TBO.com: Tampa Bay Online, The Tampa Tribune and The Tampa Times - breaking news and weather.
Saturday, Sep 20, 2014

Keith Morelli

Tribune Staff

For managing a Tampa pain clinic run amok, they get 30 years in prison

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The owners and office manager of a Tampa pain clinic were sentenced Friday to 30 years each in prison for building a massive synthetic heroin distribution center where drug us...

Red tide nears Bay area after brief retreat

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The red tide bloom in the Gulf of Mexico that was threatening the tourist-soaked beaches of Pinellas County reversed its course last week and began ebbing from the coastline. ...

Parasitic disease Crypto on rise in Tampa Bay area

- A disease that leaves its victims with stomach cramps, nausea, fever and diarrhea is on the rise in Hillsborough County.

Area awaits break from temperatures

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As heat weary Floridians count the days until October and maybe a break in the temperatures that have blistered the region in recent months, weather observers say August was p...

State tweaks rules to help save the underdog gopher tortoise

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A lot of attention gets paid to the sleek and proud Florida panther in its struggle to ov...

Sheriff drops jail health-care provider tied to inmate death

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— After nearly 10 years, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is dropping the contractor that provides health-care services to jail inmates — following in the ...

Renovation plans unveiled for Julian B. Lane Park

- After meetings with community leaders and residents near the park, developers said the most prominent needs were a “great lawn” and access to the downtown riverfront.

Before wrong-way crash, 911 caller reported ‘headlights in my lane’

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TAMPA — Moments before a wrong-way driver crashed head on into a tractor-trailer on Interstate 275 Sunday morning, the Florida Highway Patrol got a single 911 call.

Deputies: Man aimed laser at airplanes, police helicopter

- The man charged with shining a laser at four airplanes and a police helicopter said it was meant as a prank. The chief pilot of the Tampa police air unit, however, said it’s not amusing.

Pasco deputies identify four bodies found in Hudson

- The victims in the quadruple homicide case in Hudson, in which a 4-year-old child was kidnapped, include the boy’s mother, her mother and father and another man.

In Pinellas, locals and scientists keeping wary eye out for red tide

- The swath of red tide that is poised to brush the visitor-rich beaches of Pinellas County may be the most unwelcome tourist of all. Hotel and resort managers are dreading the impending arrival of the algal bloom, which is s...

Red tide heading for Pinellas worries local officials

- The ominous bloom that has been hovering offshore of Dixie County for weeks is making its way toward the Tampa Bay area’s tourist-clogged beaches, researchers say.

Florida hospital charged exorbitant fees for scans, X-rays, lawsuit claims

- A lawsuit filed in Tampa accuses a company that owns 80 hospitals across the state, including several in the Tampa area, of grossly overcharging for medical services.

Near-record August heat gives way to storm season

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If you think it was hot in August, the kind of hot that burns your fingers when you grip the steering wheel or wilts your reserve when you walk across a shimmering parking lot ...

Panther track in Polk viewed as good sign

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For the first time in decades, a Florida panther has made its way to the Green Swamp.

Tiny town’s library holds a treasure trove of Civil War books

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The shelves of the tiny E.C. Rowell Public Library in Webster, a town more famous for its flea market and cattle...

Fight between Hillsborough, Lyft goes up a notch

- The simmering feud escalated when a Lyft driver refused to take a plea on a misdemeanor of driving a taxi without a license and demanded a jury trial.

Early voting for primary in Hillsborough sets record

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No one knows yet who will win today’s primary races, but one thing already is clear: More and more people are casting a ballot before election day dawns.

Early voting for primary in Hillsborough sets record

- The polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. today. But many of you have already voted, based on early voting and vote-by-mail ballots.

Citrus blight tightens grip on Florida growers

- Citrus greening, the insidious disease that is laying waste to Florida's signature agricultural industry, marches on with insect soldiers the size of a freckle that pass the lethal bacteria from tree to tree.

New business model may be something that floats your boat

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Not everybody in Tampa Bay has a boat, and that’s a shame because this part of the world is rich with water. Rivers and lakes beckon, along with estuaries, ponds and ba...

Other nonprofits awed by ALS Ice bucket challenge

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The ice bucket challenge’s phenomenal success is making other charitable organizations rethink how they connect with a younger generation of potential donors.

Fire fatalities still happen but becoming less common

- The trend of people killed in house fires has been dropping for decades, the result of a combination of factors, including the abundance of smoke alarms in homes.

STD rates skyrocket in Hillsborough County

- Florida has a sexually transmitted disease problem. Hillsborough County has it worse.

Hillsborough charity may house immigrant children

- A federal official says an unknown number of undocumented youths from Central America who recently crossed the border may temporarily be put up by The Children’s Home.

Some companies vying for Hillsborough jail contract have pasts to overcome

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Inmate death haunts Hillsborough jail contract process

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The private health services agency that treats Hillsborough County jail inmates is hoping to get an extension on its contract in spite of a scandal in 2012 in which an inmate ...

Proposed snapper rules would split charter captains, private anglers

- The state and federal recreational angling season for red snapper in the Gulf of Mexico is long closed, but the controversy over newly proposed federal regulations is just getting started.

Artist's works locked behind prison walls

- Six idyllic murals, the work of Florida Highwaymen artist Al “Blood” Black, are on the walls of the defunct prison in Riverview, and the building's future is uncertain.

Weekend proves hectic at TGH Trauma Center

- The gunshots and vehicle crashes that buffetted Tampa over the weekend reverberated in Tampa General Hospital’s Trauma Center, which was slammed with critically injured patients.

First-responders pay a price for saving lives

- First responders get into the business to help people — victims of violence and disease, people who are near death and in pain. But those images can haunt them for years.

Researchers keeping eye on unusual red tide north of Tampa Bay

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State wildlife officials and environmental researchers are watching a large bloom of red tide north of the Tampa Bay area, trying to predict where it will go and the impact it will have on wildlife.

Scientist takes on 4-foot lizards in Riverview

- It appears the tegu, a cold-blooded, fork-tongued interloper that has muscled its way into the Florida landscape, is here to stay. Tegu sightings have more than doubled since April.

Leaky reservoir finally ready to be filled again

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The massive C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir, which has been nearly empty for more than a year while construction crews repaired the leaking liner, is ready to be filled, according to

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Pinellas, Tampa Bay to merge

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Two local Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies are merging and, as of Jan. 1, will combine to mentor about 3,350 children from Polk County to Pinellas, from Hillsborough County t...

Gym owner charged with theft of sales tax funds

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The co-owner of a Lutz gymnasium has been accused of collecting thousands of dollars of sales tax from his customers and not paying that money to the state.

Gov. Scott takes spin in driverless car

- Despite a glitch, Gov. Rick Scott enjoyed his trip on the Selmon Expressway in a sleek German car with fancy driverless technology.

Mosquito-borne chikungunya threat growing

- July is cresting in West Central Florida, and mosquitoes, with their piercing proboscises and nerve-wringing whine, are on the prowl for red-blooded victims. This year, they may leave behind more than an itching welt: chiku...

'Driverless' car testing on Selmon Expressway

- The elevated lanes of the Selmon Expressway will be closed during the day Sunday and Monday so Audi can test a car that doesn’t require someone to steer, brake and accelerate.