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Published October 14, 2006

Park ride will likely stay closed for rest of festival

PINELLAS PARK - A carnival ride that stranded 20 riders in the air when it malfunctioned Thursday night will probably remain closed for the rest of the Sacred Heart Fall Festival, state officials said Friday.

Allan Harrison, an operations management consultant for the state Bureau of Fair Ride inspections, said the state issued a stop operation order Friday that would prohibit carnival workers from operating the Power Surge ride until it was repaired and reinspected.

Woman charged with illegal broadcasting

TAMPA - Deputies say 20-year-old Marjorie Voltaire ran an illegal radio station, broadcasting Creole music over the Tampa airwaves for a month before getting caught.

Investigators say Voltaire operated the station from an apartment just south of Fletcher Avenue at 13410 La Place Circle.

On Thursday night, deputies served a search warrant at Voltaire's apartment. They found $10,000 worth of broadcasting equipment and a large antennae, said Hillsborough County sheriff's spokesman J.D. Callaway.

Voltaire was arrested at 11:30 p.m. on a charge of unauthorized radio transmissions, a felony. She was released after posting $2,000 bail.

Voltaire, who has no criminal record in Florida, is Haitian, and she set up the station about a month ago, Callaway said.

Churches raise funds to help teens in Jeep crash

VALRICO - A Brandon church is hoping to raise money to help families of the eight Bloomingdale High School students involved in Jeep crash last weekend.

One student died in the crash; seven others were injured.

Donations can be sent to the Nativity Catholic Church at 705 E Brandon Blvd., Brandon, FL 33511. They should be marked for the Bloomingdale, Because We Care fund.

The church will divide the funds based upon each family's needs.

Also, community members will hold a carwash today to raise money for the family of Tyler Clark, the 17-year-old killed in the crash. It will be begin at 8 a.m. at Advanced Discount Auto Parts, 101 E Brandon Blvd.

Arsonist finishes burning house after it was saved

TAMPA - Someone tried to burn down a home in Sulphur Springs Thursday morning, but fire crews saved the house.

Early Friday, though, the arsonist came back and finished the job, according to Tampa Fire Rescue officials.

No one has been arrested for the fires, but officials believe both were deliberately set, said Fire Rescue Capt. Bill Wade.

No one lived in the small home, which was owned by twin brothers Thomas and Robert Dotson, 35, of Riverview.

At 4:17 a.m. Friday, firefighters were again to the home for another report of a fire. It took crews 20 minutes to get the fire under control. Investigators determined this fire, too, was arson.

The fire caused about $70,000 damage to the home.

[Last modified October 14, 2006, 00:47:00]

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