Tampa Bay Times from St. Petersburg, Florida on January 24, 1995 · 166
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Tampa Bay Times from St. Petersburg, Florida · 166

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Location:
St. Petersburg, Florida
Issue Date:
Tuesday, January 24, 1995
Page:
166
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PS TIMES TUESDAY, JANUARY 24, 1995 learclh doesn't turn up fugitive A tip fails to produce murder suspect Albert Leon Fletcher, who escaped from a police van Jan. 1 1 . By JAMAL THAUI Timet CofTpoodgnt The search for escaped murder suspect Albert Leon Fletcher moved to his parents' home Friday night, where an anonymous tip led authorities to believe that Fletcher may have been hiding out with his folks. :, Pasco County sheriffs deputies secured an area around the Fletchers' residence at the corner of Melrose and 35th Avenue, and called in a SWAT team to search the house. The search didn't net Albert Leon Fletcher, but deputies didn't leave empty-handed. Robert Dennis Fletcher, the 51-year-old father of Albert Leon Fletcher, was taken into custody by sheriff's deputies Saturday morning on an outstanding Polk County warrant for failing to appear on a charge of driving with a suspended license. Robert Dennis Fletcher was freed on bail. Albert Leon Fletcher was on trial for charges of burglary and grand theft and awaiting trial on a first-degree murder case in Polk County in which he could face the death penalty when he escaped from police custody on the morning of Jan. 11. According to police, Albert Leon Fletcher picked the locks of his handcuffs and leg shackles while in a van en route to the county courthouse from the county lockup in Land O'Lakes. When the van stopped at the courthouse and an officer opened the rear door, Albert Leon Fletcher bolted out of the rear of the van and then fled across U.S. 98 into the Mickens-Harper neighborhood, where he disappeared. An intense search for the escapee was conducted that day by up to 40 police officers and sheriffs deputies, but the manhunt was called off that night. Fletcher has been at large ever since. ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR BARBARA L. FREDRICKSEN 'Chicago' spices up Broadway series Animal shelter seeks exemption J Mobile homes can't serve as permanent offices. The commission will hear the Humane Society's case today. By ADAM C. SMITH Time Staff Writer r SHADY HILLS After four years of wrangling between county officials and the Humane Society, county commissioners today will consider what kind of building should shelter several dozen cats and at least a couple of animal lovers. On the surface it's a mundane land use issue: Mobile homes aren't allowed as permanent offices, but that's what the Humane Society is doing with its double-wide near the county's trash incinerator. Take a bureaucratic dispute and mix in some cuddly animals, though, and emotions run high. To heat the shelter operators tell the story, this is much more than a mere zoning matter. "Pasco County no longer serves the public but instead serves itself, feeding on any who oppose it or its employees." That's from Ed Alcorn, a Humane Society board member who operates a wildlife rescue business from the 6ame property. This is from Humane Society board president Suellen Szesyski: "Animal Control wants to be the only agency that handles animals in Pasco County. They would like to do what they want to do and how they want to do it." What the county says is that the Humane Society of Pasco is violating county land development regulations pure and simple. They say they allowed the agency to put up a trailer and use it as an office, temporarily, until it could erect a more permanent office. The Humane Society at one time planned to apply for a grant to build a permanent shelteroffice, but it never came through. They blame county zoning officials for allowing them to spend thousands of dollars improving the current shelteroffice. They insist that county officials led them to believe the mobile home could be used as an office on a long-term basis. "The permit is clearly marked temporary, 180 days," said Acting County Attorney Karla Stetter, who noted that the Humane Society has been the subject of neighborhood complaints. Stetter ordered the Humane Society to remove the trailer a year ago, and the agency is appealing to county commissioners to overrule their staff. A public hearing is scheduled for 9:30 this morning in the county commission chambers at the county government complex off Little Road in New Port Richey. BRIEFLY Fasano leaving helm of Republican club State Rep. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, announced Monday that he will step down as president of the West Pasco Republican Club. For years the club served as Fasano's main power base, but the freshman legislator said in a Jan. 23 letter to club members that he needed to step down because his constituents include more than just Republicans. His resignation is effective Feb. 27, and Fasano recommended that club members elect executive vice president Brian Corley to fill his seat. New Port Richey council to meet NEW PORT RICHEY City Council members are planning an unusual work session today. Instead of dealing with several smaller issues, council members will take up one big one: their vision of the city. David Kelly, who is from the Institute for Better Government at the University of South Florida, will help lead the discussion and keep council members on track. The session begins at 4 p.m. Mourns from Page 1 The mood at Saint Leo on Monday reminded Rochelle of how the school came together last summer after the death of baseball player Jeff Ganz. Ganz was visiting his home in Long Island, N.Y., when he died after he hit his head against a street in an accident. When Saint Leo stu dents returned from summer break, they gathered at Thomas B. Southard Stadium, the college's baseball field, to honor his memory. d Christine Anderson, 19, is shown in a 1994 yearbook photo. Hugh gave the eulogy then. At the ceremony's end, the Saint Leo baseball team stood in a circle, locked arms around an oak tree planted there in Ganz's memory and prayed for him. Hugli blessed the tree. "That was hard to take, and now we'll have to go through it all over again," Rochelle said. Counseling already has begun for many students under the direction of Jo Ann Quinn, resident director. "They've been working with students to try to help them through this," Rochelle said. "Students have been calling me at home wanting to know where they can send flowers for Melody and Christine. We have caring kids on this campus because we stress individual growth here. We have sensitive students. Something like this becomes internalized in everybody here, and that's why they have really deep feelings for each other." I had to wonder if others in the audience at Saturday night's performance of the musical Chicago were getting the same hoot out of the hyped-up murder trial on the stage that I was. The play is simple: Chorine Roxie Hart (Nancy Hoffman) shoots her lover, is defended at trial by lawyer Billy Flynn (Paul Salvatoriello), vies with cellblock mate Velma Kelly (Jennifer Houston) to dominate the headlines, then fades from sight overnight, only to emerge as Velma's partner after they both get out of the slammer. Except for the fact that the defendant was a blond chorus girl, the courtroom scene could have come straight off this week's CNN or Court TV a sharp, self-serving, media-milking lawyer, a frenzied bunch of news reporters fawning over the defendant's every word, and a horde of cynical bystanders predicting and second-guessing every move. The 1975 John KanderFred Ebb musical satire was the second in the new Suncoast Broadway series at River Ridge Center for the Arts, but it was probably the first time that most of the patrons had seen that show. There hasn't been a road show of it for years, and perhaps because of its raw language and risque costumes, it's not often performed by community theaters. I'm told that after it played in Brooksville last week, several series subscribers walked out and canceled their subscriptions. (All of them changed their minds later, though.) Nothing like that happened in Pasco. The only disturbance in the audience was a fellow who arrived late and got in the wrong seat. Despite some titters at the explicit language, brief simulated sex, skimpy costumes and bumps and grinds, all the theatergoers I saw were smiling and whistling the show tunes leaving the auditorium. What makes Chicago special are the sassy patter and the snappy songs and dances. It has the late choreographer Bob Fosse's trade- THEATER REVIEW mark high kicks and lightning-quick moves, right down to the white top hat and tails on the two female leads in the finale. The 3D II International production company stars do a nice job of filling the roles created on Broadway by Gwen Verdon, Chita Rivera and Jerry Orbach. It's rare to see two female leads in one musical, but the Chicago writers decided to pump up the supporting role when they snared Ms. Rivera to play it when the play opened on Broadway. All the better for the audience, especially when the second lead is someone like Ms. Houston, whose strong voice and dancing skills left many of us gasping for breath just watching her. Ms. Hoffman almost paled in comparison. There were plenty of chances for the cast members to shine. An audience favorite was J.R. Stuart, as Roxie's long-suffering husband Amos, singing Mister Cellophane, his lament at being virtually invisible. The best lyrics were in Class by Ms. Houston and Robin Granick in the role of the police Matron, who bemoan that folks just ain't got no class these days. The stage set centered on an elevated six-piece orchestra, a welcome change for front-row patrons whose view is partially blocked when the orchestra is on the floor. A minor problem came from the sound system, which seemed to have a mind of its own, especially in the second act. The wonder of touring companies is that they can come in to a strange town and unfamiliar stage, set up for one show and put on a creditable performance. So far, the Stars of the Universe promoters are bringing in troupes that do a remarkably good job, especially considering the challenges. For information about tickets for the two remaining shows, Pirates of Penzance and Anything Cm, call (800) 543-9829. THE MEN'S CLUB "Fantasy Dancing" COMPLETE PRIVACY 5925 U.S. Highway 19 S. New Port Richey (across from Kancs Furniture) Mon.-Sat. 3 I'M-12 Midnight 841-7282 And Books, Magazines, Marital Aids vl" BtSlwnlld rrivotaTbMtm f"H On The Wert Coaitl D"ll Enlsrlainmant Canter 40457 U.S. 19 N. N.ar Tarpon Ava. Open 34 Hn M1-16QO TAI-CHI Classes Forming The Most Practiced Exercise in the World SAFE FOR ALL AGES Registration LIMITED TO FIRST 50 Friday 7:30 pm January 27th Athletic Club of America Embassy Crossing Port Richey, FL FREE ORIENTATION CLASS (813) 848-5584 or i (904686-4831 l. For Reservations ttui. u vcot less tart when walk? If you have tingling or numbness in your legs or feet, pain and tenderness in the legs, or it hurts to walk, it's most likely a call for help from the back. We also can help relieve pain from: Whiplash, Auto Accident Headache Pain Injured at Work Sciatica, Lower Back, Leg Pain Sports Injury Stress Most insurance assignments are accepted and often there are no out of pocket expenses to the patient. 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To make the move easier 1 A CARDS j t) l uBp7 ' f OUR EVERYDAY LOW PRICES ON X bzmJ X EVERYTHING IN THE STORE. , VALUES TO 81.75 EA. 3 DAYS ONLY NO LIMIT DAYS ONLY A Lti Vi II ILL' 01 ANTIJ ILS LAST V", MON., 123, Tl ES., 12 1, WED., 125 t I MON., 123. TIES., 12 1, El)., 125 V5 y " i ' f V S LWm Lt: LIST I'KICE PKICE OFF LG. ASST. COOKBOOKS & PUZZLE BOOKS $5.93 $ .99 $ .75 FASHION GIFT WRAP 82 SQ. FT. S3.9. $ .99 $ .75 LARGE ASSORTMENT OF GIFT BAGS $2.69 $1.37 $i.02 MANY DIFFERENT CERAMIC MUGS $6.95 $3.77 $2.83 INVITATIONSANNOUNCEMENTS $2.75 $1.77 $1.33 1993 CALENDARS $5.95 $2.77 $2.08 HOLIDAY H34 U.S. 19 934-6677 tx itn EMBASSY CROSSING Next to WALMART 9670 U.S. 19, Port Richey STORE Jloliaay Square ONLY (Behind Stacey s Buffet) 845-4550 1-800-432-4573 Mon.-Frl. 9 am-5 pm Sat. 9 am-1 pm T T OH

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