Pinellas father and son arrested in separate crimes

Deputies arrested 49 year old Rodney J. Blanchard on Sunday and charged him with four counts of animal cruelty and one count of battery after a visitor to his home discovered four kittens inside a freezer.

His son, Damian Blanchard, 24, was arrested Monday and charged with be rolex watches ing involved in a mobile home park shooting last weekend. He is facing two counts of attempted first degree murder.

According to the Pinellas Sheriff’s Office, Damian Blanchard called the victims, David Sharp and Rosa Pereira, out of their mobile home. Once outside, deputies say they were allegedly shot by Francis Bahr, a friend of Damian Blanchard’s. Bahr was arrested and charged on Saturday.

Sharp and Pereira continue to recover in an area hospital.

A friend of the victims spotted Damian Blanchard shortly after Saturday’s shootings.

“They (deputies) just came and picked him up,” said Miguel Ortiz. “We held him until the cops came. He was just right there. Waiting for them.”

Damian Blanchard lives with his father, Rodney, in their mobile home on 46th Avenue North.

On Sunday, a neighbor was at his home when the kittens were discovered in the freezer.

According to officials, neighbor Eve Mulder said Blanchard asked her to get a beer out of the freezer located in the carport.

When Mulder said there were no beers in the freezer Rodney laughed and stated, “But there are kittens in the freezer,” according to an arrest affidavit.

Mulder took a closer look, saw the kittens and attempted to remove them from the freezer. Blanchard pushed her aside and told her to get out. Mulder went home and reported the finding to the Sheriff’s rolex watches rolex watches ng>Office.

Deputies responded to Blanchard’s residence on 46th Avenue North to conduct a welfare check on the animals. As deputies approached the freezer they heard several kittens’ meow.

After deputies discovered the four kittens inside separate sandwich bags in the freezer Rodney stated, “I didn’t know what to do with them,” according to the arrest report.

Rodney Blanchard is being held on $8,500 bond. His son Damian is in jail without bond. He has been appointed a public defender.

Three of the four cats found in the freezer survived. They could be adopted out by as early as rolex watches this weekend by the Pinellas Suncoast Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Pinellas County pokes holes in ‘myths’ of sandbag protection as it sacks service

The TV reporters rush to the water’s edge, and there at the end of a long line stands a man in rubber boots and a flapping poncho. The cameras zoom in, then past him, for the star of this moment is not the man, but the object he lugs, heaves and piles.

This scene, in movies and in real life, is a familiar one. Because what is a sandbag without a flood? A bag of sand. But not so in the face of impending watery doom. It is, at that time, brave. Noble. Iconic.

Earlier this week, officials here announced that they will no longer o rolex watches ffer sand or bags t rolex watches o residents during hurricane season. Because, the county concluded, the bags just don’t work that well.

“We’re trying to dispel a rolex watches lot of myths here across Pinellas County,” said spokesman Tom Iovino. “We would rather spend the time helping people get ready rather than make people feel like they’re ready.”

In ideal conditions, sandbags divert flowing water. Over time, usu rolex watches ally a day or two, standing water will saturate the bags and then leak through them.

Still, other Tampa Bay communities will maintain the service as they always have.

“The average person wants to do anything they can to protect their property,” said Jim Johnston of Pasco County’s emergency management. “Even if it’s a feeble attempt or will ultimately fail.”

Pinellas County no longer offers sandbags

During that year, when Florida saw heavy rainfall and $17.5 billion in damage from hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne, the county realized that sandbags have their limitations.

Now officials u rolex watches rge residents not to rely on them to save their homes from flooding.

According to the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, “Sandbags are for small water flow protection up to two feet,” which is not a likely solution for coastal residents anticipating a strong hurricane.

Also, “if you have moving water, it will be able to pick up the sandbags,” said Pete Yauch, the county’s director of transportation and stormwater.

Water eventually can seep through the bags, and sandbags must be treated as hazardous and thrown away after they’re exposed to potentially contaminated floodwaters. It would be an added inconvenience if residents need to restock after every flood, officials said.

When the county offered sandbags, it created a long line of vehicles and impatient drivers. 19 trying to get sandbags,” Yauch said.

In addition, the cost of offering free sandbags was high.

While officials don’t know the total amount, Iovino said the county has saved on the cost of labor and equipment since the program was discontinued.

The county has offered a self service sand site ab rolex watches out three times since 2004. Residents must buy their own bags and fill them with san rolex watches d. If people rolex watches choose to do that, officials recommend wrapping the rear of a sandbag barrier with a plastic tarp to help keep water out.

Yet, some Pinellas cities do provide sandbags. The Pinellas County Emergency Management website, which explains why sandbags are ineffective, provides a full list of options.

The website says Seminole would provide sandbags to residents in the event of a storm, and most other Pinellas cities would open a self service site.

Residents are encouraged to protect themselves and their homes by shuttering windows, evacuating if necessary, or using commercial products such as DoorDam, which offers waterproof flood barriers for homes.