Wildfire Burns Seven Acres On Barrineau Park Road

February 21, 2017

A Monday afternoon wildfire burned about seven acres in the Molino area.

Four tractor/plow units from the Florida Forest Service responded  to a wildfire in the area of Barrineau Park Road and 95A near Molino.

At 4:20  p.m. the fire was about  seven acres with no structures threatened. By nightfall, the fire  was 95 percent contained, with smoke and small flames lingering overnight.

The Cantonment, Molino and McDavid stations of Escambia Fire Rescue were also on scene.

Pictured: Florida Forest Service crews work into the dark on a seven acre fire on Barrineau Park Road.

State Attorney To Seek First Degree Murder Indictment Against Rice

February 21, 2017

State Attorney Bill Eddings said Monday that he intends to move forward on the prosecution of Mary Rice for her part in the shooting death of Kayla Crocker during a robbery home invasion February 6 in Beulah.

The case is expected to go before a grand jury within the next 30 days with the state intends to seek an indictment against Rice for first degree murder.

She also faces two counts of accessory after the fact in the double homicide at a Milton hotel.  Alicia Ann Greer and Jacqueline Jeanette Moore were found shot to death in the Emerald Sands Inn.

Rice also faces a capital murder charge from Baldwin County for the murder of Peggy Broz.

“Additional investigation has indicated that there is sufficient evidence to move forward on the Escambia County prosecution at this time. This decision was made after discussing  this matter with Robert Wilters, District  Attorney for Baldwin County Alabama. Any decision regarding charges that Rice may face in Alabama will be made by that office,” Eddins said.

Rice was arrested after surrendering peacefully at Georgia hotel. She was an accused accomplice of quadruple murder suspect William “Billy” Boyette, who took his own life in Georgia rather than surrendering to authorities.

NASA Scientist Confirms Fireball, Boom Was Likely Meteorite

February 20, 2017

A NASA scientist has confirmed the source of a bright light and booms across the North Escambia area  about 9:15 Saturday night was likely a meteorite dropper at least the size of a basketball.

“Took a look at the eyewitness reports – there is a lot of scatter, but I was able to use a software tool developed by a colleague to derive a ground track. The fireball first appeared to the NE of Mobile and moved westerly at about 56,000 miles per hour. The best reports indicate that it broke apart above U.S. 43 north of Mobile, and the reports of sound indicate it probably penetrated fairly low into the atmosphere before fragmenting, perhaps as low as 14 miles altitude,” Bill Cooke, lead of NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office located in Huntsville, AL, wrote in a Facebook post.

The object’s average brightness was about that of the full moon, with reports of it being seen as far away as extreme North Alabama and Arkansas.

“A search of the Doppler weather radar in the area may be helpful in determining if there were meteoritic particles falling to the ground,” he said.

NorthEscambia.com received reports of distant “shooting start” sightings from Saturday night Panama City to Pensacola, and more fireball-like descriptions from readers either side of a line from Bay Minette to Atmore to Bratt to Flomaton to Brewton. Many of those residents also reported a boom or explosion that rattle windows and shook their homes.

Pictured: A green glow that was reported along with the meteorite Saturday night as seen from Godwin Lane in Pensacola. NorthEscambia.com photo by Kelly Senft, click to enlarge.

No Injuries In Classic Car Crash

February 20, 2017

The driver of a classic escaped serious injury in a single vehicle rollover accident Sunday night in Cantonment.

The accident happened about 10:30 p.m. on County Road 87 near Sherrilane Drive.  The driver refused medical transport to the hospital.

The accident remains under investigation by the Florida Highway Patrol.

NorthEscambia.com photos by Kristi Barbour, click to enlarge.

Atmore Man Dies In Motorcycle Crash

February 20, 2017

An Atmore man was killed in a crash Sunday afternoon in a Baldwin County crash.

Orrie Hubert Bradford, 83, died when his 1999 Harley Davidson motorcycle struck a guardrail and crashed, according to Alabama State Troopers. Brandford was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The accident occurred at 1:35 p.m. on Highway 59 about a mile southeast of Stockton, AL. Further details have not yet been released as troopers continue their investigation.

Beulah Benefit Nets $10K For Murder Victim’s Children

February 19, 2017

Hundreds of people help raise over $10 thousand Saturday for the children of murder victim Kayla Crocker of Beulah.

Organizers said the fundraiser collected $10,800 with about 800 people in attendance Saturday at the Beulah Park on Mobile Highway.

Food plates were sold and prizes were raffled during the event. First responders in uniform were able to eat free.

Crocker, a Tate High School graduate, was the final victim of William “Billy” Boyette, who later took his own life when surrounded by law enforcement in Georgia, His accomplice, Mary Rice, is facing  a first degreee murder charge for Crocker’s death.

Donations can still be made to the “Crocker Children Education Fund” at Navy Federal Credit Union.

Pictured above and below: A fundraiser for the children of  murder victim Kayla Crocker of Beulah. Pictured inset: Escambia County Chief Deputy Chip Simmons plays a little basketball. Pictured bottom: Simmons and Sherif David Morgan pose with Beulah and Bellview volunteer firefighters. Photos by Tony Vance and others for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.

Benefit Raises Over $15K For Local Family With Double Cancer Loss

February 18, 2017

A benefit for the Barrow family Friday night in Bratt raised over $15,790 for the family, according to organizers.  The Breakfast for the Barrows fundraiser included  pancake supper at the First Baptist Church of Bratt and sales of t-shirts and bracelets.

The Barrows recently experienced the loss two family members to cancer — mother Joanna Barrow died on January 30 and son Zachary Barrow passed away on February 8. (NorthEscambia.com recently featured the emotional story of Zach and his fiancee Lauren, click here.)

The Zach Barrow Memorial Scholarship funded by Dr. Sheldon Harigel was also announced. The $1,000 scholarship will be awarded annually on December 3, Zach’s birthday, to a deserving athlete at Northview High School, where Zach graduated and later returned as an assistant baseball coach.

The Blue Wahoo’s Kazoo was scheduled to attend the pancake supper but was absent due to illness. It was announced that the Blue Wahoos will honor the Barrows at an upcoming game, present them a portion of game night proceeds and allow a family member to toss the game’s first pitch.

NorthEscambia.com photos, click to enlarge.