RIVIERA BEACH — Radio talk-show host Rick Sessa, a retired Riviera Beach Police commander and loud critic of Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw who ran for office last year, turned himself in to authorities overnight.
He remains in the county jail pending a bond hearing this morning. He was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, battery and trespassing.
In an exclusive interview obtained before he surrendered, Sessa, 51, told Gossip Extra the accusations stem from a verbal altercation with a man with a history of drug arrests. Sessa says the alleged victim, Donald Flewellen of Riviera Beach, made up the story because Sessa, a retired Riviera Beach Police narcotics agent, has been chasing drug dealers off the rental property where Flewellen lives.
“My girlfriend lives in that place and Riviera Beach Police haven’t done anything to clean up,” Sessa said. “They’re selling fetanyl patches in there and I reported it to RBPD several times. I only wanted to talk to these guys to tell them to go sell elsewhere. I never touched the guy.”
Incidentally, Sessa had to surrender to his old outfit, where he worked for more than 20 years.
Flewellen, 59, claims the incident occurred shortly after 2 a.m. Feb 21. Flewellen claims Sessa and four others appeared on motorcycles when he sat on his porch after returning home from the nearby Seaside Bar & Grill, where Sessa and the others spotted him earlier in the night.
In a report that’s short on details, Flewellen told police Sessa grabbed him by the neck and “I will kill you.” Flewellen claims Sessa pulled out a chrome-plated gun out of his waistband.
Flewellen then said Sessa and the others entered his condo uninvited and sat on the couch before leaving when Flewellen said he would call the police.
For the past five years, Sessa has the host of a weekly law enforcement-oriented program called The Beat, on 900 AM. Sessa discusses issues in policing and has used to show to criticize Bradshaw’s stewardship of PBSO, which he calls corrupt.
Sessa ran for sheriff in 2016 and came in third in the race that Bradshaw won.
Sessa also founded a motorcycle club, The Enforcers, that enrolls mostly former or active law enforcement, military, federal and state agents.
Flewellen, meanwhile, has a criminal record that includes manslaughter DUI, burglary and theft.