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Miami Police Officer Arrested for Kidnapping and Attempted Sexual Battery

Miami Beach police arrested a city of Miami police officer Tuesday morning, charging him with kidnapping and attempted sexual battery, both felonies.

New Times profiled the officer, 31-year-old Michael Ragusa, a little over two weeks ago, in a story about an unusual traffic stop that ended with another officer, Sgt. Larry Jackson, being Tasered. Jackson accused Ragusa of shoving him and ignoring his entreaties that he was a fellow cop. Ragusa had twice before been accused of excessive force during his three-year career.

Monday around 5 a.m., Ragusa allegedly called to a 31-year-old woman from his patrol car at 75th Street and Collins Avenue. When the woman approached, Ragusa dragged her into the car by her arms, according to a police report. He then drove three blocks north to an unlit lot where he exposed himself, according to the report, forcibly removed the crying woman's pants, and tried to have sex with her. Then he drove her home after she claimed to have a venereal disease. She told police she did not know Ragusa before the incident.

As is standard procedure with incarcerated police officers, Ragusa was being held in solitary confinement for his safety at TGK jail Tuesday night, according to corrections department spokeswoman Janelle Hall. No bond had been set, according to court documents.

(A day after this story posted, the Miami Herald described the incident, referring to New Times March 1 story. )

--Rob Jordan

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