An honor student upset over a physics grade stabbed his teacher in the neck in a classroom confrontation Tuesday, authorities said. David Pologruto, 41, was hospitalized in stable condition after the after-school incident at Taravella High School. "That discussion turned into an argument where the student pulled out a large knife and struck the teacher with the knife," said Coral Springs police Sgt. Jeffrey Maslan. "However, the teacher was able to restrain the student from further attack." The 16-year-old straight-A student, whom police would not identify because of his age, was charged with attempted homicide, Maslan said.Man testifies in his murder trial
PALATKA _ A man charged with trying to arrange his wife's death in a convoluted murder-for-hire plot denied all knowledge of the scheme Tuesday and said prosecutors must have brainwashed the would-be victim. Kosta Fotopoulos took the stand in the fourth week of his trial on charges of first-degree murder, attempted murder, conspiracy and related accusations. Last fall in Daytona Beach, several unsuccessful attempts were made on Mrs. Fotopoulos' life, and Mark Kevin Ramsey, 19, and Bryan Chase, 18, were killed. Ramsey's murder was videotaped, with Fotopoulos allegedly holding the camera. "I still love my wife up to this point," Fotopoulos, 30, testified Tuesday. Asked why he thinks he is charged in the case, he replied, "I believe she was brainwashed. She was hurt by the affair." Fotopoulos' ex-girlfriend, Deidre Hunt, 21, has pleaded guilty in the murders of Ramsey and Chase and has been sentenced to die.
$100-million cleanup planned
JACKSONVILLE _ More than $100-million will be spent to clean up 97 hazardous-waste sites at three Navy bases in Florida, officials said Tuesday. An agreement signed Tuesday in Tallahassee between the Navy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state Department of Environmental Regulation (DER) calls for the cleanup. The areas, many contaminated by fuel oils and cleaning solvents, are at Jacksonville Naval Air Station, Jacksonville's Cecil Field Naval Air Station and the Pensacola Naval Air Station. The cleanup of the three sites could take 20 years, officials said.
Disabled official gets apology
JACKSONVILLE _ A disabled federal official who left angrily when an ambulance instead of a van met him at the airport on his last Jacksonville visit returned to an apology and a key to the city. Evan Kemp, chairman of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, was to speak to a national human rights conference in July but never left the airport. His aides said he didn't want to endure the pain and humiliation of lying in an ambulance for the trip downtown. Monday, on his second trip to Jacksonville, Kemp was the keynote speaker at a conference on disabilities. This time, a van met him at the airport. Once at the conference, he was given apologies and the key to the city by Mayor Tommy Hazouri. Kemp said he found downtown Jacksonville to be "very, very accessible" to wheelchairs.
_ Compiled by DAVID CONYERS
from Associated Press reports