On Your Side: Checking an Officer's identification

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. -- First Coast News got an email from Joyce who said someone disguised as a police officer came to her door, demanding $6,000. She was afraid and eventually gave it to the man.

Captain Joe Bucci, with the Clay County Sheriff's Office, gave tangible information on how you can confirm whether or not someone that comes to your door is an Official Law Enforcement Officer.

According to Bucci:

1) Ask to see a badge and department identification. It'll have a photo with it.

2) Call the dispatch center when the person gives you a badge number to confirm who they are.

3) Ask for a supervisor with dispatch to triple check.

4) When in doubt, if you're not sure, take their information and confirm it inside your home while they wait outside.








New Valve Replacement Therapy Offers Alternative to Open Heart Surgery

JACKSONVILLE, FLA - A revolutionary new heart treatment is offering new hope to patients considered ineligible for open heart surgery or at great risk of suffering serious surgical complications.

Known as Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR), the minimally invasive procedure is now being used to treat patients suffering from severe aortic valve stenosis. One of the most common valve disease disorders, aortic stenosis typically results from aging, as calcium or scarring narrows and hardens the heart’s aortic valve. As blood flow through the valve becomes constricted, individuals may experience chest pain, shortness of breath, fainting and palpitations. For those with severe aortic stenosis, the condition can lead to congestive heart failure and even death.

Clay teachers union and school board at odds over pay raises

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. -- The Clay County teachers union says the school board is not living up to Governor Rick Scott's promise to increase teacher salaries this school year.

Clay County schools are getting $6.1 million this year for teacher pay raises. Right now, the teachers union and the Clay County School Board are at odds over how much each teacher will receive and if the raise will be permanent, or just this year.

The latest proposal from the school board offers teachers a $1,400 raise each while the teachers union is asking for a $1,960 a year raise. Former middle school guidance counselor and Clay County Education Association President Renna Lee Paiva is shocked and disappointing that the school board said it won't put the money on the permanent school salary schedule.

Former Dozier student speaks out on decision

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Arthur G. Dozier School for boys officially closed June, 2011, but still open are the many chapters to its dark history.

"Finally the truth is going to come out," said Roger Kiser. 

Kiser, founder of the organization White House Boys, is a former student at the Arthur G. Dozier school for boys. He remembers what he said the day after his first beating.

"I was beaten bloody and I said one day I'm gonna come back and report what you people are doing,' said Kiser.

It is a promise he has kept. For the past two decades Kiser has spent his time and his money exposing the horror of the reform school. 

"I put everything I had into this," said Kiser. "I don't regret for one minute that I did it, I'd do it again."

Man gets two life sentences for fatal double stabbing

GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- A Jacksonville man convicted of a 2009 Clay County double-murder received two life sentences Friday.
Cornelius Walston, 30, stabbed David Smith, 24, and Kevin Martin, 24, after getting in a fight at Club Myth in October 2009, according to a release from State Attorney's Office spokesperson Jackelyn Bernard.
A jury found Walston guilty of two counts of murder in the second degree in May.

Man busted with marijuana grow house

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. - Detectives discovered a large marijuana growing operation in a rental house after responding to suspicious activity at the location.

An investigation revealed that the suspect, Bryan Hardy, 39, who was on the lease, rented the residence with the sole purpose of creating a grow house. He is being charged with cultivation of marijuana and leasing a structure for the purpose of cultivating marijuana.

Hardy rented the house located in the block of 2200 Felucca Drive and paid the rent on time every month, according to the owner, but when called by detectives on June 26, he denied doing so in several years.

Hardy was then questioned at his residence, in the block 500 Magnolia Avenue, about why he did not live there, yet the lease was in his name and rent was paid. Witnesses also saw him mowing the lawn. His story changed more than once, according to the affidavit.

Clay County dam break alters Peters Creek

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. --  A dam break Friday night in Clay County did not cause flooding as expected but that break did alter the appearance of Peters Creek near Green Cove Springs.

A dam broke Friday night in Clay County at Wright's Lake and emergency management officials thought there could be some flash flooding as the water from that lake went into Peter's Creek. They issued a flash flood warning.

The expected flooding did not occur. But those who live along the creek woke up to a much different creek and hope it isn't permanently damaged.

The earthen headwall of Wright's Lake Dam on private property began to fail around 10:30 Friday night.

Mike Smiley lives on the creek just north of the lake.