TAMPA, Fla. - Here are five things you need to know happening in Florida on Wednesday, August 8.
(1) Jere Walker re-sentencing hearing
A man who has spent more than two decades behind bars in Florida will be re-sentenced in a Hillsborough County courtroom on Wednesday.
Jere Walker was 17 years old when he was sentenced to five life sentences for a series of crimes he committed in the spring of 1988. Walked was convicted of rape, robbery and attempted murder.
The reason he will be re-sentenced is the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2010 juveniles can not be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for crimes other than murder.
In July, Walker asked Circuit Judge Debra Behnke to release him from prison saying he is tortured by the actions that put him behind bars for the past 24 years.
Judge Behnke could release Walker, give him parole or send him back to prison to serve decades more behind bars.
The re-sentencing hearing is scheduled for 9:00 a.m.
(2) Vote By Mail request deadline
Wednesday is the last day for voters to request a Vote By Mail ballot to be sent to them by mail for the August 14 Primary Election.
Starting on Thursday, voters who wish to vote using a Vote By Mail ballot will be required to pick them up at any of their county's Supervisor of Elections Offices.
Per Florida statutes, those picking up ballots on behalf of someone will need a written request from the voter, designating them as the person authorized to carry out the ballot. Those designated are limited to picking up two ballots in addition to their own, unless the additional ballots are for immediate family members.
In order to count, Vote by Mail ballots must be received at your county's Supervisor of Elections Offices by Election Day. Voters may not drop Vote by Mail ballots off at their local polling place on August 14.
For more information about the Vote by Mail process in Florida, visit election.dos.state.fl.us/voting/absentee.shtml .
(3) Historic elephant unveiling
A historic elephant that was last on display 16 years ago will officially be unveiled in Tampa on Wednesday.
The elephant is part of the Outdoor Arts Foundation's Herd About Tampa Bay project for the Republican National Convention.
The foam sculpture is painted red, white and blue. It was last seen in 1996 at the Republican National Convention in San Diego.
The elephant will be unveiled at noon in the lobby of the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel and Marina.
For more information about the Outdoor Arts Foundation, visit the organization's website at www.outdoorartsfoundation.com .
(4) Citrus County 1st day of school
The Tampa Bay area kids are returning to school on Wednesday.
Public schools in Citrus County open for students for the 2012-2013 school year today.
Most students still have about two weeks left before school starts. Children who attend Rampello School in Tampa begin August 14. They start one week before the rest of the Hillsborough County School District because the school will be closed August 27 to 31 because of the Republican National Convention.
Students go back to school on August 20 in Pinellas, Polk, Pasco, Hernando, Manatee and Sarasota Counties. The remaining Hillsborough County kids start classes on August 21.
(5) USF football in Vero Beach
The University of South Florida football team begins 11 days of practice in Vero Beach on Wednesday.
For the third year in a row USF head coach Skip Holtz is taking his team to the Vero Beach Sports Village.
Holtz said going to Vero Beach allows the team to focus better on the upcoming season with fewer potential distractions if they would remain in Tampa.
USF is taking 165 players, coaches and staff members to Vero Beach. All the practices will be free and open to the public.
The Vero Beach Sports Village sports complex is located at 3901 26th Street in Vero Beach.
For more information, call the complex directly at (772) 569-4900 or visit gousfbulls.com .
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