men detained after police get reports of guns
Police took several young men into custody Wednesday evening at a home on Palm Bluff Street after receiving a report about some people carrying guns, authorities said. More than 100 onlookers watched as about half a dozen young men came out of the home about 5:30 p.m. They were ordered to the ground, then handcuffed by police officers who had lined both sides of the front door of the home about a half-block east of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in the North Greenwood neighborhood. Clearwater police Chief Tony Holloway, who arrived shortly after the men were taken into custody, said officers were still investigating.
Woman accused of duping donors
A 21-year-old woman is accused of creating a phony charity collection box and using the donations for herself. Aeriel Peterson was arrested Tuesday afternoon and charged with unlawful solicitation of funds. Police say she designed a box to look like it was for donations for the American Red Cross and the American Cancer Society, although she isn't affiliated with either organization. Peterson, of 104 Brigadoon Drive in Clearwater, stood outside a Publix at 1520 McMullen-Booth Road on March 16 and collected donations that she never intended to give to charity, Clearwater police said. When she was arrested Tuesday, officers found her with a drink from Starbucks that she said she paid for with the donations.
Police: Man in two hit-runs was drunk
A Clearwater man was drunk Tuesday night when he crashed into two vehicles in separate accidents within a mile of each other and didn't stop at either, police said. Stephen M. Provenzano, 24, of 300 Gunn Ave., No. 2, was charged with DUI and leaving the scene of an accident involving injury. Police said he had a blood-alcohol level of 0.184, more than twice the limit at which a driver is presumed impaired in Florida. Both crashes happened around 6:45 p.m. Police said Provenzano hit a Lincoln Navigator on Belcher Road near NE Coachman Road. A 6-year-old girl riding in the SUV suffered a leg injury, police said, and the SUV had major damage. Provenzano kept driving and hit another vehicle a few blocks away, near Cleveland Street, police said. He fled from that accident, too, heading home, about a quarter of a mile away, police said.
Local and regional obituaries are in the Tampa Bay section.