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Florida: 5 Things To Know For Jan. 3rd

Your daily look at news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today.

SCOTT SIGNS DEATH WARRANT FOR JIMMY RYCE’S KILLER

The man who raped and murdered 9-year-old Jimmy Ryce almost 20 years ago is scheduled to be executed Feb. 12. Gov. Rick Scott signed a death warrant Thursday for 46-year-old Juan Carlos Chavez, who kidnapped, raped then dismembered the boy on Sept. 11, 1995.

IN 2014, FLORIDA WILL SURPASS NEW YORK IN POPULATION

That will make the Sunshine the country’s third-most populous state, second only to California and Texas. Experts say sun-seeking seniors aren’t driving the growth. Although Florida has the nation’s largest share of residents over age 65, seniors account for less than 10 percent of new residents in the last several years. Instead, more than half the new arrivals are between 25 and 64, according to an AP analysis of data from the U.S. Census’ American Community Survey. Almost two-fifths of them were under age 25.

TEENAGER ACCIDENTALLY SHOOTS HERSELF AT CENTRAL FLORIDA GUN RANGE

According to the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office, the girl was at the Merritt Island gun range with her father Thursday afternoon when her handgun accidentally fired one shot. A sheriff’s office spokesman says the teen was struck by a bullet in the thigh. She was flown to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The sheriff’s office says the shooting was accidental and there will not be an investigation.

$100M LAWSUIT OVER BAHAMAS CHOPPER CRASH WITHDRAWN

A $100 million lawsuit filed against a Florida billionaire over a 2012 helicopter crash in the Bahamas that killed a prominent tax attorney has been withdrawn. The widow of attorney Lance Valdez filed the wrongful death suit last month in Miami federal court against real estate magnate Jeffrey Soffer, but the woman’s attorney filed a voluntary withdrawal on Tuesday.

DEAD SPERM WHALE TOWED AWAY FROM KEYS

The carcass of a deceased sperm whale, estimated to be 35 feet long, has been towed about 10 miles off the Florida Keys to the Gulf Stream. The marine mammal was discovered about a mile off Key Largo Thursday. Officials with the Marine Mammal Conservancy responded along with officers from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Source: Associated Press

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