It’s Wednesday, September 1st - and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - Broward County Public Schools will be keeping their mask mandate in place for the time being after Florida's Commissioner of Education announced that the state was withholding funding from the district over the policy.
Commissioner Richard Corcoran announced Monday that the Florida Department of Education has withheld an amount equal to monthly school board member salaries in Broward and Alachua counties, after they defied Gov. Ron DeSantis' ban on mask mandates in schools. Funds will continue to be withheld until the districts comply, Corcoran said. At a school board meeting Tuesday, interim superintendent Vickie Cartwright said the mask mandate would remain in place, and said she believes they are complying with state law. Cartwright said the school board was expected to revisit the mask mandate after the Labor Day holiday to look at COVID-19 data and see if it needs to continue.
No. 2 - Gregg Breitbart's wife Karen means everything to him — but this past year hasn’t been easy.
He says she felt very sick after her latest round of chemo, so she went to the emergency room at Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood last week. Once she got there, he says the wait was extremely long due to all the doctors and nurses taking care of COVID-19 patients. The lawyer out of Fort Lauderdale shared a moving post on social media about the experience, saying she sat in the waiting room for about five hours until she was placed on a gurney in a hallway. To hear their emotional words on the hours of waiting, click here for the story from NBC 6 reporter Amanda Plasencia.
No. 3 - A beloved teacher, her husband and her mother were killed in a crash Tuesday morning in southwest Miami-Dade.
Karina Diaz was a teacher for nine years at The Creative Learning Center in Miami, where she taught toddlers, the school confirmed. The incident happened near the intersection of Sunset Drive and Southwest 92nd Avenue, where one car involved crashed into a pole. A white Range Rover involved was found west of the scene. According to police, an officer attempted to pull over the Range Rover for speeding on the Palmetto Expressway when it pulled off onto Sunset Drive at a high rate of speed. It struck a grey Kia carrying the three victims, which collided with the pole.
No. 4 - More than 20 years after three young women were found brutally murdered in South Florida, authorities have identified the serial killer who they say is responsible for the cold case slayings, years after he fled the country and was killed in a plane crash.
DNA evidence helped detectives identify Roberto Wagner Fernandes as the man responsible for the three murders that occurred over 14 months between 2000 and 2001, officials with the Broward Sheriff's Office and Miami Police Department said at a news conference Tuesday morning. Fernandes was linked to the murders of two women in Broward, including Kimberly Dietz-Livesey, whose body was discovered in a suitcase in Cooper City on June 22, 2000, and Sia Demas, whose body was found in a duffel bag in Dania Beach on Aug. 9, 2000. The body of the third victim, Jessica Good, was found floating in Biscayne Bay on Aug. 30, 2001. Fernandes was later killed in 2005 when the plane he was on crashed while traveling between Brazil and Paraguay, officials said.
No. 5 - Now that the last American solider has left Afghanistan, South Florida veterans who served there are reflecting on their time spent fighting the longest war in the country's history.
Bruce Vitor is a Broward County resident who is a West Point graduate and Retired Army Colonel. He spent several years in Afghanistan helping oversee the training of the Afghan Army, was the Chief of Staff to a General and had days in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, for a time one of the most dangerous places on the globe. NBC 6 asked him if he was surprised at the quick exit of the Afghan Army. Click here for his answer in a story from NBC 6 investigator Willard Shepard.
No. 6 - Millions of Americans suffer from sleep apnea -- a condition that can interrupt a person’s airways and breathing while they sleep -- and now, those people have one more reason to be on alert.
A massive recall of CPAP, BiPAP and ventilator machines by manufacturer Philips has left users with high anxiety, many questions and restless sleep over how to treat their condition overnight. Making matters worse, the company tells Chicago NBC affiliate WMAQ-TV it does not have enough machines or parts to repair or replace the three-to-four million devices recalled worldwide. Half of those machines are in the United States, the company said. To hear what you need to know, click here for the story from NBC 6 consumer investigator Sasha Jones.
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