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Public invited to comment at Pier meetings


ST. PETERSBURG, Florida -- Five meetings to help determine what becomes of the Pier are scheduled around the city in the next few weeks to give the public a chance to sound off.

The 21-person Working Group, appointed by Mayor Rick Kriseman in May, includes residents from neighborhoods, businesses and stakeholders from previous discussions on what to do with the Pier plan.

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Excitement building for Clearwater Jazz Holiday


Clearwater, Florida -- Music fans are already gearing up for the Clearwater Jazz Holiday and at a party Tuesday evening organizers unveiled the official poster that is based on a painting by R.J. Hohimer.

This is the 35th year for the Jazz Holiday. It takes place Oct. 16 to 19 at Coachman Park.

Bitcoin Bowl to replace Beef O' Brady's Bowl


St. Petersburg, Florida -- The Beef O'Brady's Bowl, which has been played at Tropicana Field the past four years, will have a new sponsor.

The bowl will now be called the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl, sponsored by BitPay, the world's leader in business solutions for bitcoin digital currency. The new sponsorship deal will last for three years through the 2016 game.

Hours of effort to recover stolen car in Gulf near John's Pass


Madeira Beach, Florida -- An SUV has been recovered from the Gulf near John's Pass after hours of effort.

Beach goers got a view they never expected on their vacation.

"It's a story I can look back and tell the people back in Layfette," said vacationer Eric Benoit. "I woke up on the beach and there was a car in the water."

"Maybe a shark or a whale, but not a vehicle in the ocean," said Jerry Little. "It was amazing," said Jerry Little.

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Malware holds personal computer files for ransom


Seminole, Florida -- A thief did not have to break into a family-owned body shop in Seminole to steal valuables and hold them hostage.

"Last month, we had a pop-up on our main computer that read that all our files would be destructed within a couple of days if we didn't pay a thousand dollars," said Tyler DePergola of Jim's Body Shop.

The computer was not only filled with important business information, but also thousands of family vacation photos.

6 Americans detained in Honduras could come home soon


A diving crew from Tarpon Springs that has been held in a Honduran jail on firearms charges could be home soon, according to a A Pinellas County congressman.

U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., heard Honduran officials told a top Central American foreign policy adviser to Vice President Joe Biden that the six detainees would be released this week. The congressman is trying to confirm directly the information with Biden.

Garbage Piling Up at Gandy Beach


The Florida Department of Transportation is battling a trashy situation along Gandy Beach. Garbage is piling up faster than it can be cleaned up.

St. Petersburg resident John Mathieu is concerned about making the shores safer and is helping with the trash. "This is something that shouldn't be tolerated," Mathieu said. He loves Gandy Beach and hates to see the sand and mangroves littered with garbage, like beer bottles, plastic bottles, cans and Styrofoam cups.