A homeless shelter in Crystal River passed a safety inspection Friday, saving it from possible closing. Nevertheless, the Citrus County Interfaith Organization for the Homeless faces eviction at the end of this month because its landlord, Anthony Marino, says he is afraid to let the group stay. The shelter, a two-story house on NE First Street, installed a manual fire alarm, cleared the area around a main electrical panel, added a hand rail for a stairway and removed beds that blocked paths to exits, said Citrus County Fire Prevention Capt. John Russo. Another inspection is set for March 5, if the shelter remains there.
Boys' game investigated
LECANTO _ Legal authorities are investigating a penny-pitching game at Lecanto High School that left one student $35 in debt to another, the Citrus County Sheriff's Office reported. Two students _ one 15, the other 16 _ apparently played the game recently and the younger boy lost, sheriff's spokeswoman Gail Tierney said Friday. The older boy went to his partner's home one night and demanded payment; the younger boy's mother wrote a $35 check to the boy, Tierney said. The winner's mother apparently destroyed the check when she learned what had happened, Tierney said. The state attorney's office is expected to determine whether criminal charges would be appropriate. Sheriff's officials did not release the boy's names because they are juveniles.
Police seize marijuana
HOMOSASSA _ Law officers raided a home-grown marijuana operation in Homosassa on Friday and arrested the alleged operator. Bruce Lewis, 36, of 4725 S Trent Point, is accused of growing 75 marijuana plants in a barn near his house, said sheriff's spokeswoman Gail Tierney. Investigators also found loose marijuana and scales inside the home, Tierney said. Lewis was booked into the Citrus County Jail on charges of possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana, possession of marijuana with the intent to sell or deliver, cultivation of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was being held late Friday in lieu of $30,500 bail.
Handle on a tough job
Jack Bramlett of Federal Sign cleans the Sun Bank sign on State Road 44 in Inverness on Friday. Bramlett, of Valrico, cleans signs at the bank's branches in the area.