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Local news briefs

Published June 10, 2006

Inmate briefly escapes from Orient Road Jail

TAMPA - About 11 a.m. Friday, Susan Arline Thornton, an inmate at the Orient Road Jail, simply slipped out of her uniform and vanished, deputies say.

She had nearly six hours of freedom.

About 5 p.m., Tampa police spotted Thornton at a car lot on Nebraska Avenue, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies say Thornton, 33, serving time for prostitution, left her trusty uniform in one of the jail bathrooms and escaped.

Sheriff's investigators spread the news of her disappearance to other agencies, said sheriff's spokesman J.D. Callaway.

A warrant for escape was issued Friday, he said. Thornton was scheduled to be rebooked into the jail that evening, Callaway said.

Thornton, who lives at 4708 Hillsborough Ave., has been arrested six times in the last two years in Hillsborough County on charges of prostitution and possession of marijuana and cocaine.

Sword tragedy had roots in brother's birthday gift

CLEARWATER - Jason Rosenbloom gave his brother, Joshua, three emerald-green samurai-style swords as a reminder of the samurai philosophy of being thankful for little things.

But this week, his brother apparently saw another purpose for them. And the early birthday gift led to a deadly confrontation with police.

Joshua Paul Rosenbloom, 20, was wielding one of the swords inside his apartment Thursday night when Clearwater police shot and killed him. Police at first used a less lethal beanbag projectile, which failed to subdue him, authorities said Friday.

Joshua Rosenbloom was pronounced dead at Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg.

The incident occurred three days after Rosenbloom's brother, Jason, 30, was shot by his next-door neighbor during an argument in Clearwater.

That incident may have contributed to Joshua's downfall, his relatives say.

"I think the fact that I was going through what I was going through may have pushed him over the edge," Jason said Friday from the same hospital where his brother was taken.

Their mother, Doreen Rosenbloom, also said Joshua was upset about his brother's altercation, and also about a disagreement with his brother Thursday.

Relatives said Joshua was also depressed about recently losing a job as a server at the Melting Pot restaurant in Clearwater.

"It was a combination of everything," Doreen Rosenbloom, 50, said. "How much more can a kid take?"

Doreen Rosenbloom said everything seemed fine Wednesday when Joshua called their home to wish his father, Gary, a happy 51st birthday.

But Joshua's mood apparently changed Thursday. About 5:30 p.m., Sabrina Rosenbloom said her brother-in-law was upset.

She said Joshua told her, "I've had the week from hell. I've lost my job, I've almost lost my brother."

At about 6:28 p.m. Joshua's girlfriend called Clearwater police, concerned that he was suicidal, officials said. The woman, who was not identified, told police Joshua had taken pills, was armed with a sword and she feared he would be dead by the time police arrived.

Jason thinks his brother may have provoked officers in an attempt to kill himself, but his mother doesn't think so.

[Last modified June 10, 2006, 07:20:43]

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