WJTV News Channel 12 - Ballroom dancing swindler dies in prison

Ballroom dancing swindler dies in prison

Posted: Updated:
Michael Pasquarelli during a court proceeding Michael Pasquarelli during a court proceeding
PINELLAS COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

Convicted Safety Harbor ballroom dance studio swindler Michael Pasquarelli died in a Florida prison medical ward Sunday at the age of 58.

A Department of Corrections spokesperson said he died of natural causes. Pasquarelli had suffered from cancer in recent years. His ex-wife Corinne Rungo said Pasquarelli's death was "sad."

Pasquarelli gained notoriety for romancing and exploiting elderly women at his dance studio in Safety Harbor. A Pinellas Jury convicted him of racketeering in 2006 and a judge sentenced Pasquarelli to 30 years in prison.

Two years ago Pasquarelli won a chance to argue for new trial, but a Pinellas judge ultimately denied that request.

In 2012, Pasquarelli told Eight On Your Side he hoped to write a book highlighting the "do's" and "don'ts" of the dance studio profession after winning his freedom.

By the end of Pasquarelli's life the ravages of cancer had stolen the good looks charming demeanor that helped him win the hearts and steal the fortunes of his elderly dance students.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.


  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Bradenton apartment complex to be repaired after 8 on your side report

    Bradenton apartment complex to be repaired after 8 on your side report

    Friday, August 22 2014 1:27 PM EDT2014-08-22 17:27:02 GMT
    Last week, 8 on your side showed you some of the dilapidated conditions inside some units at the Townhouse Park Apartments in Bradenton.Tenants were having problems with mold and rodents.There was also water damage.
    Last week, 8 on your side showed you some of the dilapidated conditions inside some units at the Townhouse Park Apartments in Bradenton.Tenants were having problems with mold and rodents.There was also water damage.
  • 2.2 million bean bag chairs recalled after deaths

    2.2 million bean bag chairs recalled after deaths

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:01 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:01:24 GMT
    About 2.2 million bean bag chairs are being recalled after two children opened them, crawled inside and suffocated to death. CPSC photoAbout 2.2 million bean bag chairs are being recalled after two children opened them, crawled inside and suffocated to death. CPSC photo
    About 2.2 million bean bag chairs are being recalled after two children opened them, crawled inside and suffocated to death.
    About 2.2 million bean bag chairs are being recalled after two children opened them, crawled inside and suffocated to death.
  • TPD claims training stories fell short

    TPD claims training stories fell short

    Thursday, August 21 2014 5:12 PM EDT2014-08-21 21:12:02 GMT
    The Tampa police department is responding to an 8 On Your Side investigation into a January shooting.The police contend the reports were incomplete and contained errors.The stories focused on a January 9th police shooting in Tampa and the lack of crisis intervention team training at T.P.D.
    The Tampa police department is responding to an 8 On Your Side investigation into a January shooting.The police contend the reports were incomplete and contained errors.The stories focused on a January 9th police shooting in Tampa and the lack of crisis intervention team training at T.P.D.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

1820 TV Road
Jackson, MS 39204

Telephone: 601.372.6311
Fax: 804.819.5569
Email: wjtvnews@wjtv.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.