By Michael E. Miller
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By Jake Rossen
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By Kyle Swenson
By Chris Joseph
By Michael E. Miller
The woman acquitted of stalking Channel 10 reporter Kristi Krueger after a highly publicized and bizarre 2003 trial now stands accused of stalking a family in the Orlando area in an eerily similar manner.
Georgia Roberts, according to a Winter Gardens police report, was arrested in November at her home after allegedly confronting the wife of the family she is accused of victimizing at a Publix store. The wife, whose name was blacked out in the police report, said that Roberts, a former neighbor, claimed she had an affair with her husband and had been stalking her family for three years. Her husband denied the affair.
Roberts admitted after her arrest that she had stalked the family but said she would fight the charges. "I want him to admit what he did and pay for it," she told police.
Roberts, the mother of now-teenaged twins, was charged with stalking Krueger in 2003 after feeling that the TV reporter had snubbed her daughter. Krueger reported that Roberts followed her to stores and basically tormented her life. The situation came to a head when Roberts took great offense when her daughter wasn't invited to Krueger's daughter's birthday party. After an altercation at a Pembroke Pines elementary school, Roberts was arrested in her home.
Roberts represented herself at trial in what became a spectacle for courthouse watchers and the media. During the course of the trial, it was learned that Roberts, at age 19, had shot and killed her high school's homecoming queen, Angela Puccetti, also 19, in an apartment in Chicago.
In the Krueger case, a jury acquitted Roberts of the stalking and battery charges, and she and her family moved to Orlando, where they eventually settled in a suburban neighborhood across the street from her latest alleged victims.
The new case followed a similar pattern. The female victim, who police reported was shaking and crying at the Publix store, said that Roberts had stalked her and her family not only at the supermarket but at her daughter's school and the family's church. She said Roberts had also plagued the family with dozens of unwanted phone calls, emails, and text messages.
She also told police that in March 2008, Roberts hired a female stripper to perform in front of their house.
The family had also tried to get an injunction for protection against Roberts, but that was denied by a judge because she had made no threats of violence. Roberts then sued the family for $300,000 in damages for pain and suffering but later dropped the suit.
The victim told police that the family had moved twice during the three-year period to try to elude Roberts but that she quickly found them and continued the harassment. More recently, Roberts sold her own family's house and moved into a home near her victims. The victims reported that since moving in, Roberts had walked by their house every day and had come to their church and sat near them during the service.
More recently, Roberts had shown up in the parking lot of her children's elementary school.
"[The victim] stated that when she came out of the school function, Ms. Roberts was waiting by her vehicle," police wrote. "She stated that Ms. Roberts followed her to the drivers side of the vehicle and fearing for the safety of herself and her family she quickly entered her vehicle, locked the doors, and drove away."
I had phone and email contact with Roberts back in 2007, and she had told me of the situation and said that the married couple had become her new "project." I asked her why she was harassing the family.
"Why would he have to feel my wrath?" she asked rhetorically. "Because I went to tell his wife about [the affair], and he denied it. He's playing with fire; he's going to get burned."
I spoke with the couple at the time as well. They were clearly frightened by this woman and were in the process of moving. I chose not to write about it at the time, and Roberts actually claimed she was going to stop tormenting the family.
"I am going to do the RIGHT THING — THE DECENT THING & STOP MY DESTRUCTIVE TAUNTING BEHAVIOR," she wrote in an email. "I'm going to use all my energy to get better; I need the right medication & I need to follow-through w/ the treatment. I've been in denial, shifting blaming others my entire life — no more. I have beautiful, healthy kids, straight-A students, & more importantly kind, compassionate, unselfish kids... I am going to start appreciating & TREASURING that."
That was the last I heard from her before learning of the recent arrest. Obviously, she didn't stick to those words and was soon back to her destructive behavior.
The final straw came at the Publix store this past November 13. The female victim said that Roberts got in her way in the aisle of the supermarket and wouldn't let her pass, causing her to fear for her safety.
The police report also references an interview with a Publix clerk who said that Roberts acted "crazy" and made her nervous while returning an empty box of shredded wheat cereal that she claimed had been "too shredded."
Police interviewed the victim at her home, and even during that short time, Roberts sent her two emails "indicating that she was selling her residence and that it's not a good time to start a criminal or civil court case." Investigators then drove the short distance to Roberts' home and arrested her for stalking.
On the way to jail in the back of the patrol car, Roberts "spontaneously uttered" admissions to the crime, police say.
"I am guilty as charged, but I won't accept a plea deal," she reportedly said. "I will make them work for it... I have bipolar disorder; I can't help what I do. I want him to admit what he did and pay for it; it's only simple [misdemeanor] stalking anyway."