It’s Friday, March 11th - and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - Six students on spring break were hospitalized after a drug overdose at a Wilton Manors short-term rental home Thursday, officials said.
First responders got a call before 5 p.m. about multiple overdoses at the home in the 800 block of Northwest 29th Court, Fort Lauderdale Fire Battalion Chief Stephen Gollan said. The students overdosed on what they thought was cocaine, but it was laced with fentanyl, officials said. Only four of the six students actually took the drug, officials said. But when they had a bad reaction, the other two tried to help - then they overdosed. One of the students is in critical condition in the ICU. Five of them are now in stable condition. There’s no word yet on what school the students go to.
No. 2 - Five middle school students are facing hate crime charges after what was believed to be a racially motivated attack against another group of kids in Coconut Creek.
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Police said the incident happened Wednesday morning at the Coconut Creek Recreation Center, which is a short walk away from Lyons Creek Middle School. The arrest reports from Coconut Creek Police stated the victims were "racially profiled." According to the reports, the students told police that the other students approached them, yelling, “It’s opposite day!” and “brown power!” Broward County Public Schools said in a statement that this was an off-campus incident that police and fire responded to. The principal of the school sounded out a robocall to make parents aware of the incident, saying they are always working to provide a safe and secure learning environment and will work to ensure that any off-campus incidents do not impact students at the middle school.
No. 3 - Florida lawmakers on Thursday passed a bill that would limit how educators discuss certain racial issues in classrooms.
The bill, known as HB 7/Individual Freedom, was passed by the Senate along party lines Thursday and now goes to Gov. Ron DeSantis, who was expected to sign it into law. DeSantis and Republican lawmakers in the state have pushed for legislation to prevent Critical Race Theory instruction in schools, with the governor proposing a "Stop W.O.K.E. Act" last year to take aim against CRT in schools. The acronym stands for "Stop the Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees." Proponents said the bill simply states that teachers and businesses can't force students and employees to feel they are to blame for racial injustices in America's past. Opponents said the legislation was designed to create racial division and would have a chilling effect on the discussion of injustices past and present.
No. 4 - A South Florida man is fuming after he says his condo association gave him a violation notice for signs and flags on his car in support of Ukraine.
"At first I was confused and then I was angry," said Ed Cobin, of North Miami Beach. "I didn't think I was offending anybody." Cobin said he placed decals and flags on his car shortly after Ukraine was invaded by Russia. One large decal reads "Putin = Hitler." A short time later, he said he received the violation notice, which said he can't show any sign, advertisement or notice of any type on common elements, which are parts of a complex that belong to all owners. Cobin said his car is not a common element and it's not an ad. He believes his First Amendment rights are being violated. Click here for more in a report from NBC 6’s Nicole Lauren.
No. 5 - As rents skyrocket across South Florida, NBC 6 Investigators heard from dozens of viewers wondering in our online survey why local officials weren’t trying to implement rent controls in the area.
Although Florida law is stacked against them, Miami-Dade County commissioners are considering studying the issue. Florida law largely prohibits rent controls unless there’s a “housing emergency.” Some on the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners are beginning to explore that option. Thursday morning they took their first step, but housing advocates have a long and tough road ahead. In a 3-2 vote, the Miami-Dade Public Housing and Community Services Committee passed a measure by Commissioner Kionne McGhee directing Mayor Daniella Levine Cava’s office to study the housing situation in the county. The full county board of commissioners will take up the measure in April. Click here for what’s next in a report from NBC 6 investigator Phil Prazan.
No. 6 - Major League Baseball’s lockout is over.
MLB owners and the players’ association agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement on Thursday, bringing an end to a 99-day lockout that began on Dec. 2. It was the second-longest work stoppage in MLB history. The owners submitted the final offer to the players early Thursday afternoon, and the deal was agreed upon by the players with a vote of 26-12. The 30 player representatives voted 26-4 in favor of the deal, while the eight executive subcommittee members voted 8-0 against the deal, according to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman. The owners then voted 30-0 to ratify the deal later Thursday evening, putting an official end to the lockout. Despite MLB-imposed deadlines on Feb. 28 and March 9 to salvage a full season, no games will be missed in 2022. Each team will play their usual 162-game slate, with Opening Day set for April 7 – exactly one week after its originally scheduled date of March 31.