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Articles written by Tamara Lush

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AP Explains: Workers try to decipher intent in hand recount

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Sometimes voters put a check next to a candidate's name instead of filling in an oval that a voting machine can read. Other times, they mistake the abbreviation for "Republican Party" with the abbreviation for "Reform Party"...

 

Devastating toxic algae bloom plagues Florida's Gulf Coast

LONGBOAT KEY, Fla. (AP) — Tons of dead fish. A smell so awful you gag with one inhale. Empty beaches, empty roads, empty restaurants. A toxic algae bloom has overrun Florida's southern Gulf Coast this summer, devastating sea life and driving...

 

Who is Q? Behind conspiracy theory erupting at Trump rallies

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Amid the "Trump 2020" placards, the "Women for Trump" signs and the "CNN SUCKS" T-shirts, the most inscrutable message that came out of Donald Trump's Tampa rally on Tuesday evening was a letter. Q. People wore T-shirts with the...

 

Florida woman's gruesome roach-in-ear tale goes viral

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Those screams you hear? They're the collective sounds of primal anguish after reading a Florida woman's account of waking up with a palmetto bug in her ear. (That's the polite name for a flying cockroach, for those of...

 

Widow of Orlando nightclub gunman is acquitted in the attack

The widow of the gunman who slaughtered 49 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, was acquitted Friday of helping to plot the attack and lying to the FBI afterward — a rare and stinging defeat for the U.S. government in a terrorism case....

 

Lawyers differ on what Orlando club shooter's widow knew

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — If jurors in a federal trial in Florida believe government prosecutors, the wife of the man who carried out one of the U.S.'s biggest mass shootings gave a "green light" to her husband when he wanted to execute his...

 

Can #MeToo movement do harm? Ansari story raises question

The #MeToo movement has been embraced by legions of women as a vital step toward countering widespread sexual abuse and misconduct. This week, more so than at any point in the movement's brief history, there's visceral discussion about its potential...

 

Rare US coins sell for pretty penny at auction in Florida

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — When is a penny worth $300,000? When it's one of the first copper coins struck at the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia, in 1793. The annual Florida United Numismatists (FUN) convention was held in Tampa this week. It's considered one...

 

Man alleges bobcat attack; condo owner says it was housecat

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — A Florida contractor says he was attacked by a bobcat inside a woman's condo, but the animal's owner says her feline is no predator, just a 10-pound domestic longhair kitty named Calli. The contractor, Marcos Hernandez, filed a l...

 

Victims of harassment, assault triggered by recent events

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - Noelle Rose Andressen was raped by her grandfather as a toddler. As an adult, she thought she'd successfully dealt with the trauma, having gone through years of therapy. A professional dancer, she even choreographed a...

 

Tampa police: Finding gun was key in arrest in 4 slayings

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — A recent college graduate who was charged in four slayings that terrorized a Tampa neighborhood over the past 51 days used the same gun in all of the shootings and targeted people near bus stops with "no apparent motive," a...

 

Years into journey, transgender teen still finding himself

HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) — It's been six years since Theo Ramos first cut himself in the school bathroom, six years since his parents and friends and teachers found out he wanted to be a boy instead of a girl, six years in transition. And his mother,...

 

Police hunt house by house for killer after 4th slaying

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Tampa police blockaded a neighborhood and searched with a SWAT team and dogs for a possible serial killer Tuesday after a fourth person was shot dead for no apparent reason. Residents of the Seminole Heights neighborhood...

 

Tiny Texas town turns inward in wake of mass shooting

SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas (AP) — The people of Sutherland Springs have not held news conferences, they haven't made appearances on network morning television shows, and while they've been polite to the media, they're not exactly forthcoming....

 

Serial killer fears: Area of Tampa on edge after 3 killings

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Fears of a serial killer have police in Tampa escorting children to school in one neighborhood near downtown, and a city bus changed its usual route. Three people have been shot to death in the past two weeks within a 1-mile...

 

40 years, 3 sisters, 1 DNA test: The story of a cold case

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — For nearly half her life, Ruby Williams has prayed for her daughter, Brenda: "Lord, let her be alive." She's repeated this prayer tens of thousands of times, starting in the mid-1970s, when she lived in a four-bedroom apartment...

 

Irma devastates Florida orange crop, harms other produce

LAKE WALES, Fla. (AP) — Hurricane Irma dealt Florida's iconic orange crop a devastating blow, destroying nearly all the fruit in some Southwest Florida groves and seriously damaging groves in Central Florida. U.S. Senators Bill Nelson and Marco...

 

Houston cleanup has little crime and lots of helping hands

HOUSTON (AP) — After riding out Hurricane Harvey in a motel and waiting an agonizing week for the waist-high waters to recede, 71-year-old Bob Janak returned to his wrecked home for the first time to find it swarming with people. They weren't thiev...

 

'I survived': How 1 woman lived Harvey on social media

HOUSTON (AP) — Katlyn Perkins' first announcement that something was very wrong at her home in northeast Houston came at 8:19 p.m. on Aug. 24, when she updated her Facebook status. "I'm scared." Like many 20-year-olds, Perkins lives out her life on...

 

Grim reality in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey: More dead

HOUSTON (AP) — Now that the sun is finally shining and the murky, brown floodwaters are slowly receding in much of the Houston area, grim reality is setting in. Harvey is about to release its dead. In Texas, the official death toll stood at 23 on...

 

Monkey troupe vexes Florida park, goes viral on social media

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — There's an upswing in monkey business in and around a state park in Florida, where bands of non-native rhesus macaques live along a river that's popular with kayakers and tourists. Officials have closed two walking...

 

Robots, rappelling, rifles: Showcase of special ops gadgets

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — It's like a supermarket for Navy SEALs. A grocery store for Green Berets. A Costco for commandoes. It's a conference for military special operations forces and their gadgets, weapons and tools. The Special Operations Forces...

 

New 3D technology raises hopes for the coldest of cold cases

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — The faces are haunting. They stare, straight ahead, unblinking and made of malleable clay. There are fourteen total, all busts of the missing, the unidentified, the murdered. The forgotten. These faces appeared before law enforce...

 

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