Report: Riviera Beach man sent teens nude pics

OKEECHOBEE — A Riviera Beach man accused of sending nude photos of himself to two local teens is being held on bond in the county jail.

The man, John Edward Whitmire, has been arrested on felony charges by both the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) and the Okeechobee City Police Department (OCPD).

Whitmire, 27, Wedgewood Plaza, was first arrested Dec. 22 by OCPD Officer Cesar Romero on felony charges of burglary of a conveyance, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and tampering with a witness.

On Dec. 23, Whitmire was arrested by OCSO Deputy Ryane Ammons on felony charges of transmitting information harmful to a minor (two counts) and one count of filing a false bomb report.

He is being held in the Okeechobee County Jail with a bond of $260,000.

The man’s initial arrest stemmed from an incident in the Walmart parking lot where he confronted a former girlfriend, who no longer wanted anything to do with him. As she tried to get into a vehicle, the man wedged himself between the door and the body of the vehicle to keep her from leaving, stated a report by Officer Romero.

John Whitmire

John Whitmire

He apparently became angry and punched the windshield of the 2005 Chevrolet Blazer hard enough to crack the glass, continued the report.

According to the report the woman then told Whitmire she needed to get gas in the vehicle so he rode on the outside of the Blazer to a nearby station.

While pumping gas the woman told Whitmire she had to go, but he allegedly pulled a knife and punctured the two right-side tires so she couldn’t drive away.

He then took her $900 cell phone and would not return it, added the officer.
The woman told Whitmire she needed some cigarettes so she went to the window where she quietly asked the cashier to call 9-1-1.

She told Whitmire she was leaving but he threatened to cut her throat, stated the officer. So she drove the SUV with two flat tires back to the Walmart parking lot with Whitmire hanging onto the side of the vehicle, Officer Romero added.

The victim was able to get away from her attacker when a female friend pulled up beside her and she jumped into that vehicle.

Officer Romero stated that he spoke with the female cashier who told him the woman appeared to be very upset and that she saw a man shoving the woman.

Whitmire was later taken into custody by officers from the Riviera Beach Police Department, and returned to Okeechobee.

Deputy Ammons stated in his arrest report that Whitmire sent nude photos of himself via a social networking site to a 12-year-old girl and a 17-year-old girl. On 13 occasions he reportedly sent similar type photos of himself to his former girlfriend, who is an adult.

The deputy went on to document that Whitmire used at least three fictitious names when he sent his messages — Matt Dye, John Edward and Ricky Fountain.

While working another case involving the Riviera Beach man, Deputy Ammons stated he was told about a 9-1-1 call to Palm Beach Emergency Services from a man who identified himself as Fountain. Fountain supposedly said an Okeechobee man armed with a bomb and two pistols was going to blow up the Walmart store in Okeechobee.

As it turned out, continued the deputy’s report, Whitmire actually made that call and used the alias.

“It should also be noted, I placed John Whitmire under arrest on Dec. 7 for the violation of aggravated stalking,” stated the OCSO deputy. “John was ordered by the court to wear an ankle monitor as a condition of his pretrial release.”

However, continued Deputy Ammons, Whitmire also sent a photo to his former girlfriend of that ankle monitor after he had removed it from his ankle.

Despite the man’s arrest and incarceration, this investigation is continuing.
Whitmire’s arraignment on these charges has been set for Feb. 4, 2016, at 10 a.m.

Eric Kopp is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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