According to campaign finance records that have belatedly appeared on the Supervisor of Elections' website, Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti received $4,000 in check donations from auto dealer Rick Case and his family members before the 2008 election.
Pulp readers questioned whether Case had been a financial backer for the sheriff when we reported on BSO's efforts to press charges against a TSA agent who says he mistakenly took home Case's $450 pen.
Records from the 2008 election cycle itemize each contribution to Lamberti's overall campaign haul of $785,746.13. Scott Rothstein, then
a cheerful supporter of the sheriff but now an imprisoned liability, gave the state-imposed maximum individual contribution of $500.
But Case and his family seem to have gotten around that limit. In April, the Supervisor of Elections received two $500 donations from Rick and Rita Case. Then, the following month, their children, Ryan and Raquel, made donations of $500 each.
Then, in October -- a month before the election -- records show four more $500 donations from each of the four family members, Rick and Rita this time listing their middle initials. This brought the family's total listed contributions to $4,000.
If the individual family members did, in fact, donate more than $500 total, that would violate Florida's election rules. "A candidate may not accept a contribution in excess of $500 from any one person per election," according to the Florida Department of State.
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UPDATE: The Broward Supervisor of Elections Office says the Case family donations were legit. The rules cap donations at $500 for the primary and $500 for the general election, so they stayed within the limits.