Your Florida Daily: Dad accused using power tool to kill son, power restored to 96% of customers after Idalia

Plus: A rich archeological site in Florida

Stephen Thomas Rodda, 37 (Polk County Sheriff's Office)

A man is accused of using a power tool to kill his 16-year-old son, and Polk County deputies are working to figure out why.

An arrest report shows Stephen Thomas Rodda used an angle grinder to attack his son — also named Stephen — at a home in the Lake Wales area Monday.

Investigators said the teen’s grandfather found his body.

During a press conference, Sheriff Grady Judd said 16-year-old Stephen Rodda was a junior at Frostproof High School and was studying to be an electrician.

“I want you to know the world lost a great young man today. We lost a great young man and we have an evil, evil man in custody,” Judd said.

Deputies said they do not know what led Stephen Thomas Rodda to attack and kill his son. This comes a week after a Polk County mother killed her two children and herself in a murder-suicide on Aug. 27.

DeSantis speaks in Perry (Copyright 2023 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

Gov. Ron DeSantis said more than 96% of Floridians who lost power during Hurricane Idalia have had their service restored.

“This has probably been the fastest restoration even faster than we did during Hurricane Ian,” DeSantis said. “So that’s something that’s really meaningful. And I know Floridians are appreciative when they see those power trucks coming into the state.”

Hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses around the state lost electricity last week as Idalia moved through the gulf before making landfall in the Big Bend region. The governor said about 23,000 were still without power as of Monday with crews inspecting damage to power lines and other infrastructure.

The Subway in the Sky blimp (Subway Restaurants)

And a flying Subway sandwich in the sky: it’s a sight coming to select cities around the country including Orlando.

Subway just unveiled their flying dining experience that takes up to six customers inside a massive blimp.

The company said up to 40 people per day will have the chance to eat one of their four hero subs on board the blimp as “they float 1,000 feet above the ground.”

The flying footlong visits Orlando Sept. 19-20.

Random Florida Fact

Lake Jackson Mounds Archaeological State Park is one of several major mound sites in North Florida and one of the richest in Native American artifacts and history.

This community included ancestors of the Apalachee, Creek, Cherokee and Choctaw Native American tribes until its abandonment around 1500.

Excavations and study of the site show that construction of the mounds required skilled planning, knowledge of soils and organization of laborers over a number of years.

Visitors to the park can view two of the remaining mounds, which have stairs leading to observation platforms at the tops.

Get today’s headlines in minutes with Your Florida Daily:

About the Author:

Katrina Scales is a producer for the News 6+ Takeover at 3:30 p.m. She also writes and voices the podcast Your Florida Daily. Katrina was born and raised in Brevard County and started her journalism career in radio before joining News 6 in June 2021.