The fire that trapped a family of three behind burglar bars this week claimed a second life. Willie Bynes, 68, died at Tampa General Hospital Wednesday morning, a day after his granddaughter, Latoya Williams-Jones, 26, died from her injuries. Still alive is Mary Jones-Bynes, 73, Bynes' wife and Williams-Jones' grandmother. Jones-Bynes' condition was upgraded from serious to fair on Wednesday at St. Joseph's Hospital, a spokeswoman said.
Repairs under way for gash along I-75
Investigators were unclear Wednesday as to why the empty trailer bed of a Mack truck rose up and ripped a gaping hole in the Interstate 75 overpass at State Road 50. The Florida Highway Patrol said nothing illegal occurred in the accident on Tuesday that backed up traffic for miles. Meanwhile, the Florida Department of Transportation was working quickly to repair the damage. The Highway Patrol said more than 41,000 drivers use I-75 at that site each day, while another 19,900 travel along SR 50. All lanes of SR 50 had been opened by noon Wednesday, and one of the two southbound lanes on I-75 was closed. The Transportation Department plans to replace the damaged concrete beams and bridge deck of the overpass by today. Motorists headed east on SR 50 should expect to be periodically diverted to a westbound lane under the overpass while repairs are being completed on the overpass. The department said by the end of the week, it will create a second lane on southbound I-75 and erect a temporary barrier wall during repairs.
Council member files for Chapter 11
City Council member Joseph Caetano, who represents North Tampa, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection for his hair salon last month. Court documents show the Bostonian Hair Studio owes creditors $179,116. Caetano, who was elected for a first term on the council in March 2007, said he's disputing some of the claims. But he doesn't dispute that his business has been hurting in the tanking economy.
Deacon accused of fondling teen
A church deacon is accused of fondling a 17-year-old parishioner - and police believe she's not the only victim. Willie Clarence Harvard, 58, was arrested Tuesday on a charge of simple battery, a misdemeanor crime that means someone has been touched illegally, against their will. Police said he is a deacon at Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church. The incident took place Nov. 14, according to police, and while they would not say where, they did say it did not take place at the church. The girl's mother reported it to police. Harvard was released from the county jail Tuesday night after posting $150 bond. State records show he was arrested several times in the 1970s on charges such as aggravated assault and possession of marijuana. In January, records show he was arrested in Brevard County on a charge of violating a domestic violence injunction. St. Petersburg detectives ask that any other victims come forward. Call the agency's crimes against children unit at (727) 893-7746 or (727) 893-7780.