Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Sue Carlton: a DUI arrest, and our mayors on history, money, squirrels

When prosecutors look at a DUI arrest to decide what's next, it's pretty routine: Review the police reports, determine whether to go forward.

But the recent arrest of Tampa attorney C. Philip Campbell in the midst of a bitter radio DJ trial was anything but routine. His includes allegations of a pretty paralegal from the opposing firm of Adams & Diaco sent in to Malio's to buy drinks and get him to drive, plus allegations that a lawyer in that firm used a personal connection to have DUI cops lay in wait.

Campbell's case has landed in the hands of the Pinellas-Pasco state attorney because Hillsborough's top prosecutor was a witness in the DJ trial. (Almost forgot there was a trial.) Chief Assistant Bruce Bartlett says they plan to talk to "other people who were involved in the circumstances" that led to the DUI charge, presumably police, the paralegal and plenty of others, before deciding the case, a process expected to take weeks.

And won't those interviews make one interesting read.

•••

In more festive news, today Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn gets the city back from those scallywag Gasparilla pirates.

And, really? After all the festivities and frolic and imbibing of beer, they actually give it back?

This lesser-known ceremony of one last encounter before the pirates sail away, recently revived after nearly half a century, is interesting given the symbolism that is Gasparilla. It has to be one of the most intriguing festivals in America, this pack of powerful white guys dressed like pirates demanding the key to the city for the big "invasion" and parade.

I figured today's Channelside festivities were a tradition restored by Buckhorn — a man making his mark on his city with events like dyeing the Hillsborough River green for St. Patrick's Day while he presides in shamrocked trousers. (Yes, I have mentioned his occasional penchant for loud pants before, but seriously, you have to see them.)

But no, this getting-our-city-back event last seen in the 1960s was restored a couple of years ago under then-mayor Pam Iorio, who said shooing the pirates away was less about symbolism, more about one more party. Buckhorn is game for prolonging things in the name of fun.

"It's my Braveheart moment, without a kilt," he says. "Too cold."

•••

Here's Buckhorn on the absurdity of renegotiating Tampa Airport CEO Joe Lopano's contract because Lopano may be in play for jobs elsewhere: "This is akin to every time a woman comes up and wants her picture taken with me, I go home to my wife and try to renegotiate my marriage vows. That's how pathetic this was."

•••

On quotable mayors: After a squirrel chewed an electric supply line and kicked off what turned into a 37-hour Tampa boil-water alert, no, St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster says when I ask, he was not claiming his city has a better class of squirrel. His comments on how this was unlikely in his town were intended to be positive, he says, about "how good our water system is."

"Sometimes I feel like the squirrel," Foster says. "Kind of like: Wow, what was I thinking?"

Sue Carlton: a DUI arrest, and our mayors on history, money, squirrels 03/01/13 [Last modified: Friday, March 1, 2013 9:37pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. After offseason of work hard, play hard, DeSean Jackson ready to produce for Bucs

    Bucs

    TAMPA — There's no telling what DeSean Jackson will do once he gets a football in his hands. Perhaps that's why a camera crew followed his every move Wednesday while the Bucs' new $30 million receiver stood on a step of the hot tub that empties into a spacious, azure pool at his new, sprawling five-bedroom home in …

    DeSean Jackson jokes around with girlfriend Kayla Phillips at their Tampa home as a crew from HBO’s Hard Knocks documents their day.
  2. Trump announces $10 billion Foxconn plant in Wisconsin

    Politics

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Wednesday that electronics giant Foxconn will build a $10 billion factory in Wisconsin that's expected to initially create 3,000 jobs, the largest economic development project in state history.

    President Donald Trump embraces Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in the East Room of the White House during an announcement Wednesday that Foxconn is going to build a plant in Wisconsin.
  3. Playoff chase heats up for Rays with key series at Yankees up first (w/ video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    It was important that Evan Longoria crushed a two-run homer in the sixth inning Wednesday and Steven Souza Jr. blasted a solo shot off the farthest catwalk an inning later.

    Adeiny Hechavarria (11) and Tim Beckham (1) celebrate the double play to end the top of the sixth inning. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  4. Conservatives come to Sessions' defense amid Trump attacks

    Politics

    WASHINGTON — Congressional Republicans and influential conservatives rallied around Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday as President Donald Trump kept up his public pelting of the nation's top law enforcement officer and left his future in doubt.

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions
  5. Jones: Alex Cobb proves again why he's Rays' stopper, no matter how long he's here (w/ video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    If a team hopes to hang around the pennant race, it better have an ace. A stopper. A pitcher it can count on every fifth day to stop the bleeding, keep a winning streak going or flat-out win a game that a team flat-out needs to win.

    Rays starting pitcher Alex Cobb (53) throwing the first inning. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]