News

Reggae Sunday's at Conch House resumes after free-for-all brawl


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — Some described it as a disappointment, saying the Reggae Sundays event at the Conch House in St Augustine isn't quite the same now.

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"I love the atmosphere. I love the water and everything. There's nobody there. It's just really sad that it's come to this point," said Lisa Hart, a customer.

Hart said she goes to Reggae Sunday every weekend.

"There's like 80 people in there when it used to be 500-600 people," Hart complained.

Two weeks ago, a fight that reportedly started between two women, turned into a free-for-all.

Cellphone video captured the chaotic scene, and what appeared to be security guards fighting customers.

Owner: Conch House to resume Reggae Sunday


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Reggae Sundays will resume this weekend at the Conch House Marina Resort in St. Augustine.

Two weeks ago, the Conch House owner chose to stop the weekly event after a brawl took place during Reggae Sunday. The fight sent two people to the hospital and simple battery charges are pending against four people.

Now, the restaurant's owner plans to bring back the popular event on Sunday.

Jessica Clark spoke with the business's owner, David Ponce, who confirmed the news, on Monday. He said, "People will like the changes."

St. Augustine City Manager John Regan said he met with Ponce Monday. Regan said the changes include limiting the number of guests at 1,075. "I don't know how big Reggae Sunday was that last Sunday, but that's about half or a third of what it had been."

Stolen antique Ford Shelby Cobra found abandoned; suspect sought


ST. AUGUSTINE — The antique 1965 Ford Shelby Cobra stolen at gunpoint from a salesman was discovered abandoned less than a mile down the road on Monday.

The car was noticed by a passer-by around 7:30 a.m. at the end of Stokes Landing Road, near where it was originally taken.

The car was not damaged and the keys were left in the front seat.

While on a dealer test drive Saturday, a potential customer allegedly turned to an armed carjacker after pulling a gun on the salesman and forcing him from the vehicle.

The suspect then reportedly drove off toward US-1 North. Police went looking for the car with several deputies as well as a helicopter, but couldn't find the missing Ford.

The Ford belongs to Bozard Ford and is valued at $96,000.

Armed carjacker nabs a 1965 Ford Shelby Cobra during test drive


ST. AUGUSTINE — While on a dealer test drive in a red 1965 Ford Shelby Cobra Saturday afternoon, a potential customer allegedly turned to an armed carjacker after pulling a gun on the salesman and forcing him from the vehicle.

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The suspect then reportedly drove off toward US-1 North. Police went looking for the car with several deputies as well as a helicopter, but couldn't find the missing Cobra.

The suspect is described by police as being in his 50s, 6-foot, 240 lbs., with blue eyes and a bald head. In the surveillance photo of him, he can be seen wearing a dark shirt, dark basketball shorts, with reading glasses.

American Pharoah has relatives to First Coast horses


ST AUGUSTINE — The Belmont Stakes is here and the latest "super horse" American Pharaoh has just won the coveted Triple Crown.

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It's been called the one of the hardest titles to win in sports.

But what you might not know is that we have descendants of that famous horse right here on the First Coast at the Diamonds in the Rough Horse Farm.

Man flown to hospital after striking palm tree in St. Augustine


ST. AUGUSTINE — A man was flown to UF-Health in Jacksonville after striking a palm tree with his car in St. Augustine Saturday afternoon.

The single-car crash occurred around 2:15 p.m. John Wesley Heath III was going Southbound on US-1 when, for unknown reasons, he lost control of his car and struck a palm tree in the median of the road.

The tree he struck ripped the left-front tire and door off of his car. It ejected Heath from his car.

The driver's condition is currently unknown, but because of the extent of his injuries he was flown by helicopter to UF-Health in Jacksonville.

The crash shut down the Southbound lanes of US-1 at San Carlos Avenue for two hours on Saturday.

The investigation is ongoing, but at this time police said it was unclear if speeding or alcohol contributed to this crash in any way.

No road closures planned as repairs begin on Vilano Bridge


ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — Construction is scheduled to begin on the Vilano Bridge in St. Augustine next Monday, June 8. No lane closures are currently planned, but some shoulders may be used to allow equipment access.

The Florida Department of Transportation's project to repair and replace portions of the fender system beneath Vilano Bridge is expected to be completed by Fall 2015.

The fender system assists in guiding boats through the channel and protects the bridge's piers. Boaters are encouraged to use caution while moving through the area.

The majority of the work is supposed to be done from barges beneath the bridge.

According to the FDOT, repairs will only take place during weekdays.

Hal Jones Contractor Inc. is the hired crew on this project. It is projected to coast $1.4 million.