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5 Things to Know in Florida for June 9

June 8, 2017

MIAMI (AP) — Your daily look at news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today.

FLORIDA FLOODING FORCES OUTLET MALL TO CLOSE FOR 2ND DAY

Officials from Sawgrass Mills mall made the announcement in social media posts Thursday. The mall, located north of Miami, closed Wednesday after heavy rains flooded the massive parking lot, stranding cars. While rain is in the forecast, the National Weather Service said fewer clouds are expected Thursday, with some sunshine in the morning and scattered storms in the afternoon.

FLORIDA LAWMAKER: REMOVE PROSECUTOR FROM DEATH ROW CASE

The Florida Supreme Court ordered the new hearing for Bessman Okafor, which places the case in the hands of State Attorney Aramis Ayala. Ayala has said she won’t seek the death penalty in cases she prosecutes. Okafor was sentenced to death in Sept. 2015 in a case handled by Ayala’s predecessor. Okafor was convicted of the 2012 murder of 19-year-old Alex Zaldivar.

FLORIDA LEGISLATORS SAY NO TO SMOKING MEDICAL MARIJUANA

House Democrats on Thursday wanted to allow the smoking of medical marijuana, saying that’s what voters wanted when they approved an amendment last November. But House Republicans rejected the push and pointed out they are poised to approve a bill that allows vaping of marijuana. Gov. Rick Scott ordered legislators back to town to boost money for public schools and to set aside more money for his top priorities.

SHARK BITES LEG OF MAN SPEARFISHING OFF FLORIDA KEYS

Parker Simpson of Key West posted a YouTube video of his encounter with a reef shark Sunday in the waters off the Florida Keys. Simpson was spearfishing in 50 feet of water about 6 miles off Key West. The video shows an 8-foot shark charging Simpson, leaving a 3-inch gash below his left knee. Simpson swam to his friends’ boat, which took him to land. The 23-year-old got 50 stitches in his leg.

FLORIDA CAPS IN MALPRACTICE CASES RULED UNCONSTITUTIONAL

The Florida Supreme Court issued a ruling Thursday striking down a 2003 law setting the caps pushed by then-Gov. Jeb Bush as a way to controlling skyrocketing malpractice insurance rates. The court ruled the caps were arbitrary and there’s no proof that they reduced malpractice insurance rates. Even if they have, there’s no present crisis to justify the caps.

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