The Florida Times Union

Articles from April 8, 2008

A.M. Stir
Byline: TOM SZAROLETA SOCIETY YOU'RE SO VAIN (YOU PROBABLY THOUGHT THIS ITEM WAS ABOUT YOU) The American Society of Plastic Surgeons released a report last month that shows that Americans are increasingly going under the knife to achieve that...
BAUSCH & LOMB CHAMPIONSHIPS NOTEBOOK; Davenport Must Work for Good Draw
Byline: FRANCINE KING Lindsay Davenport has gotten used to the interesting draws she receives as a lower-ranked player on the WTA Tour. Davenport snuck into the final seeded position in her last two tournaments after higher-ranked players withdrew...
Chambliss Plays Hooky from Senate to Visit Schools; He Uses a "No Vote Day" to Make Stops in Coastal Georgia
Byline: TERRY DICKSON ST. SIMONS ISLAND -- The U.S. Senate and some Georgia schools and colleges were all in session Monday. U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., chose school. Chambliss made morning stops at Frederica Academy, a private school...
CRIMINAL JUSTICE; Skimping on Justice
Most of the attention on Jacksonville's crime problem focuses on the police, especially the need for more of them. Little attention is focused on an equally important part of the criminal justice system: prosecutors, public defenders and the courts....
Deadline Looms for Walker's Final Plea; He'll Have to Pay Nearly $700,000 to Victims If His Appeal Isn't Reconsidered
Byline: SANDY HODSON AUGUSTA -- Former state Sen. Charles Walker has until Friday to make a final plea to the U.S. Supreme Court to consider his case. Walker, the highest-ranking Georgia politician ever prosecuted and sentenced to prison, lost...
Deal Was Actually a Throwback
Byline: Gene Frenette In July 1997, after Mark Brunell validated his team's faith in him as their long-term quarterback by leading a magical playoff run to the AFC championship game, the Jaguars gave him a five-year, $30.5 million contract. Accounting...
Debt Collector Has to Pay Up; the State Won a $1.3 Million Judgment against the Duval Firm
Byline: DAVID BAUERLEIN A state crackdown on Jacksonville-based debt collection businesses won a $1.3 million judgment against Ellis Crosby & Associates, the attorney general's office announced Monday. The judgment covers both restitution...
District Pushes Specific Watering Days; the Intent Is to Conserve the St. Johns River and Match Rules to the South
Byline: DEIRDRE CONNER Stricter lawn watering restrictions could be on the way for counties along the St. Johns River, and for most Florida residents. The district's current rule, which has been in place since 2006, limits watering to two days...
From Humble to Augusta, in a Snap; Weary but Excited, Johnson Wagner Is Flying High at Masters
Byline: GARRY SMITS AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Augusta National reinstated its invitation given to PGA Tour winners for this year. It didn't take long for it to work in the most dramatic way possible. Johnson Wagner is playing in the Masters this week....
Garrard Cashes in; QB Receives the Most Lucrative Deal in Jaguars History: 6 Years, $60 Million
Byline: VITO STELLINO Patience paid off big time for Jaguars quarterback David Garrard on Monday. Garrard, who spent four years toiling in the shadow of Byron Leftwich before winning the starting job nine days before the season opened last year,...
GATORS NOTEBOOK; Dunlap Plays with First Team
Byline: JENNA MARINA GAINESVILLE -- Expect to see more of defensive end Carlos Dunlap. The sophomore from North Charleston, S.C., is running exclusively with the first string. "He falls into the 'Most Improved Guy,' " Florida coach Urban Meyer...
Good Times Keep Rolling for State's Elite Politicians
Byline: Ronald L. Littlepage Reading news reports in the state's newspapers doesn't exactly instill confidence in Tallahassee. For instance, The Miami Herald reported Monday that House Speaker Marco Rubio slipped language into the budget bill...
Hitters Catch Up in West Tenn Win; Suns Strand Runners and Lose 12-4 in the Final Game of the Homestand
Byline: JEFF ELLIOTT After four games in which pitching dominated hitting, the Jacksonville Suns and West Tenn Diamond Jaxx batters caught up to the pitchers in the final game of the five-game series Monday afternoon, combining for 16 runs and 22...
Late Outburst Puts Barracudas in Finals; Goalie Haun Named MVP of Series after 6-3 Home Victory
Byline: ROBBY MONK Tim Haun is a rookie in the Southern Professional Hockey League, but the Barracudas goalie played like a veteran Monday, stopping 18 shots in a 6-3 victory over the Fayetteville (N.C.) FireAntz at Jacksonville Ice. The Barracudas...
Man Charged with Raping 11-Year-Old Girl
A 31-year-old Jacksonville man has been charged with capital sexual battery and child abuse after a young girl told authorities she was brought to St. Johns County to prostitute herself and was raped. The 11-year-old girl was found with Kenneth...
Mauresmo Advances; the Frenchwoman Brushes off a Qualifier at Amelia Island
Byline: FRANCINE KING Amelie Mauresmo looked ready to cruise into the second round of the Bausch & Lomb Championships -- until her opponent took her off auto pilot in the second set. The Frenchwoman rebounded from a three-game deficit, however,...
Mayo Doctor's Arrest Follows Lewd-Messages Tip; Police Say He Traveled to St. Cloud, Expecting to Meet a Teen for Sex
Byline: JIM SCHOETTLER Jacksonville police and other agencies are investigating a Southside doctor arrested in Central Florida on charges of using a computer to arrange for sex with a teen who turned out to be an undercover officer. Jacksonville...
Miami Signs Haith to 5-Year Extension
Miami Hurricanes basketball coach Frank Haith signed a five-year contract through the 2012-13 season, a reward for leading the school to 23 wins and its first berth in the NCAA Tournament since 2002. In Haith's fourth season, the Hurricanes went...
NAACP: Return Plotters to School; ACCUSED the Group Worries the Children Accused in a Plot on a Teacher Will Fall Behind
Byline: TERRY DICKSON The NAACP is questioning the suspensions last week of nine Ware County third-graders over a plot to hurt or kill their teacher. Larry Lockey, president of the NAACP's Ware County branch, said he wants the suspended children...
Officers Give Different Views of Jag's Arrest; Brian Williams Was "Polite," Not Profane, after 2006 Arrest, a New Testimony Says
Byline: PAUL PINKHAM A Jacksonville police officer who encountered Jaguars defensive back Brian Williams during his 2006 drunken driving arrest testified he heard Williams being loud but didn't hear a profane, sexually charged rant like the arresting...
Online Travel Companies Battle Fee; They Ask the Legislature to Back Them Up on Lower Bed Tax Payments
Byline: DAVID BAUERLEIN The state Legislature is taking sides in a years-long battle pitting cities, including Jacksonville, against online travel companies over whether the businesses pay their share of local bed taxes. The Jacksonville City...
Other Sex Abuse Cases Found; Police Suspect a Clay County Man of Battery Dating to the 1990s
Byline: DANA TREEN A Clay County man charged with intimidating men into performing sexual favors sometimes had more than one victim at a time in cases that stretch back to the late 1990s, authorities said Monday. William Anthony Filancia, 43,...
Preservation Program at Risk, Backers Say; the Legislature Is Considering a Move to DEP
Byline: STEVE PATTERSON A state agency that prods Florida towns to manage growth could lose leverage in that fight as the Legislature debates whether to continue funding a popular land-preservation program. Critics say it's a ploy to weaken the...
Pride Abounds at Mount Carmel; Tenants of the HUD Facility Say They're Home
Byline: TAMI LIVINGSTON Estelle Wasserfall, 81, used to visit Mount Carmel Gardens, a Jacksonville housing complex, to see her mother and her aunt. After Wasserfall's husband died, she decided to leave Brooklyn, N.Y., and move to Mount Carmel....
RICHARD MONTNEY: 1927-2008; He Was Committed Civic Leader "He Gave His Heart and Soul to Jacksonville," Close Friend Says
Byline: JESSIE-LYNNE KERR Richard H. Montney Sr., a Jacksonville business and civic leader, died Sunday at the Hadlow Center of Caring of Community Hospice of Northeast Florida. He was 81 and had complications from Parkinson's disease. The funeral...
Robert Van Cleve; He Got to Know, and Misses, Patients
Byline: CHARLIE PATTON Robert Van Cleve could have retired in June 1998. That's when the Riverside Clinic, where he had practiced medicine for 33 years in Jacksonville, ceased operations. Van Cleve, a cardiologist, even treated the last patient...
SEMINOLES NOTEBOOK; Parker Gives Offense a Boost
Byline: BOB THOMAS TALLAHASSEE -- The big play -- make that the big play-maker -- returned to Florida State spring football practice Monday and it didn't take receiver Preston Parker more than one touch for everyone to realize what the Seminoles...
State Cash for Public Schools Dwindles; NO SPARE CHANGE Sen. Wise Expects Schools to Have Even Less Money to Work with Next Year
Byline: STEVE PATTERSON Florida's state spending on public schools generally has ranked in the bottom fifth of the country since 2000, according to federal data released this month. Whether that's bad remains a subject of debate as state lawmakers...
Town Leery as Agri-Cycle Appeals; with Cleanup Stalled, Talmo Residents Dread the Smell in Summer
Byline: MERRITT MELANCON TALMO -- Citizens here rejoiced last fall when, after two years of complaints, a Jackson County judge shut down Agri-Cycle, a food and agricultural waste recycler that often smelled like fetid grease and had a treatment...
Trees That Will Tolerate Some Shade
Byline: BECKY WERN I have several trees on my lot, which is not a really big lot. But I've noticed that in forests, trees often grow under other trees. How do I mimic this? Nature usually produces a layered look, smaller trees under larger trees....
T-YOU; RANTS & RAVES the Police Might Not Shoot If You Don't
I am your typical law-abiding citizen. I don't fight with the police. I don't pull weapons on the police. I don't shoot guns at the police. And therefore I don't get shot by the police. It's that simple, people. DON'T RESTRICT BEACH DRIVING A...
Witness a Crash? Help out the Cops; Police Ask Bystanders to Come Forward If They've Seen a Hit-and-Run
Byline: BRIDGET MURPHY Scores of hit-and-run files end the same way, some version of this: "Closed," reads a Florida Highway Patrol traffic homicide report from 2006. "All available leads exhausted." Troopers never caught the culprit whose...