Hoax Leads To School Evacuation (Titusville, FL) -- The evacuation of a Brevard County school is being blamed on a hoax. The bomb squad was called to Titusville High School yesterday after a suspicious device was found in a breezeway. Students and staff were removed from the school to a safe location until the bomb squad determined the device was not a threat. Police say they're aggressively looking for whoever's responsible for causing what they call a tremendous drain on public safety resources.
Lack Of Funding Blamed For Lack Of School Security Upgrades (Tampa, FL) -- Security upgrades that parents are asking for might be out of reach financially for one district. A town hall meeting was held this week in Hillsborough County to discuss enhancing school safety. Security director John Newman says making the requested upgrades would grow the district's security budget deficit to 16-million dollars. The "Tampa Bay Times" reports school board member April Griffin pointed out the district already spent more than five million dollars on security upgrades after Sandy Hook six years ago.
Judge: Ok To Confiscate Zachary Cruz' Weapons (Fort Lauderdale, FL) -- A formal order allowing deputies to confiscate any weapons Zachary Cruz will be issued at a hearing on Monday. Yesterday, a Broward County judge gave the initial approval to a request to seize guns from the brother of Parkland high school shooter Nikolaus Cruz. The request was submitted based on a new Florida law that allows weapons to be taken from anyone taken into custody and forced to have a mental health assessment. Zachary Cruz was arrested Monday for trespassing at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Crisis Management Team Hired To Help Broward Sheriff (Fort Lauderdale, FL) -- Broward County's sheriff is getting some help fighting back against his critics. Supporters of Scott Israel last week hired a crisis management team to help him deal with negative publicity since the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. Israel tells the "Miami Herald" he welcomes the support, and they share the same goal of protecting the community.
Five Arrested In Credit Card Skimming Operation (Bartow, FL) -- A perceptive deputy is credited with uncovering what turned out to be a statewide credit card skimming operation. Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd this week announced the arrests of five men involved in the operation. The investigation started in December when a deputy saw two men tampering with a gas pump keypad at a Sunoco station in Polk City. None of the crime rings leaders were arrested, but Judd says the arrests of the others should send a very clear signal to bad guys that the cost of doing business just went up.
Thunderbirds Arrive In Melbourne For Weekend Air Show (Melbourne, FL) -- The Air Force Thunderbirds arrived yesterday for the Melbourne Air and Space Show at Melbourne International Airport. The show will take place tomorrow and Sunday from noon to 3:00, but a practice session will take place today at noon. "Florida Today" reports the highlights include the B-2 Spirit Stealth Bomber, special ops skydivers and a race between a jet-powered truck and a World War Two fighter plane.
Tardiness Excuses (Undated) -- A new CareerBuilder survey is releasing an interesting list of excuses employees use for their tardiness. Some of these include, "I was here but I fell asleep in the parking lot," "my fake eyelashes were stuck together," or even "an astrologer warned of a car accident on a major highway so I took the longer, slower back roads." Of the more entertaining excuses, a man complaining of morning sickness.
Florida State Stumps Gonzaga, Advances To Elite Eight (Los Angeles, CA) -- Terrance Mann led the charge with 18 points as ninth-seeded Florida State stumped Gonzaga 75-60 in Sweet 16 action in Los Angeles. Mann was the only Seminole in double-figures, but the team effort helped FSU slide into the Elite Eight. They'll meet third-seeded Michigan in the next round Saturday with a trip to the Final Four on the line. My Mountaineers take on the only remaining #1 seed Villanova tonight in Boston. The Mountaineers began the tournament as a 5 seed.
TODAY IN HISTORY:
2016, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed a bathroom bill that restricts legal protections for LGBT citizens into law.
2004, an independent commission investigating the September 11th, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States opened a hearing in Washington DC featuring testimony from key figures from the White House administrations under President George W. Bush and former President Bill Clinton.
2002, following the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan to oust the oppressive Taliban regime, girls in Afghanistan celebrated their return to school for the first time in years.
1983, President Ronald Reagan first proposed the Strategic Defense Initiative. This technology to intercept enemy missiles became known as "Star Wars."
1929, the first telephone was installed in the White House.
1912, the Dixie Cup was invented.
1775, Patrick Henry made his famous "Give me liberty, or give me death" speech to the Virginia Provincial Convention.