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    Tampa Bay briefs

    By Times staff reports
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published June 6, 2002


    Plant City man found guilty in shooting death

    TAMPA -- A Plant City man was convicted of second-degree murder Wednesday in the November 2001 shooting death of a housemate.

    Paul Gray, 42, was charged with gunning down Nelvin Doriskar, 42, at the Hunter Road mobile home they shared. Gray's defense attorney argued the shooting was accidental. Circuit Judge J. Rogers Padgett sentenced Gray to life in prison.

    Man charged in crash, fight with deputies

    TAMPA -- A Tampa man was arrested at 3 a.m. Wednesday after he aimed his car at a Hillsborough County sheriff's patrol car and crashed into a fire hydrant, authorities said.

    Nickey Dale Loden, 41, of 10610 Henderson Road was charged with aggravated assault, aggravated fleeing and eluding, battery on an officer, resisting arrest with violence, DUI and driving with a suspended license.

    Authorities said a deputy clocked Loden's Camaro going 89 mph in a 50 mph zone on U.S. 41 in Lutz, and that Loden ran a stop light. When the deputy flashed his lights, Loden did not stop. He turned his car and tried to hit the deputy's patrol car, authorities said. The car missed the patrol car but hit a fire hydrant, authorities said. Loden stopped his Camaro and tried to run away. Deputies caught Loden and said he resisted arrest. Loden was released Wednesday from the Orient Road Jail on a $26,000 bond.

    Bay area prepares GOP 2004 bid

    TAMPA -- The facilities and political leadership are in place to attract the 2004 Republican National Convention to the Tampa Bay area, local officials said Wednesday.

    Now it's a matter of raising the $65-million needed to ready the area for the 20,000 people expected to come.

    "Don't worry about the money, we're going to get the money," said Al Austin, finance chairman for the Republican Party of Florida, and one of four people leading the effort to bring the convention to the area.

    Tampa Mayor Dick Greco hosted a press conference Wednesday at the Ice Palace to announce the Host Committee for Tampa-St. Petersburg's bid for the convention, scheduled for Aug. 30 to Sept. 2, 2004.

    On June 17, the Host Committee will submit its official bid for the convention.

    If the bid is successful, the convention could be at the Ice Palace or Tropicana Field, bringing to the area an economic impact four times greater than the Super Bowl in 2001, Austin said.

    "This is going to be really special for us," said real estate developer Dick Beard.

    The 83-member host committee is led by Austin, Beard, Outback Steakhouse co-founder Bob Basham, and Rick Michaels, founder of Communications Equity Associates Inc.

    Greco said the occasion would be huge for the area.

    "The president of the United States is going to be here," Greco said. "A presidential visit is a big deal for a community."

    After the bid is submitted, the Republican National Committee will announce finalist cities in August. A final decision will be made Feb. 1.

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