DADE CITY - Lawyers have agreed on how to split a $100,000 settlementamong plaintiffs who sued the owner of a group home where three people died after an attack on New Year's Day 1989. A hearing Friday to divide the money was canceled after the agreement, which divided the money among relatives of two residents who were killed in the attack and two of the surviving residents. The $100,000 was paid by the liability insurance company of Helen Tear, owner of the Reflections retirement home. However, details on how the money was divided were not available. Henry Thomas, an 89-year-old resident at the home, has been charged with the New Year's Day assault.
Man found guilty of kidnapping DADE CITY - A jury on Thursday convicted an Illinois man of kidnapping and fondling a child younger than 16 in January. Ralph Miller, 21, will be sentenced March 29, after a presentence investigation. He faces up to life in prison on the kidnapping charge. Miller was found guilty of forcing a 12-year-old girl into a car in which he was riding and fondling her as the two rode in the back seat. The victim told authorities she approached the car Miller was in because she knew him.
Bacteria close swimming areas LAND O'LAKES - High bacterial counts have forced Pasco County officials to close the Lake Padgett and East Lake swimming areas. The lakes will remain closed to swimming until more tests show that pollution has dropped to acceptable levels.