08/23/17 Public Safety
ST. PETERSBURG — U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist is meeting with local children Wednesday night to get their thoughts on how to stop the deadly juvenile auto theft epidemic plaguing Pinellas County.
"We must come together to find a way to stop this deadly trend before more lives are lost," Crist said in a statement ahead of the event. "To truly enact change, our youth must be a part of the solution, and I look forward to hearing directly from them on how we can work together to do just that."...
08/23/17 Real Estate
TAMPA — Tampa Bay Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman's multi-million Davis Islands home is staying in the Lightning family. Yzerman sold his 6,265-square-foot house Monday to new defenseman Dan Girardi for $3 million.
The sale was recorded in a Hillsborough County filing Tuesday.
08/23/17 Local Government
BROOKSVILLE — The typical budget battle between the Hernando County Commission and Sheriff Al Nienhuis has largely been averted this summer, except for a dust-up over how the sheriff has accounted for federal inmate money. But a minor skirmish did break out this week.
Commission Chairman Wayne Dukes suggested a small rollback in the proposed property tax rate for the 2017-18 fiscal year and proposed that it be equally shared by the county's operations and the sheriff, sparking a familiar divide in the commission and a debate about taking needed funding away from important public safety functions....
The following story appeared in the St. Petersburg Times on October 26, 2006, the day after Danny Rolling was put to death. Also included are photos covering the period from the time of the murders to the day of Rolling execution.
By Chris Tisch, Tamara Lush and Shannon Colavecchio-Van Sickler
Times Staff Writers
STARKE – The drab brown curtain between killer and survivors opened at 5:59 p.m. Wednesday. Danny Rolling lay on a gurney....
TAMPA — LaJoyce Houston, a former Tampa police sergeant accused with her husband in a federal tax refund fraud scheme, has agreed to plead guilty to receiving stolen government property, court records state.
A plea agreement in which Houston admits to the charge was filed Wednesday morning in federal court in Tampa. A hearing is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.
Houston, 50, was expected to go to trial next month on more than a dozen charges, including aggravated identity theft and conspiracy. But if she proceeds with her guilty plea, she will no longer face most of those charges....
LAKELAND – A veterinarian who practices part-time in Gulfport and Port Richey was arrested Tuesday along with her husband after Polk County Sheriff's Office deputies found more than 30 severely abused animals at their Lakeland home.
Gail Anne Nichols, 66, and Paul Craig Smith, 74, are each facing three counts of felony animal cruelty, one count of misdemeanor animal cruelty and five counts of confinement of animals without sufficient food, water or shelter after the deputies seized 28 miniature horses, two full-sized horses and eight dogs from their home at 3211 West Bella Vista Street....
Greg Auman gives an injury update, with several key players still sidelined from practice three days before the Bucs play the Cleveland Browns in Tampa, and a full recap of your favorite scenes from Tuesday night's new episode of HBO's "Hard Knocks" in our latest Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast. Listen below:...
ST. PETERSBURG— Steve Kornell knows his idea won't put much of a dent in the $326 million bill the city must pay over the next five years to fix its inadequate and outdated sewer system.
Female manatees know what it's like to be sought after — maybe too much so.
It actually sounds pretty exhausting. If you ever see what appears to be a large herd of manatees huddled together in the water, they're likely mating. But for every one female manatee, there can be up to 25 male manatees surrounding her, drawn to her pheromones, biologists say.
That's a lot of males vying for one female's attention....
ST. PETERSBURG — It's a funky name: the Bad Boys Mowers Gasparilla Bowl. But the new sponsors for the former St. Petersburg Bowl might need more than an eye-catching name to create a thriving, profitable contest.
With a proliferation of college football bowl games and a local market with limited brand-name options, both nabbing a corporate sponsor for the annual St. Pete football gathering and keeping it is a challenge. ...
Four days before their preseason home opener against the Cleveland Browns, which had 12 players not stand for the national anthem prior to their last game, the Bucs used their team meeting to discuss social issues that might have led to that demonstration, coach Dirk Koetter said.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans sat for the anthem in Week 11 last season to protest the election of President Donald Trump, but he received a lot of negative feedback and his protest lasted one game....
Don't let his modest preseason stats fool you: Antony Auclair, the undrafted rookie tight end from Canada is making a strong case to stick around on the Bucs' 53-man roster this season.
"I'm definitely impressed with both rookies," first-year tight ends coach Ben Steele said. "Auclair and O.J. (Howard) obviously both have made huge strides with the gap from coming from college, especially from Canada. Without a doubt, (Auclair) is one of those guys that just works super-hard. He's a natural learner, a football junkie and that helps with the transition. He still has a lot of room for improvement as everybody does in camp."...
08/23/17 Public Safety
MANATEE COUNTY — Neil and Claudia Cook are lucky to be alive after an off-duty deputy spotted them trapped in their smoking car and rescued them just before it became engulfed in flames on Sunday.
Manatee County deputy Willie Finklea was riding his motorcycle with his wife on Moccasin Willow Road around 2:27 p.m. when he noticed the Cooks' car on the side of the road, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports....
If Largo and St. Petersburg high schools are going to be successful this football season, it will be because of defense. And if those defenses are going to be successful, it will be because of secondaries that are potentially the best in Pinellas County.
Largo's soft-spoken and hard-hitting group includes seniors Cameron Tisdale and Calvin Lockett, junior Solomon Brown and sophomore Jayion McCluster. ...
The longtime attorney for Pasco-Hernando State College has resigned for what he says are "purely personal reasons."
Steve Schroeder, who also holds the title of vice president of policy, announced his resignation to college president Timothy Beard last week. After 17 years at the college, his last day will be Sept. 8.
Beard said the move came as a surprise, despite Schroeder's occasional mentions of wanting to do something else....