NEW PORT RICHEY
Judy Jackson was walking north in a U.S. 19 right turn lane when she was run over and killed nearly three years ago. Last month, Jason William Mapel took responsibility for the 49-year-old Hudson woman's death. Mapel, 32, of Port Richey, pleaded no contest to DUI and leaving the scene of a crash involving death. He was adjudicated guilty and sentenced to three years in prison, 12 years of probation and 120 hours of community service in a trauma center or emergency room. He can drive while on probation, but only to work. Mapel was accused of hitting Jackson on U.S. 19 near Jasmine Boulevard at 1:49 a.m. Sept. 2, 2004, then fleeing in his Toyota.
Taste of freedom turns sour to him
Rory James McGrory tasted freedom for a brief few days in November - until deputies recaptured the escaped jail inmate. McGrory recently learned how long until his next reprieve from behind bars: 15 years. The 44-year-old New Port Richey man agreed to the prison sentence in June to settle a host of criminal charges, including escape, grand theft, grand theft auto and burglary. He pleaded no contest, but a circuit judge adjudicated him guilty and declared McGrory a violent career criminal. He was the first inmate to escape the Land O'Lakes jail in five years. The Sheriff's Office said he cut a hole through a minimum security tent, dug his way underneath a fence with a metal can lid and fled into the swamp Nov. 13. Two deputies who missed him during a head count later resigned.
Rep. Bilirakis' staff offers public help
Staffers for U.S. Rep. Mike Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor, will meet with residents 10 a.m. to noon today at the Hudson Regional Library, 8012 Library Road. They will help residents with questions and problems dealing with federal agencies or Congress.
19-year-old found dead by his friends
Pasco deputies are investigating the death of a 19-year-old Lutz man who died after friends say he took methadone and alcohol. Sean Gilbert spent Monday pool-hopping and hanging out with friends in Land O'Lakes, deputies say. The friends told deputies everyone fell asleep around noon. Gilbert never woke up. Gilbert drank some beer and used methadone, his friends told deputies. One teen told deputies he and Gilbert wanted to attend the fire academy in the fall and were trying to get off methadone. Deputies are waiting for the toxicology results to determine cause of death.