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Published: Wednesday, February 1, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, February 1, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
Area man arrested, charged with rape
  • A 41-year-old Gainesville man was arrested early Tuesday after deputies say he raped a woman in his car after giving her a ride to work.
    Jackie Lee Sykes,of 2841 SW 37th Place, No. 59G, was arrested on charges of felony sexual battery and misdemeanor battery for the alleged rape of a 22-year-old Alachua County woman. The victim told Alachua County Sheriff's deputies that Sykes gave her and a man a ride to work about 12:30 a.m. at 5121 NE 63rd Ave., which is listed as SP Recycling Corp.
    When the other man got out of the car to find someone to open a locked gate at the business, Sykes reportedly asked the victim for oral sex in exchange for gas used for the ride, but she declined, deputies said. After he asked her a second time and she refused, Sykes allegedly pushed her down onto the back seat and raped her.
    Sykes was being held at the Alachua County jail on a $50,000 bond Tuesday night.
    - Deborah BallFund-raiser will benefit families of crash victims
  • A Saturday event originally intended to benefit the city park in Hampton now will be used to raise money for the families of victims of last week's deadly traffic crash near Lake Butler.
    "We can do a fund-raiser for a concession stand any day of the week," Hampton Mayor Jim Mitzel said Tuesday in announcing that the City of Hampton Music Festival instead will benefit the families of the seven children killed and those who were injured.
    The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the city park in Hampton. Performances by the Dirt Road Band, Doug Williamson, Barry Moore and Phil Cay will begin at noon and continue to 5 p.m. Spaghetti dinners will be sold for $4 each from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    The festival will include face painting and a "moonwalk." A donation jar will be available.
    Other fund-raisers for the families of the children killed or injured include:
  • Community State Bank, P.O. Box 158, Lake Butler, Fla. 32054; separate accounts for the Mann-Scott Family Fund, Murphy Family Fund, Elixon Family Fund and the Lillie Mae Perry-Godbolt Fund.
  • Mercantile Bank, 300 W. Main St., Lake Butler, Fla. 32054; the Mann Family Memorial Fund.
  • Sonny's Barbecue in Alachua, "Mary Murphy Day" on Feb. 8; half of the day's receipts will go to help one of the restaurant's waitresses with medical expenses for two of her children who were seriously injured in the crash.
    - Bob ArndorferProgram to celebrate Black History Month
  • The Alachua County Commission will celebrate Black History Month with the airing of "Profiles in Black History 2006," honoring five blacks whose contributions have enriched the lives of all of us in Alachua County.
    Honored are arts advocate NKwanda Jah, Realtor Edwin B. Dix, Dr. Cullen Banks, the Rev. Kevin W. Thorpe and former Police Chief Atkins W. Warren.
    This half-hour program will run on Channel 12 throughout the month of February. Initial airings are as follows Feb. 1, 8 p.m.; Feb. 2, 8:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.; and Feb. 3 at 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.
    Additional times are at the Alachua County Communications Web site at Click on Channel 12 schedule.
    - Cindy Swirko
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