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Argument between mayor, wife detailed

Police released photos of Miami Mayor Joe Carollo's wife Wednesday and a transcript of her statement after she was allegedly hit by a tea canister he threw at her last month.

The Miami Police Department made the photos available to the public after Circuit Judge Bernard Shapiro ruled Monday that they were exempt from the state's public records law. The law normally bars disclosure of evidence in an active investigation.

The mayor is accused of throwing a cardboard tea canister at his wife, Maria Ledon Carollo, causing a lump on her head. After a night in jail, he was released on $1,500 bail and ordered to stay away from his wife. She filed for divorce in November.

Mrs. Carollo told police she and the mayor began arguing in the kitchen the morning of Feb. 7, according to the transcript. Joe Carollo asked her how to make tea, and she told him to fill a pot with water and let it boil. The mayor asked again if he was supposed to fill the pot with water.

"No, point your finger and water will appear," Mrs. Carollo recalled saying to her husband.

The mayor insulted her and she insulted him back, she said. He then threw a cardboard tea canister, which hit her on the temple. Mrs. Carollo got up and lunged at her husband, she said.

"I went to hit him, and he grabbed my arms," she said. "I scratched his neck, and I started yelling for my daughter to call 911."

One of the daughters came into the kitchen and told her father to leave her mother alone.

Mrs. Carollo said there was tension between the couple but no major argument leading up to the scuffle. She said this was the first time an incident like that had occurred.

The mayor's attorney, Ben Kuehne, said he was disappointed that the transcript and photos were released but did not think they would have an impact on the case.

"After reviewing the transcript, I'm surprised Mayor Carollo was even arrested," Kuehne said.

A detective said Mrs. Carollo had a hematoma the size of a small lemon on the left temple. The photos released by the police showed redness on Mrs. Carollo's left temple. There were no close-ups, and the quality was poor.