Around the region


A couple of turkey vultures bask in the morning sun over Newnan's Lake early Saturday.

TRACY WILCOX/The Gainesville Sun
Published: Sunday, January 22, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 22, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
12-year-old hurt in ATV-van accident
  • A 12-year-old boy was injured Friday afternoon when he drove an all terrain vehicle into the path of a van in Levy County, troopers said.
    An ATV, driven by Matthew Schrader of Chiefland, failed to yield the right of way at an intersection to a van headed south on State Road 345, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. The van's driver, Willis Rothra, 76, of Ashville, N.Y., braked but hit the ATV and the boy was thrown from the vehicle.
    Matthew, who had been wearing a helmet, was taken to Shands at the University of Florida with serious injuries.
    According to Florida law, in most cases, ATVs can only be operated on private property and not on public roads, streets or highways.
    Troopers cited the boy for failure to yield at an intersection and improper operation of an ATV on a roadway.
    - Lise FisherInterlachen crash kills East Palatka woman
  • A crash in Interlachen Friday killed an East Palatka woman, the Florida Highway Patrol reported.
    Angela E. Cribbs, 28, died after she was partially ejected from a vehicle driving west on Medlock Street, according to troopers.
    The driver, Jimmy Edward Brown, 28, of Palatka, told troopers Cribbs had been yelling at him when he lost control of the vehicle. It swerved, causing the front to strike a tree. The passenger door opened and Cribbs, who was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown from the vehicle.
    - Lise FisherTrain hits SUV stuck on tracks in Bradford
  • A train crashed into a sports utility vehicle stuck on railroad tracks in Bradford County early Saturday, according to troopers.
    Tojaun T. Smith, 29, of Jacksonville was driving west on NE 204th St. at about 5:30 a.m. when he made a sudden turn onto a railroad crossing about two miles south of Lawtey, the Florida Highway Patrol reported.
    The SUV became stuck on the tracks. Smith got out and was trying to get help when a CSX freight train hauling 104 cars struck the abandoned vehicle.
    The train had been traveling at about 47 mph. Smith was cited for careless driving by troopers.
    - Lise FisherGazing at heavens on agenda at Cedar Key
  • The fourth-annual Cedar Key Star Party will begin welcoming visitors Monday, giving them a chance to view stars by night and the sun and moon by day.
    From Monday through Jan. 27, volunteer astronomers will set up telescopes at the City Park from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. so people can look at the sun and moon. The astronomers will relocate to the Cedar Key State Museum so people can view the stars and planets from 7 until 10 p.m.
    Also during the evenings, astronomy slide shows will be offered at the museum.
    On Wednesday night, a hayride through the Cedar Key Scrub Reserve will be an opportunity to stargaze through binoculars. Reservations are required by calling (352) 543-5567.
    More information about the events is available at http://www.upstateastro.org/stars/cedarkey.html
    - Karen VoylesJudge voids Daytona anti-nudity laws
  • DAYTONA BEACH - A federal judge has struck down this city's anti-nudity laws, saying they are unconstitutional.
    U.S. District Judge John Antoon decided Friday that Daytona Beach's laws prohibiting public nudity, and nudity in places that sell alcohol, violate the First and 14th amendments. Daytona Beach also failed to prove its claim that adult nightclubs create secondary negative impacts on levels of crime, prostitution and illegal drug activity in neighborhoods, he said in his ruling.
    - The Associated Press "We won on every single issue," said Daniel Aaronson, a Fort Lauderdale attorney representing Lollipops Gentleman's Club in its federal lawsuit.
    City officials said they plan to study the judge's ruling and ask the City Commission about a possible appeal.
    Public nudity, particularly women exposing their breasts, has been an issue at special events in Daytona Beach, such as Biketoberfest and Spring Break.
    Carlie Brucia's mother in trouble with the law
  • ST. PETERSBURG - The mother of Carlie Brucia, the girl whose abduction was captured by a car wash security camera two years ago, was charged with drug possession and facilitation of prostitution, authorities said.
    Susan Schorpen was arrested Thursday and charged with possessing crack cocaine and violating the city's prostitution ordinance, police said. She posted $5,000 bail Friday.
    Schorpen was picked up in St. Petersburg by an undercover police officer who suspected prostitution, but she wasn't charged with prostitution because she did not offer to perform sex acts for money, a police spokesman said.
    The allegations come after she was accused earlier this month of stealing thousands in money and jewelry from her father, then disappearing.
    Family and friends say Schorpen has long battled drug abuse, and tried several times to clean up.
    "Nobody knows what she's going to do next. This is the last straw," said her brother, Paul Schorpen.
    Carlie, 11, was grabbed as she was walking home from a friend's house in February 2004. The images captured on a car wash security camera and later broadcast around the world.
    Joseph Smith was convicted of kidnapping, raping and killing Carlie, and the jury recommended he be executed. He will be sentenced Feb. 13.
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