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Man gets 18 years in fatal DUI wreck

Guillermo Mendoza, 21, a Mexican citizen with no local address except a post office box, was sentenced Thursday in Hernando Circuit Court to 18 years in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of DUI manslaughter, one count of DUI with serious bodily injury and driving without a license. Mendoza was driving under the influence in a van one night in January on Interstate 75 south of the Sumter County line when he slammed into a truck with three people in it. The driver and a passenger were killed when the truck rolled over in the median, and they were thrown from the vehicle.


Police seek woman who snatched purse

City police are looking for a purse-snatcher who robbed an elderly woman at Big Lots in Brooksville.

The purse-snatching happened about 1:45 p.m. in the parking lot Thursday. The victim, who walks with a cane, was set upon by a heavy-set white woman with blondish-brown hair in a pony tale. The purse-snatcher jumped into a red compact car driven by a thin white man and fled. Police Chief Ed Tincher said the number of these crimes flare up this time of year with the increased number of shoppers.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Hernando County Crime Stoppers hotline at (352) 797-TIPS (8477).


Cultural group sets New Year's dance

The Latin American Civic and Cultural Association will host a New Year's dance on Dec. 31 at the SNPJ Lodge, 13383 County Line Road.

The event will be from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Music will be provided by DJ Cayuco.

Admission for members is $12 for adults, $6 for ages 6-16; the cost for nonmembers is $15 for adults and $7.50 for ages 6-16. Attendees can bring their own alcohol.

For tickets, call Carmen at 592-8494, Noemi at 683-6742 or Elsa at 688-5890.

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