Is the Sunshine State the capital of bizarre, head-scratching crime? You be the judge.

 

Illustration by Matt Mignanelli

Maybe it’s the heat.

Perhaps it’s the influx of strangers—an estimated 80 million tourists wintered or vacationed here last year alone. Or, given the number of scams perpetuated in the Sunshine State, maybe it’s our reputation for being easily duped. On the other hand, it could be nothing more than sheer stupidity.

Whatever the explanation, Florida, according to a recent survey by the Associated Press, is the undisputed champion of strange-but-true news. There are blogs and websites devoted to our state’s seemingly never-ending wave of weird crime. Like the shapely woman who was smuggling cocaine in her breast implants. Or the faux physician who went door-to-door offering free breast exams.

Police see it all the time; another numbskull making life interesting.

“It seems that there’s a magnet over Florida,” says Stephanie Slater, public information officer for the Boynton Beach Police Department. “There’s always a Florida connection. Always.”

As Florida residents, it’s certainly nothing of which to be proud. However, it does make for good reading. Here are some of our favorite surreal episodes—all from the past five years.

To continue reading, please pick up a copy of
the February Boca Raton magazine.