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North Pinellas History | A look back

Dunedin mayor accused of public intoxication

DUNEDIN — The mayor of Dunedin paid a visit to Clearwater city jail Tuesday night accompanied by his chief of police.

He left some time later after making an appointment to visit Dunedin police court Thursday night to answer a charge of drunkenness.

Mayor W.H. Titus was "drinking with some friends and probably had a little too much," he told Drs. Winchester of Dunedin and Gainand of Clearwater as they made sobriety tests, including the traditional walking a straight line.

His chief of police, George Davis, hauled him down to Clearwater and temporarily incarcerated him in the city jail after finding him bordering on collapse in front of City Hall, where Dunedin's votes in the city election were being counted.

The two doctors said it was impossible to determine if he were actually drunk.

"He may have been before they saw him," they added.

Unconvinced, Chief Davis ordered the mayor to appear at Dunedin court Thursday to answer the charge.

Dec. 12, 1962

Woman was alive when dismembered

Two Dunedin doctors yesterday testified that Mrs. Ida M. Brown, 57, was alive when her body was dismembered.

Drs. J.O. Norton, assistant county medical examiner, and William E. Purvis, the pathologist who performed the autopsy, testified at the opening day of the murder trial of Maurice Eugene Sinclair.

Sinclair is charged with first-degree murder. He is accused of dismembering the woman's body and leaving parts of it in different areas of the county.

Both doctors based their opinions on the fact that Mrs. Brown's body contained very little blood when it was discovered at Indian Rocks Beach on Oct. 12.

They said severing of the "great vessels" in the arms and neck apparently caused hemorrhaging, which led to the woman's death.

The death certificate listed dual causes, severing the "great vessels" and multiple skull fractures.

Norton was asked if an autopsy was performed on Mrs. Brown's head, found at the north side of the Courtney Campbell Parkway, to determine if skull fractures could have caused the death. He said an autopsy was not made on the skull.

"We could not list the primary causes, but both were contributory," Norton said.

Dec. 12, 1962

Welcome station action protested

TARPON SPRINGS — Fred H. Howard, president of the Chamber of Commerce, said he will write to Gov. Farris Bryant protesting action of a welcome station on the east coast.

Howard offered to do this at a meeting of chamber directors Monday night after a complaint was heard from Mike Samarkos, a local businessman.

Samarkos said it had been reported to him that personnel at the welcome station are advising visitors to avoid the west coast because of the encephalitis outbreak this past summer and are routing them down the east coast.

Dec. 2, 1945

Kidnapped woman recounts incident

CLEARWATER — Mrs. Corene Lewis, 22, who was kidnapped here Thursday morning during the robbery of Mosher and Sweet Liquor store, returned home yesterday to tell her story to city, county and FBI officers. She described how she made every effort to escape the kidnapper during the 300-mile drive from Clearwater to Waycross, Ga., where she was released.

"We left town by way of Five Points," Mrs. Lewis told the sheriff. "The man asked me which way to turn but I would not tell him. He then threatened me and asked what direction we were traveling. I told him north, but we actually were going east."

The man drove around the bay through Oldsmar and then dodged the main part of Tampa and went through Dade City.

"Near there we took the wrong road and while backing the car, it got stuck in the ditch. I was placed in the back seat and covered up with a blanket. When a man came to pull us out he asked the bandit if he were alone. The kidnapper said his wife was asleep in the back seat. He told me not to make a yell."

The bandit promised to let Mrs. Lewis out in Jacksonville, but did not.

"About 200 yards from Waycross railroad station he let me out after giving me $24 in silver from the money taken from the liquor store," Mrs. Lewis said.

Dec. 9, 1949

Express promises fast fruit shipment

CLEARWATER — Fruit shippers, whether individuals sending one box or commercial houses transporting hundreds of boxes, will have the best service yet given by the Railway Express, according to J.O. Johnson, Atlanta district supervisor.

Johnson, here to direct the flow of Christmas fruit shipments, said that for the first time since the war the firm will have enough cars on hand to handle all the shipments.

Daily shipments from this area, starting Dec. 10, will average 40 cars, Johnson said. This, he said, was based on advance orders placed by most of the large commercial shippers.

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Dunedin mayor accused of public intoxication 12/10/08 [Last modified: Friday, December 12, 2008 1:20pm]
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