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News Cast for July 10th:

Okeechobee City Councilmembers meet this evening and they will be looking to approve a bid of nearly $20 thousand dollars to a company to pressure wash and paint the Okeechobee City Hall Building. They will also be reviewing health insurance plans offered through public risk management. The meeting will begin at 6pm at City Hall.

The Okeechobee County School Board will also be meeting and among other items, they will be looking at their agreement with Indian River State College for dual enrollment. That meeting also begins at 6pm at the school board office.

A vehicle accident claimed the life of an Okeechobee man early Sunday morning and closed off the road to traffic for several hours. Okeechobee County Sheriff’s deputies say 28 year old Cody Nicholas Gorham was killed just before 2:30 am in a motorcycle accident on the 42 hundred block of Highway 70. The accident shut down traffic in the eastbound lanes for about nine hours. The cause of the accident is being investigated.

Okeechobee County fire investigators are looking into the cause of a fire that gutted a double wide trailer Friday evening. Crews were called to the scene on the 17 thousand block of NW 38th Avenue just after six o’clock and found the blaze in one of the bedrooms, completely destroying it and seriously damaging the kitchen and laundry room areas. Crews needed just over a half hour to get the fire under control with about 35 hundred gallons of water. No one was hurt. Total damage to the home and its contents is about $40 thousand dollars.

At their last meeting, Okeechobee County Commissioners approved a facility license agreement with the Chaka Stars Foundation, Inc. to operate a summer camp at the Douglas Brown Community Center. Community Services Director Albie Scoggins says this camp was started by Chaka Smith’s foundation, called Chaka’s Stars, just over seven years ago after one of the county’s two summer camps was shut down due to the economy. Scoggins says this camp has taken a considerable amount of pressure off the county and not just because it provides the county with another children’s summer camp. The camp began early last month and runs through July 27th.

Chaka Stars Camp 1

Chaka Stars Camp 2

An Okeechobee man is in county jail on several charges after a series of incidents Sunday afternoon. Sheriff’s deputies say 18 year old Zachary Seth Gopher had gone to his grandmother’s house and got into an argument with his uncle and then punched him in the face a little before 2:30. His grandmother asked him to leave because of his drug usage after his requests to stay there and he began throwing objects around and breaking them. Deputies say Gopher had left the scene by the time they arrived but they later came back after Gopher’s uncle told deputies he was hiding in the bathroom. He was arrested and charged with criminal mischief and battery. His bond has not been set.

A traffic stop led to an arrest on drug charges for an Okeechobee woman Friday afternoon. Okeechobee County Sheriff’s deputies stopped a Pontiac passenger vehicle, driven by 24 year old Erica Nicole Frederick on the 35 hundred block of SE 38th Avenue just before 2:30 for speeding. When she couldn’t provide her driver’s license, registration or proof of insurance and she shoved her hand between the driver’s seat and center console, she was ordered out of the vehicle and deputies searched it. They told her to open her hand and a hydromorphone pill came out. A vehicle search turned up a bag of marijuana as well. Frederick was arrested and booked into county jail for possession of marijuana, hydromorphone and tampering with evidence. She was released after posting a $10 thousand five hundred dollar bond.

On the arrest report:

33 year old Robert Lee Simpson of Okeechobee was arrested by sheriff’s deputies for possession of drug paraphernalia when deputies found a syringe laced with methamphetamine in his car after a traffic stop. He was released after posting a thousand dollar bond.

23 year old Paul Billie of Okeechobee was arrested for failing to appear in court on previous drug possession, disorderly conduct and driving without a license charges. He was released after posting a $12 thousand five hundred dollar bond.

48 year old Rodolfo Jesus Uncein of Okeechobee was arrested for drunk driving after a traffic stop. He was released after posting a five hundred dollar bond.

25 year old Devin Allen Rexroad of Okeechobee was arrested for drunk driving after a traffic stop. He was released after posting a five hundred dollar bond.

33 year old Lisa Nicole Williams of Okeechobee was arrested for driving without a license for the third time after she was stopped for a traffic violation. She was released after posting a five thousand dollar bond.

26 year old Serrina Arlene Snyder of Okeechobee was arrested for possession of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia after a traffic stop. She was released after posting a six thousand dollar bond.

18 year old Cutler David Meigs of Okeechobee was arrested for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia after a traffic stop. He was released after posting a thousand dollar bond.

30 year old Justin Alan Driggers of Okeechobee was arrested for battery on a woman. He was released after posting a $75 hundred dollar bond.

31 year old Candice Nicole Nesby of Okeechobee was arrested for driving without a license. She was released after posting a $250 dollar bond.