5 Things to Know in Florida for Feb. 5

Your daily look at news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today.

FLORIDA SUPREME COURT ASKED TO DEFINE SEXUAL INTERCOURSE

The Florida Supreme Court will consider the definition of sexual intercourse in a case involving a gay man charged with not letting a partner know he was HIV-positive. A lawyer for Gary Debaun is trying to have a charge dismissed under a 1986 law designed to prevent the spread of the human immunodeficiency virus.

FUGITIVE TREASURE HUNTER TO REMAIN BEHIND BARS IN FLORIDA

A treasure hunter accused of cheating investors out of their share of his historic underwater find of gold is remaining behind bars. Tommy Thompson appeared before a judge in West Palm Beach on Wednesday. But because he has not formally hired an attorney licensed to defend him in federal court, a hearing to confirm his identity and seek his extradition to Ohio was again put off.

WITH BLACK BEAR POPULATION ON RISE, FLORIDA MAY ALLOW HUNTS

With Florida’s black bears rebounding from near extinction, clashes with humans are on the rise, and the state is considering a limited hunting season as part of the solution. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission didn’t make a decision Wednesday but appeared receptive to the idea, raising cheers from hunters and the hackles of animal rights advocates. It would be the first time since 1994 for legalized bear hunting in the state.

OVER 1.3 MILLION FLORIDIANS SIGN UP FOR HEALTH INSURANCE

More than 1.3 million Floridians have signed up for health insurance through the federal marketplace so far under the Affordable Care Act. Federal health officials said Wednesday that about 57 percent are part of the nearly 1 million who are re-enrolling and 43 percent selected a plan for the first time. About 32 percent were under the age of 35. The second enrollment period started in November and ends Feb. 15.

STAPLES SNAPS UP OFFICE DEPOT FOR $6 BILLION

There are few places where evolving technology has been more disruptive than in the work place, which played out again Wednesday as Staples announced it would spend about $6 billion to buy Boca Raton-based Office Depot. Once one-time rivals will no longer compete in close proximity for the same customers, instead putting up a front of 4,000 stores to hold off encroachments from the likes of Wal-Mart, Target and Amazon.com.

 

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