The Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Miami-Dade Police Department today arrested current Sweetwater Police Department Sergeant Reny Armando Garcia, 46, of Palmetto Bay, FL, and former Sweetwater Detective William Garcia, 42, currently incarcerated at the U.S. Penitentiary in Pennington, VA., each on one count of organized scheme to defraud, one count of racketeering, and one count of conspiracy to commit racketeering.
FDLE, in collaboration with the Miami-Dade Police Department and the FBI, interviewed numerous victims and witnesses during the course of the investigation and found that the allegations and supporting evidence revealed an ongoing pattern of criminal activity by members of the Sweetwater Police Department that spanned several years and affected dozens of victims.
The investigation revealed that members of the department engaged in a protracted pattern of racketeering activity that included battery, theft, fraud, burglary, and other violent crimes against civilians, often specifically targeting foreign-born victims with limited knowledge of the English language and the U.S. legal system, in order to exploit these victims’ vulnerabilities, as well as conceal the officers’ unlawful activities from outside authorities.
The arrests are part of a larger investigation based on decades of corruption, cultivated from the top down, at the Sweetwater Police Department and City. The investigation has not revealed criminal wrongdoing of the current Sweetwater police administration, and its chief has fully cooperated.
Reny Armando Garcia was arrested today and booked into Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Facility. William Garcia will be transported to Miami to face these charges. The case will be prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Office of Statewide Prosecution in Miami.