Florida commissioner ambushes deputy of the month during awards ceremony

September 30, 2019


Mike Gelin, a Florida city commissioner shocked his colleagues during an awards ceremony for outstanding officers when he claimed Broward County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Joshua Gallardo, one of the honorees, was a “bad police officer” who had falsely arrested him years earlier.

It was supposed to be a glorious moment for Gallardo. During the ceremony, city officials in Tamarac, Florida, honored him with the deputy of the month award for his role in arresting a gang member who had been wanted for murder.

Gallardo accepted his award, took pictures with the city’s mayor. As the audience and the rest of the Commission applauded, Gelin stood with his hands folded in front of him. As Gallardo was heading back to his seat in, Gelin took the microphone and asked him to come back to the front.

“Joshua Gallardo, will you come down for a second? It’s good to see you again,” said Gelin, before erupting into a tirade over what he believed to have been a false arrest in 2015. “You probably don’t remember me, but you’re the police officer who falsely arrested me four years ago.”

“You lied on the police report. I believe you’re a rogue police officer. You’re a bad police officer, and you don’t deserve to be here,” he added.

As Gelin spoke, Gallardo stood only a few feet away, looking directly at the commissioner. The deputy didn’t say a word, responded with a thumbs-up gesture and walked away. While the rest of the commissioners remained on the floor for the next proclamation and presentation, Gelin walked away and returned to his seat on the dais and left the rest of the presentation.
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Broward County court documents show that Gallardo arrested Gelin, who was not yet a commissioner, as he used his cellphone video to record police actions as they responded to a battery incident. According to his arrest report, Gelin “failed to comply with [the deputy’s] commands to move from the area.” Though the case was later dropped, Gelin remains perturbed about the incident four years later.

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