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Published: Friday, January 28, 2005 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 27, 2005 at 11:53 p.m.

Area man, 71, accused of molesting girl

  • A 71-year-old Gainesville man was arrested Thursday and charged with performing a lewd and lascivious act on a 12-year-old child, according to the Gainesville Police Department.
    At 12:50 p.m., David Hancock of 4425 NW 23rd Drive, was booked into the Alachua County jail. He is being held without bond.
    The girl, an acquaintance of Hancock's, said he molested her when she was 10 years old, according to a police report.
    The girl's mother found her diary with entries detailing the alleged incident, the report said.
    The 12-year-old told her mother she was scared to tell anyone about the encounter, the report said.
    During questioning, the report said Hancock denied the allegations and told police that he did not believe his relationship with the child was abnormal.
    - Meredith Mandell

    Charges against ex-vicar in High Springs dropped

  • An Alachua County prosecutor has dropped domestic violence charges against the Rev. Claudia Kalis, officials said.
    Kalis of High Springs had been accused of slapping her husband, Kenneth, five or six times after a verbal argument in their Alachua home Dec. 20. Spencer Mann, a spokesman for the State Attorney's Office, said prosecutors dropped the charges because Kalis went through an assessment and counseling process.
    In an unrelated incident, Bishop John Howard of the Episcopal Diocese of Florida had fired Kalis, 51, late last month from her position as vicar of St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church in High Springs because she repeatedly said she was out of Communion with the bishop, diocese officials have said.
    Kalis had protested the bishop's taking Communion with an openly gay bishop, which she has said "aligned (her) with people who have abandoned the faith."
    - Amy Reinink

    Local Carson memorial planned for weekend

  • A community memorial to the "King of Late Night" will be held Sunday at 3 p.m. at Gainesville's Forest Meadows Funeral Home, 725 NW 23rd Ave.
    "An associate who is from the Johnny Carson era and I were talking about how we should do something for him," said Sal Passalaqua, manager of the funeral home. "He was an icon of late-night shows."
    Carson died Sunday of emphysema at age 79.
    Passalaqua said Thursday that he still is working on the "Service of Remembrance" program. They hope to have video clips of "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" to play on a large TV before, after and maybe even during the service.
    "And any fans of Johnny's who want to get up and talk about him can do so," he said.
    He acknowledged the video clips and memories might create a light-hearted mood for the memorial service. But it wouldn't be a first, he said.
    "You do get services where there is a lot of laughter," Passalaqua said. "Sometimes laughter is better than tears."
    Community memorials to a public figure also are not new, he said. Passalaqua said that when he was at a funeral home in South Florida last year, he helped arrange a similar service for President Reagan.
    - Bob Arndorfer

    State officials remind Floridians OF tax credit

  • TALLAHASSEE - In a year when many Floridians had financial hardships because of hurricanes, state officials are trying to boost use of the federal Earned Income Tax Credit, which could mean thousands of extra dollars for many who don't know they're eligible.
    The IRS says as much as $635 million dollars is going unclaimed in Florida because people don't know they can get the credit off their federal taxes.
    - The Associated Press
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