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Ocala
Friday, March 5, 2021

Marion County and Ocala firefighters battle roaring blaze at local car lot

Firefighters from Marion County and Ocala battled a structure fire Thursday night at a local car lot.

Tri-county area experiences deadliest day since COVID-19 hit Florida

A whopping 63 new deaths were reported from COVID-19 in the tri-county area on Saturday, marking the largest number of fatalities reported in a single day since the deadly virus was first identified in Florida in March.

It’s unclear if all of those deaths happened in the past day or if there has been a lag in reporting fatality numbers of the part of the Florida Department of Health. That agency has in the past run behind in reporting statistics in several categories, including the number of vaccinations given across the Sunshine State, so it’s possible that some of the latest victims have died over the past week or longer.

Thirty of the latest fatalities were reported in Sumter County, which is home to the vast majority of residences in The Villages. Another 28 were reported in Lake County and five were identified in Marion County. Those fatalities are among the 1,067 reported across the tri-county area, the 24,380 in Florida and the 393,264 across the country.

All told, Florida is reporting 1,560,186 cases – an increase of 12,119 from Friday to Saturday. Of those, 1,531,830 are residents. A total of 71,210 cases have been reported in long-term care centers and 28,187 in correctional facilities. Across the state, 67,790 people have been hospitalized.

Locally, Marion County is reporting 22,030 COVID-19 cases, an increase of 242 in a 24-hour period. There have been 534 deaths and 1,450 people hospitalized.

Ocala continues to lead Marion County with 16,215 cases – an overnight increase of 167. Others have been identified in Summerfield (1,355), Dunnellon (982), Belleview (919), Citra (383), Silver Springs (380), Ocklawaha (317), Reddick (232), Fort McCoy (197), Anthony (197), Weirsdale (158), The Villages (62), Salt Springs (37), Flemington (34), McIntosh (22), Sparr (20), Orange Lake (18), Candler (17), Lowell (15), Morriston (6), Orange Springs (6), East Lake (6) and Fairfield (5).

Below is a breakdown of other COVID-19 activity in the local area:

TRI-COUNTY AREA

  • Cases: 47,601 – increase of 586
  • Deaths: 1,067
  • Hospitalizations: 2,953

LAKE COUNTY

  • Cases: 19,208 – increase of 246
  • Deaths: 377
  • Hospitalizations: 1,080
  • Cities with most cases: Clermont (5,009), Leesburg (3,093), Eustis (1,673), Mount Dora (1,456) and Tavares (1,410).

SUMTER COUNTY

  • Cases: 6,363 – increase of 98
  • Deaths: 156
  • Hospitalizations: 423
  • Areas/cities with most cases: The Villages (2,845), Coleman (807), Wildwood (781), Bushnell (688) and Oxford (377).

Photos in Ocala, Florida

Crime

27-year-old Ocala man jailed after lady friend tells deputies of violent attack

An Ocala man found himself behind bars recently after denying any problems with his lady friend after a 911 call came from his home.

‘Impaired’ Ocala man jailed after found passed out in vehicle at minimart

An Ocala man was arrested recently after he was found passed out in a vehicle at a Belleview minimart.

Ocala man arrested after series of arguments turns physical

An Ocala man was arrested Sunday afternoon after he allegedly threw a woman to the ground several times and struck her during a nasty domestic spat.

Bird lover claims lady friend went berserk and tried to run him over

Multiple Marion County sheriff’s deputies responded to a nasty altercation recently after a man claimed his lady friend tried to take his bird out of its cage and then run him over.

Business

Lockheed Martin teams with CareerSource Florida for apprenticeship program

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Wednesday that Lockheed Martin and CareerSource Florida have partnered to develop and refine a registered apprenticeship program.

Craft Cuisine falls victim to pandemic, forced to close doors

Craft Cuisine was forced to close its doors last month amidst the global pandemic that has forced the closures of a multitude of businesses in Ocala.

Ocala police chief: ‘Marijuana legalization will produce more violent crime in Ocala’

The chief of the Ocala Police Department believes the legalization of marijuana will produce more violent crime in the city of Ocala.

CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion offering live workshops via Zoom platform

CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion will resume live employability workshops beginning Monday, Jan. 11 with Job Specific Resume Development.

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Headlines

Marion County and Ocala firefighters battle roaring blaze at local car lot

Firefighters from Marion County and Ocala battled a structure fire Thursday night at a local car lot.

27-year-old Ocala man jailed after lady friend tells deputies of violent attack

An Ocala man found himself behind bars recently after denying any problems with his lady friend after a 911 call came from his home.

‘Impaired’ Ocala man jailed after found passed out in vehicle at minimart

An Ocala man was arrested recently after he was found passed out in a vehicle at a Belleview minimart.

DeSantis vows to lower COVID-19 vaccine age as 20 more local residents succumb to virus

On the day Gov. Ron DeSantis promised to drop the eligibility age for COVID-19 vaccinations, 20 more local residents succumbed to the fast-spreading illness.

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