Kiley's gardens - what trees?

I had heard about the changes afoot at Kiley Gardens (aka NationsBank Park Plaza) and the adjoining Beer Can (Rivergate) and Cube (Pavilion) buildings, but I was caught Kiley Gardens from across Ashley Streetoffguard when I had the chance to see it for myself.

I stopped in at the Lucky Dill for an excellent Cuban wrap, and even from over there I got quite a shock. The forest of increasingly sickly looking trees that used to be there have been removed, leaving only rows of palm trees that were always hidden by the crape myrtles. So hidden in fact I had to check to see if the palms were new because I never remember them being there.

Anyway, looking west from Ashley St. you can see right over the river to the glittering minarets of the University of Tampa campus.

The following week Tommy and I met for lunch at the same Lucky Dill. We both walked over to Kiley Gardens to check it out.

Frankly the place looks like the no man's land between the trenches in World War I. Tree stumps sawn off at the ground. Turf ripped and pitted with the stone walkways shattered and tossed about. We took these photos of the devastation and saw evidence of ongoing work but I detected no real sign of what plans the shady kiley parkcity might have for the park.

The city has a photo of what the park looked like before the trees were cut down. The difference is shocking.

I'll have more on the future of Kiley Park shortly.

Barney miller tampa bureau

You may remember when the investigation began on Tampa's uniformed frat club (aka anti-crime squad) and their leader, Sgt. Gene Strickland. The Internal Affairs probe is now complete and punishments have been handed out. Some of the punishments seem minor from a civilian's point of view, but I assume that

"demoted to detective and assigned to the legal division, working asset forfeiture"

is the police equivalent of counting cans at a can factory.

To see how the police feel, we'll keep checking LEOaffairs.com. I haven't found any postings about the development yet, but I bet over the coming days we will see some information (and a lot of opinions) turn up there.

But we still don't have all the information. Last March, the St. Pete Times explained why we will have to wait for all the lurid details. Contrary to recent TPD protocol, it is illegal for the police to release the results of their investigation until all discipline (and appeals, I assume) is complete.

So, without knowing those details, it is impossible to see why two junior officers were fired, while the constant with most issues - Gene Strickland - was only demoted and reassigned.

It will be telling to see if the officers appeal the firings. As a former union employee myself, I know if union members are fired for a good reason, they rarely appeal the decision. The union makes it clear they are not interested in wasting everyone's time.