About two years ago, a couple of golfing buddies took the first tee at Parkland Golf & Country Club. A club official asked Mike and Paul if they'd agree to be joined on their round by a single player who'd just shown up and was to be joined later by his own friend. Sure, they said. "And who pulls up but Vice Mayor Josephus Eggelletion," says Mike. "I leaned over to my friend Paul and said, 'Watch out! This guy's a fucking scumbag.'"
The Oakland Park resident spoke on condition I not print his last name or that of his friend. They don't want to get anywhere near Eggelletion's case. But their story provides a telling glimpse into the character of one of Broward's most powerful political figures.
Mike had already read New Times articles by Bob Norman about Eggelletion -- they were the basis for his "scumbag" prediction. He recalls wondering how a county politician could afford to play at country club where the annual membership fee was $90,000. (Norman reported in June that the Broward State Attorney's Office was investigating a report that a developer seeking Eggelletion's support paid $10,000 of that fee.)
When the threesome arrived at the course's fourth hole, Mike recalls Eggelletion teeing up the ball, swinging, then watching it slice right into a water hazard. Then, in nearly the next moment, Mike saw Eggelletion's golfing partner, plastic surgeon Dwight Reynolds, walking up to the tee. "Fifty dollars a hole, like always," said Reynolds, according to Mike. Eggelletion agreed, and then Mike says that Reynolds asked the vice mayor, "Did you hit yet?"
"Nope," said Eggelletion, according to Mike. He and Paul were stunned. This was a grievous offense against the sport. "Golf is the consummate gentleman's game," says Mike. "It's all based on honesty -- and this guy's a fucking cheater."
Eggelletion teed up a second ball, says Mike, "and this time he drills one right down the middle of the fairway." Eggelletion won that $50, along with several subsequent holes. On at least two more occasions, says Mike, Reynolds asked Eggelletion, "Are you sure you didn't hit a ball before I got here?" The vice mayor denied it each time.
"Then he's getting cocky, and he wants to play us for $50 a hole," says Mike. That was a bit too steep for Mike and Paul, but they agreed on $20 a hole. "We took him for $100," he says of Eggelletion, laughing.
Reynolds, who didn't immediately return a call for comment, has paid a high price for his friendship with Eggelletion. A few weeks ago, the Sun-Sentinel reported that Reynolds was interviewed by the FBI in connection with his position on the board of GOLF -- the Golf-Oriented Leadership Fund, to which Eggelletion allegedly asked an undercover FBI agent to make a $5,000 donation in exchange for help laundering money.