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  1. Update: 6 hurt when plane skids off runway at LaGuardia (w/video)

    Transportation

    UPDATE, 1:25 p.m. Officials say six people aboard a plane from Atlanta that skidded off a runway at LaGuardia Airport while landing have injuries that aren't life threatening.

  2. Americans spent $58 billion to pamper, protect pets in 2014

    Pets

    LOS ANGELES — We feed them, groom them, clothe them and otherwise shell out the big bucks to protect and pamper our pets.

    The American Pet Products Association's annual report on pet industry spending says Americans spent $58 billion in 2014 on their 397 million pets, which range from freshwater fish and reptiles to cats and dogs. [Times files]
  3. Dave Chappelle coming to Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater

    Blogs

    Sound the alarm! We have a Dave Chappelle sighting!

  4. Selma's 50th anniversary brings comparisons to Ferguson

    Nation

    They only lasted minutes, but the images of the beatings of civil rights marchers in Selma, Ala., on television permanently seared the inhumanity of Southern segregation onto the American conscience.

    Alabama state troopers use clubs against participants of a civil rights voting march in Selma, Ala., on March 7, 1965. At foreground right, John Lewis, chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, is beaten by a state trooper. The day, which became known as "Bloody Sunday," is widely credited for galvanizing the nation's leaders and ultimately yielded passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. [Associated Press]
  5. Prosecutors: No charges for NASCAR driver Kurt Busch (w/video)

    Auto racing

    DOVER, Del. — Delaware prosecutors said Thursday that they will not file criminal charges against NASCAR driver Kurt Busch after allegations of domestic violence against his ex-girlfriend.

    Delaware prosecutors said Thursday that they will not file criminal charges against NASCAR driver Kurt Busch following allegations of domestic violence against his ex-girlfriend. [Associated Press]
  6. Nerds unite: When every metro area wants to be called an innovation hub

    Business

    "Nerds love Orlando." So starts The Upshot column, headlined What Is The Next 'Next Silicon Valley'? and published in today's New York Times.

  7. Phillie Phanatic brings antics to Clearwater for spring training

    Features

    CLEARWATER — It's about 35 minutes before the 1:05 start of the first spring training game and the Phillie Phanatic makes his appearance atop an ATV. The Phanatic is well-known for riding a four-wheeler around the field at top speed. He helps conduct the University of Tampa band. He meets with fans in the …

    The Phillie Phanatic performs with the UT Spartan Scarlets dance team on Tuesday.
  8. Survivor of Boston Marathon attack recalls locking eyes with bomber

    Criminal

    BOSTON — A man who became one of the lasting images of the Boston Marathon bombing when he was wheeled away, ashen-faced, his legs severely injured, testified Thursday that he locked eyes with the bomber's older brother before the explosives went off.

    In this April 15, 2013, file photo, Emergency Medical Services EMT Paul Mitchell, left, Carlos Arredondo, center, and Devin Wang, rear, push Jeff Bauman in a wheelchair after he was injured in one of two explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Boston. Bauman testified Thursday, March 5, 2015, in the federal death penalty trial of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in Boston, charged with conspiring with his brother to place twin bombs near the finish line of the race, killing three and injuring 260 people. [Associated Press]
  9. Ferry service to run from downtown Clearwater to Clearwater Beach

    Tourism

    CLEARWATER — The last time someone tried running a ferry service between Clearwater Beach and the mainland, it didn't work out. Not enough passengers rode the ferry back in 2000, so the city-sponsored service got discontinued.

    Pontoon boats will first focus on taking workers from downtown Clearwater to their jobs at Clearwater Beach.
  10. Tarpon Springs okays new townhome development

    Local Government

    TARPON SPRINGS — City commissioners on Tuesday approved the first phase of Cypress Trails, a development of 95 townhomes just east of U.S. 19.

  11. Judge doesn't budge on 21-year term for tax fraud 'queen'

    Criminal

    TAMPA — Self-described tax fraud queen Rashia Wilson got no breaks Thursday in a federal courtroom, where a judge under orders to reconsider her sentence imposed the same term he did once before: 21 years.

    Rashia Wilson held herself out "as a sort of anti-role model, calling herself the 'queen' and 'first lady' of tax fraud while publicly bragging about her crimes,'' federal prosecutor Sara Sweeney said.
  12. Suspected thief tells police he didn't want to wait in line to pay

    Crime

    LARGO

    POLICE: SUSPECTED thief says he didn't want to wait in line to pay

  13. Tampa City Council members say thanks — and no thanks — to honoring MaryEllen Elia

    Blogs

    The Hillsborough County School Board is not the only local elected body with mixed feelings about outgoing school superintendent MaryEllen Elia.

  14. Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus to eliminate elephant acts (w/video)

    Nation

    POLK CITY — The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus will phase out the show's iconic elephants from its performances by 2018, telling the Associated Press exclusively that growing public concern about how the animals are treated led to the decision.

    In this March 19, 2013 file photo, a performer waves as elephants with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey show, pause for a photo opportunity in front of the Capitol in Washington, on their way to the Verizon Center, to promote the show coming to town. [Associated Press]
  15. Gulfport sues company over nonworking security cameras at marina

    Local Government

    GULFPORT — Denis Frain is not a happy man. Six of the 12 surveillance cameras at the city marina are not working, and Frain, director of marina operations, can't seem to get anyone to tell him why.