Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Clearwater candidate arrested on felony bad check charge

CLEARWATER — On Tuesday night, City Council candidate Herb Quintero was at City Hall, joining other candidates for a televised election forum.

Afterward, he went home to Island Estates. Then came a knock at the door. Sheriff's deputies were there to arrest him on a felony bad check charge.

Quintero, who was briefly booked into the Pinellas County Jail at 1 a.m. Wednesday and released on $2,500 bail, says the whole thing is a mistake.

"My attorney is trying to find out what happened. This had been worked out, and I have documentation to prove it," he said.

"This caught me completely by surprise. I wasn't ever notified that this was out there. Hopefully in the next couple of days, those charges will be dropped and my name will be cleared again."

Quintero, 41, came to the public's attention last year when he battled the city over a fish mural on a wall of his tackle shop, the Complete Angler. Officials fined him and called the mural a code violation, but Quintero won in court.

Now he's running for City Council Seat 4, competing against candidates Wayne Carothers, Bill Jonson and Joe Paige.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office arrested him on a warrant for a felony charge of obtaining property in return for a worthless check.

Quintero, who is also a construction contractor, is accused of writing a bad check to a subcontractor. He says he gave the subcontractor a postdated check and asked him not to cash it until money became available from a construction job to cover it.

"It was a misunderstanding on what was supposed to have been done with the check. It wasn't supposed to have been cashed for a certain period of time," Quintero said.

Quintero's tackle shop in Clearwater recently closed, and he has been getting back into air-conditioning and construction work to pay the bills.

According to records on file with the Pinellas County Clerk of Court, the check was written from Quintero's company, Coast to Coast Construction, in January 2009. The subcontractor later tried to cash it at a Regions Bank, but there weren't sufficient funds to cover it, according to an affidavit filed in October 2009.

"After I found out about it, I made arrangements to pay that obligation," Quintero said.

He said he's been making payments to the subcontractor since they reached an agreement in December.

"This completely caught me off guard," he said of his arrest.

Little information was available about the case Wednesday.

The Sheriff's Office said its deputies merely picked up Quintero on a warrant, but it's not a Sheriff's Office case.

Documents from the Clerk of Court's Office show that a judge signed a warrant for Quintero's arrest on Friday.

The assistant state attorney who is listed in that paperwork, Mark McGarry, said he handles hundreds of bad check cases and can't comment on a particular one, but added that potential defendants are typically notified ahead of time by certified letter.

Quintero said he was blindsided by the arrest, and the timing is tough — less than two weeks before the election. But he also took responsibility.

"It is my fault for not following up. After the agreement was made between me and the other party, I never followed up to make sure that the state attorney was aware of it," he said.

"Everything was taken care of, everybody was happy. I didn't see why it would escalate any further. I honestly didn't think it was a big deal."

Mike Brassfield can be reached at brassfield@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4160.

. Fast facts

Televised candidate forum

Six candidates seeking two City Council seats took part in a televised election forum Tuesday night. The two-hour forum will be replayed almost daily on the city's cable station, C-VIEW TV, until the March 9 election as follows: 4:30 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays, 8 a.m.

Wednesdays, 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Fridays, 8:30 a.m. Saturdays, 6:30 p.m. Sundays.

C-VIEW can be found on

Ch. 615 on Bright House,

Ch. 15 on Knology, and

Ch. 30 on Verizon.

Clearwater candidate arrested on felony bad check charge 02/24/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 24, 2010 8:05pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. After fraught debate, Trump to disclose new Afghanistan plan

    War

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump will unveil his updated Afghanistan policy Monday night in a rare, prime-time address to a nation that broadly shares his pessimism about American involvement in the 16-year conflict. Although he may send a few thousand more troops, there are no signs of a major shift in …

    U.S. soldiers patrol the perimeter of a weapons cache near the U.S. military base in Bagram, Afghanistan in 2003. Sixteen years of U.S. warfare in Afghanistan have left the insurgents as strong as ever and the nation's future precarious. Facing a quagmire, President Donald Trump on Monday will outline his strategy for a country that has historically snared great powers and defied easy solutions.  [Associated Press (2003)]
  2. Trial begins for man accused of threatening to kill Tampa federal judge

    Criminal

    TAMPA — Jason Jerome Springer was in jail awaiting trial on a firearms charge when he heard inmates talking about a case that had made the news.

    Jason Jerome Springer, 39, is accused of threatening to kill a U.S. District Judge Elizabeth Kovachevich, according to a federal indictment.  |Hernando County Sheriff's Office photo]
  3. Editorial: Tampa Electric customers should not pay for utility's fatal misjudgments

    Editorials

    There will be financial fallout from the terrible miscalculations that resulted in five workers being killed in June at Tampa Electric's Big Bend Power Station. State and federal regulators should ensure those costs are borne by the company's shareholders, not its customers. Monetary considerations will not begin to …

    LUIS SANTANA   |   Times
There will be financial fallout from the terrible miscalculations that resulted in five workers being killed in June at Tampa Electric's Big Bend Power Station. State and federal regulators should ensure those costs are borne by the company's shareholders, not its customers.
  4. Superior Uniform acquires Los Angeles-based PublicIdentity

    Corporate

    SEMINOLE — A subsidiary of Seminole-based Superior Uniform Group has acquired Los Angeles-based branded merchandise company PublicIdentity Inc.

    Superior Uniform Group CEO Michael Benstock
[Courtesy of Superior Uniform Group]
  5. Money is the issue as Hillsborough strains to fix school air conditioners

    K12

    TAMPA — With more than 200 repair requests tumbling in every day, school officials in Hillsborough County are broadening their circle of air conditioning mechanics as they struggle to control a debilitating cycle of breakdowns and sweltering classrooms.

    Hillsborough school officials want to expand the number of contractors who work on broken school air conditioning systems. But it all gets rolled into a workload that has increased by 40 percent since 2011. "With no increase in budget, no increase in equipment and no increase in manpower, and as the equipment gets older and needs more maintenance, this is going to continue to grow," said Robert Weggman, general manager of maintenance." [iStockphoto.com
]