Man says he defended himself in hitting girl
A 26-year-old man, 6-feet-5 inches tall and 210 pounds, claimed self defense after, police said, he tackled his ex-girlfriend Tuesday and slapped and punched her daughter to the ground.
Zaccery James Harley Isaac Derrick struck the girl with an open hand and fist, knocking her to the ground several times, according to a Zephyrhills police report.
The report did not list the girl's age.
Several witnesses at the scene tried to stop him to no avail, the report said.
When Derrick's ex-girlfriend of eight years, who once lived with him and her daughter, grabbed him from behind, he tackled her to the ground, the report states. When police later found him, he said "that he was acting 'in self defense.' "
Derrick, of 8001 Old Pasco Road in Wesley Chapel, was arrested on charges of child abuse and domestic battery.
He remained in the Land O'Lakes jail Thursday in lieu of $600 bail.
Man accused of firing shotgun, hitting house
Jacob Klages said he was only trying to hit a buzzard. That's why, he told deputies, he fired a shotgun onto private property and ended up hitting a house. About 6 p.m. Thursday, Klages pulled up to the corner of Curley and McCabe roads and, from inside his vehicle, fired off two rounds onto the property, a Pasco sheriff's report states. The homeowner, who was not named in the report, called the Sheriff's Office and followed Klages. When deputies stopped him, he said he was trying to hit a buzzard on a fence. A witness told deputies Klages, 21, had fired the gun onto the property several times over the past two months and had been "hostile when confronted in the past." Klages, of 2802 Old Bayshore Way in Tampa, was arrested on a charge of armed trespassing. He was released from the Land O'Lakes jail after posting $10,000 bail.
NEW PORT RICHEY
Course offering help to caregivers
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Pasco County is offering a free six-week NAMI Basics course, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Feb. 5 through March 12 in Conference Room C at Medical Center of Trinity West Campus, 5637 Marine Parkway, New Port Richey. This peer-directed education program has been developed specifically for parents and other family caregivers of children and adolescents (age 13 and younger) who have either been diagnosed with a serious mental illness, serious emotional disturbance, or who are experiencing symptoms but have not yet been diagnosed. Course elements include: dealing with trauma of mental illness, accurate diagnosis, latest research, and communication skills. Reservations are required. For more information and to register, call (727) 992-9653 or (727) 277-8059, or visit namipasco .org.
AARP will offer a safety class for drivers ages 50 and older. The cost will be $12 for AARP members and $14 for nonmembers. The two-day class will be from 1 to 4 p.m. Jan. 24 and 25, at Land O'Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, Land O'Lakes. The Wednesday Pasco Times listed only the first class date. Space is limited. Registration is required. Call (813) 395-8376.
• • •
Smile Faith Foundation, a nonprofit organization providing charitable dental work and counseling in the Tampa Bay area, will have a ribbon-cutting and grand opening at noon Feb. 15 for its new thrift store and coffee shop at 8125 U.S. 19. An incorrect date was listed Thursday.
Detailed obituaries are published in Section B.