News Cast for January 10th:

Okeechobee County Commissioners will meet for the first time in 2019 this morning and they will be looking to confirm the appointment of a new deputy county administrator and they will also look at a memorandum of understanding between commissioners and the county school board regarding internet service at the Douglas Brown Community Center. The meeting will begin at nine o’clock in the Historic County Courthouse.

Officers from the Okeechobee Police Department are investigating the death of a person found in Taylor Creek yesterday afternoon. Detective James Pickering says the police department got a call just after 3:45 that a body was floating in the creek near Burger King on the six hundred block of NE Park Street. The body was reportedly found by a passerby and someone who had been boating in the creek. Pickering says while the cause of death is not yet known, it’s being treated as a homicide investigation at this time. Pickering says the body looked like it had been in the creek lifeless for the better part of twelve to eighteen hours. The identity of the body will be released following an autopsy report and next of kin notification which Pickering says will take about a day or two.

Officials from the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) say there will be a prescribed burn in Lake Okeechobee today. The prescribed burn will cover about a thousand acres and it will take place in the Pearce Canal area of the lake. Water District Board member Randy Smith says the water has receded in Pearce Canal area of the lake and it’s a good location to burn some debris for lake operations. The burn is expected to begin at some point before eleven o’clock this morning. It will be conducted by the Water Management District, Fish and Wildlife and the US Army Corps of Engineers.

A Bradenton man is recovering from serious injuries he sustained in a vehicle accident in Okeechobee County on Monday evening. Sheriff’s deputies and emergency medical personnel were dispatched to the 32 hundred block of NW 344th Street just after six o’clock after witnesses reported that Sean McEIhimey crashed his ATV and broke his leg and began screaming for help. Deputies and medics say McElhimey also had several lacerations on his face. McElhimey was eventually airlifted to Lawnwood Regional Medical Center in Fort Pierce for treatment. The cause of the accident is not known and is being investigated.

A Belle Glade man is dead after a vehicle accident last Thursday morning. Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) officers say 77 year old James McMillan was driving a Ford F-150 northbound on State Road 15 in Belle Glade, passing other northbound traffic when he hit an oncoming Freightliner semi-truck on the driver’s side door as he was in the southbound lane passing other vehicles. The impact caused McMillan’s truck to go in a northbound direction and skid into a guardrail and land on the other side of the guardrail and into a canal. FHP officers say the semi-truck driver was trying to avoid colliding into McMillan’s truck but to no avail. McMillan was pronounced dead at the scene. The semi-truck driver was not injured.

On the arrest report:

47 year old Robert Lee Hilger of Okeechobee was arrested by sheriff’s deputies for violating probation on previous charges of misusing the phone and resisting arrest. He was released after posting bond.

21 year old Lillian Louise Geary of Okeechobee was arrested for loitering and prowling on someone’s property. Her bond has not been set.