News Near You: What’s Happening in The Bay Area

By: Nada Blassy

Here are five local stories surrounding the Bay Area.

DNA Evidence Solves an Arrest in Sarasota… 19 years later

According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, Luke Fleming, 39, was arrested on Sunday for the sexual battery and murder of Debora Dalzell in 1999.

Dalzell was found dead in her Sarasota home after concerned co-workers alerted the authorities of her absence.

A Virginia company used DNA phenotyping, a process of predicting a person’s physical appearance, to create a picture of what the alleged assailant would have looked like.

The Sheriff’s Office used the information to track down Fleming, who lived within walking distance from the crime scene, according to detectives.

Detectives then obtained Fleming’s DNA to test the evidence taken from the crime scene. Fleming is believed to be the murderer. Detectives are still investigating.

Semi Truck Crash Leaves One Person Dead

A Florida Highway Patrol official reports a traffic accident involving a semi truck killed someone early Wednesday morning on I-75.

The accident was called in around 4:30 a.m. at mile marker 228.

The truck was headed northbound on I-275 to I-75 transfer ramp when it hit a pylon, according to FHP.

The ramp was closed off for an investigation and was opened around 8:50 a.m. No structural damage has been reported.

Local Restaurant Business Plans to Send Supplies to Hurricane Florence Victims

The Beachside Hospitality Group is looking to fill trucks with the following items:

  • Water
  • Diapers
  • Bleach
  • Cleaning Supplies
  • Non-Perishable Food
  • Flashlights
  • Candles
  • Batteries
  • Toiletries
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • First Aid Items
  • Utility Knives
  • New Pillows & Blankets
  • Formula
  • Baby Food

Donations can be dropped off at three of their restaurants.

The group hopes they can fill the truck and send it out this weekend. For additional information about helping support North Carolina’s hurricane victims, contact Julia Cassino at

Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Adds Two New Social Media Pages in Spanish

Hillsborough County Sherrif Chad Chronister announces new Facebook and Twitter pages on Wednesday morning. About thirty percent of the county’s population is Hispanic. The sheriff’s office said this is an effort to better communicate with local residents.

Chipotle Donates Half of Proceeds to Children’s Hospitals

Chipotle Mexican Grill is fundraising for children’s medical centers.

Hillsborough County Chipotles will donate to Shriners Hospital. Pinellas County Chipotles will donate to Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital.

The fundraiser lasts until the restaurants close.

Mentioning the children’s hospitals while purchasing a meal will ensure proceeds are sent to the medical centers.


Anchor: Nada Blassy

Prompter: Angie Romero

Audio: Galen Martin

Technical Director: Katlyn Brieskorn

Director: Dakota Galvin

Camera Operator: Valezka Nava

Floor Manager: Helen Leon

Graphics: Sherra Parent

Graduate Assistant: Kelsey Baker

Faculty Advisor: Cathy Gugerty