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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A second person has been charged after dozens of balloons were popped onboard a large yacht docked within the Bayshore Landing marina.

Martina Gaspoz, 26, has been charged with willful disregard for the environment, a felony.

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The man accused of dumping balloons, David Torres-Bocanegra, is also facing a felony charge.

(Courtesy of @mmgoutboarddivision)

The man who rented the boat for a wedding proposal says he had no idea about the balloon incident.

Gaspoz was spotted popping/deflating 50 balloons on the yacht which were then illegally dumped in the bay, according to her arrest report.

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During questioning, Gaspoz reportedly told police she assisted Torres-Bocanegra in removing the balloons.

She said when the charter ended, she left the boat and then saw a news crew filming and saw the spent balloons in the water.

Gaspoz said she felt ashamed of what they had done after looking at the social media posts, according to the arrest report.

“Balloons are horrible for our environment. They often look like jellyfish floating in the water, sea turtles eat them,” Debris Free Oceans Co-Founder Caiti Waks explained.

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Recently, over 1,500 balloons were recovered in a cleanup operation at Biscayne National Park.

News Source: cbslocal.com

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Crime and Public Safety | You will likely not see a worse case of physical abuse on a young child: East Bay mother takes plea deal in horrific child abuse case

OAKLAND — At the verge of her trial’s beginning, a San Leandro woman pleaded no contest to multiple felony contest related to extensive abuse of her then-9-year-old son, whom authorities say was starved, received regular beatings, and spent most of his time locked in a bathroom.

Shawanda Black, 27, pleaded no contest to mayhem, multiple counts of inflicting injury on a child, and assault, according to court records. In return, prosecutors dropped numerous other charges, including torture, which would have made her eligible for a life sentence.

Black will receive an 18-year prison term, scheduled to be handed down in August, court records show. She entered her plea as jury selection was underway in her trial.

Black has been in jail since January 2020, when she was arrested and charged. She will receive credit for the two years she has spent behind bars.

At the time of her arrest, Black was roughly six months pregnant, according to court records.  In a failed defense motion to lower Black’s bail, filed last year, Black’s attorney wrote in court records that she reported being “systematically mistreated” by deputies in the Santa Rita Jail, due to the nature of the charges.

Shortly after he arrest, she suffered a concussion when deputies knocked her to the ground while she was handcuffed. Three months later, she gave birth to a boy while still behind bars, and claimed police authorized doctors to induced labor against her will, court records show.

The abuse — described by one doctor as the worst he’ll likely see in his career — was discovered by police, who showed up to Black’s home in search of the boy. He had been missing from school for a month and hadn’t shown up to his father’s either, in violation of a custody agreement, according to court records. When announced their presence and received no response, they opened an unlocked door to the apartment and walked in, guns drawn, according to prosecutors.

Black’s son was inside a bathroom, son dressed in a t-shirt pulled over his legs. He appeared malnourished, had trouble standing, and was covered in open wounds. The bathroom had blood spattered on the walls, and smelled of bleach, police testified.

The boy later reported to police that his mom “bent a broom on me” days earlier, and would force him to clean up his own blood after bleedings. He told police she occasionally fed him cereal and that if he snuck into the kitchen to sneak food, she would beat him for leaving the bathroom. He told police she hit him with belts and extension chords, and bit him on the cheek around Christmas 2019.

The boy was examined by Dr. James Crawford-Jakubiak, a child abuse specialist who told police that even he was phased by the boy’s condition.

“You will likely not see a worse case of physical abuse on a young child for the rest of your career,” Crawford-Jakubiak told authorities, according to police testimony at Black’s preliminary hearing. “The amount of time and effort it would take for somebody to beat another person to give them that collections of wounds is extraordinary.”

The boy suffered multiple injuries to his scalp, but no brain damage, prosecutors wrote in court records.

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