In the lawsuit where businessmen Bill Fuller and Martin Pinilla are suing Miami Commissioner Joe Carollo for alleged harassment and using city codes as weapons to shut down businesses, former city police chiefs testified on Tuesday .

Arturo Acevedo, who was fired after 6 months as Miami police chief, said shortly after he arrived in the city, city officials warned him he would face consequences if he didn’t do as commissioner Joe Carollo said.

During his testimony, he pointed out that much of what he said was documented in Miami city commission meetings.

Arturo Acevedo said that from the beginning many told him about the hatred Carollo had towards businessman Bill Fuller, for which they warned him that as a resident to stay away from his businesses and that as police chief, Carollo expected him to have Fuller’s properties under the peephole.

Acevedo explained that Miami’s city charter says commissioners must submit their requests through the administrator and not issue orders to the police. To which Carollo replied that he would make his demands to the administrator because the commission can fire him.

Earlier in this Tuesday’s section the police chief in front of Acevedo testified who Jorge Colina was, in the trial they showed a commission meeting in February 2019 where Carollo is seen telling Colina : “You came here very defensive boss”.

Commissioner Carollo told him that he was questioning the actions of police officers at a Fuller business called Las Taquerías and located on 8th and 5th Streets in Southwest Miami and that Chief Colina was in charge of the defense.

“You’re not going to harass me like you do other people. I’m not going to intimidate you,” the then-police chief told Commissioner Carollo.

Colina testified that, based on his nearly 30 years of police experience, he believed Joe Carollo was acting in retaliation against Fuller’s businesses.

In a lawsuit brought by businessmen Bill Fuller and Martin Pinilla, both insist Carollo spent his years on the Commission going beyond his powers as commissioner to destroy their businesses in retaliation and for political reasons.

They argue that the reason would have been that Bill Fuller supported Alfie León, Carollo’s political opponent.

The businessmen accuse the commissioner of allegedly using the Code Department and the City of Miami Police Department to retaliate and force the closure of some of their businesses, in particular the nightlife and tourist center popular located on 8th Street, Ball and Chain.

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