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Published Feb. 4, 2008


A Gibbs High School ninth-grader was arrested Tuesday morning after he brought a semiautomatic handgun to school, police said. A campus monitor noticed the 15-year-old congregating with other students at about 7 a.m. in the first-floor boys restroom of Building 2, a police spokesman said. As the monitor moved closer, he reported seeing the boy holding a Phoenix P 51 .25-caliber pistol in his right hand. The monitor, Phillip Hawkins, cleared the other boys out of the restroom and took the gun away from the boy after asking him to give it up, police spokesman Bill Proffitt said. The boy tried to run, but Hawkins restrained him, police said. Hawkins then called the school resource officer, who arrested the boy and took the handgun. The Times is not naming the boy because of his age. Proffitt said it is unclear why the boy brought the gun to school. It had a round in the chamber and eight rounds in the magazine. He was taken to the Juvenile Detention Center on a felony charge of possessing a firearm on school property.


DUI suspect turns into deputy's path

Hillsborough sheriff's Deputy Julie Seale normally spends her shift patrolling the area's roadways for impaired drivers. She goes to them. But early Tuesday, authorities said a drunken driver came to her. In fact, Maria Chamorro Vega, 25, couldn't have gotten closer. Deputies say she smashed into Seale's marked Crown Victoria sheriff's cruiser on State Road 60. A Sheriff's Office news release explains it this way: Chamorro Vega, a Valrico resident, was driving a 1998 Mazda in the left lane, headed west on Highway 60 just after 2 a.m. Seale was next to her in the center lane. Chamorro Vega started to turn left onto Mount Carmel Avenue, but reconsidered, made a right and smashed into the front driver's-side corner of Seale's cruiser, causing about $1,500 in damage to the car and sending the two-year department veteran to Brandon Regional Hospital for medical evaluation. Chamorro Vega was charged with DUI.


Girl, 12, hit by car is seriously injured

A 12-year-old Tampa girl was taken to Tampa General Hospital after she was struck by a car Monday near 56th Street and Sligh Avenue, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Moranga Ismanuela of 6906 Castlegate Drive tried to cross the southbound lanes of traffic on 56th Street at 8:30 a.m., when a 1998 Chrysler struck her, troopers said. The driver of the Chrysler was identified as Andrew Ralph, 28, of 13901 N Florida Ave. No charges have been filed. Ismanuela sustained serious injuries, troopers said.


2 teens arrested at Hernando High

Two 17-year-old girls were charged with felony possession of marijuana after being arrested on the campus of Hernando High School this week. The girls, who are not being identified because they are juveniles, were booked into the Hernando County Jail on Monday morning and released to their legal guardians.