A prominent Coral Gables businessman and festival organizer was arrested Friday on charges of knocking down his 79-year-old mother, rendering her unconscious and breaking her wrist.
Robert Burr, 57, was charged with aggravated battery on someone over 65. He turned himself in to Coral Gables police and was taken to the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center.
Burr started a yearly South Miami-Dade tour called Rob’s Redland Riot Road Rallye and created the Miami Rum Renaissance Festival. He also is a member of Coral Gables Citizens’ Crime Watch.
The incident took place last week at 314 Romano Ave., according to the arrest affidavit. The police report says that just before 3:30 p.m. on May 30, Burr injured his mother as he tried to intervene in a fight she was having with Burr’s wife. That’s when Burr put both hands on his mother’s shoulders and pushed her.
“The force of the shove caused the victim to fly backward and fall, hitting her head on the wooden floor,” the report says.
Burr’s mother passed out and broke three bones in her left wrist, the report notes. Burr did not offer his mother help. He fled the scene instead.
Reached Thursday, Burr called the incident “unfortunate” and said he was put in a terrible situation.
“I had to either defend my wife from an attack, or step in between what was certainly going to be a bad situation,” he said.
Burr’s attorney James McGuirk said the family has been involved in bitter litigation over property. According to McGuirk, Burr’s mother fell down.
“Obviously, he had no intent to injure his mother,” he said. “She chose to press charges against him.”
Miami-Dade Corrections Spokeswoman Janelle Hall said that bond is typically set at $15,000 for aggravated battery against an elderly person.
Burr was placed under arrest after turning himself in on Friday.