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JUDGE REFUSES TO TOSS CHARGES AGAINST MOTHER

ORLANDO

A judge has dismissed a request to throw out the most serious criminal charges against Casey Anthony in the killing of 2-year-old daughter, Caylee. Circuit Judge Stan Strickled ruled Friday that a motion filed by defense attorneys did not meet the requirements for dismissal of the first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse charges. In an earlier filing, Anthony's attorneys had said the charges were based on "circumstantial and speculative" evidence. Anthony has pleaded not guilty and says a babysitter kidnapped Caylee. The toddler's remains were found in December 2008, months after she was reported missing.

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INDIANTOWN

Cell mate says he strangledchild rapist

A prison lifer has admitted strangling his cell mate, a child rapist, with a shoelace, authorities said. "If you had kids, you would understand," Ricky Silva told a prison nurse, Martin County sheriff's officials said. The victim, Terry B. Bell, 45, was serving life for two counts of sexual battery on a child under 12. Silva, 29, was charged with murder. He's serving life for robbery, carjacking and kidnapping.

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DELAND

Husband accusedof strangling pet rat

Authorities say a man who strangled a pet rat after accusing his wife of taking the last cigarette has been charged with animal cruelty. Volusia County sheriff's officials say 22-year-old Darren Daniels had grabbed a white rat from a tank in the couple's apartment, smashed its head and then strangled it before grabbing his wife. After the confrontation, she fled and so did he. He was arrested on charges of battery and fleeing and eluding.

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TALLAHASSEE

Trooper accused of ticket fixing

Authorities say a Florida Highway Patrol trooper has been arrested for dismissing a ticket issued by another trooper to help a friend. Trooper William Grissom was arrested this week on a felony charge of falsifying official documents. FHP officials say Grissom is on administrative duty until an internal review is completed.

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MIAMI

Doctors may seek stimulus money

A nonprofit coalition is seeking the help of 1,800 South Florida doctors to get $10 million in federal stimulus funds to help set up a regional system of electronic health records that could improve patients' care and cut costs. As part of the application, the coalition must obtain letters of support from 1,800 South Florida physicians indicating interest in training, education, and technical assistance in using electronic health records.

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Winter Haven

Woman gets 40 years for strangling mom

A Winter Haven woman has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for beating her mother with a cup and strangling her with an electrical cord last year. A judge sentenced 41-year-old Latesha Brokenshire Wednesday. Brokenshire told detectives that she and her mother had gotten into a fight and that she "snapped." She had pleaded guilty to second-degree murder as part of a plea deal.

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