Wednesday, December 13, 2017
News Roundup

The DayStarter: Trump stumps in Tampa, home price numbers come out and the Bucs and Browns practice together

Be sure to check in with tampabay.com for updates today on tropical systems brewing in the Atlantic. Otherwise the day should start out sunny, then turn stiflingly hot before afternoon storms arrive, according to 10Weather WTSP.

• Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump returns to Florida for a 1 p.m. rally today at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa. Doors open at 10 a.m. Follow our live coverage at tampabay.com.

• For the third time in two days, Gov. Rick Scott will hold a roundtable discussion with Tampa Bay area officials on the Zika virus. He'll be at the Hillsborough County Health Department at 9:30 a.m. following Tuesday's announcement of the first locally transmitted Zika case in Pinellas County. Need to get up to speed? See our latest story, plus our Zika Q&A. Stay with tampabay.com. for the latest developments.

• Rescue workers scrambled to reach survivors buried under rubble in isolated towns and villages across central Italy on Wednesday after a 6.2-magnitude earthquake and a series of strong aftershocks struck the region overnight, collapsing homes, rattling buildings as far away as Rome and Venice and leaving an escalating toll of dead and injured. At least 38 people were killed in the mountainous heart of the country, Civil Protection Department spokeswoman Immacolata Postiglione told reporters in Rome. But another official with the agency, reached by phone, called it a "temporary number" that may yet climb. She said authorities were still trying to assess the large number of injured but were focused now on saving lives.

• Are housing prices in Florida still heading up? We'll find out later this morning when the National Association of Realtors releases existing-home sales for July. Check out tampabay.com/money for the latest.

• Follow business reporter Justine Griffin on Twitter (@SunBizGriffin) beginning at 7:30 a.m. for updates from a Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce event featuring Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik, Jim Dean from Busch Gardens and Judy Lisi of the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts. The panelists will be talking about sports, entertainment and the arts in Tampa Bay.

• At 3 p.m., follow her (again, @SunBizGriffin) for updates from an Urban Land Institute meeting in Tampa about wellness in real estate. Meagan Rossi of Delos will talk about the health and fitness features coming to Tampa Bay Vinik's 40-acre redevelopment project in downtown Tampa.

• Planning to vote in the Aug. 30 primary? Read our Know Your Candidates 2016 Election Guide. It's a handy summary on more than 100 state and local candidates that will help make you an even more informed voter.

• We check out Vine and Grind, the new specialty olive oil store in Treasure Island. And our food editor has tips for buying quality olive oil, no matter the store.

• Universal Orlando has announced dates for this year's Celebration of Harry Potter coming Jan. 27–29, bringing actors, stunt coordinators and a display of props from the movies. Vacation packages sold out last year, especially after the celebrity guest list is announced so consider this your early warning owl.

• Here are the top things to do today around Tampa Bay, including rapper Lil Yachty in Ybor and Bucs practice with the Cleveland Browns.

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St. Petersburg police sergeant demoted after throwing bullet at fellow officer

St. Petersburg police sergeant demoted after throwing bullet at fellow officer

ST. PETERSBURG — A long-tenured St. Petersburg police sergeant and executive vice president of the local police union is being demoted to the rank of officer after he threw a bullet at another sergeant while on duty, the department said Wednesday.Jam...
Updated: 8 minutes ago
Andrei Vasilevskiy’s dreams are coming true

Andrei Vasilevskiy’s dreams are coming true

GLENDALE, Ariz — Nikita Kucherov’s toughest challenge isn’t facing Canadiens goalie Carey Price, or Columbus’ Sergei Bobrovsky.It comes in practice against Andrei Vasilevskiy. "I’ve been saying, I thought he was going to be the top goalie in the leag...
Updated: 21 minutes ago
Thefts from cell towers in Ruskin, Gibsonton interrupt service, deputies say

Thefts from cell towers in Ruskin, Gibsonton interrupt service, deputies say

Lost phone signal recently?The culprit might be a Ruskin man who stole thousands of dollars of equipment that had powered Verizon and T-Mobile towers, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. The theft interrupted cell tower signals on ...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Train strikes stalled semi, out spills frozen chicken, beef and fish

LAKELAND — Residents got some frozen treats the hard way Wednesday morning, hours after a CSX train struck a semitrailer truck, splitting it in half and spilling its load of frozen beef, chicken and fish onto the roadway.The train was traveling from ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Editorial: Congress should block efforts to expand offshore drilling

Editorial: Congress should block efforts to expand offshore drilling

Timing is everything, and Sen. Bill Nelson seized the right moment this week to call on his colleagues to pass legislation he filed earlier this year that would block the Trump administration from opening additional areas to offshore drilling. With t...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Bucs’ Mike Evans gives the gift of perspective

Bucs’ Mike Evans gives the gift of perspective

TAMPA — So, this is Christmas.The Bucs are having an awful season. There is no way around it. Star receiver Mike Evans isn’t having a great year, either, not nearly as many catches or touchdowns as last season, when he was selected for the Pro Bowl.S...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Highlands County students hurt when semi hits school bus

Four Highlands County school children and their bus driver were injured Wednesday morning when their school bus was struck by a semitrailer truck, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.The crash took place just before 8 a.m. on U.S. 27 and Lake Pla...
Updated: 1 hour ago

When to see the Geminid Meteor Shower light up Tampa Bay (w/video)

Folks around Tampa Bay will be treated to quite the light show Wednesday night and early Thursday morning.And it has nothing to do with Christmas.The Geminid Meteor Shower will produce as many as 120 meteors per hour.The best time to view? We hope yo...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Goodman: The night Alabama woke up America

Goodman: The night Alabama woke up America

After weeks during which the people of Alabama were prejudged as incapable or unwilling to decipher right from wrong, they proved themselves by blazing a new path to virtue.They defied tradition. They defied political party. They defied the elites wh...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Warren Sapp on sexual harassment allegations: ‘Ain’t no #MeToo’

Warren Sapp on sexual harassment allegations: ‘Ain’t no #MeToo’

Warren Sapp vehemently denied allegations that he sexually harassed a female employee when he worked at the NFL Network during a radio appearance this afternoon in Miami."Ain’t no #MeToo," the former Buc and Pro Football Hall of Famer said on the And...
Updated: 1 hour ago