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Woman who prompted courthouse evacuation arrested on unrelated charges

TAMPA — The woman who prompted an evacuation of the Hills­borough County Courthouse after carrying a gun-shaped lighter past security this month was arrested early Tuesday on unrelated charges.

Howronda Overstreet, 31, of 2609 Oleander Lakes Drive, is accused of battering an officer at a Ybor City nightclub and violating a domestic violence injunction.

About 3 a.m., a man at the Tampa Live nightclub, at 2600 E Seventh Ave., approached a Tampa police officer who was working there off-duty and said Overstreet wouldn't leave him alone, according to Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis. As the man was telling the officer he had an injunction against Overstreet, she jumped in his car and refused to leave.

The officer tried to put Overstreet in his police car, but she tried to punch him, Davis said. She missed, instead grabbing his arm and scratching him.

Overstreet was taken to the Hills­borough County Jail on charges of battery on a law enforcement officer, obstructing an officer with and without violence and violating an injunction. She remains there without bail.

The relationship with Overstreet and the man is not clear, though they have the same last name, Davis said.

Overstreet was the woman who on Aug. 5 brought a lighter that looked like a gun into the courthouse. Officials said because the X-ray machine operator was distracted as Overstreet's bag went through the scanner, he saw the suspected gun too late, and Overstreet entered the building. The courthouse was evacuated several hours later, prompting an investigation into the building's emergency response.

Overstreet was not charged with a crime in the courthouse incident.

Monday's arrest was Overstreet's fourth in Hillsborough County, records show.

The previous charges were for domestic violence battery in January, aggravated battery with great bodily harm in December and driving without a license in 2006.

Woman who prompted courthouse evacuation arrested on unrelated charges 08/18/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 18, 2009 10:25pm]
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