The Bizarre World of Florida

Neighbors say they’re fed up with excess mothballs October 29, 2014

Neighbors in a Mandarin community say they’re fed up with an annoying and smelly situation on Spurline Drive South. Hundreds of mothballs line one woman’s driveway. She says it’s to repel animals from her yard, her neighbors argue it’s a ridiculous move that they believe is a health hazard.

“It started off with just a few and now it’s got over 400 or more,” said Dana Nicol.

635500488159246805-mothballsHundreds of mothballs, some bagged, others loose and a good amount of them are crushed into the pavement of Nicol’s neighbors driveway.

“She drives back and forth and crushes them up with her car to make them stink even more,” said Nicol.

Besides the smell Nicol who is 5 months pregnant is concerned about possible health hazards.

According to the National Pesticide Information Center, mothballs are not intended to be used outdoors. Its ingredients can contaminate plants, water supplies, harm wildlife and contribute to air pollution.

Kim Bristol filed a complaint with the City of Jacksonville, urging them to do something about her neighbors excessive use of mothballs.

“I’ve talked to nearby neighbors and we’re suffering symptoms from the mothballs,” said Bristol. “Respiratory, coughing, headaches and it’s not just adults. It’s also affecting the children. My own children included.”

We visited the home at the center of the dispute. The woman inside told FCN the mothballs are to stop her neighbor’s dogs from defecating in her yard. She went on to say she has no intentions of cleaning up and doesn’t believe the mothballs scattered about her driveway is making anyone sick.

“We care about our children, we care about the lives in our community,” said Bristol. “I’m just trying to be heard, trying to get help.”

The city has not given the homeowner a citation, they visited the property on October 23 and the investigation is ongoing.


Man bares more than his soul in a ‘spiritual calling’

Filed under: Bad Luck,Controversy,Drugs,Florida Nut,Really Dumb,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 9:20 pm

A naked man spotted at a Port St. Lucie intersection told police he felt a “spiritual calling” to be outside in his birthday suit and that he saw “strange things in the sky.”
sfl-flduh-naked-man-genital-ring-20141028-001What could be called the case of the nude dude with accessorized private parts began about 10:48 p.m. at Southwest Halcomb Street and Southwest Paar Drive where police noticed Berfield in the buff.When Port St. Lucie police encountered Keith Berfield, 56, on Oct. 17, the only thing he had on was “a large metal ring around his testicles,” according to recently released records.

Asked why he was outside naked, Berfield said he felt a “spiritual calling.”

He said he’d been “called” to his back porch and further “moved” or “called” outside where he noticed “strange things in the sky.”

“The defendant (Berfield) could not describe what he meant by strange things but stated that he has been seeing this for the past several days and that standing in the driveway naked with officers was deja vu,” a report states.

He started rambling about a “spiritual initiation,” and investigators suspected he may be under the influence of drugs.

He told police he had “meth and weed” in his home, which is nearby. Police and Berfield went in his residence, and Berfield threw on a pair of underwear.

paraphernalia-table-e1413980457996Investigators found a variety of drugs, including suspected LSD, methamphetamine and marijuana.

Berfield was taken to the hospital, and police asked him again why he was outside naked. He said he’d been on drugs and wasn’t really sure why.

Berfield, of the 3900 block of Southwest Halcomb Street in Port St. Lucie, was arrested on seven felony and two misdemeanor drug-related charges.


Judge rules city’s two-hour parking spots unconstitutional. “I will tell you the city does not agree with the order” October 28, 2014

Filed under: Amazing,Controversy,Interesting,Lawsuit,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 2:58 pm

A judge ruled this week that an ordinance regulating two-hour parking restrictions in the city’s downtown core violates the law, sparking questions about an often-buzzed-about topic.

SP_298481_ALLE_Parking_03_14100724_8colPinellas County Judge William Overton declared city code section 26-152, which sets out rules for parking limitations in central downtown, to be unconstitutional.

In doing so, Overton sided with St. Petersburg lawyer Chris Sierra, who launched a legal campaign this year after he says the city erroneously issued him a ticket for remaining too long in a two-hour parking space. He argued that the city’s restrictions were too vague for drivers to understand.

“They have kind of arbitrary ways of enforcing these things,” Sierra said, referring to the city’s current method of chalking tires and snapping pictures of vehicles parked in nonmetered, but time-restricted, spaces downtown. “The ordinance doesn’t tell you what you can and cannot do. (The judge) agreed.”

On Friday, Assistant City Attorney Sharon Michnowicz told the Tampa Bay Times that the case isn’t over and that officials have filed a motion for a rehearing.

“I will tell you the city does not agree with the order,” Michnowicz said.

So what happens now?

Sierra said he believed the city stopped enforcing the parking code on Wednesday afternoon after being notified of the ruling.

But Evan Mory, the city’s director of transportation and parking, said that was not the case. Staffers are still issuing two-hour parking tickets, he said.

“Our enforcement’s going same as usual,” Mory said Friday. “I know somebody challenged it. I didn’t know the judge had ruled. … I haven’t been informed to stop anything.”

Despite the judge’s decision on the ordinance, the city did not have to stop writing tickets, Michnowicz said. Earlier this month, Overton verbally granted the city’s request for a rehearing, which means his ruling does not take effect immediately, she said.

Sierra’s problem with the ordinance has always been personal.

In January, he parked in an unmetered, two-hour spot in front of his law office in the 600 block of Central Avenue. At some point, he said, he left for a client meeting in Largo.

“I’d been gone for an hour and a half to two hours,” Sierra said. “When I came back, I parked back in front of my office, in what just so happened to be the same spot.”

Thirty minutes later, Sierra said, someone issued him a ticket for being in the spot too long, despite him leaving in between.

“I’ve gotten a ticket for overtime before. This one I knew I was in the right,” Sierra said. “It wasn’t my fault.”

Sierra fought his ticket, which a judge dismissed in March, because the lawyer had left the city in between his two instances of parking in the same spot. But Sierra said he heard similar complaints from others who park downtown. A few months later, two women who work in a boutique next to his office got similar parking tickets.

Sierra took their case, which is what resulted in this week’s order.

As written, Sierra said, the code makes it a violation for someone to move their car to a nearby spot to avoid getting a ticket, which he said is common practice.

Particularly interesting, Sierra said, is a sentence that reads:

“The changing of the parked position of a vehicle from one parking space directly to another parking space within the same block on either side of the street or roadway shall be deemed one continuous parking period.”

Sierra also argued that the code doesn’t indicate whether the two-hour limit means two consecutive or cumulative hours. He also said since the word “block” is undefined, a person doesn’t know where exactly they can move their car to avoid a ticket.

The city disagrees.

“Our position is it’s not vague,” Michnowicz said.


“Wild pigs are running so wild in one Brevard County neighborhood that Halloween trick-or-treating is being threatened”

Filed under: Amazing,Bad Luck,Bizzarre,Scary,Unusual,WTF? — floridaduh @ 2:56 pm

Wild pigs are running so wild in one Brevard County neighborhood that Halloween trick-or-treating is being threatened.

Wild_Pig_KSC02pd0873Wildlife trapper James Dean has captured eight hogs this week.

He’s sure there are more, though. Dean said the hogs have dug up the grass in 17 homes.

“Some of the homeowners are telling me they’re walking out on the sidewalk, they’re pooping, they’re crossing the road,” Dean said.

Dean baited several traps, using corn, in backyards in the Sawgrass at Suntree neighborhood just north of Melbourne.

The homeowners association is concerned that Halloween trick-or-treaters could run afoul of a toothy wild boar on the hunt for snacks.

“What we’ll do is come in Wednesday or Thursday with a pack of dogs that will actually catch the hogs and at least scare them further away from the residents around here,” Dean said.


Second man accused of swiping political signs, deputies say

A second man has been accused of stealing campaign signs in Hernando County, according to deputies.

sfl-flduh-swiping-political-signs-20141027-001Benjamin Moser, 52, faces petit theft charges after a school board candidate found him removing signs from in front of the Spring Hill Library and placing them into his car on Saturday, according to a release form the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office.

Moser was found with 37 political signs from nine candidates, deputies said. He told deputies he removed the signs because he thought it was illegal to put them on library property. The Hernando County School Board candidate told deputies he had permission to place the signs on library property and the signs belonged to the library.

On his Facebook page, Moser questioned whether candidates should be allowed to legally place signs on public property.

“Can it really be legal to place partisan political campaign signs on PUBLIC PROPERTY (in this case, a library) or as I have noted before, on the right of way?” Moser wrote on his site, where he changed his profile picture to his mug shot. “The plaintiff says that yes, it is permitted by the board of elections. This is news to me and if true … my question is why can this even be permitted? The only place candidate’s names should appear on public property is on the ballots (my opinion!)”

Last week, deputies investigated John Good, 50, of Spring Hill, after they found 244 political signs at his home. Good told deputies he was tired of looking at the signs and was cleaning up Hernando County. His case was turned over to the state attorney’s office, which was deciding whether to press charges.

Moser is a member of a Facebook group started by Good called “sign sign everywhere a sign,” where members post comments and pictures of signs they believe are placed illegally.


A bird in hand is worth two in a tree October 27, 2014

Filed under: Bizzarre,Florida Nut,Bad Luck,Dangerous Nut,WTF?,Unusual,Dumb,Stupid — floridaduh @ 2:19 pm

After realizing his roommate’s pet parrot was missing on Wednesday, a Punta Gorda man went to new “heights” to get it back — and nearly died trying.

5335730_GFor the past three months, 50-year-old Kenny Corley has been taking care of his roommate’s pet bird named Chuckles.

“Ol’ Chuckles is a good bird,” said Corley. “I about had a heart attack when I lost her.”

Over that time, Chuckles has grown quite fond of Corley and now follows him everywhere.  When Chuckles followed Corley outside Wednesday morning only to perch herself at the top of a 30-foot tree, Corley climbed up right after her.  That’s when disaster struck.

“She was up there saying ‘What are you doing? What are you doing?'” said Corley. “I said I’m coming for you, what do you think I’m doing!”

But after making it the top of the tree, Corley fell more than 20 feet back down and was lodged against a tree branch.

“I was more worried about the bird than myself,” said Corley.

While Corley was able to call for help, it took more than an hour for firefighters to rescue him using a harness.

Remarkably Corley says he only suffered three bruised ribs and a swollen knee during the fall. Firefighters say his injuries could have been worse had he not gotten lodged in the tree.

Thankfully, firefighters were later able to rescue Chuckles as well.

“Thank God I got her back now.  I’ll be able to sleep easy tonight,” said Corley.

Both Corley and Chuckles are now recovering back at home. Corley says he has no regrets and would do it all over again to get his favorite parrot back home.


Out for blood? Woman deliberately drove car into plasma-donation center

Filed under: Bizzarre,WTF?,Controversy,Unusual,Amazing,Stupid,OK Then ..... — floridaduh @ 2:13 pm

A busy Westside plasma-donation clinic was rocked Saturday afternoon after a woman intentionally drove her car through the entrance following a dispute with employees, creating a chaotic scene and sending herself and eight others to local hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries, police said.

sfl-flduh-plasma-donation-20141026-001The dispute between Pamela Miller, 35, and DCI Biologicals employees may have been over why she couldn’t donate plasma, according to police and witness accounts.

Miller will be charged with aggravated battery, police said.
DCI Biologicals is in a large strip shopping center, home to a thrift store, Dollar Tree and several other businesses, just south of Wilson Boulevard. A Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office substation is also in the shopping center, and police were able to respond to the hectic scene quickly.

Moments before Miller drove her car into the clinic, Jamal Ford had just walked out of the building after donating plasma. He said Miller approached the clinic in her red Honda Accord, stopped in front for a moment and then appeared to step on the accelerator, sending the car careening into the building.

“There was screaming, hollering. Everybody is in a state of shock,” Ford said. “I was absolutely terrified.”

Miller’s car plowed about 40 feet into the building, police said. She reversed and hit a concrete pillar underneath the store’s awning.

It’s unclear how fast Miller was going when she drove through the entrance. Evidence technicians are trying to determine her speed, police said.

Half of Miller’s remained under a covered walkway as onlookers – some who were hoping to donate plasma – passed by. The damage inside the clinic was extensive: part of the roof had collapsed, as had counters.

“It was definitely a chaotic scene,” said Sheriff’s Lt. Derrick Mitchell, who was in the substation and among the first to respond.

Investigators are looking into whether drugs played a role in the incident.

Police are also questioning a man who identified himself as Miller’s boyfriend.



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