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Court visitor's purse contents lead to charge

A bailiff working security at the Pasco County Courthouse noticed something suspicious in a visitor's purse Tuesday: a pipe with the image of cartoon character Scooby-Doo.

An on-the-spot chemical analysis earned a misdemeanor charge of possession of drug paraphernalia for Rosa Anna Hernandez, 29, of Patti Lane.

Bailiff Susan Dicks reported she saw the pipe about 2:15 p.m. as Hernandez' purse was X-rayed as she entered the courthouse. A chemical analysis detected trace amounts of marijuana, according to Dicks' report.

Hernandez was issued a notice to appear in court on the misdemeanor charge. The pipe was taken as evidence.

Dicks said Hernandez was at the courthouse on behalf of a relative facing a traffic citation.

Kitchen fire destroys

couple's home

DADE CITY _ An accidental fire destroyed a home early Tuesday after the oven was turned on and the door left open.

Dade City fire Capt. Joey Wubbena said a call came about 4:45 a.m. Tuesday from 13603 23rd St.

Gary Patterson, who lives in the house with his wife, Sharon, told fire officials he awoke about 4 a.m. to turn on the coffee machine. He also turned on the oven and opened the door to heat the house.

"We definitely don't encourage that," Wubbena said.

The house didn't appear to have central heat, but there were space heaters inside, Wubbena said.

Patterson went back to bed and was awakened half an hour later by popping sounds coming from the kitchen. He found the whole room on fire.

Three engines and 11 firefighters battled the blaze until 7:20 a.m.

Wubbena said the wood frame house was destroyed. He estimated damage at $40,000. The fire also damaged Patterson's 2002 Dodge pickup truck and a carport.

No one was injured and the case was closed as an accidental fire, Wubbena said.

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