Advertisement
  1. News

The Daystarter: Documents show Jordan Belliveau's short, troubled history; how dead manatees can save live ones; what's in Andrew Gillum's receipts?

Marine Mammal Biologist Gina Lonati (left) moves two deceased manatees at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Marine Mammal Pathology Lab in St. Petersburg. Biologists conducted necropsies on the animals which were found dead during the Labor Day weekend along Florida's southwest coast. Tissue from the deceased manatees will be tested to see if Red Tide was the cause of death. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
Marine Mammal Biologist Gina Lonati (left) moves two deceased manatees at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Marine Mammal Pathology Lab in St. Petersburg. Biologists conducted necropsies on the animals which were found dead during the Labor Day weekend along Florida's southwest coast. Tissue from the deceased manatees will be tested to see if Red Tide was the cause of death. [SCOTT KEELER | Times]
Published Sep. 6, 2018

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what to know today.

• Rinse and repeat: It'll be another hot and wet day, according to the National Weather Service. As usual, expect a 50 percent chance of rain in the afternoon along with the usual highs in the 90s.

• As you head out for your morning commute, check out our live blog for the latest traffic updates and road conditions across Tampa Bay.

• Three months into Jordan Belliveau's short life, his father was shot twice outside their house. After six months, he moved in with foster parents. Just before his first birthday, he was hit in the face during a fight between his parents and another woman on Father's Day. At 2, he was dead. Documents released late Wednesday by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office reveal a volatile life for the 2-year-old, found dead this week in a wooded area in Largo.

• Hurricane Florence is churning through the Atlantic Ocean and two other tropical waves are forming, which is right on schedule for the midpoint of the 2018 hurricane season. So just in case Florence or one of those other systems makes its way toward us, remember to utilize the Tampa Bay Times hurricane guide and other weather resources. Read our

• Read the latest from the Times on the investigation into the death of 2-year-old Jordan Belliveau. His mother faces a charge of first-degree murder in the child's death, and on Wednesday police revealed that a caseworker visited the mother on Friday, just days before her son was found dead in a Largo park. But what did the caseworker do? Kathryn Varn reports on the latest details in the toddler's death.

• A group of biologists undertook a grim task this week: Performing necropsies on dead manatees to find out if they are the latest victims of the deadly Red Tide bloom afflicting Florida's coastline, its wildlife and its tourism industry. Craig Pittman explains what these scientists are trying to find out as the manatee death toll climbs.

• What's in those receipts from trips to New York City and Costa Rica that Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum took with a lobbyist back in 2016? The Times/Herald bureau takes a look at the records released by the Democratic gubernatorial candidate.

• Republican gubernatorial nominee Ron DeSantis has picked Miami Rep. Jeanette Nuñez as his running mate, the Miami Herald has confirmed. Nuñez, a Kendall-area politician who was first elected to the state House in 2010, would be the first Cuban-American woman to serve as the state's second in command if she and DeSantis are elected in November. She recently served as Speaker pro tempore under House Speaker Richard Corcoran. Meanwhile, his Democratic opponent, Andrew Gillum, will announce his decision later this morning. Stay with tampabay.com for updates.

• Water Street Tampa unveiled the "work" part of its live-work-play vision for Tampa with a pair of 19- and 20-story office towers — billed as downtown's first such "trophy" office buildings in 26 years. Add in another 180,000 square feet of loft-style offices at Channelside Bay Plaza, soon to be renamed Sparkman Wharf, and the result will be about a million square feet of Class A office space coming on the market, though not all at once. Check out the renderings here.

Keep up with Tampa Bay’s top headlines

Keep up with Tampa Bay’s top headlines

Subscribe to our free DayStarter newsletter

We’ll deliver the latest news and information you need to know every weekday morning.

You’re all signed up!

Want more of our free, weekly newsletters in your inbox? Let’s get started.

Explore all your options

• One of the most interesting Congressional campaign battles is unfolding in the 12th District in North Pinellas, pitting U.S. Rep Gus Bilirakis, a Republican, against Democratic challenger Chris Hunter. Tracey McManus explains at how Hunter is raising money online from donors across the country to battle Bilirakis, who is supported by special interest PACs.

• If a "blue wave" comes in November, don't expect it to sweep Nancy Pelosi back into power. At least, that's if Tampa Bay-area Democrats have anything to say about it. Three of the four Democrats running against Republicans in local Congressional races — David Shapiro, Chris Hunter and Kristen Carlson — all said they would back a leader other than Pelosi for Speaker of the House of Representatives should their party win a majority in chamber this November.

• Columnist John Romano writes that at Disney World, Tomorrowland might finally live up to its name: The company has reached a deal with its largest union to raise the minimum wage to $15 by the end of 2021. So if a large private company like Disney is for it, he asks then why would politicians still oppose it?

• After a judge awarded San Diego Comic Con millions in a trademark infringement lawsuit against Salt Lake City Comic Con, the owners of Tampa Bay Comic Con quietly changed its name

• Some 1,000 mystery writers and fans will descend on St. Petersburg this weekend for Bouchercon, the world convention of mystery writers. Oh Florida! author and Tampa Bay Times environmental reporter Craig Pittman says Florida — a sunny place full of shady people — is the perfect place for such a meeting.

• Columnist Tom Jones opines on Nike's deal to make former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick part of its 30th anniversary "Just Do It" campaign. Jones writes that Nike is making a risky bet, considering the controversy over Kaepernick's protest against racial inequality — but also the right one.

• CF Kevin Kiermaier hit two home runs. C Nick Ciuffo got his first big-league hit. RHP Jake Faria made a decent return to the majors. And … And … And the Rays provided a stinky reminder that they are not going to win every game and that legitimately getting back in the race for the second AL wild card is going to be much harder done than said. That was what was left in the wake of an ugly 10-3 loss to the Blue Jays as the Rays gave up seven runs in the first and never recovered.

• And while you have your calendar out, performing arts critic Andrew Meacham takes a look at what's coming to the stages of Tampa Bay this fall. From Hamilton to Othello, it's one of the best theater lineups in years. And he also looks ahead to the Florida Orchestra's season and finds both grand masters and newer work, an increased visibility for minorities and women and more collaborations with museums and other artistic institutions.

• It's time to plan your weekend! Our critics and writers have laid out their best bets on our Weekend Planner page

• Here are the top things to do today in Tampa Bay including the red carpet premiere of a documentary on legalizing cannabis and hemp.