5 Things to Know in Florida for May 1

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

Senate Democrats sue Florida House over abrupt session nnd

Democrats in the Florida Senate are suing the Florida House over the abrupt end of this year’s annual session. The House adjourned earlier in the week due to a disagreement with the Senate over health care spending and Medicaid expansion. The session was scheduled to end Friday. Democrats want the Florida Supreme Court to order House members back for the final day. Democrats maintain House leaders violated the state constitution by leaving early. The constitution reads that neither chamber can adjourn for more than 72 hours without an agreement between the House and Senate.

Supreme Court upholds death sentence in 2004 ‘Xbox murders’

The state Supreme Court says a lower court was correct to impose the death sentence on a man convicted in the bloody, 2004 “Xbox murders.” The court released an opinion Thursday upholding the conviction and sentencing of Jerone Hunter, who was 18 at the time of the crime. Hunter was one of four men convicted of fatally stabbing and beating six people with baseball bats in a Deltona house. Prosecutors said one of the men was angry with one of the victims because she evicted him when she found him living in her grandmother’s home and kept some belongings including an Xbox video game.

Florida governor says he will work on new state budget

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is promising to help work on a new state budget. The annual legislative session wrapped up this week without Republican leaders reaching a budget deal. A shutdown of state government could happen if legislators can’t pass a budget by June 30. Scott said Thursday that legislators should work on a budget that assumes Florida will lose more than $1 billion in federal aid for hospitals. He also said that he remains opposed to expanding Medicaid.

82nd Airborne Division paratrooper from Florida dies during training operation at Fort Bragg

Army officials say 27-year-old Spc. Nicholas Roberts of Longwood, Fla., died Thursday during training at Fort Bragg at an area called Sicily Drop Zone. His death is being investigated. Roberts joined the U.S. Army Reserve in 2010 as a military police officer and deployed to Afghanistan from March 2011 to January 2012. He went active duty in 2014 and became an infantryman.

Report: 3 agencies failed to stop abuse before boy’s death

Florida child welfare officials say investigators failed to see or fix a “pattern of repeat injuries” suffered by a 3-year-old before his badly bruised body was found hidden in a box under a pile of clothes. Ahziya Osceola was being monitored by the Broward Sheriff’s Office, the Seminole Tribe and ChildNet, a privately run agency that handles foster care for the state. Investigators found that while all noticed the boy’s bruises and injuries at different times, they failed to talk with each other or determine that the toddler was in danger, despite obvious warning signs and multiple calls to the child abuse hotline.

 

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