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Parents of comatose teen sue city, police

Published December 20, 2006



The parents of an autistic teenager who has been in a coma since a confrontation with police are suing.

The lawsuit filed Monday against Miami and police Chief John Timoney contends officers hog-tied Kevin Colindres, 18, and applied pressure to his back and shoulders outside the teen's home, which caused him to stop breathing and left him comatose.

Police were called Dec. 12 after the teenager became combative with family members. He was calm at first when officers arrived, but had ankle restraints placed in him when he became agitated outside, Timoney said Monday. The chief denied that the youth was hogtied. A police investigation continues.


Escambia Bay I-10 bridge replacement half-done

One of two new bridges over Escambia Bay opened Tuesday to replace the Interstate 10 spans destroyed two years ago when a 20-foot storm surge from Hurricane Ivan tossed enormous concrete slabs into the water.

What will eventually be a permanent, three-lane eastbound bridge was opened to serve two lanes each of east- and westbound traffic. A three-lane westbound bridge will open in about a year.

Photographs of the bridge with a truck dangling over one of the missing sections symbolized Ivan's destruction across the northern Gulf Coast. Divers found the body of truck driver Roberto Molina Alvarado of Toppenish, Wash., in the bay.


Park closure to protect spoonbill nesting

Everglades National Park will close Carl Ross Key and Frank Key Channel to public for nearly three months during the nesting season of roseate spoonbills.

The area will be closed from Saturday to March 15. Park patrols will also increase during that time.

Rangers say spoonbill nesting in Florida Bay is threatened by residual damage from Hurricane Wilma, human activity and unnatural predation. Hurricane Wilma damaged Carl Ross Key and pruned the protective tree cover on nearby Sandy and Frank Keys, home to two major spoonbill nesting colonies.

If spooked by humans, spoonbills will leave their nests, exposing their young to predators.


Stingray attack victim released from hospital

A man was released from the hospital two months after a stingray attack left a foot-long barb in his heart, his family said Tuesday.

James Bertakis, 82, of Lighthouse Point, was hurt Oct. 18 when a stingray flopped onto his boat and stung him. He underwent surgery to remove the barb.

His family said he has been released from North Broward Medical Center and is undergoing rehabilitation at a new location.

The attack on Bertakis came about six weeks after Steve Irwin, known as the "crocodile hunter" star of a popular television program, was killed by a stingray.



A longtime Florida International University psychology professor and his wife pleaded guilty Tuesday to reduced federal charges in a case involving allegations that they spied for Cuba's communist government for decades.

Carlos Alvarez, 61, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to become an unregistered foreign agent. Elsa Alvarez, 56, admitted knowing about her husband's activities but failing to report them.

Both previously faced the more serious charge of acting as illegal Cuban agents.

He faces up to five years in prison and his wife up to three years. Sentencing is Feb. 27.

Carlos Alvarez was accused of spying on Cuban-American exile groups and prominent individuals in Miami.

[Last modified December 19, 2006, 23:51:44]

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