News

Can an Armadillo Climb Stairs? Jeannie's Attic Follow

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Can an armadillo really climb stairs?

It was making so much noise in our attic that my husband figured it must be a robber or a big ol' possum. He took his trusty golf club up to check it out.

Turns out we had an armadillo. And he was a big one.

But our attic is over our garage, up 15 steep steps with open backs.

So I went to an expert. Dan Maloney has worked in zoos for 30 years and is the deputy director of conservation and education at the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.

He said when an animal is scared or determined it can do "unexpected things," although he's never heard of a "stair-climbing armadillo."

However, Maloney said, armadillos do have strong back legs.  They're known for popping up under cars (That's why we see so many dead on the road.) and they can jump.

94-Year-Old Woman Says TSA Crossed the Line with Pat Down

94-Year-Old Woman Says TSA Crossed the Line with Pat Down

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- "I didn't think I was much of a threat to anybody," said Marian Peterson.

Traveling back home from visiting her daughter in North Carolina, 94-year-old Marian Peterson was pulled out of line for a random security check.

"They patted me down, and they made me stand for, with my arms out, for over 10 minutes," she said.

"They groped her. All of her body: her crotch, her breasts and everything else," said her son, Joe Peterson.

Her son, Joe, said the TSA went too far. Marian said it was almost too much for her to take.

"When they let me finally sit down I said, 'I'm glad you're finally being kind to me' that way because I couldn't take it any longer," she said.

Residents Upset City is not Removing Dangerous Trees

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Donna Perry is outraged that a damaged tree in front of her home on city property has not been removed 13 months after the city tagged it. "It's very aggravating."

The "Xs," usually orange in color, are on trees around the city. The city of Jacksonville uses them to indicate troubled trees that need repairs or that need to be removed.

Perry is angry that the tree in front of her home, which is on city property, has been tagged for removal way too long. "Somebody's going to get hurt.  And that's my main concern."

The Perry family is one of many waiting for the city to take action. According to a city spokeswoman, as of June 28, 725 trees either needed removal or repair. 

Some are wondering why these dangerous trees are still standing, while the city is removing trees that an expert tells us, were not dangerous or damaged on Hendricks Avenue in San Marco.

San Marco Main Break Impacts Hospital, Restaurants | SLIDESHOW

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A water main break at a JEA treatment facility in San Marco has customers in the area with little or no water.

PICTURES: San Marco Water Main Break

According to JEA spokesperson Gerri Boyce, work crews are still trying to identify the location of the break.

After that is done, JEA can reroute water, restoring service to those currently without.

Boyce said several restaurants in the area, Baptist Hospital and the Duval County School Board are among those affected by the break.

Since the situation is still developing, JEA is not yet sure how many people have been affected.

City Removes Trees in San Marco; Arborist says they're Healthy

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The city of Jacksonville is tearing out 77 trees on Hendricks Avenue in San Marco, on medians between Dunsford Road and La Vaca Road.

Workers at the scene said today the trees are rotten and need to be removed, but not all agree.

Independent arborist Gene Bushor said nothing is wrong with the trees. "It's a healthy tree. There's no dye back at all.  All new growth on there, dark green color. There's nothing wrong with these trees whatsoever."

Bushor, who has been an arborist for 57 years, said he cannot think of a good reason why the trees would have to be torn down.

But the city said they need to be removed.

"The existing trees (Bradford pears and crepe myrtles) are in a declining state of health as determined by the city arborist and a consultant landscape architect," said city spokesperson Kristen Beach in a written statement.

New Department of Corrections Proposal Would Charge Inmates $1 per Visit

New Department of Corrections Proposal Would Charge Inmates $1 per Visit

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Call it a dollar dilemma.

Some First Coast families are angry over a new proposal from the Department of Corrections.

After $145 million dollars was cut from their budget this year, the Department knew they needed to raise some money.

One proposal on the table: Charging inmates a dollar a visit from loved ones.

And while it's not on the books yet, it has some First Coast families very upset.

Linda Dayson talks to her son on the phone at least once a week, but hasn't seen him in over a year. 

 

 

"Now they've transferred my son a long distance, almost to the panhandle," she said.

He was sentenced to 50 years in prison for 2nd degree murder in 2003, and while she acknowledges her son should pay for his crime, she says the Florida Department of Corrections hasn't made it cheap.

First Coast Man Creates "Boycott Casey Anthony" Facebook Page

First Coast Man Creates "Boycott Casey Anthony" Facebook Page

GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- A First Coast father is so angry about the Anthony verdict, he started a "Boycott Casey Anthony" Facebook page to spread the message nationwide.

Since it went online Tuesday afternoon, the number of likes have grown to the thousands.  

"I'm a parent, and for me it's a travesty," said Aris Fernandez.

Fernandez was working from home when he saw the news feed on the First Coast News Facebook page at 2:23 p.m.

"You guys were the first one to pop that the verdict had been reached," Fernandez explained.

Minutes later, he was using Facebook to put out his own message.

"I went straight and created 'Boycott Casey Anthony' because I don't think she should benefit in any way."

The group encourages people to boycott books, movies or any goods from which Anthony could profit.

In mere hours, the group exploded.

By 7:45 Tuesday evening, there were 875 likes.