Man who beat camper gets 10-year term
A 25-year-old man accused of severely beating a camper in his tent in Crystal Springs was sentenced Thursday to 10 years in prison. Orlando Vega-Rivera, a laborer from Zephyrhills, pleaded no contest to attempted first-degree murder. Authorities said he and at least one other man attacked a 38-year-old male camper with a tire iron and a shotgun the morning of Dec. 4, 2008, at a camping site near Deems Road. They said Vega-Rivera hit the victim with the shotgun until the stock shattered. The victim suffered several broken fingers while protecting himself and had to be treated for a fracture in his cheekbone, among other injuries. His tent was torched.
City officials get positive reviews
City commissioners have given largely positive performance reviews to City Manager Billy Poe, Clerk Jim Class and Attorney Karla Owens — the three officials they oversee. In reviews released Thursday, the commission said each staff member met or exceeded expectations. Commissioner Camille Hernandez offered several suggestions, including that Poe should streamline the city's departments and perform regular evaluations of staff. She and several other commissioners recommended in Poe's evaluation that city staff be moved to another location or have the current City Hall building renovated. The commission will hold a special meeting at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday to discuss the evaluations as a group.
NEW PORT RICHEY
Repo of vehicles leads to arrest
The repo people already had Jerry Lee Robinson's van hitched to a tow truck, and they were getting ready to load up his BMW Wednesday afternoon when Robinson ran out of his house, got into the tow truck and sped off with his van, according to a report from the Pasco County Sheriff's Office. Employees of Seven-X Enterprises told authorities they were at Robinson's home on Putnam Circle to repossess his two vehicles. They left the tow truck running after they loaded the first one. Robinson said he did not steal the tow truck and van, which were found parked a few blocks away, and said he was current on his car payments, according to the report. Robinson, 49, was charged with grand theft auto and remained in the county jail Thursday in lieu of $5,000 bail.
Old medications will be collected
Pasco County deputies will collect expired and unused medications from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Hess gas station at 28232 State Road 54, at the corner of Bruce B. Downs Boulevard. There will be a drive-through line so that people don't have to get out of their cars to drop off old medications, pills, liquids and needles. No information will be gathered from those dropping off their medications. The Pasco Sheriff's Office offers this service so that people can properly dispose of medications, which can be a safety hazard at home, without harming the environment.
Detailed obituaries are published in Section B.