Mick's Morning News: 12.18.18

Launch Set For Today  (Cape Canaveral, FL) -- The last launch of the year marks a first for SpaceX. A Falcon 9 rocket is set for liftoff this morning in SpaceX's first national security launch. The rocket is carrying a next-gen GPS satellite for the Air Force, and Vice President Mike Pence will be on hand to watch. The launch from Complex 40 is set for a 26-minute window that starts at 9:11. We’ll have launch coverage for you on WMMB starting just after FOX News at 9am.

Judge Dismisses MSD Lawsuit  (Parkland, FL) -- Deputies and school officials can claim victory in a legal battle with Parkland students. Fifteen Stoneman Douglas High School students sued the Broward District and the sheriff's office for failing to protect them in February's deadly shooting. A judge, though, ruled last week that the district and sheriff's office have no constitutional duty to protect the students. She ruled that because students are not wards of the state, like prisoners, schools and deputies are not duty-bound to protect them from third parties.

Jealous Ex-Boyfriend Charged With Shooting At Woman  (Daytona Beach, FL) -- A shooting in broad daylight in Volusia County is being blamed on a jealous ex-boyfriend. Daytona Beach Police released details yesterday into Sunday afternoon's shooting on North Beach Street. Daytona Beach's Vern Westcott is accused of following his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend in his car before punching the woman and firing three shots at her feet. One bullet hit the woman's car, but no one was hurt, and the 29-year-old Westcott is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Lawmaker Files Distracted Driving Bill  (Tampa, FL) -- A Tampa Bay lawmaker is behind a new effort to stop distracted driving. District 60 State Rep. Jackie Toledo filed a bill yesterday that bans touching or holding a cell phone while driving.

Man Attacked On 'Date'  (Pensacola, FL) -- What he thought was going to be a date turned into what an Escambia County man calls a terrifying experience. The man met a woman through a dating app called Tagged, and after meeting her for drinks in Pensacola over a week ago, he claims he was jumped by three armed men who broke his nose, robbed him and shot at him as he ran away. She and her boyfriend, who are accused of planned the attack, were arrested. The man tells Channel 3 News if you're going to use online dating sites, be sure to meet the person in a public place.

Landing Survivors To Share Over $1M  (Jacksonville, FL) -- Those who survived the Jacksonville Landing shooting will benefit from over a million dollars worth of donations. The committee responsible for the Jacksonville Tribute Fund announced yesterday the money collected will be split among 66 people. Two people were killed and dozens were hurt in August's shooting during an e-sports tournament by a gunman who took his own life. Electronic Arts started the fund, and the committee chair says the money will be sent out over the next few weeks.

Most Talked About Studies Of 2018  (Undated) -- From the real number of hurricane deaths to the effects of exercise on the psyche, 2018 was a year of some interesting scientific studies. The data science company Altmetric looked at which studies were the most talked about. Number one was the actual number of Hurricane deaths in Puerto Rico as a result of Hurricane Maria. That study found that the official government number was far too low and instead was likely in the thousands. Researchers also examined the spread of fake news on social media and found that lies spread six times faster than the truth. Another study found that the best amount of alcohol for people to drink was none at all, if their health is taken into consideration, although maybe a drink a day can help stave off heart disease.

Man Arrested After Stealing FHP Patrol Car  (Panama City, FL) -- A man is behind bars after stealing a Florida Highway Patrol cruiser. Officials in Bay County say the suspect led police on high speed chase on Sunday afternoon that ended near 231 and Highway 20 but the guy did not give up easily. Despite being handcuffed, he was able to drive off in the FHP car before he was caught a few miles away. The suspect was tossed into a jail cell and is facing multiple counts.

TODAY IN HISTORY:

2003, prosecutors in Santa Barbara County, California officially filed child molestation charges against pop superstar Michael Jackson. The charges stemmed from the allegations of a young boy who said Jackson molested him at the singer's Neverland Ranch. Jackson was charged with nine counts. He was eventually acquitted of the charges.

1966, Dr. Seuss' "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" aired for the first time on CBS.

1944, the Supreme Court ruled to uphold the wartime relocation and detainment of Japanese-Americans.

1865, the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution went into effect. The amendment abolished slavery.

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