Sunday, August 19, 2018
Public safety

Woman at Busch Gardens hit in leg by possible celebratory gunfire, police say

TAMPA — A 20-year-old woman attending New Year's festivities at Busch Gardens was struck in the leg by a bullet, possibly from celebratory gunfire, Tampa police said.

Kaitlyn Jacobs, 20, of Seminole was sitting in the Gwazi Pavilion area just before midnight when she suddenly felt pain in her lower left leg. She was transported to St. Joseph's Hospital, where x-rays revealed a bullet was lodged in her leg.

"It appears that someone had fired in the air and the bullet inadvertently struck the victim," police said in a statement.

Back at home Thursday morning, Jacobs told the Tampa Bay Times she'd been watching fireworks with her dad when the sudden pain appeared in her leg. She called it a "freak accident," one she didn't want to discuss in detail. She said her leg now bears two wounds; doctors did not remove the bullet.

"The biggest thing is we don't understand how there are two holes and a bullet in my leg," said Jacobs.

No other injuries were reported at or near Busch Gardens.

Officers said Thursday that they are still trying to find out who fired the gun. They describe it as an isolated incident.

Tampa police got about 30 reports of possible shots fired on New Year's Eve.

Celebratory gunfire is illegal and has caused several injuries in the Tampa Bay area in recent years.

On New Year's Day 2012, a bullet hit a Ruskin boy as he watched fireworks with his family. The bullet that traced diagonally through Diego Duran's brain, leaving him comatose for days, had probably been fired into the sky miles away. He and his family have since made it a mission to spread awareness about the danger of celebratory gunfire.

Tampa Bay area police have reported other injuries in recent years, including a man who was struck in the nose on Fourth of July in 2012 while he was watching fireworks in Safety Harbor.

Contact Jodie Tillman at [email protected] or (813) 226-3374. Follow @jtillmantimes.

Comments
North Carolina fugitives, charged with shooting at cops, found and arrested in Treasure Island

North Carolina fugitives, charged with shooting at cops, found and arrested in Treasure Island

TREASURE ISLAND — Two men on the run from law enforcement in North Carolina were found hiding in Treasure Island — armed with an AR-15, a machete and a pipe bomb, deputies said — leading to a standoff with a SWAT team that ended early Sunday morning....
Updated: 2 hours ago
Tampa holds a birthday vigil for Lillia Raubenolt, the young girl killed on Bayshore

Tampa holds a birthday vigil for Lillia Raubenolt, the young girl killed on Bayshore

Somewhere Over the Rainbow was the first song Lillia Raubenolt’s parents sang to her as a newborn, according to her uncle, John Reisinger."They were just so happy when she was born," he said.But on May 23, while the family was visiting Tampa from Ohi...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Man in Spring Hill airlifted to hospital with severe electrical burns

Man in Spring Hill airlifted to hospital with severe electrical burns

A man has been airlifted to a local hospital after suffering severe electrical burns while trimming trees in Spring Hill.In a release, Pasco County Fire Rescue said the man was working on a lift and was airborne in the 18000 Block of Skinner Dr. in S...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Clearwater police: Truck flips on U.S. 19, killing 40-year-old driver

Clearwater police: Truck flips on U.S. 19, killing 40-year-old driver

CLEARWATER — A 40-year-old man died after flipping his truck on U.S. 19 early Sunday morning, police reported.About 3:02 a.m., Michael Bellavia, 40, of Clearwater, was heading northbound on the highway, exiting at NE Coachman Road, according to the ...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Police: Driver, 26, goes wrong way on Courtney Campbell, dies after car flips into water

Police: Driver, 26, goes wrong way on Courtney Campbell, dies after car flips into water

CLEARWATER — A 26-year-old died after heading the wrong way on the Courtney Campbell Causeway and falling into the water early Sunday morning, police reported.About 4:13 a.m., Scott Anthony Wolf, 26, of Lee County, was driving a 2004 Chrysler Crossfi...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Girl, 6, found slain in her Albuquerque-area home has connections to Wimauma

Girl, 6, found slain in her Albuquerque-area home has connections to Wimauma

The family of a 6-year-old girl found dead in New Mexico last weekend is trying to bring her remains to Wimauma.Court documents say the body of Ariana "Jade" Romeo was found at her home in Rio Rancho north of Albuquerque on bloody sheets with marijua...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Woman dead after boyfriend shoots her once, returns and shoots again, deputies say

Woman dead after boyfriend shoots her once, returns and shoots again, deputies say

LARGO — A man faces a charge of murder after firing a shot at his girlfriend as she visited a travel trailer in Largo, fleeing the scene, then returning to the trailer and shooting her again a number of times, deputies said.Nathaniel J. Yates, 32, o...
Published: 08/18/18
Deputies find body in burning vehicle near Disney World miniature golf course

Deputies find body in burning vehicle near Disney World miniature golf course

A body was found in a burning vehicle near a Disney World miniature golf course early Saturday, according to WKMG News 6 Orlando.Authorities were initially called to a vehicle fire about 4 a.m. at Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf Course, 120...
Published: 08/18/18
Girlfriend of murder suspect arrested, too, in aftermath of Hudson drug shootout

Girlfriend of murder suspect arrested, too, in aftermath of Hudson drug shootout

HUDSON — The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office made a second arrest Saturday in the aftermath of a drug-related shootout Wednesday night that left one man dead and a woman critically injured.Deputies arrested Alexas Marie Gregas, 19, of Hudson, on charge...
Published: 08/18/18
Levy County man, 53, killed trying to pass truck north of Inverness

Levy County man, 53, killed trying to pass truck north of Inverness

INVERNESS — A 53-year-old Levy County man died when he collided with a Mack truck while trying to pass it north of Inverness, the Florida Highway Patrol said.Claude Pepper Blount Jr. was headed south on U.S. 41 near Overdrive Circle about 1:50 p.m. F...
Published: 08/18/18