Thursday, Apr 24, 2014


Hernando Today

Woman pleads not guilty in death of daughter

- BROOKSVILLE – A Brooksville woman plead not guilty to charges of killing her 6-week-old baby during an arraignment in front of Circuit Judge Daniel Merritt Jr. on Tuesday.

Family searching for 16-year-old girl missing since April 9


BROOKSVILLE – Life hasn’t been normal for the Serafin family since April 9, when 16-year-old Breanna Serafin vanished.

Red-light camera foes gain support


- Red-light camera opponents since last year have been collecting petitions in hopes of getting a referendum on the November ballot.

High winds damage Hernando homes


BROOKSVILLE - High winds damaged several mobile homes in Hernando County on Friday afternoon.

Parents implore school board to keep Westside open


BROOKSVILLE - Hours after the Hernando County School Board discusses the maintenance problems plaguing Westside Elementary School, parents, staff and students filed in to let school board members know how important it wa...

Man found guilty of fleeing to elude law enforcement and other charges


BROOKSVILLE - A jury found Kyle Chunn guilty on five charges on Tuesday that included fleeing or attempting to elude law enforcement and aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer.

Courts in brief


BROOKSVILLE - Kyle Chunn, 23, rejected a plea offer from the state that would send him to prison for 20 years.

Projections look good for blueberry fest

- BROOKSVILLE - While the hard numbers won't be available until the end of the week, Florida Blueberry Festival Coordinator Michael Heard said the third annual event did "extremely well" and brought an estimated 6...

Just Poets planning workshop celebrating poetry month


BROOKSVILLE - Al Svoboda recalls with excitement, even a hint of amazement, the time he was climbing a North Carolina mountain and a poem came to him.

Leaky roof could close Westside Elementary for two years


BROOKSVILLE - A roof at Westside Elementary School could close the school for up to two years while repairs are made, and students might need to be relocated in the process.

Search for missing pilot enters Hernando County


HERNANDO COUNTY - After four days of searching for a missing pilot in the Withlacoochee State Forest, the Hernando County Sheriff's Office took over as lead agency in the effort Friday.

Hernando group searching for families to become foster parents


BROOKSVILLE - Last year, 259 children in Hernando County were placed in out-of-home care after being abused, neglected or abandoned.

Man gets 18 years for trying to set sleeping couple on fire


BROOKSVILLE - A man who attempted to set his sleeping ex-girlfriend on fire in June has been sentenced to 18 years in prison.

Council move creates more room at the Brooksville Cemetery


BROOKSVILLE - Space is a precious commodity at the Brooksville Cemetery. On Monday night, City Council ...

Woman killed in Brooksville ATV crash, deputies say


BROOKSVILLE - A 23-year-old Hudson woman was killed Sunday after being thrown from a four-wheeler at Whitehurst Pond in Brooksville, deputies said.

More than 50 walk across Hernando County for child sexual abuse awareness


BROOKSVILLE - Hernando streets were a sea of teal on Friday as participants in the 2014 "Walk in My Shoes" traveled 20 miles across the county to raise awareness of child sexual abuse and assault.

Biker killed on SR 50 likely riding to see his children, brother says

- A man who was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike on State Road 50 early Tuesday was likely making a 60-mile journey to see his children, his brother said.

Teen shot by cop given house arrest in battery case


BROOKSVILLE - Joseph Berrios, a former Nature Coast Technical high school student and football standout, was sentenced to two years house arrest by Judge Stephen Toner Thursday afternoon.

Hernando school board rejects return of busing for some students


BROOKSVILLE - Bells will not be ringing earlier in the morning and later in the afternoon at Hernando County elementary schools in the coming school year.

District approves teachers contract


BROOKSVILLE - After months of negotiations, the school district and teachers union have agreed on a contract.

No drugs found in car of attempted murder suspect

- Two Atria at Evergreen Woods residents who were allegedly beaten by an off-duty security guard early Thursday remained in guarded condition Friday.

Hernando slips in annual health rankings


BROOKSVILLE - For the fifth year in a row, Hernando County has slipped in health rankings, according to a report released last week by the

Outgoing vet helped transform animal services in Hernando


BROOKSVILLE - When Dr. Lisa Centonze opened Jigsaw's cage on Wednesday afternoon, the three-legged, long-haired cat hopped over to her, and started purring as soon as he got into her arms.

Brooksville security guard charged with attempted murder

- A part-time security guard at a Brooksville assisted living facility was arrested after beating two elderly residents in the face with a scissor jack early Thursday, deputies said.

Hattenbrun found guilty of second-degree murder

- Brett Hattenbrun, who had been charged with first-degree murder, was found guilty of the lesser charge of second-degree murder.

Moral Monday draws few, vows to return


BROOKSVILLE - "Moral Monday" didn't start out with a bang, but that won't keep local government watchdogs from coming back.

Jurors hear lengthy police interview in murder case


BROOKSVILLE - Jurors in Brett Hattenbrun's murder trial last week heard exactly what was said during his lengthy interviews with law enforcement officials.

Jurors in murder trial hear testimony from detectives


BROOKSVILLE - Jurors in the murder trial of Brett Hattenbrum heard from detectives this week who said the defendant attacked them with a fire bomb and nail gun as they served a search warrant at his home. They also heard...

Agencies work to spread human trafficking awareness in Hernando


BROOKSVILLE - Over the past 10 years in Hernando County, there have been no verified human trafficking cases reported in the county.

Downtown improvement plans approved by Brooksville council


BROOKSVILLE - Brooksville City Council members selected three design plans aimed at making the downtown corridor more inviting to residents and visitors.

Report: Eagle Sink cave divers ran out of air

- According to a report, Darrin Spivey and his son Dillon Sanchez died accidentally after their air tanks ran out of oxygen.

Testimony begins in first-degree murder trial of Hernando man


BROOKSVILLE - Chad Hattenbrun started choking up on the stand when Assistant State Attorney Bill Catto asked how he and his late wife, Joey Lynn Hattenbrun, were working on their marriage before her 2011 murder.

First-degree murder trial begins Monday

- People who saw Joey Lynn Hattenbrun's beaten body on a September night in 2011 said she looked like she had been run over by a truck.

30th Annual Art in the Park showcases local talent


BROOKSVILLE - On Saturday morning in Tom Varn Park, mixed media artist Gina Fote puts finishing touches on her booth.

Walk for child sex abuse awareness passing through Hernando


BROOKSVILLE - For the past five years, Lauren Book has walked thousands of miles across the Sunshine State to raise awareness for child sexual abuse and sexual assault.

Sergeant gets probation on grand theft charge

- Joseph Reid, a former Hernando Sheriff's sergeant who resigned in December, was sentenced to two years probation on Thursday morning.

Spring Hill drive-by shooter apprehended, deputies say


SPRING HILL - Hernando deputies arrested a man Tuesday believed to have shot multiple rounds at a Dristol Avenue home on Monday night.

Hernando deputies continue search for armed robbery suspects


SPRING HILL - The Hernando County Sheriff's Office continues to look for two men who robbed a man at gunpoint in a Jiffy Store parking lot on Saturday afternoon.

Florida Blueberry Festival gaining momentum


BROOKSVILLE - More than 24 million people across the country will hear about the Florida Blueberry Festival in the coming weeks, said Festival Coordinator and City Ambassador Michael Heard during Monday's City Council me...

Teen sentenced to 8 years for setting library fire


BROOKSVILLE - Judge Stephen Toner signed off on a plea agreement Friday morning that will send Joseph Michael Brannen to prison for eight years for setting the East Hernando Branch Library on fire last summer.

Red-light camera decision kicked to future Brooksville council


BROOKSVILLE - The future of Brooksville's red-light camera program will likely be up to three new council members elected later this year.

3 sentenced in 2011 Masaryktown slaying

- The three men had previously entered guilty pleas for breaking into a man's home on Aug. 16, 2011 to steal drugs, money and valuables, according to court records.

Ridge manor residents protest proposed well fields


BROOKSVILLE - Hernando County has more important things to worry about than securing water for residents 40 years from now, Joe Wells says.

Three men will be sentenced in Masaryktown slaying


BROOKSVILLE - Richard Denard Harris, Nicholas Trammell and Robert Willoughby broke into a Masaryktown home on an August night in 2011.

City council to discuss red-light cameras Monday


BROOKSVILLE - Red-light cameras likely will be a primary topic when City Council members gather at 7 p.m. Monday at City Hall.

Christmas House auction canceled


BROOKSVILLE - A auction of the historic Rogers' Christmas House scheduled for noon Friday did not proceed as planned because no bidders showed up.

City Council holds financial workshop, discuss outsourcing fire department


BROOKSVILLE - First quarter numbers are in for the fiscal year, and the city is showing some slight signs of improvement.

Grow house found on Century Drive, sergeant says


SPRING HILL - The Hernando County Sheriff's Office seized 17 marijuana plants and 27 pounds of processed marijuana at 9543 Century Drive on Wednesday afternoon.

Hernando sheriff's Civilian Mounted Unit ready for action


BROOKSVILLE - Horses with the Hernando County Sheriff's Office mounted unit are trained to search the woods for missing people, control crowds, deter parking lot crime and march in formation.

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