Thursday, June 21, 2018
News Roundup

Pasco woman cited, charged with abandoning 53 animals in a U-Haul in Spring Hill

SPRING HILL — Authorities believe Frances Terry Evans thought she could fool Pasco County code enforcement officials by hiding a truck full of cats and dogs in Spring Hill. But her plan was foiled, and Evans now faces 53 counts of animal cruelty and has been cited for 53 counts of animal abandonment.

Evans, 52, packed 50 cats in plastic containers with air holes drilled in the sides and three dogs into the back of a U-Haul truck and attempted to hide them behind the Publix store at Mariner Boulevard and County Line Road on Tuesday afternoon.

The subject of an ongoing investigation into animal hoarding in Pasco, Evans planned to return for the animals after code enforcement officers conducted a scheduled compliance check of her home. But a tip to code enforcement had officers waiting in the parking lot to see Evans drop off the truck, then ride off with her husband in a second car, said Carol Clarke, a Pasco zoning administrator.

Pasco code enforcement officers called the Hernando County Sheriff's Office to report the abandonment. Deputies and Hernando Animal Services officers arrived and could hear animals in distress. They opened the unlocked truck door and reported it was very hot inside. There was no food or water for the animals, and they were in distress amid urine and feces, Clarke said.

Officers determined that the animals needed immediate veterinary attention. Because Pasco code enforcement officials refused to accept the animals, Hernando Animal Services officers located Evans and had her drive the U-Haul to Hernando Animal Services, accompanied by a deputy. There, Evans surrendered the animals.

Individual exams showed the cats were thin, infested with fleas and ear mites, and showed signs of infection. Most were not socialized. Managing veterinarian Lisa Centonze determined that 39 should be euthanized.

Rose Carlisle, a neighbor of Evans' Good Hope Lane home in the Pasco portion of Spring Hill, said Evans had tried to help out feeding homeless cats, but fell on hard financial times.

"(Evans) wanted to do the right thing but couldn't," Carlisle said. "The animals were her life. She loves them, but she couldn't afford to do what she really needed to do for them."

Clarke dreads the thought of what might have happened to the rest of the animals had officers not been tipped off to Evans' plan.

"You hear all the time what happens when somebody leaves an animal in a hot vehicle," Clarke said. "It's just a terribly, terribly sad story."

The 11 cats and three dogs saved are available for adoption.

Evans was arrested Wednesday and was being held in Pasco County in lieu of $26,500 bail; she also faces a fine of $26,500 on the abandonment citations.

Staff writer Alison Barnwell, news researcher Carolyn Edds and Bay News 9 contributed to this report.

 
Comments
Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

TAMPA — The news of Jameis Winston's suspension to start this season likely means the Bucs will have veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick stepping in at quarterback for the first three games of the regular season.Fitzpatrick took over as the starter for th...
Updated: 13 minutes ago
Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

More than a year ago, Kevin Knox stepped across the stage at the Straz Center to receive his high school diploma.On Thursday, the former Tampa Catholic star was on basketball's biggest stage as he fulfilled his lifelong goal of making the NBA.Knox wa...
Updated: 17 minutes ago
2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

NHL schedules all balance out at the end, but the Lightning will open 2018-19 with five straight home games and end the season with its last four on the road.The Lightning released its schedule Thursday evening for the upcoming season, with all sorts...
Updated: 25 minutes ago
Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

The Lightning doesn't have a first-round pick in this weekend's draft, but that's not to say the weekend couldn't be busy for general manager Steve Yzerman and his front office.The Lightning sent its top draft pick to the Rangers in February as part ...
Updated: 26 minutes ago
Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Trade him. Waive him. Cut him.Whatever.Just get rid of him.Jameis Winston should never play another game for the Tampa Bay Bucs.Plain and simple, he's a bad guy and the Bucs should have nothing more to do with him.He already will miss the first three...
Updated: 29 minutes ago
Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and intellectual provocateur, dies at 68

Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and intellectual provocateur, dies at 68

Charles Krauthammer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist and intellectual provocateur who championed the muscular foreign policy of neoconservatism that helped lay the ideological groundwork for the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, died...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves he’s up to speed on bases

Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves he’s up to speed on bases

ST. PETERSBURG – Rookie 1B Jake Bauers has impressed at the plate and in the field since his June 7 promotion.Also, with his hustling on the bases."I knew he played hard; everybody said that at every level,'' manager Kevin Cash said. "I di...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Three-game suspension looms for Bucs QB Jameis Winston

Three-game suspension looms for Bucs QB Jameis Winston

TAMPA — The Bucs will open the upcoming season without the face of their franchise, as quarterback Jameis Winston will be suspended three games by the NFL for violating the league's personal conduct policy.Winston, 24, was accused of groping a ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Plant City’s champion Al Berry, whose name shouted his passion, dead at 83

Plant City’s champion Al Berry, whose name shouted his passion, dead at 83

His name was Berry and berry was his passion — the strawberry that put his beloved Plant City on the map.Alfred "Al" Berry was born with the name, but he took on his role as chief promoter of Plant City through his four decades of work with the commu...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Suspect arrested in rapper XXXTentacion’s shooting death

Suspect arrested in rapper XXXTentacion’s shooting death

FORT LAUDERDALE — Authorities in Florida have arrested a suspect in the killing of rising rap star XXXTentacion, who was fatally shot in his luxury BMW electric car as he left an upscale motorcycle dealership.Dedrick Devonshay Williams, 22, of Pompan...
Updated: 3 hours ago