Cheyanne Jessie, left, with mitigation specialist/investigator Colleen Quinn

Cheyanne Jessie convicted of killing her father, daughter


Cheyanne Jessie, left, with mitigation specialist/investigator Colleen Quinn

Cheyanne Jessie, left, with mitigation specialist/investigator Colleen Quinn

State Attorney Brian Haas announces the conviction of Cheyanne Jessie for the brutal killing of her daughter and father in 2015.

A 12-member jury convicted Jessie, 29, of Lakeland, after less than four hours of deliberations. The jury, which also convicted Jessie of tampering with evidence, will now determine whether to recommend the death penalty for Jessie.

Death sentences require a unanimous jury recommendation to the judge.

Assistant State Attorneys Paul Wallace and Kristie Ducharme will continue prosecution in the death penalty phase of the case today.

In 2015, the bodies of Jessie’s father, 50-year-old Mark Weekly, and 6-year-old daughter Meredith Jessie were found in plastic storage bins in a neighbor’s shed. Detectives suspect the two were killed July 18, 2015.

Jessie’s daughter died of a gunshot to the head. She was also stabbed. Her father died of three gunshots to his head and multiple stab wounds to the chest.

Jessie committed the murders to save her relationship with boyfriend, Matthew “Cody” Munroe, who said he was unhappy with Jessie’s stormy relationship with Meredith.


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Davenport man convicted of sexual battery, impersonating an officer



State Attorney Brian Haas announces the conviction of Erubiel Aladino-Ojeda, a 38-year-old Davenport man convicted on two counts of sexual battery, attempted sexual battery and falsely impersonating an officer during a felony.

A six-member jury convicted Aladino-Ojeda after two hours of deliberations.

He faces a maximum of 50 years in prison. Circuit Judge Larry Helms is expected to sentence Aladino-Ojeda in August.

Assistant State Attorney Ralph Guerra prosecuted the case for the State Attorney’s Office.

In 2018, both Aladino-Ojeda and the victim worked at a landscaping company in Davenport. Aladino-Ojeda carried a fake badge and drove a Cadillac Escalade with flashing lights, a K-9 and 911 sticker, and tinted windows.

“His reputation was that he worked at Davenport Police Department,” Guerra said.

Evidence showed Aladino-Ojeda began stalking the female victim in the summer of 2018. In August, he took her home from the grocery store, entered her house and raped the woman.

Additionally, Aladino-Ojeda threatened to have the woman deported if she told anyone about the rape, Guerra said.

A month later, Aladino-Ojeda again raped the woman at her home. Days later, he attempted to rape her in a drug store parking lot, but the woman threatened to scream. She went to a nearby hospital where doctors notified Haines City Police. A police investigation led to the arrest of Aladino-Ojeda.

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Haines City man convicted of trafficking methamphetamine



State Attorney Brian Haas announces the conviction of Pioquinto Bejar-Salamanca, a 59-year-old Haines City man for trafficking more than 200 grams of amphetamine (methamphetamine), possession of drug paraphernalia, and possession of a structure with intent to trafficking amphetamine.

Bejar-Salamanca was convicted by a six-member jury, which deliberated for about two hours on Wednesday.  The more than 800 grams of methamphetamine has a street value of over fifty thousand dollars.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorney Seth Solomon.

Bejar-Salamanca faces up to 45 years in prison with a 15-year mandatory prison term when he is sentenced on August 30.   The Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the Lake Wales Police Department were critical partners to the State Attorney’s Office in securing this conviction.

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State Attorney Haas speaks to Suncoast Crime Prevention Association

State Attorney Brian Haas addresses law enforcement officers.

State Attorney Brian Haas addresses law enforcement officers.

State Attorney Brian Haas addressed officers and deputies from the Suncoast Crime Prevention Association on Wednesday at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office operations center.

The event, hosted by Sheriff Grady Judd, featured Mr. Haas discussing ways to prevent scams from occurring.

“We have to do everything we can to warn people ahead of time,” Mr. Haas said.

Mr. Haas mentioned a number of scams, including old ones like mail fraud and newer ones, such as text messages residents receive, stating that their bank account has been compromised. Also, Mr. Haas said scams directed at the elderly on Facebook have become all too common.

“Sometimes people are pulled into scams and they’ll end up dumping more and more money into them,” Mr. Haas said.

Toward the end of the discussion, Mr. Haas asked law enforcement if they had any suggestions about ways to tell people about scams in the community.

Officers suggested providing tips on social media and speaking to groups of people in the community about ways to prevent scams from occurring.

Mr. Haas agreed.

“This is our obligation to share this knowledge with our citizens,” Mr. Haas said.

He thanked officers for their hard work.

“I couldn’t do this job without the support of these great agencies,” Mr. Haas said.

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