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Pasco man held on stalking charge involving Hillsborough State Attorney Mark Ober

TAMPA — A man once accused of threatening to blind Hillsborough County State Attorney Mark Ober is behind bars, charged with aggravated stalking and threatening to discharge a destructive device.

Ober appears to be his target again.

Michael Wynperle, 36, of Wesley Chapel, was arrested last week in Pasco County on a warrant out of Hillsborough.

Pam Bondi, the assistant state attorney who acts as the agency's spokeswoman, said Tuesday she couldn't detail the latest crimes of which Wynperle is accused.

"This has been on-going for years and this situation has recently escalated," Bondi said. "We are relieved he is now in custody and cannot follow through on his threats."

Bondi said Ober's office has asked the governor to appoint a special prosecutor to handle the case due to a clear conflict of interest issues.

Last year, Wynperle's probation officers said he "has deep-seated issues with the justice system," according to Florida Department of Corrections reports. Then, Pinellas-Pasco prosecutor Mike Halkitis was reviewing allegations that Wynperle made threats against his probation officers as he was being arrested on a probation violation charge.

In 2005, detectives said Wynperle told them that he knew where Ober lived and what he drove. They said he threatened to put lime powder in Ober's car vents.

Authorities later dropped the charge of corruption by threat against a public servant, but sentenced him to two years in prison and three years of probation for fraudulently obtaining a driver's license and fraudulent use of a personal ID.

He was released from prison in June.

Wynperle, of 1243 Ambridge Dr., is being held now in Orient Road Jail without bail.

State records show he's been arrested 20 times going back to 1993.

Pasco man held on stalking charge involving Hillsborough State Attorney Mark Ober 08/11/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 6:52pm]
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