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WJCT First Read: Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Welcome to WJCT First Read, your daily weekday morning round-up of stories from the First Coast, around Florida, and across the country. We'll also preview some of WJCT's upcoming news programming.

Democrats call on Gov. Scott to appoint investigator for Shirk allegations: Duval County Democratic Party Chairman Neil Henrichsen is asking for an independent investigator to look into charges of professional misconduct and records tampering in the office of Jacksonville Public Defender Matthew Shirk.

Shirk to hire counsel in records case: Meanwhile, Shirk is expected to announce today that he will be asking lawyers from outside his office to review the allegations. (Florida Times-Union)

Duval parents concerned with elective class sizes: Duval County Public Schools Superintendent Nikolai Vitti has a plan to address parental complaints that enrollment in the district's new elective classes is creating large class sizes.

Jax parks in poor shape, according to city budget chair: Jacksonville City Council Member Richard Clark, chair of the council's Finance Committee Capital Investment Program Subcommittee, says city parks will need an influx of funding to be fully restored after years of neglect.

Woods elected in Atlantic Beach mayoral race: Veteran City Commissioner Carolyn Woods defeated Mitch Reeves by more than 300 votes in yesterday's Atlantic Beach elections. (Florida Times-Union)

Mother of slain Brunswick baby testifies: Sherry West, the mother of 13-month-old shooting victim Antionio Santiago, pointed out De'Marquise Elkins as the shooter during testimony, but chose the photo of his alleged partner during cross-examination. (News4Jax)

One Spark using web donations to fund festival: City startup group One Spark will crowdfund the expenses for their second annual festival using RocketHub, a platform developed by a former University of North Florida student. (Jacksonville Business Journal)

Mother sentenced in baby overdose death: Jennifer Lacey Frazier was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the death of her baby. The 29-year-old accidentally administered a lethal dose of methadone, killing the child. (Fox 30 WAWS)

Today on First Coast Connect, Florida State College at Jacksonville Interim President Dr. Willis Holcombe will speak with WJCT's Melissa Ross. 

You can get all the latest headlines online at, on our Facebook page, and on Twitter @WJCTJax.