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Largo police wrong to keep quiet about May 15 murder

Re: Largo police taking secrecy past reason editorial, July 25

Police wrong to keep quiet about murder near bus stop

My husband and I moved to this area three years ago. We have a daughter who is 14 years old. This year the school district moved her bus stop right across the street from the Largo apartments where the May 15 murder took place. On May 15 school was still in session.

Who gives the Largo Police Department the right to withhold information so important? And on top of that, they had not even caught the suspect. We go unaware that a terrible crime has been committed and a dangerous person is in our neighborhood. There are so many children here and the Police Department does not feel it is important enough to let the community know?

I would like to know who appointed the new police chief, John Carroll. I would also like to be able to ask the chief what made him think the community he is asked to serve and protect did not have the right to know that such a crime had been committed and the suspect was still at large. That is a disgrace! I am a working, taxpaying, law-abiding citizen who deserves answers along with the rest of my community.

I want to thank the St. Petersburg Times for bringing this to our attention. There are a lot of comments that are made about the media and most are in a negative manner. I praise you and hope many others see this and someone is held accountable.

Debbie Beetem, Largo

Re: A clear message: Show up for school, editorial, July 26

Tougher rules still too lax

I applaud Pinellas school superintendent Julie Janssen for her effort to "put some teeth back into the attendance policy." But I am appalled by the new rules, one of which states that students must be in class for at least half the class period to be counted present, and another that states they must stay in school for at least half the day's class periods to be counted present for the day.

In the first place, why the need for the "relaxed" rules apparently made for the swine flu last year? That whole "scare" turned out to be an overhyped media event which did not materialize. Even so, why adjust the attendance policy? Absenteeism, excused or unexcused, should have been handled per the normal policy.

Why do we keep lowering our standards? How can our public schools deliver sound education to our students when our expectations are so low? This is an outrage! The public, parents in particular, must demand more!

Marilyn Renner, Dunedin

Re: Largo police taking secrecy past reason editorial, July 25

Report jeopardizes case

Shame on the Times for taking the Largo police to task on this matter. Calling attention to this issue could alert the perpetrator that there are leads not published and complicate their investigation. Have some respect and compassion for the difficulty of their work. Have confidence in their ability and in their desire to protect and serve.

Robyn Dalton, Largo

Re: A clear message: Show up for school editorial, July 26

Stricter tardy rules needed

I am a retired school administrator who would never have tolerated or permitted the proposed attendance rules. If students were late to class, they went to a holding area until time for the next class period. They received no credit for attendance or grade for work missed.

A student who missed a half-day of classes was given an unexcused absence for the day. Three unexcused absences in a semester resulted in the student being suspended from class attendance, not school attendance, until a conference with the parents and student established a contract regarding future attendance. Violation of the contract required the school to notify the Department of Children and Family Services for intervention and possible court appearance.

If the Pinellas County schools are truly interested in school improvement, they should take a look at school practices that create not only award-winning schools, but lifelong learners.

John H. Mason, Clearwater

Re: Libraries move to e-formats | story, July 25

Free e-books not for Kindle

The free library e-books available for download are compatible with many electronic readers, but not the Amazon Kindle due to the company's proprietary restrictions. More information is available at

Casey McPhee, Largo library director

Largo police wrong to keep quiet about May 15 murder 07/31/10 [Last modified: Friday, July 30, 2010 4:04pm]
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