3 To Know: Puppy death trial; Naples man sentenced

Marco Eagle
Robert Garon, 23, plays with his puppy, Buzz Lightyear, a 5-month-old Goldendoodle who died July 29 due to possible head trauma.

1. 8 to give testimony ahead of Naples man’s trial in puppy killing

Six law enforcement officers and two animal service employees will have to testify under oath as the trial looms for a Naples man accused of beating his puppy to death.

Court records indicate that Bill Himaras, of the Domestic Animal Services, and Dr. Erik Madison, of the Emergency Pet Hospital of Collier County, will have to testify Friday, March 3, in the case accusing Robert Garon, 23, of fatally beating his puppy, Buzz Lightyear.

Depositions slated for March 22 include William Brigge of the Marco Island Police Department and officer Michael Raines; and Detective Megan Noel; Detective Sgt. Gregory Hinchliffe; Detective Thomas Gallo; and officer Jamie Peterson of the Collier County Sheriff’s Office.

The jury trial in Garon’s case is slated July 17 before Collier Circuit Judge John McGowan.

In November, McGowan ruled in favor of releasing Lightyear’s veterinary records for July 29 — the day he died — and Aug. 3 — when officials at the Humane Society Naples performed a necropsy on the puppy.

The state sought to subpoena Buzz Lightyear’s records. Witnesses said it was the second dog Robert Garon killed within five months, according to his arrest report.

McGowan denied the release of the puppy’s records prior to July 29, 2022.

The Sheriff’s Office began investigating Aug. 2 after Collier County Domestic Animal Services contacted them about a suspected case of abuse involving the puppy.

Detectives with the Collier County Sheriff’s Office Animal Cruelty Investigations Alliance arrested Garon on Aug. 11 and charged him with the late July slaying of his 5-month-old puppy.

He bonded out Aug. 12 and entered a not guilty plea Nov. 14, records indicate.

Through their attorney, Donald Day, on Nov. 21, Garon’s family subpoenaed Legacy Apartments, in the 7500 block of Campania Way, in Naples, court records indicate. – Tomas Rodriguez/Staff

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2. State police: Pedestrian killed along US 41 in Collier County

A Florida man died Feb. 24 when a sport-utility vehicle struck him as he was walking on U.S. 41 East in Collier County, state police say.

The pedestrian was trying to cross U.S. 41 East northbound lanes about 10:30 p.m. when a 71-year-old Allen Park, Michigan, man driving a blue Ford Escape hit him near Dixie Road, Florida Highway Patrol reported early Saturday.

The pedestrian’s age and hometown were not listed in the report. He was pronounced dead at the scene, pending positive identification. – Dave Osborn/Staff

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3. Naples man sentenced to federal prison for fraud

A Naples man was sentenced to seven years and three months in federal prison as part of a string of sentencings stemming from COVID relief fraud.

U.S. District Judge Sheri Polster Chappell sentenced Daniel Joseph Tisone, 35, for wire fraud, bank fraud, illegal monetary transactions and possession of ammunition by a convicted felon.

Polster Chappell also ordered that Tisone forfeit the properties, engagement ring, ammunition and cash seized from bank accounts, as well as to pay restitution in the amount of $2,617,447.17, all traceable proceeds from the offenses. He pleaded guilty Aug. 26.

According to court documents, between March 2020 and April 2021, Tisone submitted false and fraudulent Economic Injury Disaster Loan, Main Street Lending Program, and Paycheck Protection Program loan applications to the Small Business Administration, as well as approved lenders.

The loan applications contained several misrepresentations, including the criminal history, average monthly payroll, number of employees and Tisone's gross revenues, court officials said. – Tomas Rodriguez/Staff