Police: After Dispute With Wife, Man Sets Trailer On Fire, Tries To Kill Himself

May 31, 2017

An Atmore man has been charged with setting fire to his home after a fight with wife Tuesday afternoon.

The Poarch Fire Department and the Escambia County (AL) heriff’s Office  responded to a mobile home engulfed in flames at 7135 Jacks Springs Road about 12:30 p.m. Deputies received information that the fire was started by 31-year old Jason Paul Mitchell after he was involved in a domestic situation with his wife.

He made statements to people in the area about setting fire to the residence and property before entering a wooded area with a gun in an attempt to shoot himself, according to investigators. ECSO deputies and Poarch Police officers were able to disarm Mitchell and take him  into custody without incident.

After an investigation by the Alabama Fire Marhal’s Office, Mitchell was booked into the Escambia County Detention Center in Brewton on charges of arson second degree, domestic violence and domestic violence third degree.

Flomaton Railroad Crossing Closed Near State Line

May 31, 2017

The Palafox Street railroad crossing at the train yard in Flomaton will be closed through Friday, according to CSX and the Flomaton Police Department.

This will prevent Old Flomaton Road traffic from Century from crossing the state line and entering downtown Flomaton.

The Highway 29 bridge over the railroad tracks will remain open and be the detour for the closure.

Vandals Strike Cantonment Sportsplex Again

May 31, 2017

More vandalism has been reported at the Cantonment Sportsplex. This time, park officials said  lights were damaged or destroyed and the vandals once again attacked bathroom fixtures.

Ab Escambia County Sheriff’s Office crime scene unit responded to the park Tuesday night to collect evidence from the scene.

Just over a week ago, we told you the vandalism of bathrooms at the facility. Bathrooms were vandalized  –fixtures were broken and paper towels were used to cause overflows.

Anyone with information on either incident is asked to call the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office at (850) 436-9620 or Crime Stoppers at (850) 433-STOP.

Photos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.

Good Chance Of Showers And Thunderstorms

May 31, 2017

Here is your official North Escambia area forecast:
Tonight: A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 1am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 66. Calm wind.

Thursday: Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 1pm. Cloudy, with a high near 83. Calm wind becoming east around 5 mph in the morning. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.

Thursday Night: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. Calm wind becoming east around 5 mph.

Friday: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 84. East wind 5 to 10 mph becoming southeast in the afternoon.

Friday Night: A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 68. Southeast wind around 5 mph becoming calm.

Saturday: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 84. Calm wind becoming south around 5 mph in the afternoon.

Saturday Night: A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. South wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the evening.

Sunday: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 84. Calm wind becoming south around 5 mph in the morning. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

Sunday Night: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71. South wind around 5 mph.

Monday: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 85. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

Monday Night: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71.

Tuesday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 86.

Tuesday Night: A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 65.

Wednesday: Sunny, with a high near 82.

Partnership Offers Free Breakfast, Lunch For Kids In Cantonment

May 31, 2017

A Cantonment group has gone to work to address childhood hunger this summer.

“The kids I saw were saying that they were hungry all the time,” said Josh Womack of the Cantonment Improvement Club (CIC). “We got to work because we knew there were resources out there.”

The CIC found Feeding the Gulf Coast, formerly the Bay Area Food Bank, to provide breakfast and lunch to Cantonment area children five days per week.

The first meals were served Tuesday and will continue Monday through Friday until school begins in August. Breakfast is served about 10 a.m. and lunch is served about noon at the Carver Park Resource Center at 208 Webb Street in Cantonment. The meals are free for teens and children under age 18.

The CIC is also working to provide tutoring and learning opportunities in the resource center during meal service times.

Pictured: The first meals were served Tuesday under a new partnership between the Cantonment Improvement Club and Feeding the Gulf Coast. Photos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.

Seniors Get Look At New ‘ExpressVote’ System

May 31, 2017

The Escambia County Supervisor of Elections Office is testing their new ADA-compliant  ExpressVote system, recently taking it on the road to demonstrate it to senior citizens in Cantonment and Century.

The ExpressVote uses a touch-screen device to mark a paper ballot for tabulation. Voters can received audio assistance, or even Braille instructions, allowing all voters to cast their ballot, regardless of their abilities or disabilities.

The ExpressVote device was used first in the recent special election in Century earlier this year. Last week, Elections Office staff demonstrated the devices at the Council on Aging meal site in Century last Thursday and Tuesday at the Cantonment Council on Aging meal site.

There were will be one of the ExpressVote devices available at each precinct during the 2018 election.

Pictured above and below: The ExpressVote machine demonstrated at the Cantonment Council on Aging meal site. Pictured below: The ExpressVote on display in Century. Photos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.

Hurricane Season Arriving After Last Year’s Wakeup Call

May 31, 2017

After ending an 11-year stormless streak in 2016, Florida enters its annual hurricane season on Thursday with forecasters predicting an above-average season.

The 2016 season was the most active since 2012, with 15 named storms in the Atlantic Ocean, including seven hurricanes and four major hurricanes.

Hurricane Hermine, a Category 1 storm, struck Florida south of Tallahassee on Sept. 2, marking the first hurricane to hit the state since 2005.

A little more than a month later, Hurricane Matthew, a more powerful storm, moved along the East Coast. Although it did not make landfall in Florida, it caused extensive damage, particularly in Northeast Florida, with some $1.18 billion in property insurance claims, according to the state Office of Insurance Regulation.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, in a forecast released last week, predicted a similarly active season this year, based on warm sea-surface temperatures and a weak El Nino ocean-atmosphere pattern. The federal agency is predicting 11 to 17 named storms, five to nine hurricanes and two to four major storms.

The forecast will be updated in early August, right before the peak of the hurricane season, which runs until Nov. 30.

“Regardless of how many storms develop this year, it only takes one to disrupt our lives,” said Robert Fenton, acting administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Bryan Koon, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management, said Floridians’ experience with Matthew and Hermine last year may heighten their awareness of the new hurricane season.

“Those folks will have that memory fresh in their minds,” Koon said. “Matthew was such a big storm that it threatened much of the state at some point during its existence. I think people will recognize June 1 maybe a little bit more than they have in the past few years.”

Koon and other state officials stressed the need for Floridians to prepare for the possibility of a major hurricane, which would bring high winds, flooding and power outages. During Hurricane Matthew, some 1.2 million customers of Florida Power and Light, the state’s largest electric utility, lost power at some point.

“Hurricanes are always going to be an inconvenience for us, but the more you plan ahead right now, the better chance you’ll have to get back on your feet and get back to normalcy more quickly,” Koon said.

Koon also said residents need to consider evacuation plans, which do not necessarily mean moving to public storm shelters.

“We want them to plan ahead,” Koon said. “They are going to be much more comfortable staying with somebody they know, or in a hotel, than they would in a shelter. Right now is a great time to start thinking about what you would do in that situation.”

Florida Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier said property insurance coverage should be part of residents’ disaster plans.

“The time to evaluate your insurance coverage, fortify your home and prepare for how to protect yourself and your family is now,” he said.

One tip from Altmaier’s office is that residents can review the “declaration page” of their property insurance policies, which summarizes the coverage.

In last year’s season, more than 119,000 Floridians made property-insurance claims after Hurricane Matthew, with more than 101,000 residential claims.

Hurricane Hermine resulted in nearly 20,000 claims, including 14,000 residential claims, representing $139 million in total losses.

Under a new law signed by Gov. Rick Scott, residents starting Friday will have a three-day tax “holiday” when they will not have to pay sales taxes on “disaster preparedness” supplies.

The exemption covers things like flashlights, portable radios, tarpaulins, first-aid kits, batteries and coolers, with all items having a price limit. For instance, Floridians can buy a portable generator tax free, if it costs $750 or less.

There has already been one named storm in the Atlantic, with Tropical Storm Arlene, a rare pre-season storm that formed over the eastern Atlantic in April. It is included in NOAA’s estimate of up to 17 named Atlantic storms this season.

by Lloyd Dunkelberger and Tom Urban, The News Service of Florida

First Cases Of Dog Flu Confirmed In Florida

May 31, 2017

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, in coordination with the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, announced today that the University of Florida has confirmed seven cases of H3N2 canine influenza virus, a.k.a. “dog flu.” Six additional results for the virus are pending. All dogs being treated are in stable condition. There is no evidence that H3N2 canine influenza virus infects people.

While H3N2 has been circulating throughout the country since 2015, this is the first time it has been confirmed in Florida. This is a highly contagious virus. Fortunately, the mortality rate is low. Dog owners can have their veterinarians vaccinate their dogs against canine influenza viruses.

If dog owners suspect a case of dog flu, they should call their veterinarian prior to going to the clinic in order to decrease the chances of spreading the virus to other animals at the clinic. Many dogs have a fever, decreased appetite and lethargy during the first few days of illness. Most dogs recover at home without any complications. Some require hospitalization.

Scott Won’t Say What He Will Do With The Budget

May 31, 2017

Gov. Rick Scott continued to offer few clues Tuesday about what he might do when the newly passed state budget (SB 2500) lands on his desk.

The $82.4 billion package, which lawmakers approved May 8, does not include spending at the levels Scott requested for business recruitment, tourism marketing and repairs to the dike around Lake Okeechobee. Asked for hints Tuesday about how he might address the spending plan, Scott simply repeated his options.

“I have a lot of options,” Scott replied. “I can veto it. I can veto a section or any line. I’m still reviewing it.”

People who have contacted Scott’s office about the budget have been overwhelmingly opposed to it.

The office has received 364 phone calls, 2,786 emails and nine letters in opposition to the budget, according to numbers released Tuesday. The breakdown didn’t address if the opposition was over a single item or the entire package.There have been just four phone calls and two emails in support.

Once the budget is delivered from the Legislature, Scott will have 15 days to act. The budget is slated to take effect with the July 1 start of the fiscal year.

Pictured: Scott during an appearance in Fort Myers on Tuesday. Photo for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.

Bratt Elementary Releases Latest Honor Roll

May 31, 2017

The following students were named to the final nine weeks honor roll at Bratt Elementary School:

Kindergarten A Honor Roll

Alexis Amerson
Eric Anthony
Sadie Baker
Nola Barber
Landen Barlow
Abigail Brown
Alysa Bryan
Ava Bryan
Clark Burt
Jaxon Byrd
Carson Eady
Kaedyn Eady
Aubrey Flowers
Kintley Flowers
Pryce Flowers
Josyah Fontenot
Christian Fountain
Olivia Garrett
Nathan Gilmore
Kyndal Hadley
Autumn Heist
Sophia Ikner
Maybree Johnson
Denis Lambeth
Noah Luker
Parker Marsh
Mya McCants
Sophia McMorris
Briley Moore
Demeatree Moorer
Natalia Morales
Rainey Nelson
Jonathan Patrick
Jade Presley
Madison Rice
Ashton Roberts
Caden Sanspree
Kaden Seelig
Kimmora Thomas
James Thompson
Javan Thompson
Brooklyn Turk
Na’Kiyah Williams

First Grade A Honor Roll

Landon Allcock
Gabrielle Boatwright
Jamarreai Davison
Logan Diller
O’Neshia DuBose
Parker Ganey
Sawyer Gilmore
Brody Hall
Camden Jacobson
John McAnally
Hunter Parker
Madalynn Pittman
Christian Roberts
Makinzi Roley
Wyatt Spence
Lani Steadham
Cassandra Stilwell
Kennedy Ward
Kaylee Wilson

First Grade A-B Honor Roll

Govan Alexander
Tyler Amerson
Eli Anthony
Marquis Banks
Serenity Conway
Jacob Dove
Zachary Flowers
Elizabeth Gilley
Michael Greenwell
Peyton Lee
Cameron Moore
Levi Peters
Brooklyn Reynolds
Jackson Sellers
Breah Shelly
Adalynn Southard
Noah Spence
Kameryn Thompson

Second Grade A Honor Roll

Lexi Bingham
Christian Caraway
William Classen
Carlie Davis
Jacobi Dougall
Cathryn Greenwood
Laila Hadley
Lori Hall
Presley Johnson
Kaylee Long
Khloe Mason
Mikayla McAnally
Dakota Richardson
Avery Stuckey

Second Grade A-B Honor Roll

Montgomery Baker
Luke Bryan
Amara Campbell
Madilynne Cardwell
Crimson Davis
Kylar Davis
Thomas Davis
Nolan Eady
Hayden Gipson
Savannah Lowry
Logan Morris
Makayla Plato
Jamie Roberts
Miles Smith
Jake Taylor
Raleigh Warr

Third Grade A Honor Roll

Claire Amerson
Bailey Blackwell
Jackson Bridges
Carley Moore
Jackson Simmons
Talise Gregson
Desiray Bagwell
Addison Classen
Mya Wilson
Kayleb Nicholson
LanDon Johnson

Third Grade A-B Honor Roll

Aakira Davis
Addison Eicher
Brayden Smith
Braylan Shelly
Daniel Johnson
Ellie Adkins
Emily Jarvis
Jasmine Zisa
Jessica Jowers
Jordan Dawson
Justy Starns
Karissa Boatwright
Keeli Knighten
Lauren Abbott
Leann Swearengin
Luke Chavers
Maggie Stewart
Mary-Clayton Dawson
Maxwell Mason
Nevaeh Bush
Samantha Minchew
Shelby Greenwell
Treyton Schoonover
Tristan Crumm
Tristan Johnson
Tyler Carach
Wade Bailey
William Heard

Fourth Grade A Honor Roll

Colton Criswell
Payton Daw
JaCee Dortch
Jamison Gilman
Mary Catherine Hughes
Laura Laborde
Colby Pugh
Ally Richardson
Maggie Scott
Bryce Stabler

Fourth Grade A-B Honor Roll

Luke Amerson
Troy Ard
Madeleine Atallah
Evan Chick
Kinslee Coker
Calene Davis
Richard Emmons
Noah Faulkner
Noah Fehr
Aliyah Fountain
Jared Hudson
Markavia Johnson
Adannaya Mondaca
Landen Robertson
Zakyla Smith
Jonathon Stilwell
Brayden Victor
Raylee Wooten

Fifth Grade A Honor Roll

Raegan Abbott
Sarah Bailey
Haydn Baker
Riley Dawson
Carsyn Dortch
Mayson Edwards
Zykuria Fountain
Maggie Godwin
Ava Gurganus
Berklee Hall
Leah Hetrick
Allyson Jones
Austin Minchew
Jaquez Moorer
Alexis Moya
Bentley Van Pelt
Jacob Spence

Fifth Grade A-B Honor Roll

Rabekah Abbott
Elijah Amerson
Ethan Bingham
Kyle Blanton
Olivia Boatwright
Ava Brock
Kaedence Carter
Edward Conway
Chloe Criswell
Samuel Dettling
Tyteanna Dubose
Gage Eicher
Scotty Elliott
Raleigh Gibson
Joshlynn Helton
Sarah Long
Anija McNeir
Ryan Odom
William Plato
Bryson Sanders
Angel Schoonover
Emily Stilwell
Jaimee Taylor
Corbin Turberville
Raycer Watson
Skyler Williams

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