Around the Region

Published: Thursday, January 10, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 10, 2008 at 12:00 a.m.

Williston man accused of child molestation

A Williston man was arrested Tuesday after an 11-year-old girl came forward to say she had been molested by him, according to Lt. Evan Sullivan with the Levy County Sheriff's Office.

Robert Benjamin Furr, 38, is facing charges of capital sexual battery on a child under 12 and lewd and lascivious molestation on a child under 12, and is being held on $300,000 bond, Sullivan said.

Furr was arrested in connection with events that occurred on Jan. 7, but investigators may file additional charges because the girl, who is an auaintance of Furr, said the molestation has been going on since 2003, Sullivan reported.

- Alice Wallace

20-acre brush fire fought in LaCrosse area

Fire officials worked to extinguish a 20-acre blaze that started in the LaCrosse area Wednesday, but Ludie Ehlers with the Division of Forestry said residents should not have to worry about smoke in the area this morning.

Ehlers said the fire was in the area of County Road 1493 and State Road 121 in LaCrosse, and it was reported around noon. The fire originated when a man was trying to burn some cactus and the flames got out of control, Ehlers reported.

Both the Division of Forestry and Alachua County Fire Rescue monitored the fire Tuesday and Ehlers said although it will be foggy again this morning, the conditions should not be aggravated by the brush fire.

- Alice Wallace

Woman in towing theft case arraigned

A woman charged with petit theft for taking her car from a tow lot without paying the towing fee was arraigned in court Wednesday, according to the State Attorney's Office.

Police filed a sworn complaint against Deborah Woolsey, 58, in October after she allegedly took her car from Watson's Towing without paying the tow fee. The incident came a few weeks after University of Florida football player Tony Joiner was arrested for a similar offense.

After being arraigned on the charge Wednesday, the case was continued until next month, according to the State Attorney's Office.

- Alice Wallace


Alachua County to hold career expo downtown

Alachua County will host a career expo next week at the Santa Fe Community College Blount Downtown Center.

Participants can meet with county representatives from departments and divisions including Public Works, the Library District, Fire Rescue and others.

The expo will be held Tuesday and runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the center, located at University Avenue and NW 6th Street.

For more information, call the Alachua County Human Resources Department at (352) 374-5219.

- Sun staff report


12-year-old shoots 6-year-old brother

LAKE WALES - The Polk County Sheriff's Office says a 12-year-old accidentally shot his 6-year-old brother in the abdomen.

Austin Hendry was airlifted to an Orlando hospital Wednesday evening. His condition isn't known.

Deputies say the older brother was unloading a rifle when it accidentally discharged and struck the boy. Authorities are questioning witnesses.

- The Associated Press

State considers crack down on school dress

TALLAHASSEE - Youth who let their drawers droop to expose underwear, G-strings or worse at school would get a verbal warning after a first offense but face suspension if they keep doing it under a measure that cleared a Senate committee Wednesday.

The Prekindergarten-12th Grade Education Committee unanimously approved Sen. Gary Siplin's "pull up your britches'' bill (SB 302).

It next will go to the Senate floor after the Legislature convenes its regular annual session in March.

Siplin has tried for several years to get such legislation passed without success.

- The Associated Press

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