C M Y K
Monday, March 16, 2009 The Daily Commercial
Phone: (352) 365-8208
FAX: (352) 365-1951
News in brief Man kills 4 in Miami, then kills himself
TAMARA LUSH including a pregnant ous shots had been fired and
Man charged Associated Press woman, ran into the street. a red pickup truck had been
in nephew’s MIAMI — A man barged
into a birthday party early
“It was chaotic,” Ford said.
“I can’t imagine what it was
spotted leaving the scene.
Juan Sosa, who lives a
shaking death Sunday, shot his estranged like in there.”
The man also killed his 51-
block away, was out walking
his dog early Sunday when
wife and three other people
LAKELAND — year-old wife’s mother and he heard two shots and saw
to death, then went home,
Authorities say a Lakeland daughter, along with her people running toward him,
set his truck and house on
man is responsible for the daughter’s boyfriend, whose screaming. Then he heard as
fire and killed himself, police
shaking death of his 17- birthday they were celebrat- many as two dozen more
month-old nephew. ing, Ford said. shots and ducked behind a
Witnesses described a
Police say 32-year-old Police did not release the large tree to call police.
chaotic scene that started
Matthew Robert victims’ names because other “I didn’t want to get hit,”
when the man showed up
Wyrosdick initially report- family members had not he said.
uninvited at the party and
ed that his nephew had been notified. They said the The pregnant woman who
told about a dozen people
hit his head on a coffee man and his wife were mar- fled was taken to the hospital
there that he blamed them
table after falling from his ried about four years and as a precaution, but she was
for his wife leaving him, said
seat Thursday morning, not hurt.
homicide detective Ervens they weren’t sure when she AP PHOTO
but doctors at a Tampa Soon after, someone called A Miami police crime scene investigator writes notes at the house
Ford. left him.
hospital said the injuries
Then he opened fire. Some Officers got a call shortly where a man shot himself and set the house on fire after shooting four
didn’t fit the uncle’s story.
took cover while others, after midnight that numer- See KILLINGS, A4 others at a family gathering at another location early Sunday in Miami.
The child died the next
day, and an autopsy
showed the toddler’s
injuries were consistent
with shaken baby syn-
On Saturday, police say
Wyrosdick admitted that
he shook the boy repeat-
industry works on
edly and dropped him on
his head several times.
Wyrosdick was arrested
early Sunday morning RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR
and charged with aggra- Associated Press
vated manslaughter of a
child. He was being held The health insurance industry is working on a
without bail. transformation that could come right out of
Inmates find Long cast as villains for denying coverage or refus-
ing to pay for treatment, insurers now are represent-
trash bags full ing themselves as indispensable partners in health
of marijuana In their pitch to lawmakers, the companies say
they are in a unique position to help improve quali-
OCALA — Authorities ty and root out waste, saving money so everyone can
are trying to figure out be covered.
who dropped four 55-gal- “They are making inroads,” said John Rother, pub-
lon trash bags filled with lic policy director for AARP. “They are getting past the
marijuana by the side of rhetoric and starting to talk about more concrete
an Ocala road. ideas for improving quality and getting value.”
The Marion County In a big change from three or four years ago, insur-
Sheriff’s Office reports ers are writing bigger campaign checks to Democrats,
that inmates working now the party of power in Washington. The insur-
with the county’s solid ance industry gave $10.7 million to Democratic can-
waste department found didates for federal office in the 2006 elections,
the bags on Thursday. according to OpenSecrets.org. Last year, it was $20.7
Drug agents say the bags million.
weighed a total of nearly The stakes are high.
65 pounds. If the industry’s pitch succeeds, insurers will be
Officials are investigat- guaranteed many more customers. The industry
ing where the bags came wants all people in the United States to be required to
from. carry medical coverage, with government providing
financial help for those who cannot afford it.
Woman hurt in Even if insurers end up making less per customer
because of anticipated consumer safeguards, they still
crash gets $9.4M could come out ahead.
PORT RICHEY — A judge But if the overhaul that President Barack Obama
has ruled that the Pasco has promised goes against them, insurers could find
County Sheriff’s Office themselves trying to compete against a new govern-
should pay $9.14 million ment-run health plan offering cut-rate premiums to
to a woman who sus- middle-class families.
tained permanent brain That’s exactly what many liberal Democrats want,
damage from a crash with and Obama hasn’t taken the option off the table.
a deputy. “No one is naive enough to believe that insurers
A judge ruled Friday aren’t going to have problems with parts of this,”
that Deputy Kenneth Rother said. “But they are pushing back in a rather
Petrillo was negligent in quiet way.”
the January 2005 crash. Said Karen Ignagni, president of America’s Health
He had been chasing a CHRIS O'MEARA / AP
Insurance Plans and the industry’s top strategist in
suspected drunken driver Washington: “We understand we need to come to the
The space shuttle Discovery lifts off Sunday at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral. Seven astronauts
when he followed table with very specific solutions.”
are beginning a 12-day mission to the international space station. Ignagni is hedging her bets by building ties to
through a red light and
hit Jennifer groups such as small businesses, whose conservative
Discovery lifts off
Wohlgemuth’s car. The outlook and grass- roots clout could be crucial.
crash sent five people to Yet the industry has won a measure of respect from
the hospital. some longtime adversaries.
Wohlgemuth’s attorney “I have seen very few groups, including the insur-
says the 25-year-old ance industry, that are willing to exercise the nuclear
woman’s brain injury has option and torpedo reform,” said Ron Pollack, execu-
left her unable to care for MARCIA DUNN A hydrogen leak prevented Discovery from lift- tive director of Families USA, a liberal advocacy
AP Aerospace Writer ing off Wednesday and, before that, hydrogen group. “They have participated in a good faith man-
A sheriff’s spokesman CAPE CANAVERAL — Space shuttle Discovery valves kept the shuttle grounded for weeks in ner.”
says state law limits civil and its crew of seven rocketed into orbit Sunday February. Launch pad repairs took care of the Others on the left are not convinced. “Private
judgments against law evening, setting off on a space station construc- leak, and the astronauts were able to board their insurance is the problem,” said Carmen Balber of
enforcement agencies to tion mission cut short by launch delays that spaceship and lift off. Consumer Watchdog, a California-based group.
$100,000, and the sher- dragged on for more than a month. “Well, you had a little bit of a wait but that will “Individuals can’t afford to be forced into buying pri-
iff’s office has insurance Discovery rose from its seaside pad just as the just make the payoff that much sweeter,” launch vate insurance.”
to cover that. But sun was setting, a spectacular sight for a space director Mike Leinbach told the astronauts. If insurers have come to see government as a part-
Wohlgemuth’s attorney agency anxious to get the flight going. As the Commander Lee Archambault and his crew, ner, that’s not as strange as it may seem.
can file a special claim bill shuttle sped away like a brilliant star, part of the which includes two former schoolteachers, Employer coverage has dwindled in recent years,
in the Florida Legislature launch plume glowed pink, peach and golden.
to get the rest. The shuttle was visible for several minutes. See SHUTTLE, A4 See INSURANCE, A4
for string of
Egyptian’s trial on explosives charges to begin
ORLANDO — Police in MITCH STACY Tampa, were arrested on the spot. have any evidence to prove it, police convert a remote-control toy into a
Orlando say they’ve Associated Press Whether those items were danger- and prosecutors think the young bomb detonator.
arrested a man for a string
of Florida bank robberies. TAMPA — Youssef Megahed’s legal ous explosives or just the makings of men were up to no good, noting that Mohamed narrated the video in
Authorities say 46-year- odyssey began a year and a half ago relatively harmless homemade fire- they were pulled over for speeding Arabic, saying he wanted to teach
old Robert McLemore had when deputies in South Carolina works, as the men claim, is expected near the naval weapons station in “martyrdoms” and “suiciders” how
been hiding out after rob- pulled over the car his friend was to be decided by a jury being picked Charleston. to save themselves so they can con-
bing four banks over just driving and found some suspicious starting Monday for Megahed’s trial What the jury won’t hear about are tinue to fight invaders, including U.S.
a few days earlier in the material in the trunk. in federal court. the apparent terrorist leanings of the soldiers.
week, but officers found Raising the specter of terrorism, The 22-year-old former engineer- man who accompanied Megahed Mohamed, 27, pleaded guilty to
him at an Orlando-area federal prosecutors said those items ing student and the other man said that day, Ahmed Abdellatif Sherif providing support to terrorists and in
home Friday night. — PVC pipe containing a mixture of they were on an innocent college Mohamed. December got the maximum 15-year
Police say they found sugar, potassium nitrate and cat litter, road trip to visit Carolina beaches. In the Toyota Camry Mohamed sentence from U.S. District Judge
evidence from the rob- plus fuses — were explosives that Defense attorneys have characterized was driving, deputies found a laptop Steven Merryday, who also will pre-
beries during the arrest, could be used to build a destructive the items in the trunk as ingredients computer containing a video side over Megahed’s trial.
and the case will be device. The two young men, both of for homemade “sugar rockets,” not Mohamed produced and posted to Megahed is expected to claim that
turned over to the FBI for them Egyptian graduate students at dangerous explosives. the YouTube Web site. The 12-minute
federal prosecution. the University of South Florida in Although they apparently don’t clip shows would-be terrorists how to See EGYPTIAN, A4