GRAND JURY QUESTIONS ARISE IN FLORIDA DEPUTY SHOOTING CASE
Defense attorney Eric Schwartzreich said at a hearing Thursday that one grand juror might have been biased against Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputy Peter Peraza because his daughter was facing drunken-driving charges. A judge, however, agreed with prosecutors that the juror should not have to testify about it.
FLORIDA SENATE COMMITTEE REJECTS FRACKING BILL
The Senate Appropriations Committee narrowly voted against the bill. It was then kept alive on a procedural move. Opponents’ concerns about the environment and measures that wouldn’t let local governments ban the method of oil and gas drilling won out over supporters’ warnings that fracking is already legal and voting down the bill would let it happen without protections.
FLORIDA HAS MORE THAN 6,200 MANATEES IN LATEST COUNT
The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said Thursday that almost 3,300 were counted on Florida’s east coast, and almost 3,000 manatees were counted on the state’s west coast. Wildlife officials say this year’s count is on par with last year’s count of more than 6,000 manatees.
LAWSUIT FILED OVER CRUISE SHIP BATTERED BY STORM IN ATLANTIC
The lawsuit filed Thursday by attorney Michael Winkleman in federal court in Miami says Royal Caribbean “knew or should have known” of warnings for hurricane-force winds in the Atlantic before Anthem of the Seas set sail Feb. 6 from New Jersey.
FLORIDA MAN ACCUSED OF MAKING REPEATED 911 CALLS
Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies arrested 47-year-old John Simes following repeated calls to 911 on Tuesday. According to deputies, Simes was combative and intoxicated when they arrived at his Palm Coast after receiving four 911 calls in 10 minutes. They found no emergency, but Simes told them he’d called 911 over 20 times.