Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hillsborough's new child protector pledges case reviews

Tampa

New child protector pledges case reviews

Hillsborough County's new child protector introduced herself to Tampa on Tuesday, pledging to review all active child dependency cases to ensure none have slipped through the cracks. Lorita Shirley is the executive director of Eckerd Youth Alternatives, the lead child protection agency in Pinellas County. Her agency replaces Hillsborough Kids Inc. on July 1. She appeared Tuesday at a news conference with David Wilkins, secretary of the Florida Department of Children and Families. The change comes in the wake of nine deaths in the past two years of Hillsborough children whose families were under state supervision. Shirley started her child welfare career with the former Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services, working in child abuse investigations and foster care. She also oversaw child welfare services for the DCF in Osceola County.

Tampa

Two African penguin chicks hatched at zoo

Two lovebirds at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo have hatched a pair of chicks, who were unveiled just in time for Valentine's Day. The baby African penguins hatched Jan. 31 and Feb. 3 and became the first pair to be born to the same parents during a single breeding cycle at the zoo. It's too early to tell if the chicks are male or female, zoo officials said. The chicks will remain with their parents, Amber and Violet, for the next few weeks before being transferred to zookeepers' care, under which they will learn how to swim before rejoining the penguin colony on display. Amber and Violet have joined the ranks of two other couples — Thumbelina and Flannigan, and Tinkerbell and Loki — who have successfully hatched offspring in the past year. Like penguins in the wild, the African penguins at the zoo are believed to mate for life.

DUNEDIN

Driver loses control, lands in Intracoastal

Deputies are investigating how a 28-year-old woman and her Ford Explorer ended up in the Intracoastal Waterway off Alt. U.S. 19 Tuesday afternoon. The incident happened about 3 p.m. near the 600 block of Edgewater Drive. Nicole L. Glazier of Clearwater was driving north on Edgewater in a 2001 Ford Explorer when she tried passing another vehicle in the southbound lane, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office. She lost control, struck a curb, drove across a grassy area and into water that was about 4 feet deep. John Thorington, 53, of Palm Harbor, saw the accidednt and pulled Glazier from the vehicle. She was taken to the hospital and is expected to recover.

OLDSMAR

Couple injured while fleeing apartment fire

Two people were hurt escaping a fire that ravaged their apartment early Tuesday. The fire began just after 3 a.m. in downstairs unit 138 at the Forest Lakes Apartments on Hunters Lake Drive, firefighters said. Investigators think unattended candles in the living room sparked the blaze while the couple were in the bedroom. To escape the flames, the couple, who were not immediately identified, broke a window and climbed through to safety, firefighters said. The two sustained injuries while climbing through the broken glass and were taken to Mease Countryside Hospital, officials said. The extent of their injuries was not immediately known. Several of the couple's neighbors were evacuated at the time of the fire, but it didn't appear the flames had spread to other units, officials said. An investigation is under way.

Hillsborough's new child protector pledges case reviews 02/14/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 14, 2012 10:33pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 'Empire' star Grace Byers keynotes USF Women in Leadership & Philanthropy luncheon

    Human Interest

    BY AMY SCHERZER

    TAMPA — The first University of South Florida graduate to address the USF's Women in Leadership & Philanthropy supporters, Grace Gealey Byers, class of 2006, centered her speech on her first name, turning it into a verb to share life lessons.

    Grace Byers, University of South Florida Class of 2006, stars on the Fox television show Empire. She delivered the keynote at the USF Women in Leadership and Philanthropy luncheon Friday. Photo by Amy Scherzer
  2. Southeast Seminole Heights holds candlelight vigil for victims' families and each other

    News

    TAMPA — They came together in solidarity in Southeast Seminole Heights, to sustain three families in their grief and to confront fear, at a candlelight vigil held Sunday night in the central Tampa neighborhood.

    A peaceful march that began on east New Orleans Avenue was held during the candlelight vigil for the three victims who were killed in the recent shootings in the Seminole Heights neighborhood in Tampa on Sunday, October 22, 2017.
  3. It's not just Puerto Rico: FEMA bogs down in Florida, Texas too

    HOUSTON — Outside Rachel Roberts' house, a skeleton sits on a chair next to the driveway, a skeleton child on its lap, an empty cup in its hand and a sign at its feet that reads "Waiting on FEMA."

    Ernestino Leon sits among the debris removed from his family’s flood-damaged Bonita Springs home on Oct. 11. He has waited five weeks for FEMA to provide $10,000 to repair the home.
  4. McConnell says he's awaiting Trump guidance on health care

    STERLING, Va. — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Sunday he's willing to bring bipartisan health care legislation to the floor if President Donald Trump makes clear he supports it.

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he’s “not certain yet” on what Trump wants.
  5. Tampa's Lance McCullers shows killer instinct in pitching Astros to World Series

    Ml

    HOUSTON — It felt like the beginning on Saturday night at Minute Maid Park, the arrival of a new force on the World Series stage. The Astros are back, for the first time in a dozen years, and they want to stay a while.

    Houston Astros starting pitcher Lance McCullers (43) throwing in the fifth inning of the game between the Houston Astros and the Tampa Bay Rays in Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, July 12, 2015.