A Tampa man is facing murder charges after Pasco County authorities say he was involved in a fatal road-rage incident last month.
A Land 'O Lakes man is facing manslaughter charges after Pinellas County Sheriff's deputies say he struck and killed two pedestrians while driving drunk in Treasure Island.
Derral had lost all hope. For seven-hundred seventy-seven days he sat in a windowless six foot by nine foot cell all day, every day. His world was confined by three walls of cinder block and one of steel bars. There were six and a half blocks along the long side, four and one-half across the short side, and fourteen and a quarter to the top. He counted them every day. There were ninety-two blocks on each of the side walls and sixty-four blocks on the back side. He counted those each day, too. He knew the number would never be any different, but he counted the blocks anyway. The blocks enclosing his world would never change, the steel bars would never change, and the fact that he'd never know anything else would never change, he thought. That was his life, day in and day out, as he was on Florida's Death Row.
Seventeen-year-old Land O'Lakes High School student Dustin Sean White was shot and killed in a parking lot at a party in 2009. His acquaintance who fired the gun pleaded guilty to manslaughter as part of a plea agreement last week.
The capital murder trial of Derral Wayne Hodgkins continued in Pasco County on Friday. Prosecutors presented DNA evidence to the jury that they argue proves Hodgkins killed Teresa Lodge in her Land O'Lakes apartment in September 2006.
In a murder trial in Pasco County this week, prosecutors told jurors that Teresa Lodge scratched the person who attacked and killed her in Land O'Lakes in September 2006. A year later, law enforcement decided that DNA evidence contained in scrapings from Lodge's fingernails implicated Derral Wayne Hodgkins. The State now claims that Lodge and Hodgkins got into a fight, Hodgkins tried to choke Lodge and ultimately stabbed her 10 times.