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Deputies find marijuana growing operation in Largo strip mall unit

LARGO

Deputies find grow house in strip mall unit

A Clearwater man was arrested Tuesday and accused of operating a marijuana grow house in Largo. Scott A. Norman, 41, of the 1800 block of Overbrook Avenue, was charged with two felonies: manufacture of marijuana and trafficking in marijuana. According to an arrest report, Norman was arrested by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office after deputies serving a search warrant found 81 pot plants in a unit of a garage-style strip mall at 12890 Starkey Road. Court records show Norman pleaded guilty to manufacture with intent to sell a controlled substance and drug possession in 2005. He was sentenced to six months in jail and three years of probation, which was terminated early. On Wednesday afternoon, Norman was being held in the Pinellas County Jail in lieu of $60,000 bail.

Belleair Shore

Woman found in water is revived

A 72-year-old woman was found unconscious in shallow water off Belleair Shore beach at 1 p.m. Wednesday and was taken to Largo Medical Center in critical condition. Pinellas County sheriff's deputies say the woman, Audrey A. Lonecke, a New York resident who was visiting family in Florida, was seen by witnesses wading in knee-deep water before she was found motionless in the gulf. Deputies say after Lonecke was pulled from the water near the beach access point at 1800 Gulf Blvd., a beachgoer identified as Magdi Ozman began CPR. Clearwater Fire Rescue units were on scene within four minutes of the 911 call, said fire rescue spokeswoman Elizabeth Watts. Lonecke didn't have a pulse when rescuers found her, but they were able to get her heart beating again en route to the hospital.

CLEARWATER

Girl, 13, pregnant by 25-year-old

A 25-year-old Clearwater man was arrested Tuesday night on charges of lewd and lascivious battery after Clearwater police say he impregnated a 13-year-old girl. The victim, whose name is being withheld because of the nature of the crime, said she and Daniel P. Pena, who also goes by the name of Pedro Hernandez-Charrez, engaged in consensual sex, according to an arrest report. But a 13-year-old isn't old enough to give consent, according to Florida statute. After his arrest, Pena admitted that he was aware of the girl's age when he had sex with her, the report said.

Register now for June 27 triathlon

Registration is under way for the Morton Plant Mease Triathlon. About 1,000 swimmers, runners and cyclists are expected to compete in the event, which begins at 6:50 a.m. June 27 in Sand Key Park, 1040 Gulf Blvd., Clearwater Beach. Participants will run through communities in Clearwater and Belleair. The cost is $75 per individual and $95 for relay teams. Online registration will close on June 22. Proceeds from the triathlon will benefit the Morton Plant Mease Foundation. To register online go to www.mpmtriathlon.org.

Pinellas deaths

Local and regional obituaries are in Section B.

Deputies find marijuana growing operation in Largo strip mall unit 06/02/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 2, 2010 7:52pm]
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