Commissioner arrested after pulling out gun
Miramar City Commissioner Fitzroy Salesman was arrested by police after he pulled out a gun in Winn-Dixie.
Posted on Mon, Nov. 26, 2007
BY NATALIE P. McNEAL
MIAMI HERALD FILE PHOTO
Miramar City Commissioner Fitzroy Salesman was arrested by police after he pulled out a gun in Winn-Dixie.Miramar City Commissioner Fitzroy Salesman, who was arrested for pointing a semiautomatic gun in a Winn-Dixie, causing shoppers to scurry in fear, seemed to be in a sour mood that night because the self-checkout line wasn't open, according to a cashier.
The cashier said Salesman was apparently so peeved at having to stand in line with other Thanksgiving eve shoppers, he showed his business card to another cashier and said, ``Do you know who I am? I will shut this b**** down.''
Salesman, 50, must appear in court Dec. 26 on a charge of improper exhibition of a firearm -- a misdemeanor. It is his second arrest by Miramar police in 2 ½ years. In the first incident, a Broward jury found Salesman not guilty of driving under the influence and fleeing police.
About 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, police got a call about an assault with a firearm at the Winn-Dixie.
People on the scene described Salesman, the person with the ''big gun,'' as wearing a yellow shirt and black pants. The Winn-Dixie, at 3108 S. University Dr., has banned Salesman from the store.
Salesman did not return phone calls on Sunday.
But a draft report by Miramar police states that Salesman said, ``I pulled out my gun to defend myself.''
According to the draft report, Salesman told police an argument started with someone inside the store.
The other person went for his waistband, and Salesman told police he felt ``threatened.''
The report states that officers viewed a tape of the incident, and the victim was ``trying to avoid further conflict.''
The surveilance video shows Salesman went over to a man paying for groceries, according to the report. On the tape Salesman seemed to reach inside the man's shopping cart and say something to him.
After the man paid for his groceries, he tried to leave the store. Salesman followed the man, circling in front to stop him from leaving, the report stated.
Salesman pulled his gun from the small of his back and pointed it at the man in an angry and threatening manner, according to the police report.
The cashier who worked that night, who did not want her name published, said Salesman called the man a ''*****'' several times and touched him with the gun.
The cashier said the man, who looked to be in his early 20s, left the store. ''I don't think he wanted any problems so he walked off,'' the cashier said.
''Everybody was scared,'' she said.
Some shoppers and cashiers ran to the back of the store and others ducked.
At the scene, police confiscated the .45-caliber Springfield semiautomatic from Salesman. The gun had one round in the chamber and six rounds in the magazine.
The officer took Salesman's concealed weapons license, which he showed police when they approached him at the store.
Salesman was first elected to the Miramar City Commission in 2001 and reelected in 2005.
Salesman has had several brushes with police.
Before his 2005 DUI charge on which he was found not guilty, police responded to a disturbance call in 1998 at a bar in Miami-Dade County and charged Salesman with resisting an officer without violence and disorderly intoxication.
In lieu of prosecution, a judge ordered him into a pretrial intervention program for first-time offenders. He completed anger-management classes.
In 2002, Salesman was fired from his Miami-Dade teaching job after students in a TV production class at Miami Lakes Technical Education Center filmed a profanity-laced tape while under his supervision.
At the time, Salesman said he didn't see the finished product and had no idea the tape was so graphic.