest report says.
Pellecchia refused to take a breath test for inebriation and was arrested for DUI. Court records show that this is Pellecchia’s third DUI arrest in 10 years, which, if convicted, could mean mandatory jail time.
Another DUI arrest in 2012 involved leaving the scene of an accident, DUI property damage resulting, refusal to take a breath test, careless driving and driving without lights on.
Court records show these cases were disposed of through nolle prosequi, which means the prosecution was abandoned. Presumably, the other convictions were in other counties.
“I look forward to all the facts coming out in these two specific cases,” said Rydell, Pellecchia’s attorney. “I firmly believe my client will be exonerated. Mitch has made a career out of being a voice for the voiceless and calling for government accountability. That will not change as we navigate this legal process.”
- Anne Geggis has been a newspaper reporter for 30 years, most recently at the Sun-Sentinel. She graduated from St. Michael’s College in Colchester, Vt., with a double major in journalism and sociology.
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