Around the Region


Published: Monday, January 19, 2009 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 18, 2009 at 11:57 p.m.

POLICE BEAT

Police search for ‘suspicious' people

The Levy County Sheriff's Office is asking for help identifying those involved in a suspicious incident that may have been a pre-crime activity.

During the past week, a newer model, white, full-size van was in the 10600 block of NE 10th Avenue in Chiefland, authorities said. A witness told sheriff's investigators there were four men in the van who all appeared to be 20 to 30 years old. The men reportedly knocked on the door of a home and claimed they were starting a new business in the area and wanted to meet residents in the community.

The men claimed they were giving out soft drink samples but never produced any, according to the witness. The witness also told investigators that they acted nervously, did not talk about the business they claimed they were starting and did not say what goods or services the business would provide.

Sheriff's spokesman Capt. Evan Sullivan said the men appeared to be "casing the residence to commit crimes."

Anyone who may have had a similar experience or who may have information about the men is asked to contact Sgt. Lauree Allen at 352-486-5111.

— Karen Voyles

STATE

Woman arrested in hit-and-run

BARTOW — Authorities say they've arrested a Davenport woman responsible for the fatal hit-and-run of a 17-year-old Haines City girl.

Polk County deputies say they received an anonymous tip Saturday night from someone who had seen the news coverage of Samantha Hasting's death. The tipster had spotted a vehicle that belonged to 20-year-old Candy Marie Cummings.

When deputies questioned Cummings, they say she told them she had hit something Friday night in the area where Hasting had been found.

Cummings was arrested and charged with leaving the scene of a fatal accident and operating a motor vehicle without a valid driver's license.

— The Associated Press

Officer fatally shoots suspect

MIAMI — Authorities say a Miami-Dade police officer fatally shot an armed robbery suspect.

Miami-Dade police say the masked man went into a Winn Dixie store early Sunday and confronted a group of employees.

Police say an officer reporting to the armed robbery call was forced to discharge his weapon. The suspect died at the scene.

— The Associated Press

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