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Longboat Key
Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Longboater arrested for assault, battery over beach trespassing

A confrontation involving trespass, videotaping, and assault and battery took place on Oct. 6 in front of one of Longboat’s most exclusive Gulf front estates.

Longboat police were dispatched on that day and alleged that Longboat Key resident James Goodridge, age 72, had forced a woman who resides at the Ohana property, 6633 Gulf of Mexico Drive, onto the ground during an altercation over the property line and the right to walk across the victim’s property.

According to the Longboat Key Police report, at about 9:30 a.m., officers were dispatched in reference to a battery at the Ohana estate. The victim stated she confronted Goodridge about trespassing on her posted property. The victim said that an argument occurred over the location of the property line.

At that point, Longboat Police say Goodridge began to videotape the incident and the victim stuck her hand up to block the camera view. Police say at this time, Goodridge jumped onto the victim, and “took the victim down to the ground” straddling her by using both hands and legs to keep her pinned. The victim’s husband allegedly witnessed the incident from the residence and ran toward his wife to help. The victim’s 11-year-old son was yelling and screaming at Goodridge to get off of his mom.

The victim said she managed to kick Goodridge in the groin, causing him to get off of her. Next, the victim stated that she grabbed Goodridge’s cell phone and threw it into the Gulf of Mexico.

Police say that the victim sustained a small scratch from the struggle on the right side of her neck that was visible, and she told police she wanted to prosecute Goodridge on battery charges.

Longboat Police observed the scratch marks on the victim’s neck and noted, “she was very nervously shaken from the incident,” according to the police report. The victim did not wish to be treated by EMS at the scene.

Officers did not see any sign of injuries to Goodridge who was placed under arrest without further incident and transported to the Fire Station on the Cortez Road for Manatee County Sheriff’s Office for transfer.

Discord continues

The next day at about 9:15 a.m., Oct. 7, Longboat Key Police Officer Doug Ferris was dispatched to a suspicious person call to the Ohana Estate again,– along the beach at 6633 Gulf of Mexico Drive. Dispatch advised Officer Ferris that the call was in reference to the battery arrest that happened the day before. When officers arrived, the suspect was gone and the complainant was advised to file a restraining order.

Later in the day, Longboat Key Police contacted Goodridge that a no contact order had been issued as a condition of pre-trial bond and that contact would be a violation, and the condition could be revoked and he would proceed to jail.

Goodridge told police that he was unaware of such an order, and that he was returning because he said the woman from the day before had “robbed him of his cellular phone,” according to the police report.

Longboat Police say that Mr. Goodridge was advised that the Police Department, “Would not entertain his theory of being robbed.”

To date, there have no further incidents reported at the property.

Right of passage

The issue of traversing the Ohana property has troubled beachwalkers who were allowed to cross over the seawall, which juts out into the Gulf of Mexico. The current owners repaired the seawall earlier this year and subsequently posted signs advising “No Trespassing” and that there are dangerous dogs on the premises. The Town has received numerous letters and complaints from residents who believed or believe they have the right to walk over the seawall, but Longboat Key Police say it is simply private property.

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