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Convicted sex offender living near NSB charged with possession of child pornography

Courtesy photo. Erwin Mettler, 61, a convicted child sex offender, was arrested at his residence near New Smyrna Beach on 12 counts of possession of child pornography, the Volusia Sheriff's Office said today.
NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- A 61-year-old registered sex offender was found with several images of child pornography in his residence near New Smyrna Beach and was arrested Wednesday, the Volusia County Sheriff's Office said this afternoon.

Fight outside NSB bar between cousins leads to arrest

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- An overnight fight between two cousins outside a bar resulted in both of them being cut with a knife and one of them getting arrested earlier today, New Smyrna Beach police said.

Giles Lamar Hankins, of New Smyrna Beach, refused medical treatment for facial curs after a 12:37 a.m.Sunday fight outside Mr. C's Bar & Grill, 225 Dimmick St., police said. Police had received a call prior to arriving on scene "that a knife was involved and someone had been stabbed," according to a report filed by Sgt. Valerie Joyce.

Christopher Trull -- middle of three brothers implicated in NSB Spring Break carnage -- captured Thursday after absconding from probation three years ago

Courtesy photos/Volusia Branch Jail/Fla. Dept. of Corrections. Christopher Trull, 35, left, was arrested Thursday night in Nassau County on a warrant charging him with absconding from his post-prison probation nearly three years ago. He and his two brothers went on trial nearly a decade ago for the murders of two Maryland Spring Breakers, but ultimately, the oldest brother, Jonathan Trull, 38, was convicted of murder, while Christopher Trull, and the youngest brother, Joshua Trull, 28, were found guilty of lesser included charges.

I-4 commute tenuous because of large brush fire near S.R. 44 exit; 15 fires burning throughout county

Courtesy photo/Florida Department of Transportation. Here is a snapshot of traffic on Interstate 4, just west of the State Road 44 ramp to New Smyrna Beach and DeLand where a nasty brush fire threatened to cross traffic most of the day.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- With 15 separate brush fires across Volusia County, one of the most feared going into this evening has threatened to shut down Interstate 4 near the State Road 44 ramp that leads to DeLand and New Smyrna Beach.

Mims girl, 17, 1st shark-bite victim in Volusia

NEW SMYRNA BEACH --. A 17-year-old Mims girl is the first shark-bite victim for 2009 in Volusia County, where a record 24 attacks were reported last year.

The girl was surfing just south of Ponce de Leon Inlet Wednesday evening when she got nipped, a bite small enough that Band-Aids were used and stitches averted, the Beach Patrol reported.

This year's shark season has gotten off to a later start compared to 2008, when the first bite was Feb. 17.

A combination of murky water, bait fish and big waves attract the 3- to 5-foot-long sharks, who have little interest in humans.

Angler's Club critic writes to city again demanding answers about lease

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- The citizen who first wrote to the city earlier this year to question the validity of the Angler's Club lease agreement with the city for primate riverfront propety is at it again. He e-mailed the city again last night demanding answers as to the veracity of the longstanding lease he and others have dismissed as a "sweethart deal" that favors the rich.

Harvey T.K. Mitchell continued his call for an independent outside counsel, something at least two other residents -- William Kolesczar and William Gerhartz -- asked for at the March 10 City Commission meeting.

Brush fires on Turnbull Bay and Maytown roads keep crews busy

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- A 5-acre brush fire on Turnbull Bay Road earlier this afternoon destroyed some fencing, but did not touch half a dozen homes in its potential path, Volusia County officials said.

The 4 p.m. fire just west of the city limits was extinguished by fire crews from thecounty, New Smyrna Beach, Port Orange and the Florida Division of Forestry, said Shelly Szafraniec, Volusia Fire Services spokeswoman.

Szafraniec said no evacuations werre ordered, though several families left on their own and Turnbull Bay Road was closed to through traffic while firefighters fought

NSB man puts barrel of rifle into his mouth and asks cops to shoot him

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- A 51-year-old Auburn Avenue man was taken into custody and transported to the hospital for a mental evaluation last night after refusing to put down a rifle while on his porch and at one point putting the barrel end into his own mouth, threatening suicide and asking cops to shoot him, New Smyrna Beach police said.

The SWAT team was called in and negotiators were called out after the gunman, identified as Duane Henry Grove refused to put the rifle down after police responded to an 8:36 p.m. 911 call of a male threatening to commit suicide.

NSBHS Principal Carol Kelley injured in auto accident -- out indefinitely

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- Carol Kelley, principal of New Smyrna Beach High School, is out of work indefinitely after undergoing surgery March 3 for a broken pelvis and hip suffered in an earlier car accident, according to the school's Web site.

Assistant Principal Teresa Marcks is serving as acting principal while the 62-year-old Kelley recuperates from the Feb. 28 accident.

City manager and city attorney to meet privately with Angler's club -- Commissioner Plaskett will attend, but vows to keep quiet

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- The way City Commissioner William Hathaway sees it, nothing will be lost by allowing City Attorney Frank Gummey and interim City Manager Khalid Resheidat to meet next week with members of the Angler's Club before the city spends money on outside counsel to investigate the legitimacy of a longstanding lease agreement for prime public waterfront property.
"If it blows up in our face, we re-group," Hathaway said earlier tonight.

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