Florida Man: Tutu Edition! Updated at 10:15 PM EDT

Another day, another embarrassing act by someone from my home state (Like BettyC, I’m a native. We’re on 6 hour shifts!).

– Two men, one wearing a tutu, broke into Tampa Farmer’s Market to eat fruit and drink soda early Tuesday morning.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office released surveillance footage of the suspects breaking into the Fletcher Avenue store in hopes that the public can help identify them.

According to HCSO, the suspects gained access to the store by breaking out the glass door at approximately 1 a.m. on November 1, and proceeded to consume fruit and soda once inside.

A sheriff’s office spokesperson shared the following descriptions of the two suspects:

#1 – white male, thin build, possibly dressed in a cheerleading costume, wearing a TuTu, possibly wearing a wig.

#2-  male (unknown race), wearing a hoodie with an image of an owl on the front.

Anyone with any information reference these suspects is asked to call the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office at 247-8200 or anyone with any information regarding the identity and whereabouts of these suspects and who wants to be eligible for a cash reward is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477).

There’s video at the link!

Open, night before Thanksgiving open thread!!!

Updated at 10:15 PM EDT

Allow me to regale you with more tales of the nightlife of Tampa!

– Newly released surveillance video could help Tampa Police locate the man who drove his car onto a sidewalk in Ybor City, hitting two people and a bar early Tuesday morning.

Around 3:25 a.m. Tuesday, after businesses had closed, a group of men began fighting outside the Bad Monkey Bar on East 7th Avenue in Tampa.

Surveillance cameras captured the brawl, including one subject involved in the fighting who attempted to leave the scene by driving away in a black Nissan.

“He tries to do a U-turn, and it’s really too tight of a street to do that. He gets hung up on the curb,” said Steve Hegarty, spokesperson for the Tampa Police Department.

The driver jumped the sidewalk and crashed into several men who were still fighting. One of the men was pushed through the window of the Bad Monkey bar when the car made impact, smashing the glass.
After crashing through the building, the driver left the scene.

Detectives are working to determine if the driver intentionally accelerated his car or if the crash was accidental.

“That’s a big question that we have right now. At the very least, it’s a hit and run. There was damage to the building, clearly, someone was injured and he left the scene,” said Hegarty.

Only one of the men on the sidewalk, Michael Silhol, 25, was hurt in the crash. Silhol suffered a minor leg and head injury.

The Bad Monkey bar was left with $15,000 worth of damage. It was closed at the time of the crash.

Video at the link, too, also, again!



Florida Woman! (Not BettyC!)

Florida Woman strikes again:

Police have arrested a 24-year-old Waldo woman who they believe called in a bomb threat to the University of Florida last week.

Jessica Ward was charged with making a false report concerning planting a bomb, which is a felony, according to a news release today from UF police.

The threat was made against the university’s engineering building, and Ward worked in the building’s Java Hut Coffee Kiosk, the release says.

Students were evacuated from the building Wednesday after a note was found on the first floor of the building in a restroom, and classes in the building were canceled for the rest of the day.

Later, during an interview with police, Ward said she wrote the threat. She told them she wanted to leave work at the threat’s indicated time so she could have “me time,” according to the release.

Ward was arrested this morning and remained at the Alachua County jail on a $15,000 bond.

Open Thread!



Comey’s Coup

I don’t mean to alarm you, fellow citizens, but this FBI business is starting to feel like a coup. Right-wing agents, either with the willing participation of Mr. Comey or emboldened and enabled by his inept leadership, are attempting to swing the election to Donald J. Trump. Consider the evidence that has emerged just in the last 10 days:

1. Comey’s extraordinary statement that reanimated the dead emails story

2. The dormant @FBIRecordsVault Twitter account that burped to life this week and spewed forth investigative reports on Bill Clinton’s pardon of Marc Rich

3. FBI leaks to The Hill about an investigation into an alleged straw donor scheme to benefit FL senate candidate Patrick Murphy

4. Leaks to the WSJ (link to TPM because paywall) by FBI agents who are furious that they weren’t given the green light to investigate the Clinton Foundation based on allegations contained in book published by a Breitbart editor

It’s almost as if our taxpayer-supported public servants were waiting to see if Russia’s interference in the U.S. election would bear fruit, and, in the absence of that, decided to hurl produce of their own into the gears of our democracy. This cannot — must not — stand.

Obviously, our first order of business is to win this election. Y’all know what to do on that score. You’re doing it, and I believe we will win. But after that, there must be a reckoning. I’m not sure how that can be accomplished, but this rot must be exposed and rooted out. It’s a bigger threat to our democracy than Donald Trump.



Creamsicle Meltdown

New PRRI research released today shows Trump on the losing end of a historic gender gap:

2016-10-11-1

As expected, non-whites favor Clinton over Trump by huge margins (72% vs. 17%), but Clinton is also annihilating Trump among white women with a college degree (68% to 29%), and even white women without a degree are split 40%-40% between Clinton and Trump. The findings can be read in full here.

Meanwhile, the incomparable Sam Bee weighed in on PussyGate and presidential debate #2. The whole show was fabulous, but here’s a clip:

Samantha Bee called presidential debate #2 a “grotesque travesty of democracy.” Pretty much! As I mentioned yesterday, many of us lady folk were angry and disgusted at the spectacle of a qualified woman like Hillary Clinton being stalked and insulted by hirsute walking Roofie.

Bee says Trump knows he’s losing and is therefore prepared to “suicide-bomb” the election. If Trump’s Twitter output this morning is any indication, Bee is dead right about that:

Uh-oh. He’s shaking out the Tic Tacs right now and limbering up the stubby orange fingers. It’s time to protect your pussy, America! C’mon ladies — and allies of all genders! Let’s knee this sleazy shitbag in the groin and step over his bloated carcass into history!



Be safe as Matthew bears down

For all of our Southeastern US readers, be safe and don’t be stupid as Hurricane Matthew bears down.

Via the Wunderblog:

An 11:03 pm Wednesday fix from the Air Force hurricane hunters found that Matthew had finally closed off its eyewall, and the central pressure had dropped to 959 mb. In its 11 pm EDT discussion, NHC noted that Matthew’s eye–once again distinct on satellite imagery–has contracted to about 17 miles wide, another sign of strengthening. It may take until midday Thursday for any substantial drop in Matthew’s pressure to result in a stronger wind field. NHC predicts that Matthew will again hit Category 4 intensity by Thursday evening. The 00Z Thursday SHIPS model forecast gave an 11% chance that Matthew would intensify enough to become a Category 5 storm again by Thursday night….

Should Matthew continue on its due-northwest track, it would come uncomfortably close to making landfall along the urban corridor from Miami to Palm Beach. Our most reliable track models insist that Matthew will begin angling just to the right before landfall, which would keep the southern part of this corridor on Matthew’s weaker side. Broward County (including Fort Lauderdale) is in a hurricane warning, while Miami-Dade County is in a tropical storm warning. The risk of dangerous impacts, including hurricane-force winds, ramps up greatly from Palm Beach northward. The most recent NHC forecast (see Figure 2 above) keeps Matthew as a Category 4 hurricane as it reaches the Melbourne area on Friday morning and a strong Category 3 by Friday evening just east of Jacksonville.

A reminder, Category 5 is what Andrew and Katrina were.  Big, bad voodoo.  Sandy despite all of her destruction was only a middling Category 1 storm when it came ashore in New Jersey.  Matthew is a big powerful storm so please don’t be stupid, get away from the coast if possible and please don’t go surfing.

 



Why would Trump go?

The post-convention Dump Trump movement among Republican operatives and strategerists is growing and getting louder. Politico has the scoop:

Republican insiders in key battleground states have a message for The Donald: Get out.
That’s according to The POLITICO Caucus — a panel of activists, strategists and operatives in 11 swing states. The majority of GOP insiders, 70 percent, said they want Trump to drop out of the race and be replaced by another Republican candidate — with many citing Trump’s drag on Republicans in down-ballot races.

I have two big questions. The first is a bit of taunting —“Why the hell could you not organize an orgy at the Bunny Ranch in January?”

Secondly, why the hell would Trump agree? A Dump and Replace Trump movement has severe mechanical limitations. Ballots will start to be printed in the next couple of weeks so there is a hard time constraint on any Trump Replacement movement. More importantly, any Dump and Replace Trump action has two major players who have to agree and a hostile player who has a say. A successful Dump Trump action needs the “establishment” Republican Party to agree to the action (they’re as an institution is either there or close to it) as well as Donald J. Trump to agree to be replaced.

The Republican insider argument is that Trump will cost them the White House, will cost them the Senate and will significantly reduce (best case scenario) the current GOP majority in the House. That means Trump will cost them the Supreme Court median vote. All of those are probably true and they are high salience to Movement Conservatives.

Does Donald J. Trump and his voters care deeply about any of those items except for the White House?

No!

He does not care about the House, he does not care about the Senate. He does not care about policy outcomes. He has a very limited shadow of the future and a very narrow give a fuck space that barely intersects with Republican insider give a damn space.

What is the gain for Trump to step aside? His brand is underwater as his name is currently toxic. If he is to step aside, his brand (and his ego) won’t recover quickly. His best chance of re-establishing his brand (and his ego) is to double down and win. If he wins the White House in November even if there are 98 Democrats in the Senate and 431 Democrats in the House, he won, and the Republican establishment are full of losers. His brand would take off and he could make odd speeches at golf courses while Mike Pence attempts to govern.

If he steps aside, the party insiders are better off, but his brand is shit and his ego is bruised as he would be the loser genuflecting to the wills of the loses that he beat in the primary process.

What can the Republican Party insiders offer to Trump that is worth enough to Trump to make it worthwhile for him to step aside?

Until I see a good answer to that question, I am assuming that the Dump Trump movement is merely a stage of grief and not an actual strategy.



Don’t Try This at Home or In Public or Anywhere for That Matter!

Some knucklehead in Phoenix decided to see what would happen if he lit an entire fireworks display on fire (h/t: Sploid) inside a Wal-Mart. This is not a very good idea. Aside from starting a low explosive fire, and fortunately there weren’t any higher powered fireworks on the display or this would have been much, much worse, Arizona is a Constitutional Carry state. This means one can open carry without a permit, as well as conceal carry with or without a permit. The prankster is lucky someone didn’t hear several pops and decide there was an active threat that needed responding too!