It’s Thursday, April 21st – and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - Frantic callers can be heard screaming at Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Dwayne Haskins to get out of the middle of a highway, and the NFL star's wife is heard crying and pleading for answers about her husband's whereabouts in new 911 calls from the day he was struck and killed in South Florida.
"Oh my God! oh my God, what the f--- is wrong with you, get the f--- out of the road!" a woman is heard yelling in one of the calls, released Wednesday by the Broward Sheriff's Office. The woman can be heard screaming and crying just moments after Haskins, 24, was fatally struck by a dump truck on Interstate 595 in Broward County the morning of April 9. At one point, the call gets disconnected and the 911 operator calls the woman back. Florida Highway Patrol officials said Haskins was walking on the highway when he was struck and killed. An FHP report released Wednesday confirmed a second vehicle hit Haskins after the dump truck.
No. 2 - The Florida Senate on Wednesday passed a bill to repeal a law allowing Walt Disney World to operate a private government over its properties in the state, escalating a feud with the entertainment giant over its opposition to what critics call the “Don’t Say Gay" law.
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The proposal could have huge tax implications for Disney, whose series of theme parks have over the decades transformed Orlando into one of the world's most popular tourist destinations. And Democrats have warned that the move could cause local homeowners to get hit with big tax bills if they have to absorb bond debt from Disney — although such details are far from clear. The measures, pushed by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, comes as the governor battles with Disney after the company’s criticism of a new GOP law barring instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade as well as instruction that is not “age appropriate or developmentally appropriate.”
No. 3 - A new congressional map submitted by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis' office that will likely swing Florida's representation in Washington even further to the GOP was approved by the state Senate on Wednesday.
The House is expected to send the map back to the governor on Thursday, ending, for now, a process prolonged by DeSantis' veto of the maps the Legislature originally sent him. Even supporters agree a legal challenge will continue after this week's special session ends. The vote was 24-15 on party lines, with Democrats arguing that the governor's office gerrymandered the map to benefit Republicans, while also making it more difficult for Black voters to elect Black representatives.
No. 4 - The Postal Police Officers Association says they went from patrolling the streets to deter crimes like mail theft to being stationed at postal processing facilities.
"Carriers are being attacked, mail is being stolen, and Postal Police Officers are benched," said Edna Sepulveda, the Postal Police Officers Association Second Vice President. Sepulveda says throughout her career, she's caught plenty of mail thieves in action. But Sepulveda's role and that of hundreds of other Postal Police Officers changed when the U.S. Postal Inspection Service announced that by law the jurisdiction of the officers is limited to postal service facilities. Click here for more in a report from NBC 6’s Laura Rodriguez you’ll see Only on 6.
No. 5 - For Kamran Manafly, going back home to Russia would mean returning to a place where he’s no longer safe.
“Right now, I don’t think there’s any possibility to go back,” Manafly said. He fled to Turkey last month, then with a U.S. Visa in hand, came to Sunny Isles Beach where he’s staying with family. It’s a move he made after being fired from his job as a geography teacher in Moscow and being threatened with jail time. He says he’s being punished for speaking out against the war in Ukraine. Click here for more in a report from NBC 6’s Kim Wynne you’ll see Only on 6.
No. 6 - When South Floridians think of bad stadium deals, fairly or unfairly, the Marlins Park deal comes to mind.
Taxpayers shelled out about $600 million for the baseball stadium to be built on the Orange Bowl site, and they’re still on the hook for millions of dollars every year to cover the bonds which were used to finance the construction. The face of the Miami Marlins in those days was team president David Samson, and he now stars in filmmaker Billy Corben’s viral takedown video of the Inter Miami CF proposal to build a soccer stadium on the city’s Melreese Golf Course, calling it “a billion dollar heist happening in broad daylight.” Click here to find out about this partnership in a report from NBC 6’s Ari Odzer.