News Cast for November 14th:

There will be a couple of meetings tonight in Okeechobee County. City Council meets and among the items on the agenda up for discussion is the purchase of twelve 2018 Dodge Charger police squad cars from Auto Nation  Chrysler Dodge/Jeep Ram in Pembroke Pines. The cost of these vehicles will be about twenty thousand dollars. Councilmembers will also look to approve related equipment for these cars from an out of state company and declaring the week of the 15th thru the 22nd as “Farm City Week.” City Council meets at City Hall, tonight at 6pm.

Okeechobee County School Board will also be meeting tonight and they will discuss the possible expulsion of three students, two eighth graders and one ninth grader. That meeting will commence at 6pm at the school board building auditorium behind Golden Corral on SW 2nd Avenue.

The National Milk Producers Federation has placed Larson Dairy on probationary status in the wake of a video and photos released last week of former employees kicking and poking the cattle with metal rebars. The situation sparked a protest Sunday by members of a group called Okeechobee Animal Save against the Larson Dairy. Okeechobee County Commissioner Bryant Culpepper came by in support of the Larson family, claiming this whole ordeal was a set up. Culpepper goes on to say that the Larsons are pillars of this community and are a good Christian family and if they’d known what was going on, they would’ve put a stop to it immediately. As of now, at least one employee of Larson’s Dairy has been fired and two more suspended. There have been no arrests made and no charges have been levied on current or former employees of Larson Dairy so far.

Protest-Culpepper 1

Protest-Culpepper 2

LARSON DAIRY Statement via OCSO

Recently, Okeechobee native and Forest Ranger with the Florida Forest Service, Rob Smith volunteered for a two week assignment in South Carolina as part of a team that processed shipments of water, mattresses, tarps for homes and power poles, among other things to and from Puerto Rico, whose people are still rebuilding and repairing following the devastation of Hurricane Maria last September. Smith says it was a combination of curiosity and selflessness that propelled him to volunteer for this assignment. Smith, who has worked for the Florida Forest Service for almost two years, would volunteer again if asked.

Smith 1

Smith 2

If you’re still in need of assistance from FEMA, you still have time. Officials from FEMA have extended the disaster registration until November 24th. Regarding the extension, it’s not as unusual as you might think according to FEMA spokesperson Lynn Kimbrough. To register, you can log on to disasterassistance.gov or call 1-800-621-3362 for more information and answers to your questions.

On the arrest report:

33 year old Robert Lee Simpson of Okeechobee was arrested by sheriff’s deputies on charges of 2nd degree burglary and petty theft. His bond is set at twenty five thousand dollars.

46 year old Christopher Wayne Cain of Okeechobee was arrested with possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell and driving on a suspended license after a traffic stop. He was released after posting a fifty-five hundred dollar bond.

46 year old Jeffrey Michael Hodge of Dunnellon was arrested for driving on a suspended license after a traffic stop. He was released after posting a fifteen hundred dollar bond.

18 year old Ruben Antonio Rodriguez of Okeechobee was arrested for battery, simple assault, criminal mischief and resisting arrest after a domestic dispute. He was released after posting a twenty five hundred dollar bond.