Case dropped against Polk Co. woman arrested after taking estranged husband’s guns

8 On Your Side

Case also dropped against estranged husband.

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – The Polk County man and woman involved in a high-profile domestic violence incident this year have entered into an agreement with state prosecutors to have their cases dropped.

This news comes as 8 On Your Side learns new details about the alleged crimes of Courtney Taylor Irby.

Irby, who goes by Taylor, was arrested in June when police say she removed weapons from the apartment of her estranged husband, Joseph Irby.

According to an arrest affidavit, Taylor took Joseph’s guns while he was behind bars after being arrested for domestic aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. He was accused of ramming his car into Taylor’s vehicle back on June 14 in Bartow.

State Attorney Brian Haas later said Taylor did not go into the home with the intention of retrieving the guns. According to Haas, Taylor and a few of her friends went into the home and took two men’s watches, a GoPro and possibly a computer as well as two guns. The state attorney says it appears taking the guns was “merely an afterthought.”

Prosecutors told 8 On Your Side Investigative reporter Mahsa Saeidi Tuesday that both Joseph and Taylor Irby have entered into an agreement to drop their cases.

According to prosecutors, the two have entered into a 12-month pre-trial intervention program. If they fail to abide by the conditions, the cases could be re-filed.

Prosecutors also say that further investigation revealed evidence of other alleged crimes committed by Taylor. According to a document released by investigators, the state believes Taylor “surreptitiously placed a GPS tracker in Joseph Irby’s vehicle.” She’s also accused of committing burglary.

The document released by prosecutors also says Taylor went to “substantial lengths to be labeled a domestic violence victim.” Prosecutors believe she may have done that to obtain an advantage in a highly emotional and contested divorce.

8 On Your Side Investigates reached out to Taylor’s attorney for comment.

Mindy Murphy is the CEO of The Spring of Tampa Bay, one of the largest certified domestic violence centers in Florida. She says most survivors are telling the whole truth. Murphy says domestic violence is a dangerous crime that’s largely under-reported.

“If you call The Spring of Tampa Bay, we start with believing you,” said Murphy.

“It’s always unfortunate … when a case like this happens.”

Murphy also says despite Taylor’s inconsistent statements, she believes she was a victim of the alleged car ramming incident.

If you need help, you can call The Spring of Tampa Bay at (813) 247-SAFE.


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April 24 2021 08:00 am

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