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The Point, Feb. 27, 2023: Former cop helps convict rapist in decades-old cold case

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The stories near you

• Fresh Take Florida: Mystery solved? Feds name man they say lived under another’s identity for 3 decades. "The mystery of the bizarre identity case that spanned the Eastern seaboard is a step closer to being solved. Federal prosecutors in Tampa quietly revealed that they have determined the name of the man they said had been pretending for more than a generation to be Johnson."

• WUFT News:Alachua County Schools see ESOL population bounce back from the pandemic. "In Gainesville High School, the only high school that offers the ESOL program in the county, 80% of the ESOL students speak Spanish as their first language."

• Fresh Take Florida: Retired cop never forgot unsolved case, helped convict rapist decades later. "Twenty-three years after he retired from the police department in Atlantic Beach – just east of Jacksonville, Florida – VanderWal, now 76, is being lauded for his diligence and tenacity on behalf of a traumatized victim who had been denied justice for so long."

• WUFT News: Calligraphy in contemporary Chinese art speaker frames the relationship between mortals and murals. "Kuiyi Shen, who has a doctorate in art history, adored art since his childhood in China. Fitted in a Neptune-blue shirt and charcoal blazer, he stepped into the Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida prepared to teach. Not about brushstrokes, but about creativity."

• WUFT News: Invasive Cuban treefrog extends its presence in Florida. "The species was found in the Florida panhandle in January and has invaded areas of Georgia and Louisiana. Isolated sightings have also been reported from 29 other states and some Canadian provinces."

• Ocala Gazette: Dunnellon Man Breaks Florida Skydiving Record. "On Sunday, Feb. 26, Dave Bosanko’s 31st birthday, he broke the state of Florida’s record for the most skydiving jumps in a 24-hour period, with 77 tumbles from a perfectly good airplane."

• The Alligator: UF students befriend Riker Hall cat colony. "The six tabbies and two black cats may have different names depending on who’s visiting that day. As somewhat-strays, each person interested enough to come close calls them differently."

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Around the state

• WFSU-Tallahassee: Permitless carry is likely to pass in Florida, despite broad pushback. "Despite opposition from gun rights advocates and proponents of stricter gun laws, the measure is headed to the House floor, with one more committee stop before it gets taken up in the full Senate."

• WFSU-Tallahassee: State economists say a school choice expansion will cost $210 million. Not everyone buys it. "The state has come out with its estimate for how much a massive expansion of the state’s school choice program will cost: about $210 million. That’s far below the number put out by an independent group. So why are the numbers so far apart?"

• News Service of Florida: State senate proposal bolsters legal challenges to city and county ordinances. "The Florida Senate could quickly pass a proposal that would bolster legal challenges to city and county ordinances, with supporters saying it would help small businesses and opponents contending it would hamper local governments."

• WUSF-Tampa: Public records lawsuit filed against New College and Board Trustee Christopher Rufo. "In its complaint, the nonprofit government accountability group said it sought public records made, received and sent by Board of Trustees member Christopher Rufo during a 17-day period in January 2023, but no records have been produced."

• News Service of Florida: Bill to shield business, insurance companies from lawsuits is backed in Florida House. "In a high-stakes debate, the Florida House on Friday began moving forward with a controversial plan designed to shield businesses and insurance companies from costly lawsuits."

• Florida Politics: Nikki Fried wins race to lead Florida Democrats. "She repurposed a slogan from her campaign last year for Governor, and promised Democrats she will provide 'something new.'"

• WMFE-Orlando: 1-year since Russia invaded Kyiv, Ukraine soldiers seek 'new legs' in Orlando. "Last year, 26-year-old Alexander Bugko, was a barista in Rivne, Ukraine, planning to work as a graphic designer by the start of March. One year later, Bugko is a double amputee army soldier, living in Orlando, and stands on two prosthetic legs."

From NPR News

• Law: How a Supreme Court justice's paragraph put the Voting Rights Act in more danger

• Health: FDA authorizes the first at-home test for COVID-19 and the flu

• National: Democratic state attorneys general sue Biden administration over abortion pill rules

• Race: Malcom X's family is suing the CIA, FBI and NYPD

• National: Brittney Griner urges the return of U.S. detainees abroad at NAACP Image Awards

• Business: Child labor violations are on the rise as some states look to loosen their rules

• Economy: Despite high inflation, Americans are spending like crazy — and it's kind of puzzling

• National: Newspapers have dropped the 'Dilbert' comic strip after a racist rant by its creator
Kristin Moorehead curated today's edition of The Point.

Contact WUFT News by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news @wuft.org