Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa police use Taser to subdue agitated lawyer

TAMPA — Police used a Taser stun gun on a Tampa lawyer Wednesday as they were ejecting him from a city Code Enforcement Board meeting.

Carl Roland Hayes, 53, has racked up more than $1,000 in fines over the past month for installing aluminum windows — not wooden ones — in his 1913 Seminole Heights home.

At Wednesday's meeting, the board considered his appeal of the citation for not complying with historic preservation codes. Police said he became so frustrated about the situation that officials asked him to leave.

As Officer Dan Miller escorted Hayes from the third-floor room of 315 Kennedy Blvd., Hayes slapped the officer's face, according to Lt. Ronald McMullen.

Miller deployed his Taser on Hayes, with little effect, police said. So, Miller stunned Hayes a second time, this time placing the gun directly against Hayes' body, McMullen said. Then, two officers took him to the ground and handcuffed him.

"I really don't know what happened," Hayes said in a brief call from jail Wednesday night. He said he didn't hear anyone ask him to leave. He said the Taser to his chest caused him to bleed. But his call to the Times was disconnected after a few sentences.

According to records, Hayes began racking up fines at $60 per day starting Oct. 24 for violating historic preservation codes by installing aluminum windows in a 2005 rear addition to the home, at 5115 N Branch Ave.

Writing to code enforcement on Oct. 31, Hayes said he had brain surgery this year and lost more than half of his income.

"I am not wealthy and could only afford the aluminum windows for the back of my house which are safer, affordable and more efficient," he wrote.

Wooden windows would have cost him $300 to $400 each, and he has 19 to replace, he said.

Code enforcement learned of the windows when a neighbor complained, said Rick Barcena, of the Code Enforcement Board.

Wednesday, the board denied Hayes' appeal.

"The only thing that we can do as a board is to deny it because he didn't comply," Barcena said. "And … the fees still accumulate. … Once you comply, you can ask for a fine reduction."

Hayes offered to replace one or two windows a month, then got emotional when, as he was leaving, historic preservation code inspector Aminta Owen said replacing one window a month was insufficient and would take too long, Barcena said.

"He turned around to all the white people in the room and called them racist and told them 'get a life, don't you have anything better to do, I'm just trying to live my life.' '' Barcena said.

Owen could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

After police took Hayes from the room, Barcena said he heard yelling and swearing.

City Council member Joseph Caetano wants a full report. "I don't think they should have Tasered him," he said. "You can die from being Tasered."

Caetano and City Council member Tom Scott said they sympathize with people with financial difficulties who face code enforcement fines.

"There are times when you have to try to compromise, especially right now," Scott said.

Records show Hayes, a 1999 candidate for the City Council, filed for bankruptcy last year and refiled again in April of this year.

He is charged with battery on a law enforcement officer, trespassing after warning and obstructing an officer with violence. He was being held on $4,500 bail.

Times researcher Shirl Kennedy and staff writer Colleen Jenkins contributed to this report.

Tampa police use Taser to subdue agitated lawyer 11/26/08 [Last modified: Saturday, December 6, 2008 6:03pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Gators rally past Kentucky, streak hits 31

    Blogs

    LEXINGTON, Ky. — For the second week in a row, Florida found itself storming the field in a game that came down to the last second. A 57-yard field-goal attempt by Kentucky kicker Austin MacGinnis came just a few feet short of making history and snapping a 30-year losing streak, as the No. 20 Gators escaped a …

    Florida wide receiver Brandon Powell (4) scores a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Kentucky, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, in Lexington, Ky.
  2. Pen makes it way too interesting as Rays hang on for 9-6 win

    Blogs

    A couple of home runs provided the news pegs of the night for the Rays, but it was more topical to talk about what nearly happened as they hung on for a 9-6 win over the Orioles.

    Lucas Duda's three-run homer in the third inning was the Rays' record-breaking 217th of the season, as well as his …

  3. An attempt to project what Rays will look like in 2018

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — We know what the Rays look like this year: a team that had enough talent but too many flaws, in construction and performance, and in the next few days will be officially eliminated from a wild-card race it had a chance to win but let slip away.

    Adeiny Hechavarria, high-fiving Lucas Duda, seems likely to be brought back.
  4. Trump fallout: Bucs' DeSean Jackson to make 'statement' Sunday

    Bucs

    Bucs receiver DeSean Jackson said Saturday that he will make a "statement" before today's game against the Vikings in response to President Donald Trump's comment that owners should "fire" players who kneel in protest during the national anthem.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson (11) makes a catch during the first half of an NFL game between the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017.
  5. Kriseman invites Steph Curry to St. Pete on Twitter

    Blogs

    Mayor Rick Kriseman is no stranger to tweaking President Donald Trump on social media.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman took to Twitter Saturday evening to wade into President Donald Trump's latest social media scuffle