Developer moves Tortoises to a SAFE HOME
Nearly 115 threatened gopher tortoises have been relocated from the Hudson Ridge housing development to a permanent home at Nokuse Plantation, a nonprofit conservation area in Walton County. Working with the Humane Society of the United States and the plantation, developer Richman Group of Florida moved the tortoises from its Hudson Ridge project on nearly 11 acres southwest of State Road 52 and La Madera Boulevard. Until 2007, the state did not require the relocation or removal of gopher tortoises before construction. The state's "incidental take" permit program allowed the destruction of more than 100,000 imperiled gopher tortoises. The tortoises were often buried alive. The Richman Group had a grandfathered permit and was not required to relocate the tortoises. "The Humane Society of the United States commends the Richman Group for acting to save the tortoises who were living on this site," Jennifer Hobgood, the society's state director, said in a news release.
Man, 37, accused of fondling girl, 15
A 37-year-old man was arrested Sunday on charges that he fondled a teenage girl, according to a Pasco County Sheriff's Office report. Bobby Dewayne Knowles of 13701 Muffin Court in Millwood Village is accused of touching the right breast of a 15-year-old girl sometime last month, the report says. He told a deputy that he may have bumped into the girl by accident, the report says. Knowles is charged with one count of lewd and lascivious conduct. He was released early Monday on $10,000 bail.
Bring unwanted gold to gift shop
The "Gold Exchange" will be held from noon to 5 p.m. Friday and Monday at the Pasco Regional Medical Center. The public is invited to bring in broken, unwanted or outdated jewelry pieces, including necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings and even dental gold to the hospital's gift shop. Noble Jewelers of Fort Myers, a certified jewelry dealer, will examine the scrap gold and cut checks for residents on the spot (no cash will be on the premises). Noble also will make a donation to the hospital's volunteer services for hosting the exchange. The volunteers will use those funds to promote health care education and scholarship opportunities in the community.
The Florida Police Benevolent Association is incorporated as a nonprofit organization. Its status may have been unclear in a Sunday story about contributions to state Sen. Mike Fasano's campaign.
Banta, Paul Jay
Sapienza, Wanza Lee (Young)
Smith, Margaret A.
This list is from detailed obituaries published in Section B.