Sarasota Woman Walking Over 300 Miles To Tallahassee Passes Through Hernando County

After losing her spouse of fifty-six years in June 2014, 81-year-old 20141024_123417Rhana Bazzini decided it was time to take to the streets. Inspired by Granny D’s walk across the country for campaign finance reform, Rhana began planning “Project Granny D”, a walk from Sarasota to Tallahassee to promote Move to Amend and Campaign Finance Reform. At 5’ 3” and 94 lbs, Rhana is a tightly-packed bundle of energy and she is on a mission to reform our political system to say that corporations are not people and money is not speech!

Rhana’s walk began on October 13, 2014. Local groups that are 20141024_123714supporting the effort organized a kickoff event at New College.  Among those supporting the walk are the Florida Veterans for Common Sense, the Student Farmworker Alliance, Public Citizen, the League of Women Voters and the Peace Education and Action Center. The kickoff is a potluck so please bring a dish to share.

Flying into town to lend his support for Rhana’s Walk will be America’s most popular populist, Jim Hightower. National radio commentator, writer, public speaker, and author of the book, Swim Against The Current: Even A Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow, Jim Hightower has spent four decades battling the Powers That Be on behalf of the Powers That Ought To Be – consumers, working families, environmentalists, small businesses, and just-plain-folks.  Twice elected Texas Agriculture Commissioner, Hightower believes that the true political spectrum is not right to left but top to bottom, and he has become a leading national voice for the 80 percent of the public who no longer find themselves within shouting distance of the Washington and Wall Street powers at the top.

The walk will help Rhana connect with everyday people along the route educating them about the campaign and getting them to sign petitions along the way. Rhana will also be contacting elected officials in the districts she walks through to get them to take a stand on the issue.

Rhana was just spotted along US 19 near Timber Pines walking her Picture1way to Tallahassee. Rhana will be walking approximately 10 miles a day. Her total trip is just over 300 miles. She is scheduled to arrive in Tallahassee on December 3rd.  For more information on her trip visit


Family Disturbance Leads to Attempted Murder Arrest

On 10-18-14, a verbal dispute took place between Barbara Lewis ShowThumb (2)and her eldest son, Jason Lewis, at their residence located at 2230 Endsley Road in Brooksville. During the dispute, Dillon Lewis, Jason’s younger brother, intervened and words were exchanged between the two brothers. Jason stated that he planned to leave but would be back to shoot his brother Dillon.

Jason Lewis left in his vehicle and was gone for less than five minutes. When he returned, he got out of the vehicle and was observed to be loading a firearm. Jason immediately approached a group of people that were sitting by a bonfire in the yard. The dispute continued. Dillon stood up from a chair that he had been sitting in, and Jason pointed the shotgun at his face. Jason then lowered the gun, pointing it at Dillon’s legs, and pulled the trigger.

The round struck the ground just inches from Dillon’s right foot. Everyone at the bonfire rushed Jason in an attempt to disarm him. A physical altercation then ensued between Jason and Dillon. During the altercation, Dillon received scratches, an injured wrist, and a bite on his chest.

The round fired by Jason from the firearm is believed to have ricocheted off the ground and struck Dillon in the left earlobe and stuck bystander Dylan Sanders in the back of his right triceps, causing minor injuries to both individuals.

After one more brief physical altercation inside the residence, Jason Lewis fled the property.

Detectives issued a BOLO (Be On the Look Out) for Jason Lewis and his vehicle, as they had probable cause for his arrest on the following charges:
• Attempted Murder – 1 count
• Aggravated Battery – 2 counts
• Aggravated Assault w/a Firearm – 5 counts
• Felon in Possession of a Firearm – 1 count.

On 10-19-14, Detective Tom Breedlove completed a warrant for the arrest of Jason Lewis and was returning to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office after having the Judge sign the warrant. When Breedlove pulled into the parking lot, Jason Lewis was standing in the parking lot waving Breedlove down. Lewis was turning himself in.

Jason Buck Lewis W/M DOB/12-25-1992 was placed under arrest and transported to the Hernando County Detention Center. His charges are listed above. He is being held without bond.

Lewis did not wish to talk to Detective Breedlove about the incident that took place on 10-18-14.

Oak Hill Hospital Receives Chest Pain Center Accreditation with PCI

Oak Hill Hospital announces that it has received full accreditation download (1)with PCI from the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC). “We are particularly pleased to once again receive full accreditation with PCI from the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care,” said Frank Guardiani, Sr., BA, CCT, RCIS, Director of Cardiology Services at Oak Hill Hospital. “This is one more indication of Oak Hill Hospital’s commitment to provide our community with the highest standards of service especially in the areas of cardiovascular care.” Heart attacks are the leading cause of death in the United States, with 600,000 people dying annually of heart disease. More than five million Americans visit hospitals each year with chest pain. SCPC’s goal is to significantly reduce the mortality rate of these patients by teaching the public to recognize and react to the early symptoms of a possible heart attack, reduce the time that it takes to receive treatment, and increase the accuracy and effectiveness of treatment. The Accredited Chest Pain Center’s protocol-driven and systematic approach to patient management allows physicians to reduce time to treatment during the critical early stages of a heart attack, when treatments are most effective, and to better monitor patients when it is not clear whether or not they are having a coronary event. Such observation helps ensure that patients are neither sent home too early nor needlessly admitted. With the increase in chest pain centers came the need to establish standards designed to improve the consistency and quality of care provided to patients. SCPC’s accreditation process ensures that centers meet or exceed quality-of-care measures in acute cardiac medicine.  The Accredited Chest Pain Center at Oak Hill Hospital has demonstrated its expertise and commitment to quality patient care by meeting or exceeding a wide set of stringent criteria and undergoing an onsite review by a team of SPCP’s accreditation review specialists. Key areas in which an Accredited Chest Pain Center must demonstrate expertise include the following:

·         Integrating the emergency department with the local emergency medical system

·         Assessing, diagnosing, and treating patients quickly

·         Effectively treating patients with low risk for acute coronary syndrome and no assignable cause for their symptoms

·         Continually seeking to improve processes and procedures

·         Ensuring the competence and training of Accredited Chest Pain Center personnel

·         Maintaining organizational structure and commitment

·         Having a functional design that promotes optimal patient care

·         Supporting community outreach programs that educate the public to promptly seek medical care if they display symptoms of a possible heart attack

Two Arrested in Connection with Meth Production in Brooksville Motel Room

On 10-19-14 at approximately 9:00 a.m., deputies responded to the Budget Inn, 1795 E Jefferson St., Brooksville, in reference to an anonymous tip that a couple was making meth inside their motel room. When deputies arrived the two occupants of the room opened the door where deputies observed a one-pot meth lab inside the room. The occupants of the room, Benjamin Welch, W/M DOB/ 5-13-79, and Rebecca Looney, W/F 9-8-81, were immediately taken into custody. Members of the Vice and Narcotics Unit were called in to dismantle and dispose of the meth lab. Looney told deputies that Welch was making the meth. Investigators then made contact with the motel’s management to inform them of the incident. Management proceeded to evict Welch and Looney from the room. While deputies were inside the room, they located a spent “one pot,” HCL generator, tubing, pill grinder and receipts from purchases made to construct the meth lab. The items tested positive for meth.  A Citrus County Sheriff’s Office detective responded to the motel to assist in packaging and transporting the lab chemicals and waste to a secure hazardous chemical receiving site in Citrus County for disposal. Investigators said Welch, who along with Looney is visiting from Virginia, was making the meth for personal use. Welch was arrested on charges of manufacturing a controlled substance, possession of meth, possession of drug paraphernalia, and providing false identification to a law enforcement officer.  Looney was charged with resisting an officer without violence.

New Street Lighting in Place for Kass Circle Neighborhood

The neighborhood around Kass Circle in Spring Hill is a little brighter at night thanks to a joint effort among the Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative (WREC), the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office and the Hernando County Board of County Commissioners.  For this year’s update of the Spring Hill Municipal Street Lighting Service Unit, staff emphasized a special focus on the Kass Circle neighborhood, identifying areas where street lighting could be added to improve safety and security.  With input from the Sheriff’s Office, County staff collaborated with WREC to have infill lighting placed on existing electric poles on Canterbury Street, Mead Drive, Omaha Circle, Malone Avenue and other nearby streets. WREC field personnel are adding a total of 34 new lights.

The Kass Circle area is a mixed residential and multi-family community centered near Spring Hill’s first shopping center, built in 1967. The Hernando County Planning Department received a $20,000 grant in 2013 from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to design a revitalization plan for Kass Circle. In partnership with the University of South Florida Center for Community Design & Research, the County held two public workshops this past spring to gain community input on a vision for the area.

“Increased safety and security were priority issues identified by the neighborhood,” said Pat McNeese, Hernando County planner, “Staff members from Hernando County Public Works, WREC and the Sheriff’s Office identified this existing lighting program as a way to meet some of the immediate needs of the community.”