Judge upholds state-mandated travel ban

Published February 3, 2007

A federal judge on Friday denied a challenge of a state law banning school-paid travel by students, professors and researchers to Cuba and four other nations labeled terrorist states by the U.S. government.

In his two-sentence ruling, District Judge Adalberto Jordan turned down the American Civil Liberties Union's effort to stop enforcement of the law. The measure, signed May 30 by then-Gov. Jeb Bush, prohibits professors, students and researchers from using money administered by a public university or college - federal or state funds and even private foundation grants - to travel to any country listed as a terrorist state by the State Department.

The other nations on the list are Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria.


Criminal charges against frat dropped

Prosecutors have dropped criminal charges against a University of Florida fraternity chapter whose members were accused of drugging three young women during an unauthorized house party Sept. 30.

But UF officials Friday charged the Pi Kappa Alpha chapter with disobeying the state law against hazing, and with violating UF alcohol policies.

The Pikes' house was supposed to be "dry" because the chapter had a prior suspension for alcohol and hazing violations.

The fraternity has been suspended since the fall, and UF could extend the suspension or even expel the chapter.


Special election set for House vacancy

Gov. Charlie Crist on Friday set a special election on April 24, with primaries on March 20, for a central Florida state House seat being vacated by Rep. John Quinones, who quit to run for a new seat on the Osceola County Commission.


Tech student stabs 3 with screwdriver

A 25-year-old student angry that his technical school wasn't teaching about black history walked into his business class Friday and stabbed three school officials with a screwdriver, police said.

Kevin Mair of Plantation stabbed an assistant director and two security specialists at the Atlantic Technical Center, police said. They were treated at a hospital and released. Mair will be charged with multiple counts of aggravated battery, authorities said.


Deputy Tasers high school student

A Flagler County deputy used a Taser gun on 6-foot-1, 275-pound high school student who punched the deputy after refusing instructions from his teacher, authorities said.

The Flagler Palm Coast High School teacher requested the deputy's help when 16-year-old Laurence Gibson refused to go to the dean's office for not doing his classwork Thursday.