Former Island Drug owners agree to pay Marco for legal fees
Updated 03/04/2014 at 7 p.m. 1 Comment
After losing a four-year legal battle to the city of Marco Island, the owners of the now-defunct Island Drug store have agreed not to file an appeal and to pay the city $50,000 for its legal fees.
Vote on Mackle Park expansion project delayed
Published 03/04/2014 at 6 a.m. 9 Comments
After much debate, the Marco Island City Council unanimously agreed Monday night to delay a vote on whether to hold a referendum to ask residents if they support an expensive renovation and expansion of the 25-year-old community center at Mackle ...
Marco Island's interim community affairs director resigns
Updated 03/03/2014 at 9:06 p.m. 18 Comments
Marco Island's interim community affairs director is resigning to return to his former employer.Joe Irvin submitted his resignation letter to City Manager Roger Hernstadt, saying he was offered a job with his past employer, the city of Sequim, Wash., to
Marco Island city manager hears from former police, fire and utilities employees
Published 02/27/2014 at 2:51 p.m. 48 Comments
Marco Island City Manager Roger Hernstadt is on a fact finding mission. On Feb. 11, he sent letters to public safety employees that left the city's employment between Jan. 6, 2011, and Jan. 14, 2014. Hernstadt asked them to share ...
Marco Island intends to bill Island Drug owners for legal costs
Updated 02/21/2014 at 11:55 a.m.
After winning a four-year legal battle, the City of Marco Island wants to bill the couple who sued the police department more than $90,000 for its legal costs. The city filed a bill for $90,215.88 against now defunct-Island Drug store ...
Marco Council approves zoning change for Rose Marina
Published 02/18/2014 at 10:30 p.m. 9 Comments
The Marco City Council voted 4-3 Tuesday to approve a land-development code change that would allow Rose Marina to build a 60-foot, state-of-the-art boat storage barn.
Neighbors unhappy with Rose Marina's plans for expansion
Published 02/18/2014 at 6:30 p.m. 9 Comments
Neighbors of a Marco Island marina that hopes to nearly double the height of its boat storage building are up in arms, contending it would block — or eliminate — some water views, affect light and air and increase noise.
Marco Island approves hiring three more firefighters
Published 02/03/2014 at 10:20 p.m. 11 Comments
Marco Island City Council unanimously voted Monday to hire three more firefighter-emergency service technicians after seeing a 26 percent increase in emergency calls over the past two years as the island continues to grow.
After two-year legal battle, judge orders champion dog returned to East Naples owner
Published 02/01/2014 at 6 p.m.
A 6-year-old grand champion Bedlington terrier is at the center of a tug of war between her owner and a Marco Island breeder who claims to be her co-owner.
Quirky Buzzard Lope contests draw thousands to 30th Mullet Festival on Goodland
Updated 01/25/2014 at 9:34 p.m. 1 Comment
Eight-year-old Sydney Pope stood on the stage, flapping her arms, spinning around, flashing a broad smile and ending her Buzzard Lope dance with a cartwheel. That flourish prompted loud cheers from the crowd on Saturday at the 30th Annual Mullet ...
Fort Myers Police investigating driveby homicide of teenage girl
Published 01/25/2014 at 12:37 p.m.
Fort Myers police are investigating a driveby shooting that ended in the death of a 17-year-old Fort Myers girl and injured two others early Saturday morning.
Judge tosses Island Drug lawsuit, says law enforcement activity at pharmacy justified
Published 01/22/2014 at 7:54 p.m. 3 Comments
A federal judge on Wednesday threw out a lawsuit filed by the owners of a now-defunct Marco Island drugstore, ruling the police department and its former chief did not harass the store and customers in an attempt to shut it ...
Commissioners not vacating county's claim to historic Mamie Street in Chokoloskee
Updated 01/14/2014 at 8:40 p.m.
After a public outcry, Collier commissioners voted Tuesday not to vacate the county's claim to a public right of way on Mamie Street, allowing the county, the owners of the historic Ted Smallwood Store and others to reach a settlement ...
Gov. Rick Scott volunteers at St. Matthew’s House for Thanksgiving
Updated 11/28/2013 at 1:03 p.m.
Gov. Rick Scott and his wife Ann tossed salad, chopped onions, cut pies and carved turkeys Thursday as they and a legion of volunteers prepared dinner for up to 750 homeless people expected at St. Matthew’s House in East Naples.
Mini-golf course reopens after settlement with MICA
Published 10/23/2013 at 9:04 p.m. 25 Comments
Mini-golfers are putting again on Marco Island. The Marco Island Civic Association and Marco Golf & Garden miniature golf course have settled their legal battle after nine months. The settlement was a win for both sides: MICA’s deed restrictions, which ...
Live Updates: Collier commissioners don't renew contract for Airport Director Chris Curry
Updated 09/24/2013 at 2:01 p.m.
Daily News multimedia journalist Aisling Swift will be live tweeting today from the Collier County Commission meeting.
Collier commissioners approve $887M for fiscal 2014 budget
Updated 09/19/2013 at 8:08 p.m.
Collier County Commissioners today unanimously passed the $887.74 million 2014 fiscal budget, without any negligible change in taxes or loss of services to taxpayers.
Convict who spent 29 years on lam after killing to get new trial
Published 08/21/2013 at 12:53 p.m.
A Florida appeals court on Wednesday ruled a 69-year-old Lee County man convicted of manslaughter should get a new trial, agreeing he should have been told about the judge and prosecutor's concerns that his public defender was intoxicated during trial.
Marco mini-golf course gets reprieve as judge lifts portion of order
Published 08/02/2013 at 12:41 p.m. 23 Comments
Marco Golf & Gardens received a reprieve today as a Collier judge lifted a portion of an order that required the owners to rip it out within 60 days. Circuit Judge Hugh Hayes ruled an evidentiary hearing is needed to ...
Boat owners sue Marco marina, say memberships illegally transferred during sale
Updated 07/18/2013 at 6 p.m. 6 Comments
Jim Walker, owner of Walker's Marine, bought Cedar Bay for $2.5 million, and the boat owners were asked to pay monthly rent — or forfeit their storage slips. Now, boat owners are suing, saying the sale was illegal. Find out ...
Widow receives $4M settlement in Lee jail pepper-spray death
Published 07/02/2013 at 3:12 p.m.
Document released today shows widow of inmate who died in Lee County jail after being pepper-sprayed repeatedly got $4 million settlement.
Marco miniature golf course shut down, owners vow appeal
Updated 07/29/2013 at 7:08 p.m. 35 Comments
The closed sign tells visitors to the Marco Golf & Garden miniature golf course there will be no golf today. Golf sometime in the future? Depends on who you ask.
Commissioners vote to merge East Naples, Isles of Capri fire districts
Published 05/28/2013 at 7:06 p.m.
Collier County commissioners voted Tuesday to consolidate the East Naples and Isles of Capri fire districts, a move that averts a tax hike, but could end in some — or all — Isles of Capri firefighters losing their jobs.
Third Street Plaza could be razed for new downtown Naples boutique hotel
Published 04/30/2013 at 5:25 a.m.
Three years after a bank took over Third Street Plaza in downtown Naples, most of the storefronts remain empty — and those that signed leases know their time is limited. That’s because the new property owners are considering razing the ...
Collier, Lee, others sue BP for economic losses from 2010 oil spill
Published 04/24/2013 at 7 p.m.
Collier and Lee counties have sued BP, Transocean and Halliburton Energy Services to recoup economic losses caused by the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Fiddler's Creek suits become latest in libel, slander cases involving bloggers
Published 04/08/2013 at 5 a.m. 4 Comments
James A. Schutt has been a thorn in the side of Fiddler’s Creek Foundation for more than six years, ever since the 81-year-old resident and others created a homeowners’ blog to discuss their community north of Marco Island.
Jurors acquit Helter, Kassel on all counts in Naples gun-dealing case
Updated 03/29/2013 at 8:04 p.m. 2 Comments
Jurors have found Homer Helter and a vendor at his Naples-area military mall not guilty Friday on all counts in a gun-dealing and conspiracy case.
Appeal court upholds $3 million award to former Collier Teacher of the Year
Published 03/23/2013 at 5:07 p.m.
A Florida appeals court has upheld a $3 million verdict a Lee Circuit Court jury awarded an Immokalee Middle School teacher whose 35-year teaching career ended when he was seriously injured in a 2008 crash.
Homer Helter trial: Prosecution wrapped up its case today in federal court
Updated 03/22/2013 at 12:21 p.m.
The case: Homer Helter, 68, and a vendor, James Kassel, 61, are on trial in federal court in Fort Myers on charges of conspiring to and engaging in the dealing of firearms at a Naples-area store, Homer Helter’s Antique Mall. ...
Testimony begins in Homer Helter federal gun trial
Updated 03/20/2013 at 9:09 p.m.
FORT MYERS — Opening statements and testimony began today in the trial of Homer Helter in federal court.
Jury begins to hear guns case of military antiques dealer Homer Helter
Published 03/20/2013 at 5:10 a.m.
Homer Helter’s Antique & Military Mall is known as the place to buy flags, military medals, antique guns, uniforms, photos and other military relics.
Dead manatee in Marco waters adds to record year for red tide-caused deaths
Published 03/15/2013 at 6 a.m. 3 Comments
When a young manatee washed up on a Marco Island beach this week, it was the latest victim of the devastating effects of red tide hitting Southwest Florida waters.
Mesac Damas trial likely to start in early 2014
Updated 03/11/2013 at 6:11 p.m.
Mesac Damas — charged with killing his wife and five children in 2009 — should go to trial in early 2014.
Naples' abundant golf courses are paired with proliferation of refund lawsuits
Published 03/11/2013 at 6:50 a.m.
A saturation of golf courses in Naples may be a dream for golfers in the nation’s top golf spot, but it often can turn into a nightmare for members who quit and demand membership refunds.
Study: Naples-Marco tops national leaderboard for golf holes per capita
Published 03/08/2013 at 6 a.m. 3 Comments
Naples’ self-proclaimed title of “Golf Capital of the World” was solidified this week, when it was ranked No. 1 nationally for its abundance of golf holes.
An i for an i: Lost phones, tablets leading to rise of arrests for not returning them
Published 02/24/2013 at 8 a.m.
Finding a lost iPhone, iPad, iPod, Droid or other device may seem like finders keepers, losers weepers. It's not. It's a felony. Most of those suspects whose cases went through the court system were sentenced to house arrest and probation ...
Looking for missing or stolen phone? There are many apps for that
Published 02/24/2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Most smartphones have built-in find-my-phone features or allow you to add them through other companies’ apps. They range from free to 99 cents or a few dollars monthly.
Lee sheriff settles wrongful death lawsuit by pepper sprayed inmate's widow
Published 02/15/2013 at 5:33 a.m.
The widow of a mentally ill Ohio man who died after he was repeatedly pepper sprayed in the Lee County Jail has settled her wrongful death lawsuit against Sheriff Mike Scott, the jail's medical provider and several deputies and nurses.
Woman, 23, accuses Lee deputy trainee of using Taser on her for no reason
Published 02/14/2013 at 5:31 a.m. 2 Comments
A 23-year-old Fort Myers woman "Tased" twice last year by a Lee County deputy trainee has filed a civil rights lawsuit against Sheriff Mike Scott and the trainee, who was reprimanded for improperly using "non-deadly force."
Bonita Springs man's lawsuit contends his son accosted by deputy over toy pistol
Published 02/11/2013 at 5:25 a.m.
A Bonita Springs man is suing the Collier County sheriff and a deputy, alleging his civil rights were violated when he was arrested after questioning why his 5-year-old son couldn't bring a lime green toy gun into the county fair.
City Mattress lawsuit contends trademark infringement by Nirvana Sleep
Published 02/09/2013 at 7 a.m.
City Mattress is suing a former company president, alleging his new Nirvana Sleep store stole the trademarked PranaSleep mattress idea and distinctive seven-point lotus flower symbol.
Ruling backs Judge Mike Carr hearing case handled by election foe's law firm
Published 02/05/2013 at 5:30 a.m.
An east coast law firm lost a round Monday in its battle to have a Collier County judge disqualified from hearing its traffic cases.
Collier jury awards dieting woman $170,000 for injuries after body wrapping
Published 02/02/2013 at 7:30 a.m.
Patty Gondek wanted to lose some weight and get healthier, so she joined Slender Life Health Center of Naples three years ago.
Whatever happened to? Marco man, condo reach agreement on service dog
Published 01/28/2013 at 5:15 a.m. 1 Comment
Kane, a trained service dog, can sit and stay at his owner's Marco Island condominium community.
Marco civic group sues to block miniature golf course approved by city officials
Updated 01/28/2013 at 6:29 p.m. 30 Comments
It looked like a hole in one for a Marco Island miniature golf course that received unanimous City Council approval a year ago.
Appeals court denies request to block FPL plant
Published 01/24/2013 at 5 a.m.
A Florida appeals court Wednesday denied a second attempt by the Seminole Tribe of Florida to quash a 2011 Hendry County ordinance that would enable FPL to build a massive power plant on 3,127 acres of panther habitat near its ...
East Naples salon owners claim racial discrimination in suit
Published 01/21/2013 at 5 a.m.
The owners of an East Naples barber shop and hair salon are fighting eviction, contending they're being discriminated against because they're the only black tenants in the shopping center on U.S. 41 East.
Paralysis program, trauma centers are losers as Collier stops red light cameras
Published 01/20/2013 at 7 a.m. 1 Comment
Within two years after red-light camera tickets in 73 Florida communities began amassing fines, nearly $15 million went to trauma centers statewide and to a Miami-based program to try to help those who are paralyzed.
Booboo's owner: "My fault' bear escaped, willing to pay search-and-rescue costs
Published 01/19/2013 at 6 p.m.
The Golden Gate Estates man who owns Booboo, a 125-pound grizzly bear on the loose last week, said Saturday it was handler error that enabled the cub to flee — and he will pay for the three-day search.
Ruling clears way for trial of East Naples man jailed since '06 in child's death
Published 01/14/2013 at 5:25 a.m.
A state appeal court has ruled the omission of a defendant's name in one count of a two-count murder indictment couldn't have misled him because he was the only one charged in the 2-year-old's abuse and killing.