Deputies: Man found dead after missing work


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- A man who didn't show up for work Friday was found dead in a home in St. Johns County, where investigators also found a small-scale marijuana grow operation, authorities said.

The St. Johns County Sheriff's Office and a St. Johns County Fire Rescue Hazmat team were called to the scene, located in the 500 block of Deerfield Road, at some point, deputies said.

Foul play is not suspected at this time, according to the Sheriff's Office.


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Brawl at St. Augustine bar goes viral


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla.-- Video of a brawl that happened Sunday night at the Conch House in St. Augustine has gone viral on social media.

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Police were called to the bar around 8 p.m. Video shows patrons and several employees involved in the melee, including some patrons who were pretty bloodied up.

An estimated 500 people were at the event though police don't know exactly how many people were involved in the fight.

St. Augustine Police tell First Coast News that they are looking into reports that people were thrown into the water during the brawl.

One person was taken to the hospital and several other received minor injuries in the brawl.

The "Thank You" lady takes time at every single gravesite


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- There was a touching scene at the National Cemetery in St. Augustine on Monday.

Long after the crowd had dispersed from the Memorial Day Ceremony, a lone woman was walking in the cemetery.

She was walking slowly down every row.

She was looking at every single grave site.

First Coast News reporter Jessica Clark spotted the woman walking. She asked the woman what she was doing.

Her answer... looking at every single name and saying "thank you."

She said, "that's what we're supposed to do."

She made the names on the tombstones personal, by thanking each person individually who is buried in the cemetery.

When asked to do an interview, she politely declined and pointed to the sky, saying "this is his work."

St. Johns County rolling out lifeguards this weekend


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Beaches in St. Johns County will be fully staffed by lifeguards starting Saturday morning. Certified lifeguards will begin daily assignments between 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., staffing an average of 18 lifeguards towers, according to St. Johns County Fire Rescue.

Plus, there will be supervisors roving the coastline in emergency response vehicles, along with EMTs and ocean rescue personnel posted at coastal stations to shore up the daily staffing and provide emergency response 24 hours a day.

The staffing will remain in place until Labor Day weekend, which traditionally marks the end of the beach season, according to SJCFR.

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Man shot by St. Johns deputies dies


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A man injured in a deputy-involved shooting in St. Augustine Beach last Thursday night has died, authorities confirmed Thursday.

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The man has been identified by investigators as Cary L. Martin, 53.

According to Cmdr. Chuck Mulligan with the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office, officers were called around 7:30 p.m. May 14 to the 400 block of Florida Avenue after Martin's girlfriend called to report that he was armed and possibly suicidal.

Deputies said they made contact with Martin by phone and persuaded him to come outside to speak with authorities, but that when he reached the front door, he was armed with an M1 rifle.

Coast Guard searching after St. Augustine distress call


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- The Coast Guard continues to search for the crew of a boat that was reported to be on fire.

The search began Monday when the Coast Guard received a call around 1 p.m. about a 37-foot fishing vessel that was reportedly taking on water about 11 miles east of St. Augustine. The Coast Guard says the caller who claimed to be on board said the crew got off the boat and onto a raft.

The Coast Guard launched a helicopter, airplane and 45-foot boat to search for the missing boat. The crew aboard the 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Shrike has been searching throughout the night. There is still no sign of the boat or debris as of Tuesday morning.

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Mom charged with child neglect after 1-year-old nearly drowns


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – A St. Augustine mother of two faces a felony charge after her 1-year-old son nearly drowned after wandering out of an unlocked door at the family's apartment.

Geraldine Leola Holman, 43, is accused of leaving her son and his 2-year-old sister unsupervised outside their apartment complex, located at 255 Whispering Woods Lane, on March 30. She was arrested Wednesday and booked into the Flagler County jail.

Her son fell into the pond, but was saved by the timely heroics of an alert neighbor who jumped in after him, according to an arrest report. He was later taken to Flagler Hospital for evaluation.

The incident is now under investigation by the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office and the Florida Department of Children and Families. The children have since been removed from the home and placed with family, DCF spokesperson John Harrell told First Coast News.