Tim Padgett / WLRN

Omar Mateen – the man who allegedly committed the worst mass shooting in U.S. history Sunday – belonged to a mosque in Fort Pierce. But the head of that congregation says that while Mateen may have been a quarrelsome adolescent, he gave no indication he was capable of such an atrocity.

Miami Beach Police Department

As law enforcement agencies try to piece together  what happened Sunday morning at a gay nightclub in Orlando, when at least 50 people were gunned down, many in South Florida wonder about security and how to protect themselves and those they love from similar attacks. 

  "Every time there is a pride event, there is that fear that exists, especially since we have seen the passage of marriage equality," says Cindy Brown, Miami-Dade development officer for Equality Florida, the largest LGBTQ rights advocacy group in the state. 


Tim Padgett / WLRN

Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) and local police spent hours  Sunday going through the apartment of the alleged Orlando shooter, Omar Sadduque Mateen, as well as his parents'  house in Fort Pierce. 

A small gaggle of reporters and TV cameras were parked outside the police tape in front of the apartment complex in Fort Pierce where Mateen allegedly lived. The FBI and local police were on the scene, but neither could confirm anything about the investigation.

Orlando Nightclub Shooting: How to Help

Jun 12, 2016
Lynare Robbins / Courtesy

A shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando has left 50 dead and more injured, reported to be the largest mass shooting in U.S. history. Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency Sunday morning.

There are a number of opportunities in South Florida to support the victims and their families.

Attend a vigil


Fifty people died -including the gunman- and another 53 were injured when a man opened fire and seized hostages at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, early Sunday, making it the worst mass shooting in U.S. history, according to authorities. 

Authorities in Orlando started to release the names of the first casualties of the deadly attack on The Pulse nightclub: Edward Sotomayor Jr., Stanley Almodovar III, Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo and Juan Ramon Guerrero. More names will be released in the next hours. 


Six U.S. airlines received Friday the green light from the Department of Commerce to start flying this fall to nine Cuban cities, but not Havana. 

The return of scheduled flights between the two countries is a step in the ongoing thawing of relations between Havana and Washington. The U.S. providers still have to seek approval Cuban permission for the slots. 


Jun 11, 2016


Norman & Janet Van Aken, © 2016

Here we have a basic Pho Broth. From this point you can create a bunch of different ideas for your versions. Have phun….

3 quarts Chicken, Pork or Beef Stock

2 ea  3” long piece of ginger, peeled and split in half lengthwise (get weight)

1 # pork neck bones with meat

1 # beef neck bones with meat on them

1 # sweet onions, peeled and halved

3 ounces dried shiitake mushrooms

rushing water
Caitie Switalski / WLRN


South Florida was largely spared from the flooding and extra rain brought by the arrival of Tropical Storm Colin. Yet, as storm season rolls in, Lake Okeechobee’s levels – and subsequently connected waterways – are high. Where is all of that water going?

"Ultimately, the water can only go so many places,” says John Campbell, public affairs specialist for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Corps is in charge of managing the largest lake in Florida, Lake Okeechobee, and a major part of flood prevention in the state.

Marcy Leigh via Flikr / WLRN

Palm Beach County’s proposed plan to increase the sales tax by a penny from six cents to seven cents on the dollar is now going to the voters. Enough cities have approved the plan to put it on the ballot as a referendum on  in the Nov. 8 election.


Ashlyn Grantham/flickr

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is under growing pressure thanks to a three year old, $25 thousand contribution to her political action committee from a nonprofit associated with Donald Trump. The money came as her office was considering whether to join an investigation of fraud allegations at Trump University.

ESSAY: Muhammad Ali, An American Poet

Jun 10, 2016

Clay comes out to meet Liston

And Liston starts to retreat.

If Liston goes back any further

He’ll end up in a ringside seat.

Amanda Rabines / WLRN

Nearly one hundred south Florida residents gathered to hear medical specialists talk about precautions families should take to protect pregnant women and their unborn children from contracting the Zika virus. 

The talk, called "Zika and Pregnancy: What You Need to Know Now," was organized by Baptist Health Resource Center in their Kendall location last Wednesday. 

Luis Hernandez / WLRN

Recovering from a natural catastrophe, say like Hurricane Andrew, can sometimes be a long process. Take a look at Homestead.

In 1992, Andrew devastated the south Florida city, destroying the air force base, more than a thousand mobile homes, and one of the city's historic sites. Roughly a third of the population of 30,000 left shortly after the storm.

It didn't take long for housing and people to come back. But, the downtown area along Krome Avenue took a little longer, even though it had been historically the heart of the town.

Miami Beach Bans Conversion Therapy For Minors

Jun 9, 2016
Nick Swyter / the Miami Herald

Miami Beach is the latest city in the country to ban a controversial form of therapy that professes to change someone's sexual orientation or gender identity. The city commission voted unanimously Wednesday night to ban conversion therapy for minors under the age of 18.  And from now on, anyone caught practicing it might be slapped with a fine of two-hundred dollars a day. Miami Beach Commissioner John Elizabeth Alemàn sponsored the ban.

Spencer Parts

The Miami City Commission decided Thursday to begin negotiations to purchase a controversial trolley garage in West Coconut Grove area of Miami.

The garage was built to house trolleys from Coral Gables, but it never served its intended purpose. A Civil Rights lawsuit and widespread community backlash stopped the project.

First-year Miami City Commissioner Ken Russell brought the motion to purchase the garage for community use. He said that the choice to put an industrial facility in the neighborhood showed its neglect by city governments.