It’s Tuesday, April 27th - and NBC 6 has the top stories for your day.
No. 1 - A private school in Miami is discouraging teachers from getting the COVID-19 vaccine - and in a letter to parents, the school says it will not employ anyone who has taken it.
Centner Academy's new policy directs teachers to not get the vaccine or they won’t be allowed around students — effectively losing their jobs. The policy has some parents looking for a new school. Leila Centner, the school’s co-founder, issued a statement to NBC 6 on Monday, saying in part, “We are not 100% sure the COVID injections are safe and there are too many unknown variables for us to feel comfortable at this current time." To hear what some parents said in response, click here for the story from NBC 6 News.
No. 2 - The superintendent of Broward County Public Schools, the district where 17 students and staff died in a 2018 high school massacre prepared for his testimony before a statewide grand jury by contacting witnesses in a criminal case and then lied about it when asked, prosecutors said Monday.
The statewide prosecutor’s office released the details in a court filing after Broward County Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie's attorneys filed a court motion last week demanding specifics about the charges against him. The charges stem from the January indictment of former Broward Schools technology chief Tony Hunter, who was charged with rigging contracts for technology equipment for the district. Runcie contacted witnesses in Hunter’s case to prepare for his own testimony, prosecutors said. The school board is expected to discuss Runcie’s future during a Tuesday meeting.
No. 3 - Turnout was so low for the Johnson & Johnson single-shot vaccine at Florida FEMA-run sites Sunday that about 90% of the daily supply went unused following a 11-day pause, health officials said.
A similar story played out at Miami Dade College in South Florida, where 127 Johnson & Johnson doses were administered as of Sunday afternoon, compared to roughly 300 Pfizer vaccines. Late Friday, the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lifted the pause, which began after 15 women, out of nearly 8 million people who received the vaccine, developed blood clots.
No. 4 - Wild video showing several fights between travelers inside a terminal at Miami International Airport led to at least one arrest, officials said.
Miami-based documentary film director Billy Corben posted video of the brawl on social media showing at least three fights breaking out inside Terminal D near gate D-12 at the airport Sunday. Jameel Decquir, 20, of Illinois, was arrested for disorderly conduct, according to an arrest report. A witness told police an American Airlines counter agent told Decquir and three other men that there were only three standby seats available for a flight to Chicago and gave them the option to leave one of them behind or wait for another flight, the report said.
No. 5 - Estinfil Filsmagre is just one of the thousands arrested who have been waiting for their day to get justice. Now criminal trials are starting up again in South Florida.
Filsmagre is back at home with his daughter — a big difference from the Broward County Jail where he spent his days since he was charged with attempted murder after a man was stabbed. While bond court hearings like this have been going all along, and thousands of pre-trial criminal hearings have kept the system moving over Zoom, Miami-Dade is holding its first criminal trial since the pandemic this month. On Monday corrections officials said more than 3,000 people are in jail in Broward and more than 5,000 in Miami-Dade. To hear why the pandemic caused a delay in justice for some, click here for the story from NBC 6 investigator Willard Shepard.
No. 6 - We often hear about the challenges people face getting their unemployment benefits, but some received more money than they qualified for in 2020.
NBC 6 Responds found the Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) paid millions in overpayments last year. According to data from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Florida paid more than $104 million in state reemployment assistance in 2020. That’s nearly nine times the amount paid the previous year, when far fewer people in the state applied for unemployment benefits. In 2019, the state overpaid $12,309,380 in state reemployment assistance. To hear why the state said this takes place, click here for the story from NBC 6 consumer investigator Sasha Jones.