Soldier 24, KIlled in Iraq by explosive device

Published October 16, 2006

A soldier from Orlando has died in Iraq, the Department of Defense announced Saturday. Sgt. Gene A. Hawkins, 24, died Thursday in Mosul, Iraq, as a result of injuries he sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle, officials said. Hawkins was assigned to the 14th Engineer Battalion, 555th Combat Support Brigade (Maneuver Enhancement) at Fort Lewis, Wash.

No one hurt in 3 weekend fires

Residents escaped three unrelated home fires during the weekend that caused more than $60,000 in damage, officials said.

-Just after 1:30 a.m. Saturday, Tampa Fire Rescue responded to an Ybor City apartment, 2208 12th Ave., to find flames coming from a downstairs unit. The Fire Marshal's Office said a tenant had improperly discarded a cigarette.

-About 3:30 p.m. Saturday, an electrical powered pottery kiln was blamed for a fire at 4010 N Myrtle Ave.

-About 6 p.m. Friday, fire officials said, a 9-year-old playing with a lighter set a mattress and curtains on fire at his family's Sulphur Springs home, 8011 N 10th St.

Sheriff's deputy's radio, gun missing

An unmarked Pinellas County Sheriff's Office car with Deputy Angela Cole's weapon inside was stolen late Saturday or early Sunday from her home in St. Petersburg. The vehicle was recovered in St. Petersburg about 1 p.m. Sunday at 1127 22nd St. S. Cole's radio and .45-caliber Glock were missing. Anyone with information about the crime is asked to call Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-873-8477 or the Sheriff's Auto Theft Unit at (727) 582-6200.