Chicago man sues city over ongoing claim of mistaken identity, alleging he’s been detained by police more than 60 times in 15 years
Cole in 2014 sought help from an attorney, and they were able to secure a letter from Marion County, which he carries with him, stating he is not the Darren Cole still wanted by police. In 2018, he convinced a sergeant in the Harrison District, where he is often taken after being stopped, to craft a handwritten note with personal contact information for him to also keep with him. Cole has attempted to use the note but continues to get stopped, the lawsuit states.chicagotribune.com
Motorcyclist, bear killed in collision on Marion County road
FHP reported a motorcyclist hit a bear near the Ocala National Forest. This story was originally published on Click Orlando: https://www.clickorlando.com/traffic/2021/03/12/motorcyclist-dies-after-striking-bear-on-marion-county-road/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=snd&utm_content=wkmg6MARION COUNTY, Fla. – A 42-year-old Ocala man and a bear were killed late Thursday in a motorcycle crash in Marion County, the Florida Highway Patrol said. The fatal wreck was reported at 11:02 p.m. on State Road 40 at State Road 19 near the Ocala National Forest. 40 when he struck the bear, which was in the westbound lane of the road. The bear also died, troopers said.
Florida woman kidnapped, raped, left on side of road, deputies say
MARION COUNTY, Fla. – The Marion County Sheriff’s Office has issued a community alert and is asking for the public’s help after a woman was kidnapped, raped, and left on the side of the roadway on Tuesday. Detectives are calling this a “heinous crime.”The victim was forced into a vehicle near Baseline Road between 8 and 9 a.m., according to deputies. “At that time of day, somebody saw something,” Sheriff Billy Woods said in a news release. “We need (the public’s) help to seek justice for the victim and get this violent criminal off of our streets.”Anyone with any information is asked to call the Marion County Sheriff’s Office at 352-732-9111 or Crime Stoppers at 352-368-7867.
4 Northeast Florida men among 12 arrested in Marion County child sex sting
Four Northeast Florida men were among 12 arrested in a child sex sting out of Marion County, authorities said. According to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, the 12 men talked online with who they thought were children but were actually undercover detectives. Investigators said eight men traveled to a location in Marion County to have sex with the child they thought they had been messaging online, but when they arrived, they were actually met by law enforcement officers and arrested. During a news conference Monday, Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods issued a stern warning to parents and also people who prey on children. Lonny Blankenship, 51, of Lake City, was arrested in Marion County on charges of traveling to meet after using a computer to lure a child, using a computer to seduce/solicit/lure a child and using a two-way communication device to facilitate a felony.
4-year-old boy reported missing, endangered in Marion County found safe
MARION COUNTY, Fla. – The Marion County Sheriff’s Office issued an alert Saturday for a 4-month-old boy who was believed to be missing and endangered. Just after 1 p.m., the Sheriff’s Office said the boy was found safe. According to the Sheriff’s Office, the boy was reported missing after he was last seen on Nov. 24. He was believed to be with his mother, Jennifer Rottmann. The Department of Children and Families (DCF) issued a pick-up order for the young boy, but were not able to locate him until Saturday, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Indiana COVID-19 hospitalizations at new record high; Lake County tops state with 598 new cases
Lake County reported the most new cases in Indiana, accordng to the state with 598. Marion County, the state leader in cases with more than 36,000, reported 597. Lake County has had more than 23,000 cases. Only one new death in Lake County was reported bringing the county total to 413.chicagotribune.com
Ocala police chief killed in plane crash
Ocala Police Chief Greg Graham was killed in a plane crash Sunday morning, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said. Deputies and Marion County Fire Rescue responded around 11:30 a.m. to the plane crash in the area of Southwest 140th Avenue in Dunnellon. First responders located the single-engine private plane and discovered the pilot, who was the sole occupant of the plane, had died. The pilot was identified as Graham, according to the Sheriff’s Office. “The family of Chief Greg Graham, Ocala Police Department, Marion County Sheriff’s Office and all who knew Chief Graham experienced a tragedy today,” said Sheriff Billy Woods.
Sheriff: Investigation underway after human remains found
OCALA, Fla. – Detectives are trying to find out how a second set of human remains ended up on a north Florida property. Marion County Sheriff's officials said in a Facebook post that they executed a search warrant on Monday at an abandoned property in the Florida Highlands after receiving information from the neighboring Alachua County Sheriff's Office. On Tuesday, detectives and other officials excavated the lot and found human remains. It was the second set of remains found on the property. Sheriff’s officials said separate investigations are ongoing and the cases are believed to be unrelated.
Florida sheriff bans for deputies, with some exceptions
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. A central Florida sheriff says his deputies wont be allowed to wear face masks except under some conditions, and neither will visitors to the sheriffs office. Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods said this week in an email to staff that he had weighed both sides of the issue. The sheriff made the announcement on the week that Florida reported 213 new deaths Wednesday. Thats down from the states peak rate in daily reported deaths of 185 a week ago. Woods, the Marion County sheriff, said exceptions will be made for deputies at jails, schools, courthouses, hospitals, nursing homes and when dealing with someone who is elderly or has COVID-19.
Penske reverses course, closes Indianapolis 500 to fans
FILE - In this May 26, 2019, file photo, Simon Pagenaud, of France, leads the field through the first turn on the start of the Indianapolis 500 IndyCar auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis. Roger Penske has reversed course and decided not to allow fans at the Indianapolis 500 later this month. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)Roger Penske has reversed course and decided not to allow fans at the Indianapolis 500 later this month. Penske had initially said he wouldn't run the 500 without fans. The situation was compounded last week when IU Health, the states largest health care system and a partner of Indianapolis Motor Speedway, said it opposed fans attending the 500.
Florida state House District 20
Educational transformations, criminal justice reforms and the improvement of people's lives in the state of Florida. Unfortunately, Floridians will never approve a state amendment for an income tax which would help to stabilize our revenue sources. My qualifications and experience of nearly 40 years of Civic and Elected Office Experience allows me to hit the ground running to address issues facing Floridians in House District and the State of Florida. The next House District 20 Representative will be tasked with passing legislation to address Police Reform in Florida. Creation of an Independent Special Prosecutors Office located in the State Attorney Generals Office to investigate law enforcement abuse.
Man arrested after driving through Ocala church, setting it on fire
MARION COUNTY, Fla. – A driver plowed into a Florida church and then set it on fire as parishioners prepared for mass Saturday, but no one was hurt, authorities said. All parishioners were able to escape the church without injuries, and Marion County Fire Rescue was able to extinguish the flames quickly. The damage caused to the church was described in the report as extensive, and since it exceeded more than $1,000 in value resulted in a burglary charge. According to the police report, Shields told deputies he targeted the Catholic Church because of a “mission.” He also indicated during the interview that he had been diagnosed with Schizophrenia, but had not been taking his medication. He is being held in the Marion County Jail with no bond.
Florida felon arrested after officers spotted him on Facebook Live
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – A felon wanted for violation of probation was arrested after sheriff's deputies in Florida were notified that he was streaming on Facebook Live, officials said. The livesteam showed Timothy Munford, 25, streamed video of himself driving to Southside Jet Ski and renting a watercraft on Friday, The Daytona Beach News-Journal reported. The Facebook video also showed a Daytona Beach Shores Public Safety officer approach and arrest him. The Volusia County Sheriff's office said they had been advised that Munford was known to be armed with a handgun with an extended magazine, the newspaper reported. Munford was charged with three counts of possession of a weapon/ammunition by a convicted felon, trafficking in fentanyl and possession of narcotics paraphernalia.
Marion County woman accused of manslaughter claims victim fell onto knife
MICANOPY, Fla. – The Marion County Sheriff’s Office on Friday arrested Lillian Patterson and charged her with negligent manslaughter. The Sheriff’s Office said Patterson told Fire Rescue that Patterson stumbled out of a bedroom and collapsed on the floor. Patterson first told investigators that Collins fell onto a knife being held by one of the children in the home. During another round of questioning, Patterson claimed both she and a child were holding knives and Collins fell onto one of the knives. The Sheriff’s Office said Patterson admitted she had multiple opportunities to relinquish the knife before and during the “wrestling” match.
Report: Florida drive-in is the only U.S. theater showing new movies
OCALA, Fla. – There’s no natural disaster or worldwide pandemic that can convince John Watzke to close his drive-in theater in Ocala. Even as movie theaters across the country shut down to help slow the spread of COVID-19, Watzke and his small Ocala Drive-In theater continue to show new films and classics to moviegoers desperate for a night out. “Anybody that knows me and knows the drive-in knows I don’t close,” Watzke, 63, told Vice. Only 14 movie theaters were open in the U.S. last week, according to Deadline, and 13 were drive-in theaters. “I’m taking every precaution possible.”This weekend, the theater is showing ‘Trolls World Tour’, ‘E.T.’ and ‘Resistance.'
Rare rainbow snake spotted in Ocala
OCALA, Fla. – A woman recently reported stumbling upon a 4-foot Rainbow Snake (Farancia erytrogramma) while hiking in the Ocala National Forest. The rare snake hasn’t been seen in the county in more than 50 years! The Florida Museum of Natural History confirms this is the first record of this species in Marion County since 1969! “Our biologists speculate the recent drawdown of Rodman Reservoir had this rainbow snake on the move,” FWC Fish and Wildlife Research Institute said. The snake spends most of its life hidden.
The Marion County Sheriff’s Office needs help locating a missing 29-year-old man
The Marion County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help locating 29-year-old Erik Michael Scanlon. The Sheriff’s Office says he was last seen at around 4:00 a.m. Sunday and was last heard from at 6:00 p.m. through text messages. Scanlon is possibly driving a 2004 Blue Mitsubishi Montieau with the Florida Tag Y42WCU. He may be in the area of the springs, according to the Sheriff’s Office. If you have any information about his current whereabouts, you’re encouraged to call 911.
PCSO: Woman on the run after stealing truck, leading deputies on wild chase
According to the Putnam County Sheriff's Office, Rachel Yvonne Baggs, 43, stole a 2017 Ford truck from a family member around 4 a.m. on Sunday. This time it was a former lover of Baggs, who said Baggs drove the stolen truck into their house. The chase eventually crossed into Marion County where the Marion County Sheriff's Office jumped in. Marion County deputies reported hearing gunfire as Baggs ran from the crashed vehicle, but no law enforcement officers were injured, according to the Putnam County Sheriff's Office. Putnam and Alachua County deputies are now assisting the Marion County Sheriff's Office in the ongoing search for Baggs, who is considered armed and dangerous.
Justice Department Settles Immigration-Related Discrimination Claim Against Oregon School District
The Department of Justice announced today that it reached a settlement agreement with Marion County School District 103, aka Woodburn School District, a public school district that serves suburban and rural communities in Marion County, Oregon. The settlement resolves a complaint that the Woodburn School District violated the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) when it refused to hire a work-authorized non-U.S. citizen as a teacher. The INA generally prohibits employers from refusing to hire certain work-authorized non-U.S. citizens because of their citizenship status. It also prohibits employers from pre-screening applicants by requesting specific documentation to prove work authorization based on employees citizenship status or national origin. Among other things, the statute prohibits citizenship status and national origin discrimination in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee; unfair documentary practices; retaliation and intimidation.justice.gov
Florida man held in wife's killing now charged with kids' murders
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Authorities released new details Monday in the case of Michael Jones, the Marion County man suspected of killing his family and dumping their bodies in South Georgia. Jones appeared before a judge Tuesday morning on the new murder charges and was again denied bond. Jones was taken into custody Sept. 15 at the scene of a single-vehicle crash along U.S. 301 in Brantley County after his wifes remains were found inside the family van. A motive has not yet been released, though Jones said his wife was killed in self-defense. Jones remains in custody at the Marion County jail.
Florida man held in wife's death now charged with kids' murders
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Authorities released new details Monday in the case of Michael Jones, the Marion County man suspected of killing his family and dumping their bodies in South Georgia. Based on evidence collected so far, detectives believe Jones killed his wife with a bat July 10 and strangled the eldest two children the next day, according to the Marion County Sheriff's Office. Jones was taken into custody Sept. 15 at the scene of a single-vehicle crash along U.S. 301 in Brantley County after his wife's remains were found inside the family van. A motive has not yet been released in the murders. Jones remains in custody at the Marion County jail, where he's being held without bond.
Ex-wife of Florida man accused in killing: 'It haunts me'
The ex-wife of a Marion County man accused of killing his wife and four children said Michael Jones claimed he and his wife, Casei, were getting a divorce and asked to stay at her home in... Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.
Ex-wife of Florida man accused in killing: 'It haunts me'
Sarah Jones, Michael Jones' ex-wife, said she is devastated. Sarah Jones shares three children with Michael Jones. She said Michael Jones told her he and Casei Jones were getting a divorce. My understanding of their relationship at that point was that it was a bit contentious," Sarah Jones said. Sarah Jones says her heart goes out to Casei Jones' family.
Deputies: With bodies of wife, kids in his van, killer drove to Jacksonville
Michael Jones is escorted by Marion County deputies after his first appearance on five counts of murder. After killing his wife and four young children, Michael Jones drove to Jacksonville with their bodies in his van -- possibly to visit his ex-wife -- before driving on to Georgia, a Marion County deputy told News4Jax on Tuesday. His wife's body was found in his van after Jones crashed in a ditch in Brantley County, Georgia. The Marion County Sheriff's Office said it's believed that Jones killed them in Florida weeks ago and stored their bodies until he drove them into south Georgia. When Brantley County deputies arrived at the scene where Jones crashed, they reported smelling a foul odor coming from his van.
Florida man suspected of killing his wife and 4 kids denied bond
(CNN) - Michael Jones, the Florida man suspected of killing his wife and four children and driving with their bodies in his van for weeks, was denied bond in court in Marion County on Thursday. He faces a charge of second-degree murder in connection with the death of his wife, authorities said. The Marion County Sheriff's Office said it's believed that Jones killed them in Florida weeks ago, and then stored their bodies and drove them into southern Georgia. When police arrived at the crash scene Sunday night, deputies "smelled a foul odor" coming from Michael Jones' van, according to a Brantley County, Georgia, Sheriff's Office press release. Michael Jones also admitted to concealing the death of other bodies just prior to the traffic accident, the Brantley County Sheriff's Office said.
With hemp now legal, Ohio farmers consider alternative crop
As a board member for the Ohio Hemp Association, he's looking at hemp and hoping he can get a license to grow it. Farmers may not need much to transition from growing soybeans or corn to growing hemp. The concern, though, is where Ohio farmers could sell that hemp seed. It's not clear where there's a market for hemp seed, since other states have beaten Ohio to the punch in legalizing hemp. Last week, the Ohio Department of Agriculture planted the state's first legal hemp crop at the department's campus.