It’s Wednesday, May 26th - and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - Royal Caribbean will be allowed to operate test cruises out of South Florida starting late June after receiving approval from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a significant step toward resuming sailings out of the nation's cruise capital.
"After 15 months of hard work and collaboration, today’s approval of our simulated cruises is the latest promising step in our path to return to sailing in the U.S." Royal Caribbean International said in a statement Tuesday. Volunteer passengers will be sailing on the company's Freedom of the Seas ship for the simulated cruises out of PortMiami. The simulated cruises are being done to test whether ships can sail safely and follow CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Under the CDC guidelines, each practice cruise will run two to seven days and must have enough passengers to meet at least 10% of the ship's capacity.
No. 2 - Broward County Public Schools is investigating after cellphone video showed a student at a Deerfield Beach school physically bullying a sixth grader because of her sexuality.
Get South Florida local news, weather forecasts and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC South Florida newsletters.
Chad Sanford, 13, identifies as a trans teen. She says verbal bullying has been happening all school year long at Deerfield Beach Middle School. But last week, the bullying turned physical. The cellphone video shows someone pick up Sanford from behind and slam her on the ground in the hallway. Students stand around, yelling, but did nothing to help as Sanford struggles to get up from the ground. Sanford doesn't understand why growing up LGBTQ should be so hard. Click here for Sanford’s side of the story and the school district’s response in a report from NBC 6 News.
No. 3 - A woman is behind bars after police say she shot her ex-boyfriend to death outside a Hialeah business Monday afternoon.
Crystal Junco, 22, was arrested on charges of second-degree murder and carrying a concealed firearm after the shooting in the 300 block of W. 29th Street, according to an arrest report. The victim was identified by family members as 21-year-old Oniel Linares Álvarez. Also at the scene was Junco, who said she and the victim had been dating but were no longer in a relationship, the report said. Click here for the story from NBC 6 reporter Laura Rodriguez.
No. 4 - Since Georg Floyd's death one year ago Tuesday, South Florida law enforcement says they have pledged to better police communities and developed a plan.
A plan that has seen changes such as banning chokeholds in Miami-Dade County. The plan also called for de-escalation at scenes — giving a clear warning before shooting — and mandating officers to step in when they see another officer breaking the rules. In Fort Lauderdale, officers who use force in any situation now have their body cameras reviewed automatically — before, it was only if a citizen filed a complaint. For more on why law enforcement in South Florida said they were ahead of the curve on changes, click here for the story from NBC 6 investigator Willard Shepard.
No. 5 - The Broward Sheriff's Office added four new drug detection devices that can accurately find thousands of illegal and dangerous substances.
Called MX 908, the devices can be used in multiple places that include the field, while processing inmates and during traffic stops. The devices are in need for BSO's attempt to combat the community's opioid epidemic with Sheriff Gregory Tony estimating a 30 percent increase in the number of opiate-related deaths. Tony said that without the new devices, deputies and fire rescue crews can be at risk of being exposed to the lethal drugs. Click here to see the devices in action in the story from NBC 6 reporter Julie Leonardi.
No. 6 – The Florida Panthers are on the road and hoping to stay alive in the opening round playoff series with their in-state rivals, the Tampa Bay Lightning.
20-year-old rookie goalie Spencer Knight stopped 36 shots, Mackenzie Weegar had a goal and an assist, and the Panthers beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-1 on Monday night in Game 5 of their Central Division playoff series. The Lightning still lead the best-of-seven series 3-2. If Florida comes out on top, a deciding Game 7 would take place Friday night inside the BB&T Center in Sunrise.