Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Police: Homeless man tries to swim away after breaking into St. Petersburg boats

ST. PETERSBURG — George Carroll Wright is not a very good pirate.

Lea Obermeyer is convinced of that after police arrested the homeless man early Wednesday on burglary charges at the municipal marina.

Just before 3 a.m., she was asleep aboard Gary Wall's 30-foot sailboat in slip 45 when the 260-pound Wright bounded in through the hatch in the darkness, police said. Wall stumbled awake, too.

Wright said something about someone named Jimmy sending him over to check on them.

"You have the wrong boat," Obermeyer and Wall yelled repeatedly at the intruder, until he left.

The chase was on. Obermeyer called police and Wall followed the unwanted visitor.

Wright didn't leave the marina. Police said he boarded another boat, in slip 39, where he encountered owner Thomas Reilly. Wright quickly left when Reilly pointed a gun at him.

When police arrived, they found Wright on a boat in slip 62, surrounded by angry boaters from the marina. A police officer boarded the vessel.

"They were about to handcuff him when all of a sudden he (Wright) went over the side," Obermeyer said.

Police said Wright refused to come ashore. But Obermeyer soon arrived in her dinghy, which police used to catch him.

Wright faces burglary and resisting arrest charges. He was being held at the Pinellas County Jail in lieu of $25,150 bail.

Luis Perez can be reached at or (727) 892-2271.

Police: Homeless man tries to swim away after breaking into St. Petersburg boats 07/20/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 20, 2011 10:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Trump reveals that he didn't record Comey after all


    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump declared Thursday he never made and doesn't have recordings of his private conversations with ousted former FBI director James Comey, ending a monthlong guessing game that he started with a cryptic tweet and that ensnared his administration in yet more controversy.

    President Donald Trump said Thursday that he didn’t record his conversations with James Comey.
  2. Lightning fans, don't get attached to your first-round draft picks

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — When Lightning GM Steve Yzerman announces his first-round pick tonight in the amateur draft at No. 14, he'll invite the prospect onto the stage for the once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunity.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) eludes  Montreal Canadiens left wing Phillip Danault (24) during the second period of Wednesday???‚??„?s (12/28/16) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Montreal Canadiens at the Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  3. Investigation Discovery TV show profiles 2011 Landy Martinez murder case


    The murder of a St. Petersburg man will be featured this week on a new true crime series Murder Calls on Investigation Discovery.

    Jose Adame sits in a Pinellas County courtroom during his 2016 trial and conviction for first-degree murder. Adame was convicted of first-degree murder last year for torturing and then executing his boyfriend as he pleaded for his life in 2011. Now it will be featured in a new true crime series Murder Calls on Investigation Discovery. The episode will air on June 26 at 9 p.m. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  4. Uhuru mayoral candidate Jesse Nevel protests exclusion from debate


    ST. PETERSBURG — Jesse Nevel, the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement candidate for mayor, on Thursday demanded that he be allowed to participate in a July 25 televised debate between incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman and challenger Rick Baker.

    Mayoral candidate Jesse Nevel holds a news conference outside the headquarters of the Tampa Bay Times on Thursday to protest his exclusion from the mayoral debate. Nevel is a member of the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement.
  5. Lightning GM Steve Yzerman also has top-9 wing on his wish list

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — Much has been made about the Lightning's interest in bolstering its blue line, even after last week's acquisition of defense prospect Mikhail Sergachev.

    Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman gestures as he speaks to the media about recent trades during a news conference before an NHL hockey game against the Carolina Hurricanes Wednesday, March 1, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. The Lightning, over the past few days, have traded goaltender Ben Bishop to the Los Angeles Kings, forward Brian Boyle to the Toronto Maple Leafs, and forward Valtteri Filppula to the Philadelphia Flyers. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) TPA101