A stamp used to mail an absentee ballot in Broward County that was thought to be a rare find worth hundreds of thousands of dollars is definitely a fake, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports. An incorrect number of border perforations and its thickness, printing method and inexact colors show it is a forged Inverted Jenny, said Mercer Bristow of the American Philatelic Society. The real 24-cent stamps were printed in 1918 with a World War I-era biplane erroneously flipped upside down. "The color, to me, was off. It looked more bluish-green than the blue of the genuine," Bristow said. The Smithsonian's National Postal Museum wants it anyway.
Man to finish jail time for killing corgi
A man who fatally shot the family dog because it wouldn't stop licking his face has been sentenced to about a year in jail. Thomas J. Costello, 53, shot his corgi during a dispute with his wife in January at their St. Petersburg home. Costello was upset because the dog kept jumping on his lap and licking his face, police said, and he also knew shooting the dog would upset his wife. Costello pleaded no contest Friday to charges of shooting within a building and animal cruelty. He will receive 315 days off his sentence for time he has served in jail since his arrest.
Clinics to distribute morning after pills
Some distribute candy canes and calendars this time of year. Planned Parenthood health centers will give out free morning after pills Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. It's part of Free EC Day, short for emergency contraception. The pills lower the risk of pregnancy when started within 120 hours of unprotected sex. Clinic locations: 8068 56th St. in Temple Terrace; 21-A Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. S in St. Petersburg; or 2250 E Edgewood Drive in Lakeland.
Sergeant dies in explosion in Iraq
A former Bradenton resident and Army sergeant died Thursday when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee during a combat operation in Baghdad, the Defense Department said Monday. Staff Sgt. John L. Hartman Jr., 39, had lived in Sarasota and Bradenton. He served with the 9th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, based in Fort Stewart, Ga.