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Week in Review

By Times staff
© St. Petersburg Times
published June 23, 2002

DIAL M FOR MOM: Students will be able to phone home, or elsewhere, next year now that the Hillsborough County School District has reversed its ban on cell phones on campus. Calls will be limited to before and after school, and none will be allowed on school buses.

But when School Board members heard of the change at a recent meeting, some wondered whether the limits can be enforced. "I don't think they're going to bring these things to school and not use them," said board member Glenn Barrington . "We're creating a new problem in my view."

The change in policy can be attributed in part to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, which left many parents wanting immediate access to their children. A committee of students, parents and teachers recommended the change.

FLYING WHILE INTOXICATED: A Tampa man who flew his single-engine airplane almost directly into the ground just south of Van Dyke Road was legally intoxicated at the time of the crash, investigators determined.

Michael Antinori had a blood-alcohol level of 0.14 when his Cessna flew into the Lutz swamp. Federal aviation regulations prohibit pilots from flying with a blood-alcohol level of 0.04 percent or higher.

For Antinori, it was his second aviation accident in as many days. The day before his death, he escaped serious injury when his helicopter crashed onto the roof of a north Tampa home.

Authorities are still investigating the cause of the plane crash.

GOOOOOOOAAAAAAAL!!!: Soccer fans turned out in force at area sports bars to support the U.S. team's march through the World Cup championship. Because the games are being staged in Korea, air times in the states ranged from 2:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m.

But that didn't stop night owls from Channelside to Carrollwood who either stayed up late or got up early (depending on their perspective) to catch the action.

The U.S., considered a a vast underdog among the world's elite teams, advanced to the second round and beat Mexico 2-0 in the single-elimination portion of the tournament. But the American's season ended dramatically with a 1-0 loss to Germany on Friday morning.

The crowd at Prime Time Sports in Carrollwood saluted the team anyway with a chorus of early morning cheers.

SPLISH-SPLASH: After what seemed like weeks of cloudless skies, several days of thunderstorms brought much-needed rain to the area.

North Hillsborough got about a half-inch of rain last weekend, followed by 2.1 inches of the wet stuff on Monday. Another 2.25 inches fell on Tuesday. But the Tampa Bay area as a whole is still way behind: Rainfall through Friday stood at 3.69 inches while an average June brings 5.48 inches.

CYBER-BROTHEL: Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies arrested a Hunter's Green Web site owner and a Carrollwood woman Tuesday as part of a prostitution ring sting. Charles Kelly, 51, of Ashworth Drive was charged with owning, a Web site that investigators said openly promoted prostitution.

Also charged was 38-year-old Darcy Piotrowksi of Trouville Drive in Carrollwood Village with five counts each of committing prostitution and operating a place of prostitution.

Investigators anticipate making more arrests in the sting.

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