Safari Wild ordered to pay $8,863 fine
Safari Wild, the Polk County exotic animal park owned by former Lowry Park Zoo president Lex Salisbury, will have to pay a $8,863 fine for unauthorized construction. The Southwest Florida Water Management District initially proposed a fine five times as high for excavation, dredging and filling in areas without permits, but agreed that much of the land was being used for agricultural purposes and did not need permits. The fines are for the rest. Swiftmud told officials they have 10 days to pay.
Appeals court names chief judge
Judge Darryl C. Casanueva will become chief judge of the 2nd District Court of Appeal on July 1. The Tampa native and University of South Florida graduate was unanimously named to the two-year post by his colleagues. Casanueva, 57, has been a member of the appeals court since 1998, hearing cases from a 14-county district that includes Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties. In addition, Hillsborough Circuit Judge Anthony K. Black and Pinellas-Pasco Chief Judge Robert Morris have been are among six finalists for a seat on the appellate court. The district's Judicial Nominating Commission also listed four other finalists: lawyer Arthur S. Hardy of Sarasota; Circuit Judge Donald G. Jacobsen of Polk County; Circuit Judge Ellen Sly Masters of Polk County; and Circuit Judge Jay B. Rosman of Lee County.
Man charged with video voyeurism
Police have arrested a 42-year-old man accused of photographing a 5-year-old girl underneath her clothing. Christopher T. Hooey of Holiday was booked into the Pinellas County Jail Wednesday on charges of video voyeurism and tampering with physical evidence after police responded to a complaint at Dog Lovers, 39188 U.S. 19 N. Police said Hooey tried to destroy the memory card by biting it in half and dumping it.
White powder sent to judge by inmate
The suspicious white powder that prompted an evacuation of a Tampa courthouse Monday was sent by an inmate in a threatening letter to a judge, Hillsborough sheriff's spokeswoman Debbie Carter said. She would not identify the inmate or the judge, or provide details about the letter. Authorities do not yet know what the powder was, but preliminary tests have indicated that it contained "no harmful agents," Carter said.
New Port Richey
Woman sentenced for posing as nurse
Sandra Wilbanks taught medical courses at Pasco-Hernando Community College for 18 years before anyone noticed her nursing license was a forgery. Once that came to light last spring, an investigation began, Wilbanks abruptly retired and was arrested. Earlier this month, the 60-year-old Shady Hills woman pleaded guilty to a felony charge of forgery, a lesser crime than she originally faced. She received 18 months of probation and had adjudication of guilt withheld.