News Cast 11/10

News Cast for November 10th:

An Okeechobee driver was cited for speeding in a school zone and allegedly possessed illegal drugs and a stolen handgun. 

Austin Smith faces charges of grand theft firearm, possession with intent to sell 138 grams of marijuana and marijuana possession. 

The traffic stop was on South East 40th Avenue near Everglades Elementary School. 

The Glock handgun gun was reported stolen out of Coral Springs. 

Smith allegedly told the deputy he sold marijuana at times because he did not have a job. 

Deputies said they also located two other loaded guns and 17 prescription pills. 

Bond was $16,000. 

State comes through for Treasure Island 

The Okeechobee Utility Authority was awarded an over $21 million dollar grant Tuesday to tie Treasure Island Septic tanks onto their sewer system. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced the grants. 

He said a law approved by the legislature in 2020 showed his priority was the environment and improving water quality. 

“The Clean Waters Act of 2020 included a wide range of water quality protections aimed at minimizing the impact of nutrient polluting including septic tanks and agriculture runoff.  We also realigned resources of state assets and took efforts to safeguard our water quality.” 

Department of environmental protection Secretary Shawn Hamilton said money will upgrade sewer systems using new technology. 

The state awarded just over $480 million in grants for septic to sewer and water quality projects. 

Domestic squabble lands man in jail 

An Okeechobee man was shot in the foot after he broke down a door in rural Highlands County. 

Highlands County Deputies said 37 year old Michael Widdows was yelling and making threats and was scaring a resident in Kissimmee River Estates. 

He lived in a shed on the property.  The 39 year old female victim said Widdows was forbidden from entering the home without permission. 

After the argument outside in the yard the woman went into her home and grabbed a hand gun and fired one round when Widdows busted down the door. 

Widdows faces charges of burglary, assault and criminal mischief. 

Deputies said he got into a traffic crash as he fled to Okeechobee.   Deputies detained Widdows and turned him over to Highlands County authorities. 

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement released some details in the inmate homicide at Okeechobee Correctional. 

Special Agent Frank Mercurio said there was a violent altercation at the prison on the night of October 11. 

The victim was found in critical condition and died later. 

Mercurio’s report said Mulene Servano was found in his bunk with massive head injuries and skull fractures. 

Authorities suspect that his cell mate, David Montanez, the only person in the cell with the victim, used a metal foot locker to beat the man. 

Montanez claimed Servano “Had tried some gay stuff and I handled it.” 

The medical examiner said Servano died of blunt force trauma on October 12 at Lawnwood Regional Medical Center.  

Montanez, already serving life for a murder in Miami Dade County, was charged with second degree murder. 

A 29 year old Okeechobee woman charged with 4 counts of child neglect after an alcohol related crash on South East 36th Terrace. 

Okeechobee County Sheriff Deputies said Dalmonnia King was highly intoxicated, stumbling, staggering and complaining as they arrived on the scene. 

The vehicle allegedly struck a parked vehicle. 

Four children, ages six and younger, were in the vehicle operated by King and were not in seat belts. 

Bond was set at just over $31,500.