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Couple arrested for contempt of court

Couple arrested for contempt of court

Clearwater, Florida -  A Palm Harbor couple was arrested for contempt of court this morning after the two become upset with the decision of a judge during a child dependency hearing.

According to deputies, the couple was appearing before Judge Patrick K. Caddell when 37-year-old Matthew Ross stepped out of the main hearing area and slung the swing gate back with such force that it slammed and ricochet on the divider.

The judge ordered him held in contempt and as court security deputies approached to arrest him, Ross did not stop and continued on through the gallery.  At this time, deputies took him to the ground.

Ross sustained a minor injury to his head and was transported to a nearby hospital.

House fire starts in the chimney

House fire starts in the chimney

St. Petersburg, Florida - St. Petersburg fire rescue responded to a house fire at 1700 82 Ave North around 10:40 a.m.

When firefighters arrived, there was smoke and flames coming from the roof.

Friefighters determined that the fire started in the chimney from the fireplace and spread to the attic area.

Fire crews had the fire under control with in 15 minutes.

There were no injuries. 

SPFR fireplace safety recommendations area:

Homeless rights activists protest old jail as shelter

Homeless rights activists protest old jail as shelter

St. Pete, FL - They march with a message: Homelessness is not a crime.

On International Human Rights Day, more than a hundred people hit the streets of downtown St. Petersburg, chanting "What do we want? Housing!" as they walked to City Hall. 

But the county's idea of housing the homeless in an old county jail is not good enough, says rally organizer Reverend Bruce Wright of The Refuge.  "We have grave concerns about that.  It sounds similar to Japanese internment camps that happened in WWII," said Wright.

Cherie Honkela of the Poor People's Ecomomic Human Rights Campaign flew down from Washington DC for this rally.  The reason she said, "[is because St Pete is] the number one most hostile place in the country toward homeless people."

Honkela says housing the homeless in an old detention center is disgusting.

"They deserve to be treated like human beings," said Wright.

Palm Harbor squeaks past East Lake 50-48

Palm Harbor squeaks past East Lake 50-48

It was an exciting night on the hardwood in north Pinellas Friday as the East Lake Eagles played host to the Palm Harbor Hurricanes.  And judging by warm ups it looked as if the home team would have a slight height advantage but, despite their size, it was the Canes who jumped out to an early lead in the first.  In fact, it was 11-1 in favor of PHU before the Eagles started to get things going.  By the end of the first the Canes held a 19-9 lead.

In the second quarter, it was almost dead even as both teams kept matching each other's shots. The Canes did manage one more bucket in the quarter as they scored 12 to the Eagles 10. At half-time, the score was 31-22 and it appeared that Palm Harbor would just cruise to victory.

Pet of the Week: Cecil

Clearwater, Florida - Our Pet of the Week is a sweek boy named Cecil. Looking for a sidekick to be your best buddy? Meet Cecil! This handsome boy is about 3 years old and is white with blue patches. Can you believe he was running as a stray when he collided with a car? He is now mended and one would never know the difference!

During Cecil's time with us we have found that he is a great big lover boy that adores human affection and companionship. He will sit right in your lap and cover you with doggie kisses until you can take no more! He is eager to please and looks for your sign of approval; he just wants to make you happy. He is a strong active boy that deserves a safe and secure yard that will allow for plenty of play time and a family to share it with.

PET ID: A01430636

Woman faces DUI, child abuse charges after crash

Woman faces DUI, child abuse charges after crash

St. Petersburg, Florida -- A mother is facing several charges, including DUI and child abuse, after a three-car crash sent several people to the hospital in St. Petersburg.

Police say 22-year-old Colleen Francis Ludlow was driving westbound on 22nd Avenue North Thursday afternoon when she struck the curb and then veered toward a Nissan vehicle, which was stopped facing south at the intersection of 42nd Street South. Ludlow's car then veered into the path of a Honda which was going east on 22nd Avenue South.

The driver of the Honda, 81-year-old Hyacinth Capehart, was taken to Bayfront Medical Center with spinal injuries. Two occupants in the Nissan were also taken to Bayfront, but later released.

Thief causes $600 in damage to steal $52 in church donations

St. Petersburg, Florida-- A man who police say broke into a church to steal $52 in donations is now behind bars charged in a string of robberies throughout the same neighborhood.

St. Petersburg Police arrested 32 year old Leandra "Lee" White of St. Petersburg after they say he broke into the Christ Lutheran Church at 3451 30th Avenue North in late October.

Police say they found White's finger prints on an empty envelope that once contained the church donations. Even worse, church members say White cause nearly $600 in damage during the break in, using a crow bar to pry open the church's front door, then kicking in the office door to get to the money.

"Especially with Christ looking right at you, how could you do it?" asks longtime church member Shirley Bolvin, referring to the church's large statue of Jesus in the front window.