News Update for 713/21

Florida Highway Patrol officials finally are releasing some information about that fatal traffic crash early yesterday near the Gator Shack restaurant. According to reports, an unknown person was driving a car west on US Highway 98 and failed to negotiate a curve.
The sedan went off the road, hit a tree and caught fire. The identity of the driver remains unknown. Troopers have even redacted the sex of the victim. They say the incident remains under investigation.

It appears a Sebring dynasty has come to a close. John Dean II has announced he has closed his Sick Sidewways race shop and liquidated the team and the equipment. Dean and his team were synonymous with checkered flags and podium finishes for decades, racking up records in all categories in the Mazda Miata racing series.
Dean says he now will focus his efforts on coaching. His race shop now will become a McKibben PowerSports location.

The city of Avon Park is looking for an attorney. Officials in the City of Charm are looking to crack down on foreclosures and get properties back on the tax rolls ASAP. Reportedly, there already are more than 200 properties in question.
The plan is to take care of them in batches. Code enforcement officials are preparing a Top 20 list to start the process.
Avon Park Mayor Garrett Anderson says the real estate market is ripe, with buyers looking for properties in any condition.

The Highlands County school board will get together tonight and look at their spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year. Among other things, they will be looking at a tentative budget and millage rate for the upcoming 2021-22 school year.
The budget will be hovering right around the 200-million mark. Board officials say they are waiting for state direction on what they called the “required local effort.” That’s not expected until next Monday.
Tonight’s public hearing is set to commence this evening at 5:05.

A Lake Wales man reportedly shot his ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend in a bar before fatally shooting himself. Authorities say that Kevin Cooper had been harassing his ex-girlfriend with calls, upset that she had ended their relationship and begun seeing another man.
Cooper went to the Y’all Come Back Saloon, apparently in search of the woman. In an initial confrontation, he shot at her, grazing her with a bullet. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office says Cooper then shot and wounded his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend, who was sitting at the bar.
He was hit him twice. He was taken to an area hospital in critical but stable condition.