Dozens of DUI cases affected after Broward deputy is accused of touching two women
(SUNSENTINAL) Dozens of DUI cases in Broward County have been dropped or downgraded because a former Sheriff’s Office deputy is accused of inappropriately touching women he encountered during traffic stops.
Charles E. Grady Jr., a nearly 12-year veteran with the agency, resigned Wednesday. Grady, who worked with the DUI task force, had been suspended since December, when the Sheriff’s Office began an investigation.
Broward prosecutors filed charges Monday accusing Grady, 39, of two first-degree misdemeanor counts of battery, each punishable by up to a year in jail.
Grady’s attorney, Alberto Milian, declined to comment Thursday.
The charges stemmed from two traffic stops last year.
On Sept. 19, Grady arrested a 38-year-old Boca Raton woman on a DUI charge. She was arrested at 3:17 a.m. not far from the Solid Gold strip club, where she worked as a dancer.
On Dec. 19, a 20-year-old Coral Springs woman was stopped at 2:45 a.m. She later complained to Fort Lauderdale police that she “experienced inappropriate contact” during the traffic stop.
Sheriff’s Office Spokesman Jim Lejedal declined to provide details about the alleged batteries.
“The misdemeanor battery charge would indicate that there was deliberate and unwelcome touching,” he said.
In a statement, Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti said: “I’m extremely disappointed. It disturbs me when any law enforcement officer is accused of tarnishing the badge.”
A preliminary case count shows Grady was involved in more than 200 pending DUI cases, said Ron Ishoy, spokesman for the Broward State Attorney’s Office.
“Dozens of cases have been affected so far, either with a changed charge or [a dropped charge],” he said. “We have been reviewing each of those cases to determine their strengths and weaknesses with or without his testimony. Some cases have been, or will need to be, dropped.”
A review of the cases continues, Ishoy said.
Todd Onore, defense attorney for the Boca Raton woman, said his client’s case is pending and he hopes prosecutors will offer her a reduced charge.
“We’re obviously going to look to the state to do us right based on what happened to her,” Onore said. “This was something that obviously she had been very upset about. She was done wrong as far as what happened.”
Grady is scheduled for arraignment May 13 before County Court Judge Robert Diaz.