Florida Today from Cocoa, Florida on November 28, 1999 · Page 38
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Florida Today from Cocoa, Florida · Page 38

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Cocoa, Florida
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Sunday, November 28, 1999
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Page 38
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STATE NEWS INSIDE Handmade Spanish baby doll made famous in the '40s and '50s is regaining popularity, 7B. Brevard County Commission may require veterinarians to sell rabies identification tags, 1 B. STATE LUOHL HCVVd IF1DIUE ni rime iiininr i '! SUNDAY, November 28, 1999 SECTION B Richard Sellers, news editor, 242-3622, 3-1 1 p.m. FLORIDA BRIEFS AP HOWARD RUSSELL saved Quentin Orr, now 15-months, nearly a year ago with cardiopulmonary resuscitation. The two caught up with each other Friday at Cordova Mall in Pensacola. Santas wish is CPR know-how for all FLORIDA TODAY wires PENSACOLA The children who crawl onto his red velvet lap at Cordova Mall whisper wishes of finding doll houses and video games under the tree. But at the top of Santa Howard Russell's Christmas wish list is a gift of life. "I just want everyone everyone to learn CPR," Russell said. Last December, the white-bearded Santa saved 3-month-old Quentin Orr, who had stopped breathing after having his picture taken with Russell. Doctors later told Sheridan Orr, the baby's mom, Quentin probably became excited and choked on his own saliva. Today, she said, "He's unscathed and blissfully unaware." Shootout leaves man dead LAKE WORTH A heavily armed man, fascinated with law enforcement and suspected in the murder of a security guard, ended up dead in a shootout with officers after a 25-mile car chase. Richard Lee Newton, 25, died early Friday after the chase up and down Palm Beach County in a confrontation that included dozens of shots fired. Friends said Newton loved to dress up as a Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputy and even installed flashing lights in his car to make it look more like a patrol car. Body's identity not known DELTONA Investigators still don't know whether the skeletal remains found in the woods are those of a 2-year-old girl missing for nearly a year. Investigators determined that the remains are of a 1- or 2-year-old black girl, said Bob Burch of the Volusia County Medical Examiner's Office. He couldn't confirm, however, whether the body is that of Erica Cleveland who has been missing since October 1998. Since February, authorities have been looking for Erica who disappeared while in her father's custody. Wife dies after fight with husband ST. PETERSBURG A domestic dispute ended in a woman's death after she jumped on to the running board of her husband's van as he drove away from their home and then later fell off and hit her head, a police official said. Connie Reinsch, 42, died Thanksgiving Day after standing on the running board of husband Jeffrey Reinsch's Ford Aerostar mini-van for six blocks before she fell off, said traffic investigator J.C. Pratt. Reinsch fell and slammed her head on a raised curb as her husband attempted to stop the vehicle and talk to her, Pratt said. t Mega Money payouts TALLAHASSEE No ticket matched the four winning numbers plus the Mega Ball number to collect the top prize in the Mega Money game, the Florida Lottery Department said Saturday. Thirty-seven tickets won $420.50 for picking four; 75 tickets won $484 for picking three plus the Mega Ball number; 2,191 tickets won $71 for picking three; 1,794 won $28.50 for picking two numbers plus the Mega Ball; and 51,234 tickets won $1.50 for picking two. Friday's numbers: 23-24-30-31. Mega Ball: 7. Fantasy 5 payouts TALLAHASSEE Nine first-prize winners of the Fantasy 5 game will collect $21,376.63 each, the Florida Lottery Department said Saturday. Another 1,634 tickets won $19.50 for correctly picking four, and 22,271 tickets won $4 for picking three. Friday's numbers: 5-9-10-13-21. tort 'called off ta missing Cmtois Three survivorsof capsizing doing well Associated Press MIAMI The Coast Guard called off its search Saturday for three Cubans missing and presumed drowned after their boat capsized during an ill-fated smuggling attempt to reach the United States. The search, which was in its third day, was called off at 3:45 p.m., according to Coast Guard Petty Officer Silvia 01-vera. Three Cubans, including 5-year-old Elian Gonzalez, survived the accident by clinging to inner tubes until they were found Thursday. Seven bodies were recovered from the ocean, Olvera said. The two surviving adults Arianne Horta, 22, and Nivaldo Fernandez-Ferra, 33 are in good condition at Jackson Memorial Hospital after being treated for dehydration and severe sunburn. They could be re leased today, said hospital spokeswoman Regina Dieters. , The adults talked of the events of this past week in a news conference Saturday from their hospital room. "One lady was on the inner tubes, and she started to become delirious and she said: 'I'm hungry, I need food and water' and then she started to swim to another inner tube and went under," Fernandez-Ferra told Miami television station WSVN. The man, who authorities think drowned in the accident, may have been smuggling his relatives out of Cuba, then charging others. His name has not been made public. "One lady started asking me where her two sons were," Horta told the television station Saturday. "I said: 'I don't know, maybe they drowned' and then she said 'Then, I don't want to live and let go of the inner tube and went under." All three survivors will be allowed to remain in the United States, immigration officials Caution: Ferrets, handle with care Frisky critters require a lot of attention Associated Press PENSACOLA Wesley Hurley got his first ferret, Snuggles, a couple of years ago from an 8-year-old grandson who was too young for the exotic pet. Hurley now has six of the weasle-like creatures. Most were obtained from people who tired of their pets or could not properly care for the cuddly but controversial creatures. "They will steal your heart and hide it under the couch," said the 65-year-old retired Merchant Marine officer as he watched ferrets romp around his Pensacola living room. "They take anything they can get their hands on," he said. Ferrets may be frisky and cute, and their hide-and-seek antics are fun to watch, but they are not for everyone. They have an odor some people can't abide, they sleep 18 hours a day, and they eat a specialized diet. They also need close supervision when freed from their cages for daily exercise and are prone to getting a type of cancer that is difficult and expensive to treat, animal experts said. Ferret fans say worries about rabies and biting are overblown, but the animals are banned in two states California and Hawaii as well as New York City and some other communities. With Christmas approaching, Hurley said he is afraid people will be tempted to give ferrets as gifts. "Don't buy them for small kids," he said. "They require care, and once the kid gets tired of them that's it, the ferret's on its way out," Hurley said. The Humane Society of the United States actually recommends no animals be given as gifts during the holiday season. It's too hectic to bring a new pet into the home at that time, said Cynthia Stitely, interim director of animal sheltering issues for the organization based in Washington DC. Ferrets were domesticated in the 1300s for hunting rabbits, said Connie Howard, director of shelter programs for the American Humane Association, based in Denver. "Until the '70s, when they learned how to de-scent them, they weren't pets because they stunk so bad," she said. Even when de-scented, however, the animals have a ' 1 J Y'4-' f . 4 r?fcWi.nw A 1 1 if f 1 V i JJ f V. ' , ' I , ; .'"fi . i I i,.,,-;.',if.,v,'i'9i, I 1 ( ' 1 " t If I ' fl ( J' i J AP WESLEY HURLEY who houses six ferrets at his heart and hide it under the couch." Even so, they come home in Pensacola says the creatures "will steal your at a price, he says: They require a lot of special care. musky odor. Ferrets overcame another obstacle when a rabies vaccine was approved for them in 1990. Hawaii, as a rabies-free state, is strict on all animals. California's ban dates to the 1930s when many states prohib ited their use for hunting, said James Pembrook Scott, general counsel for the American Ferret Association in Crownsville, Md. Ferret-lovers have defied the California law, risking up to a year in jail and $1,000 fine. About 50 people walked or carried fer rets through a San Diego park to protest the ban last year. Legislation has been introduced to legalize ferrets, but it has not passed. See FERRETS, 7B said. Elian, whose mother was lost on the trip, was spotted Thursday by fishermen. He was clinging to an inner tube two miles off Fort Lauderdale. The little boy was released Friday from Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital in Hollywood after being treated for dehydration and cuts. He is living with relatives in the Miami area. His. father remains in Cuba. "God wanted him here for freedom," said Elian's cousin, Marilysis Gonzalez. "He's here, and he will get it." Medicare spending pullback hits snag Associated Press TALLAHASSEE An attempt by lawmakers to rein in the state's spending on prescription drugs for the poor could stall because legislators refused to curtail their own prescription plan. Advocates for the poor said a proposal by Gov. Jeb Bush and some legislators that would make it more difficult for doctors to prescribe certain expensive drugs to Medicare patients is hypocritical. Medicare prescription expenses are expected to cost the state $1.1 billion next year five times more than it cost 10 years ago. To reduce that cost, Bush has proposed that doctors be given a list of drugs they can prescribe for Florida's 1.4 million Medicare patients. If they want to prescribe a drug that is not on the list, they would have to get state permission. A legislative task force is examining the proposal. Greg Mellowe, executive director of the Florida Coalition for the Homeless, said the proposal "wouldn't be equitable." The state tried a similar plan last year for its 97,000 employees, but scrapped the program quickly after a pharmacist told Sen. William "Doc" Myers, R-Hobe Sound, he could no longer get his heart medicine, and he would have to accept a cheaper substitute. Myers, a retired physician and a legislative power on health issues, said he called the state's insurance department and "raised hell." Within 15 minutes, his pharmacy called him back to say his preferred medicine was ready for pick up. Myers later complained to fellow lawmakers, causing them to kill the preferred drug list for state employees. House Rep. Debby Sanderson, R-Fort Lauderdale, voted to repeal the state employee drug list, but he is a chief supporter of the task force examining whether it's feasible to impose a similar plan for Medicare patients. She voted to repeal the drug list for employees because "I don't think we should be interfering with what the doctor says." She sees no contradiction of her support for the task force. The panel "is just for more information," she said. "It doesn't say what the outcome will be." New teen abstinence program bans discussion of birth control measures Associated Press TALLAHASSEE Florida is ; putting new life into an old mes-. sage for teen-agers who want to have sex: Just Say No. And they're doing it with $10 million. Gov. Jeb Bush's administration is allotting the money this year to taxpayer funded "abstinence-only" sex education programs that urge teens to abstain from having sex. The $10 million marks the most the state has spent on such programs, according to a report in the St. Petersburg Times on Saturday. Many of the programs are taught by Christian organizations and teach kids that sex outside marriage is unhealthy. Teens are taught that even if they already have had sex, it's not too late to try "secondary virginity." It's part of a dramatic government rethinking that started in 1996, when Congress set aside $250 million to finance states' abstinence programs. The money was slipped into the federal budget with no debate. The new federal "abstinence only" sex education grants prohibit program leaders from talking about birth control at all. i "Safe sex" programs traditionally taught in schools and health departments still are in place and are being taught alongside the new programs. In classrooms and community programs called "Best Friends," "Sex Can Wait," "Everyone's Not Doing It" and "Fertility Appreciation for Families," students are hearing a government-financed message that they once heard only at home or in church. "Hopefully, we're priming kids to save something for the most important relationship of their lives," said Amy Stephens, a spokeswoman for Focus on the Family, a Christian group based in Colorado Springs, Colo. As states gobble up federal grant dollars to finance the new programs, people are asking: Can a 1950s-style chastity message compete with the sex-drenched MTV culture of the , new millennium? Bush thinks so. "It's pretty clear that sex education programs where you teach kids how to have sex don't work," he said, But Barbara Zdravecky, who heads Planned Parenthood in southwest and central Florida, disagreed. See TEEN, 7B Ballet fan gets an earful AP JIM WALKER of Gainsville was looking forward to a performance of The Nutcracker" at New York's Lincoln Center on Friday. But musicians like Paul Ingraham, a French horn player, had other ideas, and the ballet was performed with recorded music. Ingraham said he was "very disappointed" because recorded music is what he's accustomed to in Florida performances. T i

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