MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – A Miami-Dade County Commissioner will soon be surrendering himself to authorities.
Law enforcement sources have confirmed to Local 10 News that Joe Martinez will turn himself in sometime this week.
This appears to stem from a public corruption investigation.
Martinez was first elected to the county commission in 2000. He’s never been seriously challenged for re-election.
Before running for the commission, Martinez was a Miami-Dade Police Lieutenant.
His imminent arrest was first reported by the Politico Cortadito blog.
It’s not clear what crime he may have committed, however his attorney released a statement Monday on his behalf:
“State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle directed Miami-Dade County Commissioner Joe Martinez to surrender this week based on false allegations arising from his private practice work as a consultant when he was a private citizen and not an elected official. The investigation has been ongoing for five years, so the timing of the allegations that do not involve Commissioner Martinez’s time in public office raise questions of a political impact when he is considered the front runner for the newly created Sheriff of Miami-Dade County.
“Martinez, who served the public interest for more than four decades as a highly decorated and now retired Miami-Dade police officer who received two gold medals and one silver medal for his service, was twice named Miami-Dade Police Officer of the Year, and received the Life Saving Award. He is a well-respected Miami-Dade Commissioner who was being considered for Commission Chair following the November elections. As an outspoken member of the Commission, Commissioner Martinez has publicly disagreed with the State Attorney on important issues, the most recent of which is the role of and funding for the Sheriff’s Office. Whether this apparent conflict influenced the charging decision is unknown.
“For now, Commissioner Martinez makes clear that he is innocent of any wrongdoing and intends to aggressively work to clear his name. He has devoted his entire adult life to serving the best interests of the public. He is humbled by the show of support and confidence among his constituents and the people of Miami-Dade County.”