News

Body of missing Orange Park canoeist found


ORANGE PARK, Fla. -- Officials found the man who went missing following a canoe accident early Saturday morning.

According to Karen Park with Florida Fish and Wildlife, the body of 26-year-old Richmond Gard-Chambers was found Monday morning around 6:30.

Gard-Chambers was canoeing in Wells Lake in Orange Park with two other people when the canoe capsized.

Two males and a female went in the water. The female made it out safely. The two men were wearing heavy boots. One of the men was able to get his boots off and held on to a cooler until he was rescued.

Gard-Chambers allegedly panicked. FWC said hydrilla on the lake hindered search efforts. There is only 6 foot visibility in the lake.

Three burglaries investigated at one elementary school


ORANGE PARK, Fla. -- The Clay County Sheriff's Office is investigating three different break-ins, at two Oakleaf area schools, in the past ten days.

Plantation Oaks Elementary was burglarized overnight Sunday. Police reports estimate
broken windows, discharged fire extinguishers and other vandalism at $6,000.

Students were allowed into their classrooms Monday after staff cleaned up broken glass and debris.

One week earlier May 12, Plantation Oaks Elementary was burglarized, resulting in approximately $3,000 in damage, according to the incident report.

During that same weekend, Oakleaf Junior High was vandalized somewhere between Friday, May 10 and Sunday, May 12.

CCSO is asking anyone with information about potential suspects to call 904-264-6512.


Kitten without a paw gets treatment help (Graphic images)


UPDATE, 5/8/13: Peggy's surgery lasted 40 minutes and the surgeon had to amputate at her wrist, according to the Clay County Humane Society. She is already up and meowing. After two to three weeks of recovery, she will be adopted to a permanent home. Clay Humane said she will be able to acclimate very quickly and have a normal happy life.

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UPDATE: As of 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 6, the clinic tells FCN that they have reached their fundraising goal. According to Clair, the clinic coordinator at the Clay Humane Society, FCN's reports were able to help raise $1,700 for Peggy's surgery.

The goal was between $1,000 and $1,200. According to Clair, $800 in donations came from online and another $400 came from people who walked into the clinic to donate in person Tuesday morning.

Number of students being involuntarily committed spikes


ORANGE PARK, Fla. -- Psychiatric lockup. It sounds like a grownup problem, but increasingly, it's an issue at schools on the First Coast. The number of involuntary commitments, or those committed under the Baker Act, is skyrocketing.

"I didn't feel like want to be alive anymore…so they had to Baker Act me. The first time I remember I had a pitch fork to my neck," said 17-year-old Aerial Snider of Clay County.

"I have had a knife against myself, and it's an awful thing to think about, but there have been times when I've wanted to harm myself, very badly," said 16-year-old Christian Bryan of Clay County.

Exploding dye pack slipped in bag of cash during robbery


ORANGE PARK, Fla. -- The Clay County Sheriff's Office is seeking a man who is suspected of robbing Compass Bank at 536 Blanding Boulevard on Tuesday morning.

The suspect entered the bank just after 11:30 a.m. and got in line to make a transaction with a teller, according to CCSO spokesperson Mary Justino.

The teller told deputies the suspect passed her a note demanding money, pointing an object at her that was concealed by his pants pocket.

The suspect is described as weighing 250-275 pounds, is 6'2" and was wearing a white baseball cap, black tennis shoes, gray pants and a black and blue plaid shirt. The man also had a deep sounding voice.

Justino said the suspect was given money with a dye pack, so he may sustain burns to his legs or hands if he was holding the money or had it in his pockets when the dye exploded.

Strapped In: Local teen dies in police custody


ID=8767949CLAY COUNTY, Fla. -- Born just 11 months apart, Merissa and Daniel Linsinbigler were more than just brother and sister. They were roommates, partners in crime, and best friends.

Standing in the middle of the fields at the Murray Hill Playground, 19-year-old Merissa Linsinbigler recalls coming here with her big brother. "We used to play soccer here football here. We would come out here. We'd play ball. One time we had a little picnic over here."

Governor Scott kicks off reelection swing on First Coast


ORANGE PARK, Fla. -- Governor Rick Scott kicked off his reelection big on the First Coast with the first of eight stops planned across the state to get his "Lets Keep Working" theme out in front of voters.

Scott was hosted by Orange Park Volkswagen and a packed showroom while he outlined what his campaign is all about.

"In 2010 it was 'Lets Get To Work' now it is "Lets Keep Working.' We got to keep working to lower taxes, improve education and make sure keep a low crime rate," said Scott.

The Governor said slashing $500 million in taxes this year combined with creating 500,000 jobs and trimming the size of government should be attractive to voters.

Scott won his first bid at statewide office with a slim margin as 70,000 votes separated him from Alex Sink. This time his challenger is former Governor Charlie Crist.