Pasco News

Investigators: Police charity in NPR hired felons

A routine inspection of a New Port Richey law enforcement charity netted the arrest of three men Tuesday afternoon for violating state license laws.

About 3 p.m. Tuesday, members of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services entered Police Protective Fund, 4219 U.S. 19, to inspect the business. According to its website, the charity raises money to assist family members of law enforcement officers killed on duty and trains chaplains.

Investigators said Phillip Brian Stinson, 31, hired convicted felon Joseph K. Smither as a telephone fundraiser, the arrest report said. James Paul Williams Jr., 60, admitted to inspectors he employed convicted felons while running the business, deputies said. Jason Robert Williams, 33, also admitted to knowing the charity hired convicted felons.

Each charge is a felony. The arrest report said the three men operated the charity.

Stinson and James Paul Williams Jr. are charged with running a charity employing a convicted felon; Jason Robert Williams is charged with a charity allowing a felon to solicit, which violated his probation for sexual battery.

Stinson, 4043 Flamingo Drive, New Port Richey, was released from the Land O’ Lakes Jail on Tuesday after posting a $5,000 bond. James Paul Williams Jr., 321 Tall Oaks Trail, Tarpon Springs, was released eight hours after his arrest after posting a $5,000 bond. Jason Robert Williams, 2943 Windridge Drive, Holiday, remains in the Land O’ Lakes Jail. Bond for the first charge is $5,000, while bond was denied for the violation of probation.

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