An Ohio accountant, already serving a federal life sentence on convictions in two murder-for-hire schemes, has been brought to Pasco County to await another trial. Berry Lester Kessler, 73, faces a state murder charge for one of the schemes, in which he allegedly paid a hit man $10,000 to kill business partner John DeRoo in 1991. DeRoo, 40, was found dead in his Hudson cabinet shop with six shots in his head. Kessler previously had arranged for a $500,000 "key man" life insurance policy on DeRoo, payable to a corporation controlled by Kessler. Kessler was arrested for DeRoo's murder in September 1993 before he could carry out the second murder-for-hire plan, against another business partner, Perce Bowden Yankee, authorities said. On Monday, Kessler pleaded not guilty in the DeRoo case.
Former Holiday Inn renamed by Ramada
NEW PORT RICHEY _ The former Holiday Inn Bayside next to Leverocks has become the Ramada Inn Bayside. The hotel lost its Holiday Inn franchise early this year and was called the Bayside until recently, when the hotel got new owners, new managers and the Ramada franchise.