2 KILLED, 4 INJURED IN INDUSTRIAL ACCIDENT AT POWER PLANT
Hillsborough County Fire Rescue says on social media that firefighters responded to calls about an explosion Thursday afternoon at the Tampa Electric Co. plant in Apollo Beach. Officials say two people were airlifted to a Tampa hospital and two others were taken by ground. The hospital remains ready for more patients. The accident’s cause wasn’t immediately known.
COAST GUARD REJECTS NEW LIGHTS WHERE JOSE FERNANDEZ CRASHED
The Coast Guard announced in a news release Thursday that the color-coded, lighted buoys and lighted range markers in place were sufficient. The determination follows an analysis that began last fall. Miami-Dade County officials said earlier this month that the Government Cut jetties at the southern end of Miami Beach posed a serious threat to boaters. The Coast Guard determined installing new lights could possibly create confusion and impair safe navigation.
POLICE CHIEF ACQUITTED IN FATAL CITIZENS ACADEMY EXERCISE
News outlets report that Punta Gorda Police Chief Tom Lewis was acquitted on Thursday. Authorities say former officer Lee Coel mistakenly shot and killed 73-year-old Mary Knowlton during a role-playing scenario last summer. Prosecutors had argued that Lewis, as Coel’s boss, was partially responsible. Coel has been charged with manslaughter, and his trial is set for next year.
FLORIDA ZOO STAFF HAND-RAISES ABANDONED BABY KANGAROO
Brevard Zoo officials said in a news release that Lilly, who was born in August, was found abandoned on the floor of the zoo’s habitat Jan. 23. Zookeepers believe stress caused by a severe storm the night before likely caused her mother to eject the baby from her pouch. Florida Today reports zookeepers weren’t able to reunite the pair so the staff started taking care of Lilly.
SOCIAL MEDIA POST ABOUT NEAR-SHOOTING GETS DEPUTY FIRED
In a news release, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s office said 23-year-old Deputy Austen Callus admitted to putting the post on Snapchat on Sunday. He was fired Thursday, while still on probationary status. The post came to light after it was shared by a Facebook user. The post says: “Nothing like almost shooting someone to set your head right lol.”