Grant Builds Three Pole Barns For Panhandle Equine Rescue

July 21, 2017

Three pole barns were recently constructed at Panhandle Equine Rescue in Cantonment thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Melba Bayers Meyer Charitable Trust through Wells Fargo.

“They will provide much needed additional shelter for the rescue horses. We were able to extend an existing barn and add two new ones. The third barn will serve as a shelter for veterinarians and farriers and will include a stock, scale and wash rack,” said PER President Diane Lowery.

Lowery said donations received from a GoFundMe account were also included to fund the three shelters.

“We are so grateful to our generous donors and to Melba Bayers Meyer Charitable Trust for making it possible to achieve these goals. The horses are enjoying the shade and protection from the rain,” she said.

The only horse rescue in Escambia County, PER was founded by a small group of concerned citizens with a mission to rescue, rehabilitate and provide adoption services for abused, neglected and abandoned equines. PER is authorized by the court system to investigate equine cruelty in Escambia County.

Photos for, click to enlarge.

Several Escambia Schools Honored For Life Safety Improvements

July 21, 2017

Certificates of Excellence for Outstanding Achievement in the Annual Fire Life Safety Inspections were presented during the July Escambia County School Board meeting.

“The Department of Protection Services has worked very closely with school administrators to improve safety in the learning environment and in making continuous improvements in fire life safety.  Administrators and staff at all of our schools have dedicated considerable time and effort to reduce the risk of potential injuries and property damage.  Many schools have made significant improvements.  As a result district-wide life safety deficiencies have dramatically decreased,” said Superintendent Malcolm Thomas.

Schools recognized for reducing their deficiencies by 50 percent or more were: Beulah Elementary School, Scenic Heights Elementary School, A.K. Suter Elementary School, Sherwood Elementary School, West Pensacola Elementary School, Pine Meadow Elementary School, Booker T. Washington High School, and Tate High School.

The schools recognized for having 15 or fewer deficiencies were: Bratt Elementary School, Montclair Elementary School, Molino Park Elementary School and Ernest Ward Middle School.

Jim Bailey Middle School was recognized as the Most Improved School of the Year. Bailey went from 148 deficiencies in the 2013-2014 school year to only 33 in the 2016-2017 year – a 77 percent decrease.

Cantonment Man Sentenced To 15 Years For Store Robbery

July 20, 2017

A Cantonment man has been sentenced to prison for the armed robbery of a Cantonment convenience store.

Jonathan Mark Vito was sentenced by Circuit Judge John Miller to 15 years in state prison as a habitual felony offender. He pleaded no contest to robbery.

On September 10, 2016 Vito entered the Tom Thumb on Highway 29 and Woodbury Court and displayed to the clerk what appeared to be a firearm and demanded money. He then fled the scene with the money, beer and cigarettes. He was later identified in the surveillance video by a previous co-worker and a relative.

Vito has prior convictions for trafficking in stolen property, pawnbroker transaction fraud, theft, fleeing and eluding, and several other misdemeanor charges.

Pictured above and below: The Tom Thumb at Highway 29 and Woodbury Circle was robbed during the early morning hours on September 10. photos by Kristi Barbour, click to enlarge.