Former North Port commissioner charged with beating girlfriend
By Lee Williams
Published: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
A former North Port city commissioner, David Garofalo, has been charged with beating his girlfriend in the parking lot of the Tamiami Bar in Punta Gorda.
According to reports, witnesses in the bar Saturday night heard the woman scream: “Help me! Get him off me! Help!”
When they went outside, the reports say, they Garofalo sitting atop the woman as she attempted to fight and push him away.
A male customer reportedly pulled Garofalo off the woman, who then ran to her car. According to the reports, Garofalo ran after her, yelling to the crowd, “I don’t care if you call the police,” and the two drove away together.
Police stopped them near Harbor Nissan.
Garofalo, 36, had a swollen lip, scratches on his neck, blood on his hands and torn jeans, his arrest report says. Police saw no injuries on the woman. Both told police that the woman had simply fallen down. Officers noted that both appeared intoxicated, with Garofalo kneeling down next to the passenger side of the car.
On the way to the Charlotte County Jail, Garofalo began to cry and reportedly said: “I am sorry. Please get me out of this.”
Garofalo, who makes $58,672 per year as a Pasco County fire captain, was charged with domestic battery; he was released the next day after posting bond.
Neither he nor his attorney, Armando Edmiston, returned calls seeking comment.
In May, Indianapolis police charged Garofalo with DUI. He is said to have driven into a ditch and gotten trapped in his vehicle when it overturned. He was with the same woman he is accused of assaulting Saturday.