Tag Archives: 11-20-2013

Community Thanksgiving brings vets, holiday, community unity



Veterans and all rise for the Star-Spangled Banner Nov. 16 at CrossPointe Fellowship, where a  chorus from Anna Maria Elementary School performs. In the front row is World War II veteran Jim Kissick and behind him are Kit Redeker and her veteran husband Dale Redeker. There was entertainment, a barbecue lunch, refreshments, games for kids, speeches and recognition for military veterans. More photos, page 18-19. Islander Photo: Bonner Joy





Members of the American Legion Kirby Stewart Legion Post 24 Honor Guard present the colors for the military branches. In the background are games for kids and volunteers cooking lunch.



Sam Howells, a fifth-grader at Anna Maria Elementary School, read his letter to American veterans on stage for the crowd gathered at CrossPointe Fellow-ship to recognize veterans on Unity Day, Nov. 16.



Sharon Lee Ruckle performs a patriotic song on Unity Day, Nov. 16, at CrossPointe Fellowship following the posting of the colors by the American Legion honor guard.



Jackie Jordan, teacher, military veteran and mom to Gregory, speaks to the audience gathered for Unity Day.



The large U.S. flag posted at the Nov. 16 unity event was created by students at Anna Maria Elementary and includes the handprint of every student at AME.














A random selection of cards created at the event for veterans and for the “thankful” wall. Islander Photos: Bonner Joy

Concerns about AM park donations ignite discord

Sometimes people in Anna Maria take one step forward and two steps back — which appeared to be the case Nov. 14 when Anna Maria commissioners began discussing the first reading of a site plan for what city planner Alan Garrett called the Anna Maria Park —  the six vacant lots at Pine Avenue and Bay Boulevard.

Commission Chair Chuck Webb questioned whether the park should include already approved parking spaces and also expressed concern that the plan includes restrooms.

The site plan presented by Garrett, originally conceived and presented to the commission by former Commissioner Gene Aubry includes landscaping, 15 parking spaces and public restroom facilities.

Wait a minute, said Mike Coleman, a principal with Pine Avenue Restoration, which pledged a $100,000 donation toward the cost of developing the park. He said the commission previously agreed to the donations and the Aubry plan — parking, restrooms and all.

Coleman said Rex Hagen pledged a $50,000 donation to the park on the condition it would incorporate some parking.

And, at a commission meeting in June, commissioners voted for Aubry’s plan.

But Webb, on Nov. 14, disagreed with the conditions placed on the plan.

“I missed that meeting, but I believed my fellow commissioners would not accept any donation with conditions attached,” Webb said.

“I thought the commission would be adamant that no strings would be attached to the donation. Had I been there, I would have (voted) down the donation,” he said.

City attorney Jim Dye said he was asked to write an agreement accepting the donations from PAR and Hagen. He did not have the agreements with him, but said the executed agreements should be at city hall.

He cautioned commissioners: “When reviewing the site plan, base your decision on what the code says, not on money being dangled in front of you. You can accept donations, but you can’t have conditions attached.”

Commissioner Dale Woodland said the documents were agreed to and signed.

Coleman said PAR’s pledge included a clause that the company had the “right to withdraw if there was a major deviation” from the plan as submitted by Aubry.

Woodland said it would be irresponsible to change course now.

“We have an agreement, so it’s the right thing to do,” he said. He said Hagen wanted the restrooms, but if that wasn’t working out after the park opened, the city could then remove them. He indicated that changing the design before completion of the terms was not part of the deal.

Mayor SueLynn was adamant that the commission honor the agreement.

“I can’t believe you are rehashing this again. The commission already voted for this plan. This is what you agreed to and we’ve already moved forward,” she said.

When commissioners agreed to the park plan in June, she told the newly seated commission, she had asked “Are you sure this is what you want?”

She said it was “incredible” for the commission now to have second thoughts.

Nineteen trees were planted at the park and an irrigation well was dug. The 15 parking spaces have been surveyed and a lot of other work has been accomplished, she said.

Commissioner Doug Copeland agreed the city should at least have some parking at the park. “Forget about the money. We’ve already agreed to this plan.”

Webb, however, said he wanted to review documents on the pledges and meeting minutes and learn more about how much work the city has done at the park.

He continued further discussion of the site plan to the Dec. 5 commission meeting.

“Nothing is engraved in stone,” Webb said.

Coleman, a member of the city’s P&Z board, which routinely reviews site plans, gathered his thoughts after the meeting and wrote to city officials Nov. 16, pointing out what he considered to be an obvious procedural oversight.

“The confusion as to the recent review of the six-lots site plan has caused a fundamental misstep.  Even though signed contracts would seem to bind the city,” he wrote, the contracts are irrelevant. Site plan review is not a legislative process, it is quasi-judicial.

Coleman said “the criteria for approving or denying site plans is black and white.”

If the site plan is consistent with the city code, officials are bound to approve it, regardless of personal preference. Accordingly, if a plan fails to comply, it must be denied, he said.

“The commission is required, personal preference or desired policy differences not withstanding, to approve this plan based solely on the fact it has been submitted (by the city) in proper form and is compliant with existing codes and ordinances.”

He wrote, “Site plan approval must be based on substantial competent evidence as to compliance with existing code. Period.”


Renourishment ahead

Commissioners also got an update at the meeting on beach renourishment from Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources director Charlie Hunsicker.

Unfortunately, no city beaches are included in the project, which begins in December. But, he said, Anna Maria beaches are in “pretty good shape.”

The first phase should finish by early February, Hunsicker said. Renourishment will begin at the 79th Street beach in Holmes Beach and proceed south to Cortez Beach. On completion of that phase, Cortez Beach will be renourished and new, adjustable groins will replace the deteriorating concrete groins. Sand will then be pumped on the shore to the southern end of Coquina Beach.


In other matters

Commissioners adopted Nov. 14 an ordinance that requires each property to display its street number with four-inch high numbers visible from the street, and houses on the water to display the address on the waterfront.

Commissioners also rezoned the six vacant lots on Pine Avenue being developed as a park from retail-office-residential to public recreation area in compliance with the comprehensive plan.

The public hearing on a stormwater management amendment was continued to Dec. 5, as was discussion on clearing vegetation at Gulf Front Park, the city-owned beachfront extending south from Magnolia Avenue.

Commissioners also agreed to discuss beach weddings in the context of special event permit requirements at the Dec. 5 meeting.

Island accommodations and rentals: A lot to give thanks for

Anna Maria Island accommodation owners and managers already are giving thanks for a great-looking Thanksgiving weekend.

An Islander survey found most accommodations booked for Thanksgiving, with only rooms or homes here and there still available.

At Cedar Cove Resort, 2710 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, owner Eric Cairns predicted the resort would have its best Thanksgiving week ever.

“We’ve got just a few single-night rooms available, and the way the phone has been ringing, I don’t expect those to last very long,” Cairns said.

“I’m definitely excited about the week. We’ve got lots of families coming, and we may do a Thanksgiving dinner for our guests.”

Cairns said if he gets any drive-up traffic, he’ll do his best to accommodate people, either at Cedar Cove or a neighboring property.

“There’s usually one or two people who decide at the last minute to come to the island for some peace and quiet,” he said.

At the White Sands Resort, 6504 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, co-owner Ken Gerry said Thanksgiving reservations “really look good. We should definitely be filled by Thanksgiving Day.”

Meanwhile, in the vacation homes industry, Kelly Powers of Anna Maria Island Accommodations, 315 Pine Ave., Anna Maria, said she had some homes available “but people who are looking for peace and quiet have booked well ahead of time. We’ll do what we can to help the last-minute visitor, but smart vacationers know to book ahead.”

If AMI Accommodations doesn’t have a suitable rental, Powers said the staff will call around looking for what guest desires.

“We all try to help each other, especially when it’s busy like this weekend,” she said.

The same is true for Island Real Estate vacation rentals, said co-owner Larry Chatt: “We’re really about topped out, but we’ve got a few left. We’ll do all we can to help the walk-ins, including call other properties to see if they can help. All in all, it’s going to be a great Thanksgiving for all the wonderful families who enjoy what this island has to offer.”

Chatt said the office, 6101 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, would remain open until 8:30 p.m. throughout the week to assist those looking for rooms.

David Teitelbaum, owner of four resorts in Bradenton Beach, said advance reservations for Thanksgiving have “gone through the roof.”

Visitors to the island have learned not to wait until a few days before a holiday.

“You don’t want to get shut out from your favorite resort by waiting until the last minute,” he said. “But we’ll help all the walk-in traffic find a room. On the island, we all cooperate with each other.”

Teitelbaum owns the Tortuga Inn, the Tropical Isle, the Silver Surf, the Tradewinds and the SeaSide resorts, all on Gulf Drive North in Bradenton Beach.


Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce president Mary Ann Brockman said the chamber keeps a list of available vacancies among its members during holidays.

“People can call us or drive to the office and we can put them in touch with the right property they’re looking for,” she said.

For information on accommodations during Thanksgiving week, call the chamber at 941-778-1541.

The chamber office is at 5313 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.

Bradenton Beach mayor drops legal challenge

Bradenton Beach Mayor Bill Shearon said one of his first thoughts after winning the Nov. 5 election was that he was, for all intents and purposes, suing himself.

“To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I would win the election,” said Shearon. “After realizing that I had won, I said, ‘Wait a minute. I’m suing myself.’”

According to court documents filed Nov. 12 in the 12th Judicial Circuit Court, Shearon voluntarily dropped out of a lawsuit he filed with two other city residents.

The trio filed the lawsuit against the city in June 2012 following the city’s decision to enter into a joint development agreement with ELRA, Ed Chiles’ BeachHouse restaurant corporation, to construct a dune and parking lot next to the restaurant, 200 Gulf Drive N., Bradenton Beach.

The dune has since been constructed, but if the plaintiffs win, the dune could be removed and the beach restored as it was before the agreement.

Chiles, who is not named in the lawsuit, has held off on the parking lot portion of the agreement until the dispute is resolved. But the BeachHouse already uses the area for its valet parking lot.

The city entered the agreement after weeks of contention from citizens and the planning and zoning board, whose members recommended denying the agreement. The P&Z board cited various violations of the city’s comprehensive plan and land development codes in their findings against the plan.

Strong words from former Commissioner Ric Gatehouse, who questioned the P&Z members’ motives in their decision, and city attorney Ricinda Perry, who called into question the qualifications of the P&Z members, led to multiple resignations.

Jo Ann Meilner and Shearon were among the P&Z members to resign and, along with Shearon’s personal and business partner, Tjet Martin, filed the lawsuit.

Martin was recently appointed to the Scenic Waves Partnership Committee — a city commission advisory board — by the former administration.

The suit continues with Meilner and Martin as plaintiffs and the case has had little movement since it was filed. The plaintiffs offered arbitration to end the case, but the former administration rejected their offer. Commissioners proposed mediation, which was rejected by the plaintiffs.

Shearon said there was no other option for him as mayor but to drop out of the lawsuit.

“I dropped out so that there is no confusion and no conflicts of interest,” he said. “I also no longer retain the attorney Ralf Brookes or have any responsibility with Mr. Brookes or this case.”

When asked if he would recuse himself in future proceedings involving the case, Shearon said he was told he is “free and clear” to vote on decisions pertaining to the case, but that he would not take that step until he felt certain that no conflicts exist.

“I’ll have to get advice from the city attorney on that,” said Shearon. “I’m taking every step to make sure the legal and responsible thing is done, but the first step was to get myself out of the case.”

Shearon said the next step is to wait and see, but assured the public that he would not involve himself in decisions pertaining to the lawsuit if there is any indication of impropriety.

“So right now, I’m in total limbo until I can sit down with the city attorney and see what my legal standing is,” he said.

Shearon was sworn in as mayor Nov. 18.

Biggert-Waters Act has island punch

The Biggert-Waters Act that phases out over years the government subsidies for flood insurance premiums on high-risk properties is impacting Anna Maria Island.

Brent Moss of Anna Maria Island Insurance, 5702 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, said the federal legislation delaying implementation of Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012, was intended to give Congress time to overhaul the National Flood Insurance Program and establish a timeline for raising flood insurance premiums and sustain the program.

In late October, a bipartisan group of senators and representatives announced their plan to delay Biggert-Waters.

The House voted 281-146 in July to delay implementing Biggert-Waters, but the Senate was unable to come up with a companion or compromise bill until last week.

        On Nov. 15,  Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., said in a press release, the bipartisan group has reached an agreement on legislation that would delay implementation of the Biggert-Waters Act by four years.

Nelson said the bill would be introduced in the Senate this week.

But Moss said there is no guarantee the legislation would pass quickly in the Senate.

“How long that will take is anyone’s guess,” Moss said.

He said he’s been in touch almost daily with representatives of the National Flood Insurance Program, which is run by the Federal Emergency Management Authority, and “they don’t even know.”

But the result — a dramatic rise in premiums that took effect Oct. 1 under the act — is being viewed as catastrophic by many who serve the island market in real estate and insurance.

Until Congress passes a law delaying the act and it is approved by the president, Biggert-Waters remains in effect, as do new, higher flood insurance premiums, he said.

And Biggert-Waters already has impacted a number of Moss’ clients, who have seen flood insurance premiums rise at renewal time.

Homes most affected are those built before 1974, which are mostly ground-level, he said. Houses built with elevated living space will likely see little or no effect on flood insurance costs, Moss said.

“Obviously, those whose premiums really jumped are upset, but there’s nothing to do but wait,” he said.

Agent Kim Brito of Academy Insurance, 7330 Cortez Road W., Bradenton, said one island homeowner had a premium increase from $1,200 to $11,000.

Brito and Moss agree that it would help property owners in high-hazard flood areas if flood insurance premiums could be paid in installments. At present, flood insurance must be paid “in one lump sum at renewal,” Brito said.

Bradenton Beach building official Steve Gilbert said that without any changes to Biggert-Waters, Anna Maria Island could become a ghost town.

“I’m getting calls every day about what’s happening to flood insurance rates. A delay in implementing these new rates is really almost a necessity for the island to survive,” he said.

Anna Maria building official Bob Welch said the Biggert-Waters Act is so complicated that online classes are offered for insurance agents and building officials.

Welch said a delay in implementing the law would go a long way toward educating those who need to understand it.

Biggert-Waters also is affecting the island’s real estate market.

Agents at Wagner Realty, Big Fish Real Estate and Gulf-Bay Realty have reported lost sales because of high, up-front insurance premiums required at closing.

Jesse Brisson of Gulf-Bay Realty, 5309 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, said allowing monthly flood insurance payments would be a great help.

“Without some legislation, we’re all going to be losing sales,” he said.

The high cost of flood insurance will make cash sales more attractive to sellers, he said. The buyer would simply avoid paying flood insurance and hope for the best, Brisson said.

Mortgage companies require flood insurance, but owners can opt to go bare if they are not encumbered by a mortgage.

“Buyers now are checking their survey elevation and shopping for flood insurance before making any purchase. It’s really affecting the older, ground-level homes,” he said.

HB traffic committee drafts overflow parking proposal

Seeking ways to gain use of more parking for visitors to the Manatee Public Beach appears to be the focus for Holmes Beach’s congestion committee.

The committee has focused on two primary issues in attempting to resolve traffic congestion and parking issues in the city: The creation of off-site beach parking and expanding parking and improving traffic flow at the main beach, Manatee Public Beach at 4000 Gulf Drive.

The committee all but finalized the terms of an agreement at its Nov. 12 that would establish shared parking terms at churches and businesses for beach overflow parking. The agreement must first be approved by the city commission.

With the details of the agreement in place, committee member Bob Johnson said the next step is establishing whether the committee or the city will negotiate the agreement with the subject property owners.

Holmes Beach Mayor Carmel Monti, who regularly attends the congestion committee meetings, recommended that the committee take on that responsibility.

Johnson expressed concern that once the agreement is approved by the commission, there may be some factors that a church or business would want to add or change to fit specific needs.

Monti suggested that the committee draft a proposal that includes the agreement and outlines what the city has tentatively agreed to do, such as purchasing and installing signage.

He said to include as much information as possible in one sweeping proposal and he would seek to have it placed on a city commission agenda as soon as possible.

Johnson said he would draft the document and include a publicity plan and signage to get people to the overflow parking lots.

“It is my hope to have this plan in place and operating by Feb. 1,” said Johnson.

Committee chair Carol Soustek said it’s a realistic target date.


Public beach parking

        The committee is awaiting a proposal from building official Tom O’Brien on how to reconfigure parking at the public beach, as well as creating a passenger drop-off lane, per Manatee County’s approval.

A drop-off lane would provide an opportunity for motorists to drop off passengers and beach gear and then park either at the beach or at an overflow site.

Police Chief Bill Tokajer, an adviser to the committee, said the study should be done soon for the committee’s review.

The number of parking spaces at the beach is estimated to be about 400. Under the right design and circumstances, as many as 200 additional spaces could be provided, according to Soustek.

“I saw a tentative outlay and it looks wonderful,” she said, noting she has an appointment with a valet company to discuss how a valet service could benefit their parking plans.

Committee members discussed a valet lot, which would condense parking, allowing even more public parking.

Monti said city officials also have reviewed aerial photos of the parking lot and believe an additional 50 parking spaces could be added by realigning the existing parking spaces.

The committee also is in discussion with the county to store existing equipment at the north end of the parking lot elsewhere, creating more room for parking.

In other matters, Soustek placed on the agenda her possible replacement as chair.

“I put this on here for two reasons,” she said. “One is because a member called for my resignation. The other is because I was running for commissioner and, had I won, I would have had to resign.”

Soustek, however, lost in the Nov. 5 election.

Johnson called for her resignation in an October email expressing frustration over the committee’s lack of action.

Soustek said if it was the committee’s desire, she would step down.

“I like to go with the flow,” said Soustek. “I like for meetings to be open and friendly, so you get a lot of input from people.”

Other committee members, including Johnson, said everyone has their own way of doing things, but they had no issues with Soustek remaining chair.

“We just need to concentrate on moving forward in a positive direction, but need to be aggressive and get this stuff done,” said Johnson.

Monti said the committee’s recent disagreements paralleled what is going on at the city commission level, and that the key is to move forward with mutual respect.

“You can disagree, but it’s important you respect the other person’s opinion,” said Monti. “I think this group has done a great job. You’ve accomplished a lot.”

HBPD warns: click it or get a ticket

The Holmes Beach Police Department is joining the “Click It or Ticket” effort for the Thanksgiving holiday week.

HBPD, in a news release, said, travelers — whether heading across the city or across the country should buckle their safety belts on every trip.

“The risk of being involved in a serious or deadly car crash increases when the number of cars on the road increases, and the long Thanksgiving weekend is one of the busiest travel times of the year,” stated HBPD Chief William Tokajer in the news release. “So we want to remind everyone that your seat belts can save your life — and those you are traveling with.”

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that seat belts saved almost 12,000 lives nationwide in 2011. Research shows that with proper seat belt use, the risk of fatal injury to front seat passengers is reduced by 45 percent, and the risk of moderate to serious injury is reduced by 50 percent.

During the 2011 Thanksgiving period, 249 passenger vehicle occupants were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes nationwide. Fifty percent of those killed were not wearing seat belts.

“All too often, we see crash victims who were caught up in the excitement of the Thanksgiving holiday and didn’t arrive safely at their destination,” stated Tokajer in the release. “We want to remind everyone who will be on the roads to please buckle up – every trip, every time — so you can give thanks this holiday season and enjoy the time with your loved ones.”

For more information about traveling safely during Thanksgiving, go online to www.trafficsafetymarketing.gov.

Real Estate – 11-20-2013

522 Bayview Drive, Holmes Beach, a 4,751 sfla / 5,729 sfur 4bed/5bath/3car bayfront pool home built in 2007 on a 240×118 lot was sold 10/24/13, Slater to Ranck for $2,575,000; list $2,790,000.

116 45th St., Unit 116, Beachy Villas, Holmes Beach, a 2,200 sfla / 3,400 sfur 5bed/4bath/3car land condo built in 2013 was sold 10/21/13, Toehold on 4th Street LLC to Nadler for $950,000; list $1,049,000.

118 45th St., Unit 118, Beachy Villas, Holmes Beach, a 2,200 sfla / 3,400 sfur 5bed/4bath/3car land condo with pool built in 2013 was sold 10/21/13, Toehold on 4th Street LLC to BFI Investments LLP for $925,000; list $999,000.

233 Gladiolus St., Anna Maria, a 1,664 sfla / 2,632 sfur 4bed/2bath canalfront pool home built in 1979 on a 101×127 lot was sold 10/21/13, Pescitelli to Fauth for $750,000.

5605 Carissa St., Unit B, Carissa Bungalows, Holmes Beach, a 1,650 sfla / 2,100 sfur 3bed/2bath/1car condo with pool built in 2013 was sold 10/24/13, Carissa Bungalows LLC to Kling for $675,000; list $739,000.

612 Foxworth Lane, Holmes Beach, a 1,988 sfla / 2,686 sfur 3bed/3bath/2car canalfront pool home built in 1971 on a 95×116 lot was sold 10/17/13, Guerin to Pfeil for $595,000; list $645,000.

309 58th St. Unit A, Island Oasis, Holmes Beach, a 1,487 sfla 3bed/2bath condo with pool built in 1957 was sold 10/24/13, Brinson to Ulzheimer for $583,000; list $629,000.

310 63rd St., Unit 5A, Island Walk, Holmes Beach, a 2,001 sfla / 3,176 sfur 3bed/2½bath/2car condo built in 2005 was sold 10/25/13, Phelan to Pearl Event 310 LLC for $515,000; list $535,000.

308 58th St., Unit B, Calypso Cottages, Holmes Beach, a 1,095 sfla 2bed/2bath condo with pool built in 2011 was sold 10/18/13, Anna Maria Island LLC to Dorroh for $471,500; list $489,000.

407 73rd St., Holmes Beach, a 1,640 sfla / 4,904 sfur 3bed/2bath home built in 1994 on a 99×85 lot was sold 10/22/13, Bank of New York Mellon to Quinn for $425,100.

508 69th St., Holmes Beach, a 1,530 sfla / 2,286 sfur 3bed/2bath/1car home built in 1969 on a 80×120 lot was sold 11/01/13, Giles to Katz for $403,500; list $399,000.

2507 Ave. C, Bradenton Beach, a 1,620 sfla / 2,534 sfur 4bed/2bath duplex built in 1979 on a 50×100 lot was sold 10/30/13, Turner to Anmark Properties LLC for $253,000.

2513 Ave. C, Bradenton Beach, a vacant 50×100 lot was sold 10/22/13, Villadsen to 2513 Avenue C LLC for $212,000.

6300 Flotilla Drive, Unit 68, Shell Point, Holmes Beach, a 1,151 sfla 2bed/2bath condo with shared pool built in 1973 was sold 10/23/13, Hundley to Barnes for $190,000.

Jesse Brisson, broker/associate at Gulf-Bay Realty of Anna Maria, can be reached at 941-778-7244.

Island police blotter – 11-20-2013

Anna Maria

        • Nov. 9, 800 block of North Shore Drive, suspicious incident. A complainant reported that the Bradenton Herald was charging her for newspapers that were not being delivered to her address, owned by another person. She said the owner claimed the newspapers are being stolen, but that she was forced to pay a $200 bill.

• Nov. 12, 5314 Cortez Road, Bradenton, Walmart, theft. A 29-year-old Anna Maria man was arrested for misdemeanor theft after allegedly stealing memory cards from the electronics department. According to the report, the man took the cards to the bakery where he purchased a single doughnut and then attempted to exit the store without paying for the cards.

Anna Maria is policed by the MCSO.

Bradenton Beach

        • Nov. 9, 2400 block of Gulf Drive North, resisting arrest. A Bradenton Beach Police Department officer responded to a domestic disturbance and made contact with a 50-year-old New Port Richie man, who was banging on the door of a second-floor condominium unit. The officer asked the man to come down, but he refused and continued yelling and banging on the door. The officer went up the stairs and asked the man again to come down and speak with him, but the suspect refused and kept trying to get into the residence. The officer attempted to place the man in custody, at which time he began pulling away. The officer reports that he had to take the man to the ground in order to gain custody.

• Nov. 13, 900 Gulf Drive N., Gulf Drive Cafe, violation of a protection order. A 30-year-old employee of the restaurant was arrested onsite after a complainant filed a report that the suspect violated a protection order by attempting to call her three times. The suspect’s voice was identified on a voicemail left for the woman Nov. 8.

• Nov. 13, 307 Gulf Drive N., no driver’s license. According to a probable cause affidavit, a woman pulled out in front of a police officer in a careless manner, forcing the officer to slam on his brakes. Upon initiating a traffic stop, the 28-year-old Bradenton woman said she has never had a driver’s license in this country.

        Bradenton Beach is policed by the BBPD.


• Nov. 10, 4500 block of 123rd Street West, theft. A man reported that an unknown person stole his unsecured bicycle left near his boathouse.

        Cortez is policed by the MCSO

Holmes Beach

• Nov. 12, 3600 block of East Bay Drive, criminal mischief. An argument occurred between a man and woman staying at someone else’s residence. During the argument, the man damaged the front door, walls and broke several items within the residence totaling $300 in damages.

• Nov. 12, 700 Manatee Ave., reckless driving. A 46-year-old woman was observed “fishtailing” in a parking lot and then exited at a high rate of speed, at one point crossing the double yellow line to pass another vehicle. A police officer gave pursuit and recorded her speed at 60 mph. After initiating a traffic stop, the Bradenton woman said she has never had a driver’s license. She was charged with reckless driving and not having a valid driver’s license. When the officer began to arrest her, she allegedly resisted and had to be physically restrained. She was additionally charged with obstruction of a law enforcement officer.

• Nov. 2, 300 block of 61st Street, assault. Police responded to a domestic disturbance and heard a female inside the residence screaming. As they approached, a male exited the residence and appeared to be trying to flee. He was detained as the female exited, saying, “He tried to kill me.” The suspect was placed under arrest, at which time the female declined to prosecute.

• Nov. 2, 200 block of 29th Street, battery. Police responded to a domestic disturbance and upon arrival witnessed a male juvenile hitting an adult female. An officer pulled the juvenile off of the victim and placed him in his patrol car. The victim said the juvenile attacked her without warning when she asked him to take his medication. A female juvenile also was punched while trying to help the woman. Police interviewed the male juvenile, who admitted to striking the woman, but said it was because she had stepped on a cockroach and killed it. The juvenile was arrested.

• Nov. 3, 300 block of 62nd Street, vehicle burglary. A complainant said she arrived home to feed her cats and left her vehicle unlocked for only a few minutes. When she returned, her purse was missing. The purse and the stolen contents were valued at $67.

• Nov. 5, 500 block of Bay View Drive, theft. A man reported two unsecured bicycles valued at $140 were stolen from outside his residence.

        Holmes Beach is policed by the HBPD.

        Streetlife is based on incident reports and narratives from the Bradenton Beach and Holmes Beach police departments and Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

Obituaries – 11-20-2013

Anastasia ‘Sheila’ Murphy Cassidyobit-cassidy-mom

Anastasia “Sheila” Murphy Cassidy of Bradenton, born in 1923, died Nov. 17. She raised her family and lived on Anna Maria Island for many years.

She was Catholic and a member of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Catholic Church. As one of the first women to serve in the U.S. Coast Guard in World War II, she was a proud member of VFW Post 10141 and American Legion Kirby Stewart Post 24 and spent several years as a member of the honor guard, serving at military funerals. It was a great source of pride for her to serve at the funerals of her fellow servicemen and women, having served one year at 99 services.

Her closest friends throughout her life were the women with whom she served.

Mrs. Cassidy was a voracious reader and a talented needle worker and seamstress, winning a blue ribbon at the Manatee County Fair for a cross-stitch design she created for her eldest grandson. She loved music and dancing and fabulous high heels. To the end, she wouldn’t pass up an opportunity to dance.

A memorial service will be held with full military honors at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 20 at the VFW Post 10141, 5105 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton.  Donations may be made to Honor Flight of West Central Florida, P.O. Box 55661, St. Petersburg FL 33732, or Women in Military Service for America Memorial Foundation, Dept 560, Washington DC 20042-0560.

Mrs. Cassidy is survived by her children, Vince and wife Bernadette, Maureen, Robyn and husband Michael Dowd, Theresa and husband Pat Collins, Kevin and wife Jenny, Nora and husband Mike Davis and Kelly and Kelley Quinn, 12 grandchildren. She also is survived by Betty Martini, the last surviving member of her Coast Guard friends and a beloved circle of friends from VFW Post 10141.


Tracy Hatfield

Tracy Hatfield, 79, of Lakewood Ranch, died Nov. 11. He was born in Majestic, Ky., and moved to Bradenton in 1981 from New Jersey.

He was a veteran of the submarine service in the U.S. Navy and a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy class of 1957. He was past district governor of Rotary, vice president of Spartan Oil Co. of N.J., and he once owned Island Foods in Holmes Beach on Anna Maria Island.

There will be no local service. Brown & Sons Funeral Homes & Crematory 43rd Street Chapel is in charge. Condolences may be made online at www.brownandsonsfuneral.com.

Mr. Hatfield is survived by wife Sandra; foster son Christopher of West Palm Beach; daughters Karen Joy of Lakewood Ranch, Andrea Adams of Bradenton and Linda of Bradenton; foster daughter Lisa and husband Steve Loomis of West Palm Beach; brother Earl Scott of Lincoln, Neb.; sister Meleta Sammons of Columbus, Ohio; and three grandchildren.