This is Marcia Lane, your roving reporter.
A body found in heavy woods in South Putnam County on Saturday has been identified after an autopsy by the District 23 Medical Examiner’s Office in St. Johns County. Putnam County Sheriff’s Office did not reveal the individual’s identity this morning but officials are expected to do so this afternoon during a press conference at 3 p.m. A spokeswoman said results came back last night but the Sheriff’s Office was still notifying next-of-kin. Deputies found human remains while search for Nyeisha Nelson, 20, who was last seen by Feb. 11 after dropping off her 5-year-old daughter at Middleton-Burney Elementary School in Crescent City. Her car was found last Thursday, a couple of miles from where the remains were discovered.
St. Augustine commissioners saluted re-enactor Brian Bowman Monday, presenting him with the de Aviles award. That’s one of the highest honors in the city. Bowman’s earned it since for more than 35 years he’s been a part of the city’s historic scene including being a presenter of living history, portraying characters ranging from the first Spaniards to land to Victorian era visitors. Currently he’s president of Historic Florida Militia, the city’s preeminent historic re-enactors group.
Crescent City Commission Thursday is expected to make a final decision on whether to keep the police department or turn law enforcement duties over to the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office. Citizens have been fighting the change including seeking recall of commission member Judy West. That failed for lack of enough valid signatures but organizers say they will try again and are looking at recalling other commissioners as well. Commissioners have moved up the time of their meeting to 5:30 p.m. Thursday. Former mayor Brett Peterson has questioned if the meeting was properly advertised.
No injuries are reported after an accident involving a Putnam County school bus and a vehicle on Monday. The accident happened at 4:06 p.m. at 719 State Road 19. That’s the area by Walgreen’s in Palatka. This is the second time this month a school bus has been involved in an accident.
St. Johns County School District begins early registration for the 2021-22 school year March 1. The registration is only for children new to the district and includes those entering kindergarten. Go to the district’s website or visit the student’s assigned school website. You can find that out by going online at http://www.stjohns.k12.fl.us/zoning/. Students must be 5 or older before Sept. 1 and reside in St. Johns County to be eligible for public kindergarten.
Putnam County is holding a countywide cleanup throughout the month of April. Keep Putnam Beautiful director Nicole Grace went over plans with the Putnam County Commission this morning at their meeting. You can get an early start helping on Saturday when KPB joins with the Crescent City Woman’s Club to do a cleanup beginning at the Little Blue House on State Road 17 n Crescent City.
Florida Department of Health in Putnam County reported four new coronavirus cases Sunday and four Monday. Total number of cases is 5,783. Over the weekend three deaths were reported – a 84-year-old woman, a 78-year-old man and a 76-year-old man, bringing the year’s death total to 122. Flagler County reported 12 new cases Monday. Total count is 5,795. St. Johns County reported 32 cases on Monday for a total of 19,860. Two new deaths were reported, bringing the death total to 188 in St. Johns.
Bunnell City Commission met behind closed doors Monday to go over a lawsuit brought by a former employee. Lisa Moore, a former custodian, filed a lawsuit claiming she was forced to resign at the end of 2019. She’s seeking more than $30,000 in damages. Lawsuits are one of the few times governing boards in Florida are allowed to meet out of the sunshine, i.e. without the public present, in order to allow them to decide on their legal strategy.
A St. Johns County Sheriff’s deputy is credited with rescuing an individual from drowning. The individual apparently had a seizure while operating his motorized wheelchair and the chair went into a pond behind the Gate gas station off Mizell Road last Monday. Deputy Nicholas Argitis was first on the scene and found the individual face down in the pond. He pulled him onto dry land where the man began coughing and vomiting up water. Fire Rescue determined the man had a seizure and he was taken to Flagler Hospital. Argitis retrieved the wheelchair and the man’s belongings and took them to the camp where the individual lived. The man was released from the hospital the next day.