Free home inspections prove popular
By TIMES WIRES
Published December 2, 2006
Nearly 13,000 free home inspections have been completed since August as part of the pilot My Safe Florida Home program, state officials say. The Legislature appropriated $250-million for the inspections, the goal being to strengthen homes against hurricanes. "We are on track to provide free home inspections to another 40,000 Floridians in the coming months," said Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher. Inspectors offer estimates on repairs and improvements and what insurance premium savings might be available if those are done. Homeowners may qualify for matching grants of up to $5,000 to fortify their homes. To be eligible for a free inspection, you must live in a single-family, site-built home with an insured value of $500,000 or less and have a homestead exemption. Documents verifying this must accompany an application. Call 1-800-342-2762 for an application or apply online at www.MySafeFloridaHome.com.
Three indicted in deputy's slaying
Three men were indicted on first-degree murder charges Friday in the Nov. 11 shooting death of Broward County sheriff's Deputy Brian Tephford, and two women were charged with being accessories to the crime afterward. Charged with murder were Eloyn Devon Ingraham, 28, Andre Delancy, 19, and Bernard Forbes, 22. Charged with helping them were Keisha Fleurinor, 29, and Sonia Watts, 27. Tephford pulled over a vehicle after suspecting it was stolen and called for a backup deputy, Corey Carbocci. When gunfire suddenly broke out, neither deputy had a chance to draw his weapon. Carbocci, who was wearing a protective vest, survived.
Charges mount on foster parent
More child molesting charges have been filed against the president of a foster parenting association. George Allen Goulde, 61, was charged Thursday with two counts of lewd and lascivious molestation. Goulde, president of the Volusia/Flagler Foster-Adoptive Parent Association, is now charged with molesting four children. He has been a licensed foster parent since 2003 and a total of 14 foster children have lived in his home, according to officials. He has been jailed since his arrest last weekend.
Afghanistan duty calls teacher away
A Woodham High School history teacher is trading his blackboard and chalk for fatigues and a rucksack. James Brown, recalled to active duty by the Naval Reserve, expects to spend the next 18 months in Afghanistan. Teachers and students gathered to send him off with best wishes and tearful goodbyes Thursday. Leaving his students will be the most difficult part of his deployment, he said. Brown will stay in contact with students through e-mail and letters and plans to return to teaching. "The more my students know about the world outside Northwest Florida, the stronger they are," he said.