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Kameel Stanley, Times Staff Writer

Kameel Stanley

Kameel Stanley covers the St. Petersburg Police Department and public safety issues in southern Pinellas County for the Tampa Bay Times. She grew up in Michigan and started with the Times in January 2009 after graduating from Central Michigan University. Before coming to the Florida, she racked up bylines during summer internships at several newspapers, including the Grand Rapids Press and the Washington Post. She lives in St. Petersburg in a charming 1920s bungalow she swears she will repaint someday. A crazy Boston terrier keeps her company. When she's not working, she's usually shopping. Find her thoughts about style and fashion at the Deal Divas blog. Drop her a line if you want to talk crime patterns, police tactics or the advantages of a platform pump.

Phone: (727) 893-8643


Twitter: @CornAndPotatoes

Blog: Deal Divas

  1. Federal review of Tampa's bike tickets will begin next week

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — A federal review of the Tampa Police Department's enforcement practices as it relates to bicycle laws and other traffic infractions is set to begin next week, officials said Friday. Investigators are expected to be on site at least two days, Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis said, though it could be months before their work is complete. City officials requested the review following a Tampa Bay Times investigation that found that Tampa police issue more bike tickets than any other agency in Florida, and that eight out of 10 go to blacks in predominantly poor neighborhoods. In addition to data analysis, officials also plan to bring in various experts in criminology, police training and statistics to assess Tampa's situation....

  2. During budget listening tour, St. Pete officials get an earful about city staffers' wages


    ST. PETERSBURG | When officials set out to hear residents' thoughts on the 2016 budget earlier this month, they learned about concerns of gentrification.

    At the second forum, held Wednesday night at the Enoch Davis rec center, the people had a different worry: city employees' wages.

    In his draft budget now, Mayor Rick Kriseman is proposing 2 percent raises for staffers....

  3. St. Petersburg teen killed by police shouted at officers: 'Go ahead and kill me'


    ST. PETERSBURG — The officers showed up at the ranch-style home near Northeast High School on Sunday evening knowing things could go bad.

    Police files were full of warnings — about weapons, about past domestic incidents, about how officers should "use caution."

    The first officer took one side of the taupe-colored house. Two others approached from a different direction. They were searching for Austin Goodner, an 18-year-old linked to a shooting earlier in the day....

  4. Lip crayons: love at first swipe


    Remember when we were kids and our job was to literally color within the lines? Ah, the days of crayons. 

    I'm convinced its that tinge of nostalgia, plus just ease of use, that has me in love these days with crayon-shaped beauty tools. Can you blame me?

    Consider this. I'm not a makeup maven, but I want to look presentable, professional and not like a 12-year-old girl playing in her mom's bathroom....

    Impromptu model Brittany shows off her new Revlon lip crayons. We're obsessed.
  5. St. Petersburg City Council weighs in on proposed $221 million budget

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — In their first public chance to assess Mayor Rick Kriseman's draft budget on Thursday, City Council members mostly nibbled around the edges of the $221 million fiscal pie.

    During a marathon seven-hour workshop on the day-to-day operating budget, members questioned a 9 percent spike in health care costs, a $3 million increase in the police budget and the lack of more money for youth programs....

  6. St. Petersburg begins process to purchase black history museum

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — Earlier this spring, Mayor Rick Kriseman announced a plan to buy the city's only African American history museum, ending months of controversy over its future.

    An offer is now officially on the table.

    According to a draft agreement, the city is willing to spend $663,000 to acquire the museum at 2240 Ninth Ave. S.

    Before the deal can close, it must be approved by the City Council and the board of the St. Petersburg Housing Authority, which owns the building that houses the museum. ...

    The sale, if successful, could end a monthslong feud between the Carter G. Woodson African American Museum and the St. Petersburg Housing Authority, which owns the building.
  7. Some in Tampa want assurance federal bike ticket review will be thorough

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — It's unclear when federal officials will begin a likely months-long review of the Police Department's longtime practice of ticketing mostly black people for bicycle violations.

    Yet already, questions are swirling about their task.

    City Council Chairman Frank Reddick said that in the weeks since the investigation was announced, people have contacted him concerned about whether the inquiry, which will be handled by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), is really a "full scale investigation from the Department of Justice."...

    A report by the Tampa Bay Times shows blacks receive about 80 percent of bicycle citations in Tampa despite representing only a quarter of the city’s population.
  8. My Outfit Monday: A tale of breaking the rules -- and blazers


    So, I know it's been a while since you guys last saw me. A big apology about that. Can we still be friends? Let's do that, and we'll start by me embarrassing myself for YOU. 

    Welcome to today's installment of My Outfit Monday. It's hours-late and I'm breaking all sorts of rules.

    For starters, yes, it's Monday and yes I work in an office and yes these are jeans on my legs. CAN I LIVE? (Truth is, I forgot it was my turn but there was no way I could escape the stern look Deal Diva Katie gave me. She looks sweet but her peer-pressure game is on pointe.)...

    Deal Diva Katie grabbed this shot of me showing off my colleague's impressive work!
  9. Civil rights groups want new police chief to freeze bike ticketing

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — Just after Mayor Bob Buckhorn announced the city's new police chief, representatives of social justice organizations gathered in a park across from police headquarters to once again demand officials suspend bike ticketing practices that have led to stark racial disparities.

    The advocates said they are encouraged that the mayor tapped Assistant Chief Eric Ward to lead Tampa police after Chief Jane Castor retires next week....

    Terrance Hyman of Tampa Bay Academy of Hope said Thursday that he has students who’ve been stopped by the police.
  10. Mayor, Tampa police ask feds to review enforcement of bike laws

    Public Safety


    The U.S. Department of Justice will review the Tampa Police Department's enforcement of bicycle laws after a Tampa Bay Times investigation found 79 percent of the agency's bike tickets go to black residents.

    Mayor Bob Buckhorn said Wednesday that he and police Chief Jane Castor asked federal officials to review the program because their expertise can "bring clarity to us and to the community and may help evolve our current strategies."...

    Bicycle riders are sometimes targeted by the Tampa Police Department for handlebar riding, which is illegal and can result in a citation. East and west Tampa's predominantly low-income neighborhoods have seen a disproportionate number of citations issued to riders by the Tampa Police Department for that and other minor offenses, like riding without proper lights.
  11. Are Tampa police violating civil rights law with bicycle stops?

    Public Safety

    Tampa City Council Chairman Frank Reddick called Monday for an investigation into whether the Tampa Police Department is violating civil rights law with its long-standing practice of targeting poor, black neighborhoods for bicycle tickets.

    Reddick said he wants police Chief Jane Castor and Mayor Bob Buckhorn to publicly answer questions about how officers are handing out tickets.

    Reddick's call was in response to a Tampa Bay Times report on Sunday that revealed police have been using bicycle law as an excuse to stop, question and search riders in high-crime neighborhoods. ...

    Lloyd Brown, 63, center, of Tampa Heights, shown at the Joe Haskins Bicycle Shop on March 27, was stopped by Tampa police for not having his lights on. He was then searched by the officer, who found a small amount of crack cocaine, leading to his arrest and a charge of felony possession. 
  12. How riding your bike can land you in trouble with the cops — if you're black

    Public Safety

    If the tickets are any indication, Tampa residents must be the lousiest bicyclists in Florida.

    They don't use lights at night. Don't ride close enough to the curb. Can't manage to keep their hands on the handlebars.

    In the past three years, Tampa police have written 2,504 bike tickets — more than Jacksonville, Miami, St. Petersburg and Orlando combined....

    [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]
  13. Ever wonder what it would be like to have a personal stylist? Here's your chance to try it out - for free!


    If you're reading this blog, you probably love to shop. And you know we love to shop. Yet as much fun as the process is (the hunt! the deals! The crying in the dressing room!), sometimes it's nice to have someone just do the work for you.

    Which is what happened to me Monday night. Sort of.

    It started when Tampa Bay Fashion Week guru Nancy Vaughn (White Book Agency) reached out to the Divas a little while ago and told us about a neat service being offered at International Plaza. This month, the mall booked a trio of stylists to give shoppers free styling sessions. They last for one or two hours and you can even get some other perks if you bring a friend....

    We had a blast playing dress up in Kate Spade, which hands down has the best dressing rooms anywhere. Plus, I found a great pair of nude shoes. I'm just going to need to borrow $350 from you first...
  14. Hey shawty: A Deal Diva's dilemma about ‘half-pants'


    Remember a month ago when it got cold for 2 seconds and we all freaked out? Ha. These days it seems as if spring skipped us altogether and was just like, "nah, let's just go to summer."

    In short, it's been a little steamy lately. Even above average temps, according to the weather forecasters.

    So now that it's hot, I'm back to my annual conundrum: to rock shorts or not....

    Lace overlay shorts from Target, $23
  15. St. Petersburg announces plan to buy con­tro­ver­sial Woodson African American Museum

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — The city will try to purchase the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum, quelling a controversy that has been brewing for months.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman and Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin announced their intentions Tuesday at a news conference outside the small community museum on Ninth Avenue S near 22nd Street, an area in Midtown targeted for rejuvenation.

    "The Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American museum is not only an important cultural asset in this city but is also an important historical asset to this community," Kriseman told the crowd, which included residents and city officials. "This city has a keen interest in making sure it not only survives, but thrives."...

    St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman announces the city’s plan to purchase the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum on Tuesday morning.