Around the region

Published: Thursday, January 17, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 16, 2008 at 11:58 p.m.

Cuban man charged in molestation of child

A man who moved to the United States six months ago from Cuba was arrested in Levy County on Tuesday after a child reported being touched inappropriately by him, according to Lt. Evan Sullivan with the Levy County Sheriff's Office.

Jose Luis Valdes Montejo, 42, who has been residing in Lake Worth, was reportedly in a friend's home in Chiefland when the friend's child became upset - which the child said was due to inappropriate touching by Montejo.

When Montejo tried to flee the home through a window, the child's mother held him at knifepoint until deputies arrived, Sullivan reported.

Montejo was arrested on a charge of lewd and lascivious molestation on a child under 12 and was being held under a $100,000 bond Wednesday.

- Alice Wallace

Police search for man in dog shooting death

Gainesville Police were investigating an incident Tuesday night in which a man reportedly entered an apartment and shot and killed a dog, according to Lt. Sherry Scott.

Scott said the incident was reported around 8:26 p.m. Tuesday at Pine Ridge Apartments, 6000 NW 23rd Terrace.

Scott said the residents in the apartment told police that a man, who might have been known to at least one of the residents, entered the apartment uninvited and began firing rounds from what appeared to be a rifle.

The residents' dog was shot and killed during the incident, and then the man fled the scene.

Police were still searching for the shooter late Tuesday.

"As far as what the motivation was, we're not able to determine that yet," Scott said.

Police reported the suspect, who had not been located Wednesday, may have fled in a silver sedan occupied by several other people.

- Alice Wallace

Police plan to charge man in armed robbery

Officers plan to charge a man, arrested earlier this month in Alachua County, in connection with a recent robbery in Keystone Heights.

Clay County Sheriff's detectives obtained an arrest warrant Tuesday for Juan F. Ramos Jr., 25, of Hawthorne, the agency reported.

Investigators allege Ramos robbed a person trying to make a deposit at the Capital City Bank ATM in Keystone Heights on Jan. 4. The victim was robbed at gunpoint, officers reported.

Ramos was arrested in Alachua County on Jan. 8 on warrants from October for grand theft of a vehicle and larceny charges, according to the Alachua County Sheriff's Office.

Clay County deputies continue to investigate whether Ramos was involved in another Keystone Heights robbery Jan. 5 at Alfies Liquor & Wine, 153 E. Walker Drive.

- Lise Fisher


Replacement chosen for head of water district

A replacement has been chosen for the longtime executive director of the Suwannee River Water Management District.

The district's governing board has selected David Still, 52, for the job. Still currently serves as the district's deputy executive director and liaison to the Florida Legislature.

He would replace Jerry Scarborough, who is retiring after more than 18 years at the district. He was Suwannee County Clerk of the Court for 14 years and former editor of the Suwannee Democrat newspaper.

Still will now enter into contract negotiations for the executive director position. The governing board is scheduled to vote Feb. 12 on the contract. If approved, Gov. Charlie Crist and the state Senate would need to give final confirmation.

- Nathan Crabbe


3 county precincts get new voting locations

Voters in three Alachua County precincts will receive information about new polling locations in the mail, according to the county's Supervisor of Elections Office.

New voter information cards have been mailed to affected voters in Precincts 24, 25 and 52, the office reported. The cards list information about new poll locations.

New polling locations for the precincts are:

Precinct 24: B'nai Israel, 3830 NW 16th Blvd.

Precinct 25: Santa Fe Community College Blount Center, 530 W. University Ave.

Precinct 52: Disabled American Veterans State Headquarters, 2015 SW 75th St.

Voters in Precinct 23 also will receive a letter notifying them of a temporary change in their polling location for the Jan. 29 election. Voting for this precinct will take place at the India Cultural Center, 1115 SW 13th St., because of construction at the American Cancer Society's Winn-Dixie Hope Lodge, 2121 SW 16th St.

For more information, contact the elections office at 352-374-5252.

- Sun staff report


Two young girls drown in pool in Sunrise

SUNRISE - Authorities are investigating after the bodies of two young girls were found at the bottom of pool near their Sunrise home.

Sunrise Police say the mother of one of the girls thought Marieanne Boucicant, 4, and Taniya Humes, 3, were watching cartoons Wednesday afternoon, but then realized the girls weren't inside the house.

The mother, who was not identified, found the girls in the pool and pulled them out.

A neighbor called 911 and tried to perform CPR. The pool does not have a gate around it.

- The Associated Press

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