Stabbing ends in attempted murder chargeOAKLEAF – A Middleburg man faces a second-degree attempted murder charge after a workplace disagreement ended in a stabbing on Dec. 21 in the Oakleaf …
Stabbing ends in attempted murder charge
OAKLEAF – A Middleburg man faces a second-degree attempted murder charge after a workplace disagreement ended in a stabbing on Dec. 21 in the Oakleaf community.
The Clay County Sheriff’s Office arrested Mingfu Wu, 58, of Night Owl Trail on the night of Dec. 21 after he fled the scene of the China Café on Branan Field Road where he got into a dispute with a co-worker about washing dishes.
At press time, Wu was in the Clay County Jail where he is being held without bond. He also faces an additional charge of aggravated battery. During his initial court appearance, court officials had to use an interpreter to communicate with Wu.
According to the police report, Zhaowen Lin, 38, is still in critical condition after Wu allegedly attacked Lin with a meat cleaver shortly before noon on Dec. 21. He was arrested at the Branan Field Walmart across the street from the café.
According to police, Lin was washing dishes when Wu moved the faucet to wash his own items. When Lin told Wu to wait until it was his turn, an argument broke out and Wu allegedly attacked Lin with the meat cleaver. Police said Lin had multiple wounds.
Lin was first transported to nearby St. Vincent’s Medical Center, but was later transported to UF Health hospital in Jacksonville.
CCSO said a Walmart shopper called 911 and said she believed Wu was inside the store. Wu is scheduled for a court appearance on Jan. 24.
Body found in Spring Lake
KEYSTONE HEIGHTS – After a four-day search, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office found a body in Spring Lake that may be that of a man who was reported missing while swimming on Dec. 22.
However, a prepared statement released Tuesday, stated the CCSO was not yet prepared to confirm whether the body was that of 27-year-old Sean Leverette.
Late Tuesday, CCSO officials returned to the lake with members of its dive team and other Special Operations team members who used drones periodically in their search along the lake bed. Officers from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office also assisted in the search.
Leverette was last seen swimming in Spring Lake on Dec. 21, around 5 p.m. and was described by CCSO as “a good swimmer.”
Spokesman Chris Padgett also said that there was no reason to believe foul play was involved.
“Sean had been spending time with friends around the lake, but later in the afternoon his friends left the area leaving him to swim. This was the last time he was seen, because upon the return of his friends, he could not be found. At this time, Sean’s current whereabouts are unknown,” according to one CCSO statement.
Leverette was described as a white male, 5-feet 7-inches tall, weighing approximately 155 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was possibly wearing military style boots, pants and a T-shirt, that he was believed to be wearing while swimming.
Sexual battery charge for Middleburg man
ORANGE PARK – A Middleburg man was arrested after allegedly having non-consensual sexual intercourse with a friend who had fallen asleep.
The Clay County Sheriff’s Office arrested Kennardo Bentley Missick, 23, on Dec. 21 after the victim told them Missick has sexually assaulted her a few nights prior.
Missick was invited to his female friend’s house to drink wine and watch movies. According to the police report, the girl became heavily intoxicated to the point of vomiting and went to bed. The victim told police that the last thing she remembers was Missick lying next to her in bed and rubbing her thigh, then she woke up to find that her skirt had been lifted and Missick was on top of her having sex with her. She pushed him off and then lost consciousness again. After interviewing the victim, police asked Missick to come to the Orange Park substation for an interview and proceeded to arrest him.
Missick was taken to the Clay County Jail where he faces a felony for sexual battery and is being held on about $500,000 bond. He is set to appear in court on January 17.
Traffic stop ends in meth charge
MIDDLEBURG – A Middleburg woman was arrested Dec. 20 after allegedly committing theft and possessing methamphetamine.
The Clay County Sheriff’s Office said Shelby Loree Graham, 23, entered the Dollar General at 2620 Blanding Blvd. and placed multiple items such as markers, socks, batteries and more, valued at $96.30, in her purse. The store manager on duty said she watched Graham place these items in her purse and walk out of the store without paying, according to the police report.
When police arrived, the store manager described what she had witnessed, and Graham was arrested in front of the outside of the store. The stolen items were recovered from Graham’s possession and returned to Dollar General. Police not only found those stolen items in Graham’s possession, but methamphetamine as well.
Graham was arrested and charged with retail theft and possession of methamphetamine with the intent to sell. She was bailed out jail on an undisclosed amount.
Clay County man enters guilty plea to bomb charge
JACKSONVILLE – An Orange Park area man who was accused of planning a terrorist bombing plot online will not stand trial in federal court.
Joshua Ryne Goldberg, 22, of Orange Park, on Dec. 20 waived his right to indictment and pleaded guilty to an Information charging him with attempted malicious damage and destruction by an explosive of a building, according to acting United States Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow.
Goldberg faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, with a 5-year mandatory minimum term of imprisonment. A sentencing date has not yet been set.
According to the plea agreement, in the summer of 2015, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and law enforcement officers from Australia began investigating the online name “AusWitness” and determined that it was Goldberg.
Goldberg had come to the attention of law enforcement due in part to his postings concerning the May 3, 2015, attack by two gunmen at the Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest in Garland, Texas. Prior to the attack, Goldberg posted a map of the location of the contest and urged anyone in the area to attack the event.
Goldberg’s posting was copied by gunman Elton Simpson, one of the two individuals killed during the May 3, 2015, attack. The FBI later located an online posting in which Goldberg took responsibility for inspiring the Garland attack, as well as two other planned attacks.
In late July 2015, an FBI confidential informant began exchanging online messages with Goldberg as “AusWitness.”
Between July and mid-August 2015, Goldberg discussed getting an individual in Melbourne, Australia to carry out a terrorist attack and to having the CHS commit a bombing in the United States. During portions of those conversations, Goldberg sent the informant five website links containing instructions for making an explosive device, including pipe bombs and other incendiary devices.
On August 20, 2015, Goldberg stated that he was thinking of pipe bombs at a large public event and later said that a pressure cooker bomb may be better. Later that month, Goldberg told the CHS that he had found the “perfect place” to target on September 11, 2015, and sent the informant a link to a Kansas City, Missouri firefighter’s event that memorialized first responders that had been killed in the September 11th attacks.
On August 27, 2015, Goldberg instructed the informant to place the bomb near the crowd at the memorial event and to ensure it was very well hidden.
The following day, Goldberg provided the informant with a list of items to use in the pressure cooker bomb, including shards of metal, nails and broken glass. He then instructed the informant to dip screws and other shrapnel in rat poison before putting them in the pressure cooker bomb so as to have more casualties. Goldberg said he would post a video of the bombing. A forensic analysis of the bomb making information determined that it could have been used to make explosives that would cause property damage, personal injury and/or death.
The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Clay County Sheriff’s Office investigated the case. Members of the Jacksonville JTTF include the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Border Patrol, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Florida Highway Patrol, the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, and the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.