Florida school principal hacked into student accounts to cast homecoming votes, FDLE says
A school principal and her teenage daughter both hacked into student accounts in order to cast votes for homecoming court at the girl’s school, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. ESCAMBIA COUNTY, Fla. – A school principal and her teenage daughter both hacked into student accounts in order to cast votes for homecoming court at the girl’s school, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Laura Carroll, an assistant principal at Bellview Elementary School, and her 17-year-old daughter, who attended Tate High School, were identified as suspects. The girl was expelled from Tate High School as a result of the incident. Agents said that since August 2019, Carroll has accessed 372 high school records, 339 of which were for Tate High School students.
Florida man gets 20 years in prison for fatal drug-related crash
PENSACOLA, Fla. – A Florida man has been sentenced to 20 years and three months in prison for being high on drugs when he caused a crash that killed two siblings. Hunter Black, 26, was sentenced Tuesday in Escambia County circuit court after pleading no contest to two counts of DUI manslaughter and one count of marijuana possession, the Pensacola News Journal reported. The other vehicle’s driver, Antoinette McCoy, 22, and her brother, Sean Banks, 15, were seriously injured in the crash. The siblings were airlifted to a Pensacola hospital, where they died, officials said. An analysis of his blood sample, taken after the crash, revealed the presence of Xanax and cannabis in his system, prosecutors said.
Explosion destroys 5 garbage trucks in Florida
PENSACOLA, Fla. – An explosion and fire destroyed five garbage trucks and damaged two others at a sanitation complex in the Florida Panhandle. The flames erupted Sunday afternoon at the station in Escambia County, Emerald Coast Utilities Authority said in a statement. [TRENDING: 1 dead in Rolls Royce crash | Mom, boyfriend arrested after toddler drowns | How to get the vaccine in Fla.]No injuries were reported but five trucks were destroyed in the fire. Two others were damaged, and the authority was assessing all other vehicles for any further damage. The authority said the cause of the explosion is under investigation.
‘The demand has outstripped the supply:’ Florida trying to vaccinate millions of seniors
Nursing home residents and health care workers in Florida began receiving the Pfizer vaccine this week. Ron DeSantis said Florida is working to expand its vaccination efforts Wednesday to make sure a majority of its elderly population gets the shot. The state’s overall strategy is to vaccinate the millions of seniors that live in Florida. “Now these hospital-run vaccination sites are part of our next steps in order to reach our seniors throughout the community. “We want them overrepresented in the shots and that’s what we’re going to be working on as I move forward.”
Florida county administrator’s office was illegally bugged
PENSACOLA, Fla. – The office of a Florida county administrator was illegally bugged last year, but investigators don’t yet know who was responsible. Florida Department of Law Enforcement spokeswoman Gretl Plessinger told the Pensacola News Journal that the agency was contacted Aug. 1 about a hidden recording device in the office of Escambia County Administrator Janice Gilley. The case was closed in late September when investigators couldn't develop additional information, Plessenger said. “I didn’t want to be overreacting, but it was recommended to me that we do a sweep,” Gilley said. Escambia County Commissioner Jeff Bergosh said Gilley told him about the discovery of a device and that the FDLE was sweeping all of the offices on the fourth floor of the county building for more devices.
Hurricane Zeta forces Florida Panhandle voting sites to close early
PENSACOLA, Fla. – Early voting locations in several counties in Florida’s Panhandle will be closing as Hurricane Zeta approaches the region. While Hurricane Zeta is expected to make landfall south of New Orleans on Wednesday afternoon, Florida's western Panhandle region is expected to see deteriorating weather conditions throughout day, officials said. The voting locations should return to the normal 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. routine on Friday and Saturday, which is the last day for early voting in Florida. Similar hours have been posted for early voting locations in Santa Rosa County. In neighboring Okaloosa County, Supervisor of Elections Paul Lux said all early voting locations will close at 5 p.m. Wednesday “out of an abundance of caution," as the storm approaches.
Hundreds of thousands still without power in Sally cleanup
While the cleanup pressed on, the record-shattering hurricane season notched another milestone: Forecasters ran out of traditional names for storms after three new systems formed in about six hours. In Loxley, Alabama, Catherine Williams lost power and some of her roof to Sally. The same practice will govern storm names for the rest of hurricane season, which lasts until the end of November. The only other time the hurricane center dipped into the Greek alphabet was the deadly 2005 hurricane season, which included Hurricane Katrina's strike on New Orleans. She was concerned because more than two months are left in hurricane season.
Rescuers reach people cut off by Gulf Coast hurricane
(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)PENSACOLA, Fla. – Rescuers on the Gulf Coast used boats and high-water vehicles Thursday to reach people cut off by floodwaters in the aftermath of Hurricane Sally, even as a second round of flooding took shape along rivers and creeks swollen by the storm’s heavy rains. Crews carried out at least 400 rescues in Escambia County, Florida, by such means as high-water vehicles, boats and water scooters, authorities said. Also on Thursday, the National Hurricane Center said a new tropical depression formed in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico. Forecasters said the depression could become a tropical storm as it moves slowly over the western Gulf during the next few days. Meanwhile, Hurricane Teddy strengthened to a powerful Category 4 storm in the Atlantic.
Photos: Hurricane Sally slams into coast near Alabama-Florida border
Hurricane Sally made landfall near the Florida-Alabama state line as a Category 2 storm in the early morning hours Wednesday, bringing storm surge and torrential rain. Waves break ashore near the Gulf State Park pier as the outer bands of Hurricane Sally come ashore on Sept. 15 in Gulf Shores, Alabama. (2020 Getty Images)A driver navigates along a flooded road as the outer bands of Hurricane Sally come ashore on Sept. 15, 2020 in Bayou La Batre, Alabama. (2020 Getty Images)Water floods a road as the outer bands of Hurricane Sally come ashore on Sept. 15 in Gulf Shores, Alabama. (2020 Getty Images)A man walks though a flooded parking lot as the outer bands of Hurricane Sally come ashore on Sept. 15 in Gulf Shores, Alabama.
Earthquake in Florida? Yep, it happened
MOUNT CARMEL, Fla. No damage was reported after a weak earthquake occurred Thursday morning along the Alabama-Florida line. The U.S. Geological Survey reported that a magnitude 4.0 quake happened just after 10 a.m. north of Mount Carmel, Florida, mostly a forested area southwest of Brewton, Alabama. The Escambia County Sheriffs Office said it had not received any calls about damage, but some area residents reported feeling the quake in response to a question posed by the area National Weather Service office on its Facebook page. The earthquake occurred more than 6 miles beneath the surface, according to the Geological Survey.
Inmate, 79, killed in attack at Florida prison
PENSACOLA, Fla. – A 79-year-old man was killed by another inmate last week at a Florida prison, officials said. Nelson Sanderson was pronounced dead Aug. 17 following an attack at the Century Correctional Institute in Escambia County, the Pensacola News Journal reported. He was serving two life sentences for sex offenses involving a juvenile, according to Florida Department of Corrections records. Officials declined to comment on the circumstances surrounding the attack or to name the attacker. The homicide investigation is being conducted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement with assistance from the Department of Corrections Office of Inspector General.