Saturday, December 27, 2008

DRIVER AARON RIMAR GETS COMMUNITY SERVICE, UPDATED 1/7/2009

READ January 7, 2009 UPDATE AT BOTTOM!


It's been four months since Heather Whalley and husband Seth, both members of the Lord's Church, were hit by a van driven by Aaron Rimar. It's been four months and still no charges against Mr. Rimar!

"The operator of the van has a horrendous driving record, 21 driving citations including a speeding conviction on March 14, less than a month before the fatal accident. He has multiple convictions for careless driving and speeding in addition to driving with a suspended license, without headlights, running a red light and driving with an open container in the vehicle. Critics question why he was still licensed to drive."1
Heather died from the impact and Seth is still recovering. Pray for them and pray for justice before someone else suffers.

Mrs. Kell, who lost her daughter, said the following: "Anger is not beneficial to myself or family," she said. "It's not going to bring her back. The Lord will deal with this situation when there's time."

UPDATE: Sept 17, 2008
"St. Pete Beach police have not publicly given any cause for the accident other than Rimar obviously was not in control of his vehicle. Chief David Romine refuses to release a copy of the accident report, saying that the case is under investigation by the Pinellas-Pasco state attorney’s office of Bernie McCabe. Romine claims that only McCabe can release the report." Accessed: here


UPDATE: Sept 19, 2008

COMMENTARY
By June Maxam
ST. PETE BEACH, FLA—Will the mayor of St. Pete Beach ask Florida Governor Charlie Crist to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the fatal crash of April 10 in which the mother of three was fatally injured as she and her husband walked on a sidewalk along Blind Pass Road?

At a meeting of the St. Pete Beach Commission on Wednesday, Sept. 10, St. Pete Beach resident Deborah Edney questioned the commissioners and Mayor Michael Finnerty why no charges had been brought against Aaron Rimar, the operator of the van which struck and killed Heather Whalley and seriously injured her husband Seth.

Finnerty told Edney, commissioners and the audience that he had spoken with St. Pete Beach police chief David Romine about the accident and that Romine had told him he had wanted to file charges against Rimar but was precluded from doing so by the Pinellas-Pasco state attorney’s office of Bernie McCabe. Accessed here
I have been watching this story to see what would be done. For now, there has been no justice for Heather and the Whalley family.

UPDATE: Oct. 20, 2008Still no charges against Aaron Rimar and despite requests, the State Attorney's office and Police Chief of St. Pete Beach are not releasing records. No toxicology reports have been made public. Read more...

UPDATE: Oct. 30, 2008The Mayor is seeking for the Governor of the State of Florida to appoint a special prosecutor to the Whalley case. Thanks so much to June Maxam of the North Country Gazette (New York!) for keeping this story alive. I can't find barely a word on this story from the Florida papers. Read the latest here.

UPDATE: Nov. 15, 2008 The following is from the online version of the St. Petersburg Times. The exposure is welcome.
What a sad and tragic story of Heather Whalley's death when she and her husband, Seth, were slammed by Aaron Rimar's van. The accident may not have been considered a crime because all four drugs that Rimar had in his system were considered "at or below therapeutic levels." But add them all together and the sum is equal to what should be considered involuntary manslaughter.Four potent drugs for a "shoulder injury" and not being under the care of a doctor? Just where did he get this concoction of meds?....
Thanks to the Tampabay.com and thanks especially to June Maxam at North Country Gazette for not letting this store go away. Read the rest of the Tampabay.com story here.

UPDATE: Dec. 1, 2008 Witnesses saw Aaron Rimar speeding past them and talking on cell phone just moments before the crash. The witnesses were never called in for an interview for the investigation. Read more

UPDATE: Dec. 27, 2008 Excerpt: "Most recently, NCG has written numerous articles on the suspicious drowning death of Joey Turner near St. Pete Beach, Fla., and the death of Jimmy Spicer of Palm Harbor, Fla., both victims of the sons of prominent, influential and politically connected fathers who were never criminally charged.

And then there’s the case of Aaron Rimar, the son of another wealthy Florida businessman in the Sixth Judicial Circuit where Bernie McCabe is the state attorney. Rimar, under the influence of four controlled substances for which he did not have a legal prescription, lost control of his vehicle and mowed down a young couple as they walked on a sidewalk, killing Heather Whalley and seriously injuring her husband. Once again, which seems to have become the norm in Pinellas County, no criminal charges were lodged." Read more....

UPDATE: Jan. 7, 2009 Heather Whalley's husband is angry that Aaron Rimar received community service and a $500 fine for killing his wife, Heather Whalley, last April 2008. He plans to file a civil suit, which appears to be his only recourse for justice. Remember that Aaron Rimar was under the influence of four prescription drugs, but they were not prescribed to him. And Aaron Rimar, according to the only eyewitness, drove for about 50 feet on the sidewalk, never slowing down, before hitting the Whalleys. And it may be noteworthy that Aaron Rimar has had so many traffic violations that some wonder why he has a driver's license. And remember that he is the son of a prominent businessman in the area. Read the latest Fox 13 story HERE.
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1.Accessed here
2.More here
3.Original story

12 comments:

  1. Anonymous9:03 PM

    This is absolutely rediculous! I happen to know the Whalley family and I think it's crazy that just because Aaron Rimar's father has city connections he's not getting charged! What about Heather's husband, children, and family members that are now left without her?! He needs to pay for what he's done!

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  2. Anonymous8:58 PM

    Of course the witnesses weren't called in for questioning, because Rimar's father is an important person in the town! How obsurd! The Rimar's should be ashamed of themselves, and how Aaron can live with the thought of killing an innocent mother and wife is beyond me!

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  3. Anonymous2:08 PM

    Yep, it's sad. Community service was the punishment. And not much has been revealed about this, but the first reports I heard said that Mr. Rimar had four prescriptions in his system, which were not prescribed to him - allegedly. How can he have four prescriptions in his system and still be legal to drive? Something went terribly wrong with the justice here.

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  4. Anonymous1:28 PM

    This make me so angry, I feel like exploding. I will NEVER visit the state of Florida again. And my family is from there and lives there. I will NEVER step foot into any state that allows MURDER based on how rich/powerful ones daddy is.

    Florida should be ashamed. Personally, I feel the federal goverment should start investigating the state for illigal activities. I am so disgusted with this state, I wish we could just wipe it off the map.

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  5. Anonymous12:50 PM

    Seems to me the lawsuit against the driver should also be a lawsuit against his father, for using his influence to keep his kid free, which indirectly resulted in this accident. If the father loses his entire fortune to the victim's family, seems to me that will be a good thing.

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  6. Anonymous8:04 PM

    Why does everything come down to a conspiracy theory? I'm from st Petersburg and the Rimar family isn't even that well connected. Since the traces found in the toxicology report weren't enough to charge him with DUI it would have been very very hard to convict him of involuntary manslaughter since a crime technically hadn't been committed. A sad sad time when anyone has to lose loved ones especially through accidents, however every case doesn't come down to conspiracy.

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  7. Dear Anonymous, From everything I have read, the toxicology reports did not say anything about the levels of the drugs, only that there was evidence of drugs. In the June 4 Tampa Bay Online report, there was nothing about toxicology levels nor whether Mr. Rimar had legal access to the drugs.

    http://blogs.tampabay.com/breakingnews/2008/06/toxicology-resu.html

    This story says Mr. Rimar had four prescription drugs in his system. Nothing was reported on what the drugs were.

    On October 29, six months after the accident, the toxicology reports were being withheld.

    http://www.northcountrygazette.org/2008/10/29/special_rimar/

    And here on August 18, no toxicology levels and no indication if the drugs were prescribed to Mr. Rimar.

    Not until November 12, 2008, did we learn that the authorities said the drugs were at "therapeutic" levels. Still no details are released whether they were prescribed to him and why, what those levels were.

    This being Mr. Rimar's 22nd traffic ticket, community service is getting off real light.

    http://www.baynews9.com/content/36/2008/11/12/402303.html

    So tell me who else gets this kind of treatment?

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  8. Anonymous8:57 AM

    Its all SICK completely disgusting and SICK This bastard took a life and ruined many many more. No justice could ever be found that would be enough for this low life scum. All that can be done now is to sit back and hope for some greater power to make things right. For that however I hold little hope, You all comment and say your piece on that day in April a true good person was lost. May Arron Rimar burn in hell.

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  9. Did all of you forget that the law is the law? The facts remain this was a simple accident. No more, no less. The law is the law and this case was more than thoroughly investigated and careless driving was the only thing they could charge him with. A civil law. Who cares about the punishment? Do any of you think Aaron is not suffering? Do you think he will carry this burden for the rest of his life? Some of remarks here are just ludicrous. If a bolt of lightning came down from the sky and killed her, what would you all do? Smite your Lord? The Rimars are good people and Aaron is no exception. It’s not like he woke up that morning & said "hmmm...I’m going to kill someone today..." If any of you actually knew the man, you would come to find out he is very kind and giving to all of those around him or he encounters and certainly does not deserve the unjust criticism and judgment all of you are passing upon him. So to all of you self-righteous know it all's judging him, JUDGE NOT LEST YE BE JUDGED. Also, that memorial is illegal, grotesque, and borders vandalism and destruction of public property. Not to mention it is a huge distraction to other drivers that could result in the same type of event occurring. It’s long overdue for it to be removed already and perhaps replaces by a State approved memorial. May Heather rest in peace.

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  10. Anonymous9:52 PM

    People who know this father and son know that Arron has been in trouble numerous ti wemes. His father has spent thousands of dollars to get him out of trouble. If anyone has access to court records they can see that Arron has beat charges that only someone with money and connections could get out of. If the person who said that Aaron was a nice man then they don't know that most people who know him were concerned about him abusing alcohol and drugs, and by the way isn't it a felany to take narcotics without a prescription. I aggree that this was a terrible accident, but if my daughter was in Arrons place I would be visiting her in prison. Its a fact that daddy has big connection with judges, police,and the fLORIDA GOOD BOYS NETWORK. Shame on Pinellas County and those involved for not letting there3 actually be equal justice for all

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  11. Anonymous10:28 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  12. Having known Aaron since high school, I do think that he should be held accountable for what happened that evening! I, myself, was involved in a dui manslaughter accident on St.Pete Beach in 2003. Yes, I did cause that accident and was sentenced to 6 yrs. prison followed by 9 yrs of probation. I grew up in St.petersburg along the beach and Tierra Verde and was shown NO favoratism by either the St.Pete Beach police dept. nor Bernie McCabe's office. I no longer have a license and I had NO prior tickets/accidents before my accident! For Aaron to still be allowed to drive in the state of Florida is absurd to me and shows that there is no JUSTICE!!! My heart goes out to the victims family as they will not have closure until justice is served if that ever happens. It is a tragedy for all involved but it is an even bigger one when the person who caused this suffers really no consequences!

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