BRANDON — One spring day in 2012, Marcus Wayne Hunt walked out the of Orient Road jail a free man after posting bail on a charge of fleeing from police and driving without a license
Sixteen minutes later and 1.4 miles away, he walked up to a 34-year-old man, struck him in the face and stole his bike. He was later sentenced to five years in prison, his third stint in Florida, and was released in March....
TAMPA — Curtiss Wilson is an 89-year-old Tampa resident who fought in the civil rights movement.
But in a "survey" posted to the web recently by Save Southern Heritage Florida, Wilson is listed as a "resentful black woman." Her phone number and street address are included.
Charles "Fred" Hearns is a historian who grew up in Tampa and moved to St. Petersburg three years ago . In the survey, Hearns is listed as a "resentful black man" who was "imported" from Pinellas County to tell the Hillsborough County Commission to remove the Confederate monument in front of the old Hillsborough County courthouse....
TEMPLE TERRACE — Travis Malloy was supposed to show up to the Temple Terrace Golf and Country Club on Thursday to pick up his Citizen of the Year award at the Chamber of Commerce banquet.
Instead, Malloy stayed away in protest.
The club, he recently learned, will be hosting a "Southern Heritage" event with a "War on the South" program on Sept. 2.
"While it is their absolute right to do that, I do not want to lend my support to a club that would host such a group," Malloy, who was honored for starting community gardens and a farmers market, wrote on a Facebook page. ...
It started Thursday at 9:07 a.m., as it does so often these days, with a tweet:
"Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments. You....." President Donald Trump tweeted.
The president's comments again roiled a nation still reeling from the violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville this past weekend and Trump's own failure to immediately condemn neo-Nazis....
TAMPA — As gruesome images of burned bodies flashed across the screen, Amber Perera put her head down on the desk and cried.
Last week, authorities say, the 29-year-old Brandon woman caused a chain reaction crash on the Leroy Selmon Expressway that caused a Hyundai sedan to burst into flames, killing a couple and their young daughter. Now, in Hillsborough County courtroom, Perera was getting her first look at the aftermath....
Hillsborough commissioners renew monument debate while St. Petersburg swiftly moves Confederate marker08/16/17Local
Without public comment or deliberation, St. Petersburg officials on Tuesday quietly removed an obscure reminder of the Confederacy sitting on the city's downtown waterfront.
Meanwhile, a debate over the future of Tampa's Confederate monument — one that began long before last weekend's violent white nationalist protests in Charlottesville, Va., but persists today — will likely continue during today's Hillsborough County Commission meeting....
TAMPA — One day during the summer of 1984, two friends went camping in New England. One returned, and the other, 25-year-old Christopher Bird, is still missing.
Now the second camper, Richard Brunt, a man with ties to Tampa and a previous manslaughter conviction, is a suspect in Bird's murder, court records show.
The cold case came to light in Hillsborough County through a summons issued by a New Hampshire judge ordering Brunt's son Samuel to testify before a grand jury last week....
08/15/17 Public Safety
TAMPA — With images of a toppled North Carolina statue fresh in their minds, members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans are now standing guard over the Confederate monument in front of the historic county courthouse in downtown Tampa.
Several members of the group gathered at the courthouse Monday night to watch over "Memoria In Aeterna" after hearing rumors that activists were planning to try to topple it, said David McCallister, commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans' Judah P. Benjamin Camp. ...
08/14/17 Public Safety
APOLLO BEACH — A Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputy fatally shot a dog Sunday after the dog charged, according to the Sheriff's Office.
Deputies responding to a call about an open door at 315 Francis Drive arrived at the house about 1 p.m. and began to search the property, according to Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Debbie Carter. As deputies walked around the house, two dogs in a neighboring yard began to growl and bark as they tried to jump the fence, Carter said....
08/14/17 Public Safety
TAMPA — The driver who police say caused a fatal crash that killed a couple and their 8-year-old daughter on the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway had two seizures earlier in the day and one right before the crash, her attorney said Monday.
Amber Nicole Perera faces three counts of DUI manslaughter, among other charges, for the crash Thursday that killed Luiz Felipak and, pending confirmation from the Hillsborough County Medical Examiner's Office, his wife Rita Felipak of Tampa and their 8-year-old daughter, Giorgia. But Perera blacked out during the seizure and was disoriented immediately after the crash, not intoxicated from her medication as Tampa police have charged, said defense attorney Hubbell Losson....
TAMPA — The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office is investigating after granite monuments at the site of the massive Confederate flag that flies over Interstate 75 were vandalized over the weekend.
Deputies responding about 11 a.m. Sunday to a vandalism call at Confederate Memorial Park, 10418 Highway 92 East, discovered red paint had been thrown on all of the granite memorial pillars, said Debbie Carter, a spokeswoman for the Sheriff's Office. There were also derogatory comments written in paint on the memorial....
TAMPA — The officer, it seemed, had made up his mind. Michael Schaedel was going to jail.
Arrested about midnight Wednesday on suspicion of driving under the influence and marijuana possession, all that was left for Schaedel was a patrol car ride to central booking.
But Schaedel made a list-ditch effort to buy his freedom, according to an arrest report: He offered Officer Douglass Bailey $10,000 to let him go....
VALRICO — Betsy Hicka ran into her burning home and spotted her standard poodle Lacey lying by the door.
The fluffy white matriarch of an award-winning show dog family looked liked she was sleeping. Hicka scooped her up and ran outside.
"But she was already gone," Hicka said Wednesday morning as she wiped tears from her cheek.
Hicka tried to run back inside to save the four other dogs in the home but firefighters told her it was too dangerous. None of them survived....
TAMPA — Gov. Rick Scott swung through Tampa on Tuesday to celebrate the opening of Think Anew's first Florida location.
The company, based in Madison, Miss., specializes in providing information technology infrastructure and support to health care companies and just moved into a suite at an office park on Tech Boulevard, off Columbus Drive.
The company picked Tampa over locations in Florida and in other states mainly because of its stream of potential workers coming from local colleges and universities, said Don Glidewell, Think Anew's chief executive officer....
TAMPA — A 25-year-old Valrico man has been arrested and charged in a fatal crash that killed his passenger last November.
Andrew John Wallace Jr. was under the influence of alcohol when he crashed a 2003 Nissan 350Z on Brandon Parkway on Nov. 23, killing 23-year-old Ivan Ordonez, court records state. Wallace was arrested on a warrant Friday and charged with DUI manslaughter.
Wallace was driving east at a high speed about 12:20 a.m. when he lost control at a right curve in the roadway near Pauls Drive, records state. The Nissan struck a raised concrete median and the car's passenger door slammed into a palm tree....