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Court: Florida police can use 'stand your ground' law

MIAMI (AP) - The Florida Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that law enforcement officers can invoke the state's "stand your ground" law to protect them from criminal prosecution in a shooting.

The court issued its 7-0 decision Thursday in the case of Peter Peraza, a Broward County sheriff's deputy charged with manslaughter in the 2013 fatal shooting of a man carrying what turned out to be an air rifle.

Peraza's lawyers claimed he was immune from prosecution under the stand your ground law, which permits use of deadly force in certain circumstances. The justices agreed with two lower court rulings, which concluded that the law applies to law enforcement officers the same as anyone else.

Peraza shot 33-year-old Jermaine McBean during a confrontation with deputies at his apartment complex.

VitaminWater offers $100,000 to ditch phone for 1 year

Would you leave your phone behind for a year to win big money? VitaminWater is challenging smartphone users to break their device addiction.

For $100,000, officials with the company are asking people at least 18 years or older and residing in the United States to trade their smartphones in for a 2000s-era, calls-only phone. If you survive six months, you could win $10,000.

>> Read more trending news 

To compete, post a photo on Instagram or Twitter telling @vitaminwater why you need a break from your phone.

“What would you do with all that time? Go wild, be out there, and wow us,” the company posted on its website.

Contestants must enter by Jan. 8 and include the hashtags #nophoneforayear and #contest in their posts. One person can enter up to four times.

Once the contest is closed, VitaminWater will choose one lucky winner to ditch their smartphone. The company doesn’t go into details about how exactly it’ll monitor use, but lie detectors will be involved.

The non-legally binding guidelines are fairly simple. You cannot use a smartphone at all for 365 days, nor a friend’s or anyone else’s.

2 accused in home fraud scheme in Holly Hill, police say

Holly Hill police have arrested two people accused of forging documents to transfer ownership of a dead woman’s home for personal use.

Officers said Angela Mack and Joseph Tindle used a forged signature on a quit claim deed to transfer ownership of the home in August.

Read: Gunman killed in shootout with deputies on I-75 in Sumter County, officials say

The home, located on 2nd Street in Holly Hill, is valued over $100,000 and belonged to Eveline Jackson, who died in July 2016, police said.

Officers said Mack used her position as a public notary to file the paperwork and admitted to signing the deed that included Jackson’s forged signature. 

The Volusia County tax collector said Tindle was recognized as the owner and taxes on the home had been paid, officers said.

Watch: Disney World worker fired after stealing almost $49K from company, deputies say

Tax records show Tindle paid $1,945.51 in past due taxes from 2016 to 2017.

Investigators who went by to check the home and found it to be overgrown and Jackson’s vehicle was still parked in the driveway.

A neighbor told investigators that a man would come by the home around once a month and tried to sell Jackson's car for $600, according to an arrest report. 

Watch: Deltona woman, Sanford man linked to 15 burglaries in 2 weeks, deputies say

Investigators said Tindal told officers he believed that by paying the back taxes on the property, he could own the home.

Tindal and Mack were arrested Wednesday and face charges that include grand theft. 


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Steph Curry on his moon landing conspiracy comments: 'Obviously I was joking'

NBA player Steph Curry said he was joking when he said he didn’t believe humans landed on the moon.

The remark was made when the athlete made an appearance on the Monday episode of the “Winging It” podcast, which is hosted by Atlanta Hawks players Vince Carter and Kent Bazemore.

ESPN reported that the Golden State Warriors player was in the middle of a lighthearted discussion with teammate Andre Iguodala, Carter, Bazemore and podcast co-host Annie Finberg when the moon landing came up.

>> Read more trending news 

“We ever been to the moon?” Curry asked at the 46:45 mark of the episode. The group replied, “No.”

“They’re going to come get us,” Curry said. “Sorry, I don't want to start conspiracies.”

Finberg was skeptical, but the others mentioned part of the theory that says director Stanley Kubrick staged the moon landing footage.

People quickly responded, criticizing Curry for spreading the conspiracy theory, especially when he has young fans.

“Obviously I was joking when I was talking on the podcast,” Curry told ESPN Wednesday. “I was silently protesting how stupid it was that people actually took that quote and made it law as, 'Oh my God, he's a fake-moon-landing truther,' whatever you want to call it, yada, yada, yada. So I was silently protesting that part about it, how the story took a life of its own.”

CNN reported that NASA responded to Curry’s claim Tuesday.

“There’s lots of evidence NASA landed 12 American astronauts on the Moon from 1969-1972,”  NASA spokesman Allard Beutel said in a statement. “We’d love for Mr. Curry to tour the lunar lab at our Johnson Space Center in Houston, perhaps the next time the Warriors are in town to play the Rockets.”

Curry told ESPN he’d take NASA up on the offer.

“In terms of the reaction that I've gotten, I am definitely going to take them up on their offer. I am going to educate myself firsthand on everything that NASA has done and shine a light on their tremendous work over the years and hopefully people understand that education is power, informing yourself is power,” the father of three said. “For kids out there that hang on every word that we say, which is important, understand that you should not believe something just because somebody says it. You should do your homework and understand what you actually believe.

“I’m going to go to NASA and I’m going to enjoy the experience wholeheartedly.”

Florida Senate says elections supervisor must step down

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida's Republican state senate president says the Florida Senate will not take any action to block the suspension of embattled elections supervisor Brenda Snipes.

Senate President Bill Galvano sent a memo to senators on Thursday saying there is not enough time to investigate the allegations against the Broward County supervisor before her resignation takes effect in early January. The Senate has the power to review suspensions.

Snipes planned to resign on Jan. 4, but she rescinded her resignation after Gov. Rick Scott immediately suspended her last month. Scott appointed his former general counsel to take her place. In his executive order, Scott said Snipes needed to be suspended for misfeasance, incompetence and neglect of duty

A legal memo prepared by the Senate says Snipes rescinded her resignation too late.

9 At Your Desk: Thursday, Dec. 13

Lightning goalie Vasilevskiy returning to face Toronto

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy is returning after missing 14 games with a fractured left foot to face the Toronto Maple Leafs in a matchup between the NHL's top two teams.

Lightning coach Jon Cooper says last season's Vezina Trophy finalist will start Thursday night against Toronto.

Vasilevskiy went 9-3-1 with a 2.30 goals-against-average before the injury in mid-November. Backup goalie Louis Domingue has played well during Vasilevskiy's absence, helping Tampa Bay enter Thursday on a seven-game winning streak.

Lightning star Steven Stamkos says Vasilevskiy has been the team's MVP for a long time. He adds that it's been tough for Vasilevskiy to watch and not play, but the Lightning can't let down now that he's back. Stamkos adds: "We want to maintain the play that we've had."

Workers dies after being trapped under construction crane

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) - Authorities say a construction worker was killed and another worker injured when a crane toppled at a marina on Florida's Gulf Coast.

Other construction workers attempted to free the trapped employee Thursday when he became caught under the construction crane at the Twin Dolphin Marina in Bradenton, Florida.

Rescue workers freed him but he died a short time later.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports another worker was injured but the injuries weren't life-threatening.


Information from: Sarasota (Fla.) Herald-Tribune,

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