FT. LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Another charge has been filed against a Ft. Lauderdale businessman accused of orchestrating a plot to kill his own family, making threats against the president and stockpiling bomb making materials.
Jason Simione, 39, was charged with week with one count of felony animal cruelty.
Simione was arrested Monday, August 12th, and charged with three counts of solicitation to commit first degree murder, child abuse and possession of an explosive device.
During the course of their investigation, Broward Sheriff’s investigators were told by Simione’s wife Megumi and several of his co-workers that they saw him beat his dog, a four year old male Cane Corso/Italian Mastiff, on several occasions at the couple’s home at 4732 SW 35th Street from February 1st – 15th, 2012.
On one occasion, Simione reportedly punched the dog in the face repeatedly causing it to have blood shot eyes. On another occasion, according to his wife, he hit the dog with a 2×4 piece of wood. Megumi said the dog cried continually for several days and Simione would not allow her to seek medical treatment for it, according to his arrest affidavit.
After his arrest on Monday, Simione admitted to striking the dog during questioning but said he did so to protect a second smaller dog.
“I can’t imagine why somebody anyone would make a ridiculous claim like that,” said attorney Susan Brown who is representing Simione in his divorce case. “It’s really a shame,” she said, “because you see this a lot in family court, one person pushing the other person’s buttons and that’s what I see going on. The story hasn’t been told, it’s going to come out.”
Simione made an initial appearance in bond court on Thursday, but the hearing was rescheduled for Friday morning. The dog has since been turned over to an animal rescue group.
During his Simione’s initial bond hearing, Broward Circuit Court Judge John Hurley expressed concern after reading the arrest report.
“It says that you approached one of your employees from El Salvador requesting his help to find someone to kill your wife, her mother, her brother and your own child,” said Hurley after reading Simione’s arrest report. “It says you offered $150,000 for these deaths to occur.”
According to the report, Simione said he didn’t care if the hit man raped his wife before he killed her.
In addition to the stockpiling of bomb making materials and weapons, Simione also reportedly prepared his home in case a SWAT team ever tried to take him.
“When you first walk in there’s body army, tactical vest like swat team would wear, extra magazines and pistols, on each side were high powered rifles,” explained BSO Detective Ricky Libman.
BSO showed off 68 guns and shotguns they seized from inside his home, including a 50 caliber rifle. They said it was legal for him to have them, but they were concerned because he had made threats in the past.
“It says that you’ve been stock piling fire arms ammunition, bomb making material threating to kill anyone who attempts to arrest you or remove your child,” Judge Hurley read from the arrest report.
“Also one of your employees said that he helped install certain materials at your residence in Dania Beach to reinforce the residence, to prevent breaches by law enforcement and kill zones have been set up in case the SWAT teams try to make entry.”
Simione’s company, Bulldog Equipment LLC, supplies the government and local law enforcement with tactical and assault equipment.
Simione’s wife and co-workers said he had been “abusing steroids” and was prone to violent and delusional outbursts.
Simione’s attorney, David Bogenschutz, said his client is in the middle of a very nasty divorce.
Hurley set bond at $5 million.