Former LBK police officer sentenced
Beardsley was sentenced to 90 days in jail, followed by two years of house arrest, followed by 2 years probation for aggrevated assualt with a deadly weapon.
Former Longboat Key Police Officer Patricia Beardsley pled guilty to Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon without Intent to Kill on Monday, March 29. Beardsley’s guilty plea came 195 days from her arrest September 16, 2009.
Beardsley was sentenced to 90 days in jail, followed by two years of Community Control (house arrest), followed by 2 years probation. Having pled guilty to the felony charge, Beardsley has lost her civil rights. Loss of civil rights takes away not only the right to vote, but also the right to hold public office, serve on a jury and qualify for certain types of state licenses necessary for many jobs, such as those in the construction and medical fields.
This sentence is the final outcome of an incident that took place on September 16, 2009.
Beardsley, a Sarasota resident, was arrested after she brandished a firearm at a Sarasota mother who was picking up her children from school when she pulled into the officer’s driveway to turn around.
Craig Schaeffer, felony division chief in the State’s Attorney Office, said that Beardsley will no longer be permitted to work in law enforcement in Florida or any other state due to the guilty plea and felony charges.
“Community Control, a.k.a. house arrest, is a serious matter. Ms. Beardsley will not be able to leave her home after she serves her 90-day jail sentence, without her Community Control Officer knowing and approving her whereabouts.
Beardsley’s statement in the original police report claimed that she had pointed a cell phone, not a handgun, at Jill Campbell’s van, a contradiction of the guilty plea on March 29, 2010.
The incident, as described in the Probable Cause Affidavit, alleged through several witnesses that Beardsley walked out of her front door brandishing a black pistol. The details are described in the arrest affidavit as follows:
On Sept. 16, a Sarasota Police officer responded to the area of 1958 Bougainvillea Street in reference to two separate 911 calls. Both of the calls were in response to a white female (Beardsley) brandishing a firearm at a motorist who had pulled into Beardsley’s driveway on Bougainvillea Street.
The victim in the case, Jill Pamela Campbell, had picked up her two children, as well as another child from Southside Elementary one block away.
Due to parking issues encountered at the school, Campbell said she had parked on the north side of Bougainvillea and had pulled into the driveway to turn around and drive her children to church. She said as she pulled her vehicle into the driveway, she observed a white female exit the front door holding a black handgun and began walking toward Campbell’s vehicle.
As the woman approached the car she was holding the firearm level at her hip. As the female approached the car’s passenger side front window she raised the firearm pointing it into the passenger’s compartment.
Beardsley told Sarasota Police after the incident that she did, if fact, confront a driver who had pulled into her driveway but stated she only cursed at them and pointed her cell phone at them. Beardsley indicated to the Sarasota police that she did possess a black Glock handgun, which she showed to the police at their request.
In a conversation with Longboat Key News after the incident, Beardsley reaffirmed that she was holding a cell phone and not a gun. She also said that she had been on high alert after experiencing numerous burglaries at her previous north Sarasota residence. She also said her neighbor had been accosted and beaten by a home invader who was targeting women in the flower streets a few months ago.
The arrest of longtime Police Officer Beardsley shocked the Longboat Key community and disappointed Longboat Police Chief Al Hogle and Town Manager Bruce St. Denis. Beardsley was placed on administrative leave without pay while the incident was under investigation. Beardsley was terminated from employment on October 11, 2009, following an internal investigation.