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    Northeast Florida is feeling the chilliest air in nearly eight months this morning. Action News Jax Chief Meteorologist Mike Buresh says our temps will be at least 10 degrees below average today but with a lot of sun.  “That will set us up for a cold night tonight. Sweaters and jackets no doubt for your Friday evening activities as we drop into the 30’s again near and west of I-95, 40’s and 50’s at the beaches”, said Buresh.  Expect weekend temps to be near 70 degrees both days with just a brief shower chance for Sunday.
  • More than one year since a young Jacksonville woman was found dead from a reported self-inflicted gunshot wound, Jacksonville Police have announced an arrest of a man for murder.  Police found 22-year-old Aunesty Hite dead in July of 2017 at a home on Dunsford Terrace, near Philips and Emerson.  The victim’s boyfriend told police that Hite shot herself.  An officer described him as distraught at the time.  Over the past year, Homicide Detectives discovered evidence that Hite had been shot by her boyfriend. 27-year-old Sean Lovins was arrested on Wednesday for a charge of murder.  He was booked into the Pre-Trial Detention Facility and was not eligible for bond. 
  • Over two years after his voice disappeared due to a rare neurological disorder, veteran Cox Media Group reporter Jamie Dupree was honored Wednesday night by his Capitol Hill colleagues with a 'Career Achievement Award for Distinguished Reporting on Congress,' as a House lawmaker labeled Dupree, 'a shining example of determination and perseverance.'  'When life said to be quiet, Jamie found a way to speak louder than ever before,' said Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL). 'He is an example for every American faced with overwhelming adversity.' The award from the Radio and TV Congressional Correspondent's Association, which helps credential reporters who cover Capitol Hill, recognizes, 'rare, exceptional careers and signifies the admiration of the many broadcasters who follow behind and benefit from the work of the recipient.' VIDEO:  Watch Jamie Dupree receive the Career Achievement Award Dupree now uses a special voice app developed by a company in Scotland, CereProc, which allows him to use a simple text-to-speech program to generate news reports in his old voice. 'Jamie is not one to step down in the face of adversity,' added Ros-Lehtinen, who used a House floor speech in 2017 to raise awareness about Dupree's medical plight. Others echoed Ros-Lehtinen's sentiments. In remarks delivered for him by CNN correspondent Dana Bash, Dupree urged his Capitol Hill colleagues to move past the broader political debate about fake news and the media, and concentrate more on their daily work. 'My advice is simple - ignore that talk. Work harder. Do your jobs even better,' Dupree said, making the case that the best course remains a story built on solid detail. 'Smother your viewers with specifics. Overwhelm your listeners with facts. Drench your readers in details,' Dupree added. 'What’s remarkable about Jamie’s career is the not the stability or longevity, but the sustained excellence,' said Jon Sonnheim, who heads the Washington Bureau for Cox Media Group. 'Month after month, year after year, Congress after Congress, Jamie is at the top of his game,' Sonnheim added, calling his radio correspondent a 'walking encyclopedia' about the ways of Capitol Hill. The 54 year-old Dupree has been reporting on Capitol Hill since 1986, but has been around the Congress much of his life. Dupree said he was lucky in that two of the local lawmakers he covered for radio stations owned by Cox ended up rising to become Speaker of the House - Newt Gingrich, and John Boehner. 'Most of the members I have covered did their jobs with little fanfare,' Dupree said.  'And then a handful of my local lawmakers also ended up in prison,' drawing chuckles from the crowd.  
  • WARNING: These videos contain graphic language A search is underway for the man who robbed the Welcome Food Store on Loretto Road in Mandarin on Tuesday night.  Surveillance video from the store shows a man in a gray hoodie walk into the store holding what appears to be a gun.  We were told the man held the employees at gunpoint and demanded cash. The owner of the store says they are now offering a $3,000 dollar reward, which is up from the original $2,000 dollar reward.  The store, just down the street from Loretto Elementary School, has also hired armed security following the robbery.  The morning manager at the store, Karen Reape,  says she is horrified to think about what the employees in the store during the robbery went through and all the emotions they must have felt. Reape became emotional when she started talking about her 9-year-old daughter who she often brings to work. “What if my little girl had been here? What if my little girl was the one coming out of the bathroom when he walked in with a gun?” Reape says.  She says she is thankful for the community's help during this difficult time. “I’ve worked here 12 years, and as far as I know, as long as they’ve owned the store this has never happened.” Reape says. She says there were no customers in the store during the robbery and JSO says no one was hurt. Anyone with information is asked to call police at 904-630-0500 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS (8477) to remain anonymous. NEW VIDEO: Another angle from surveillance inside the Welcome Food Store
  • A Jacksonville man has died in an early morning crash when his motorcycle hit a mailbox.  Florida Highway Patrol says 34-year-old Daniel Walton was traveling south on Blackmon Road in Nassau County just after Midnight when he ran off the road for unknown reasons.  Walton was not wearing a helmet and died on scene, according to FHP. 
  • Three statewide races are being recounted, as ordered by Florida’s Secretary of State on Saturday.  It’s been a fascinating series of events since Tuesday’s General Election.  Results from the races for U.S. Senator, Governor and Commissioner of Agriculture all fell to within .5 of a percent of the overall vote.  Former Duval County Supervisor of Elections Jerry Holland, who served from 2005-2015 before he was elected Property Appraiser, presided over several recounts at the local level.  But he can’t recall a time in which three statewide races have been close enough to lead to a recount. We talked with Holland late on Friday morning about the recall procedures under Florida law, what makes Palm Beach County unique in the way it counts ballots, and what changes may result from the 2018 General Election in Florida. 
  • Florida Senator Bill Nelson says his campaign is proceeding to a recount.  In a statement, Nelson says Governor Rick Scott prematurely claimed victory. Nelson’s campaign says the tally in the race continued in to the morning, and that Scott’s lead is 0.4 percent.  “This race is over. It's a sad way for Bill Nelson to end his career. He is desperately trying to hold on to something that no longer exists”, said Chris Hartline, Spokesman for Scott for Florida.  Under Florida law, recounts for any races or issues are determined by statutory thresholds following receipt of the first unofficial returns, which are due from the county canvassing boards no later than Noon on November 10th.  Recounts must be ordered by the Florida Secretary of State, or a county canvassing board, before a recount can be initiated. 'We expect the supervisors, regardless of their party affiliation, will discharge their constitutional duties,' said Marc Elias, an election lawyer representing the Nelson campaign.  Nelson’s campaign says it will contact voters whose ballots were not counted due to a lack of ID or a matching address.  And it plans to have observers in all 67 Florida counties watching for any irregularities and more.  The Florida Department of State has a specific outline for a recount:  -A Machine Recount occurs if the first set of unofficial returns indicates that a candidate was defeated or eliminated by ½ of one percent or less of the total votes cast for an office, or if an issue (such as a constitutional amendment) was approved or rejected by ½ of one percent or less of the total votes cast on the issue. (Section 102.141(7), Florida Statutes and Rule 1S-2.031, Florida Administrative Code)  -The Machine Recount means all ballots are re-tabulated, or re-fed, through a county’s precinct tabulators and/or central count tabulators.  -Ballots with overvotes and undervotes in the affected race(s) are subsequently set-aside in case a manual recount occurs.  -Exception to ordering a machine recount: If the candidate(s) defeated or eliminated from contention for the office by ½ of one percent or less request in writing that a machine recount not be conducted.  -A Manual Recount occurs if the second set of unofficial returns indicates that a candidate was eliminated or defeated by ¼ of one percent or less of the votes cast for the office, or if an issue was approved or rejected by ¼ of one percent or less of the total votes cast on the issue. (Section 102.166, Florida Statutes and Rules 1S-2.027 and Rule 1S-2.051, Florida Administrative Code)  -The Manual Recount is a hand recount of overvotes and undervotes set-aside from the machine recount.  Exceptions to ordering a manual recount:  -If the candidate(s) defeated or eliminated from contention for the office by ¼ of one percent or less request in writing that it not be conducted; OR if the number of overvotes and undervotes is less than the number of votes needed to change the election outcome.  Results: The results from the manual recount will be reflected in the Official Returns due to the state on November 18, 2018. 
  • After months of partisan combat we finally get the numbers that matter. Voters determine which party will control the US House and Senate, as well as Florida Governor and other key local races.  News 104.5 WOKV is working to bring you up to the minute results and analysis of the key races the moment the polls close at 7 p.m.  Be listening for updates through the day on turnout in NE Florida.  We’ll have an expanded Jacksonville’s Evening News at 6 p.m. with an in-depth look at the key local and statewide races and how both major parties performed during the campaign.  Jamie Dupree Election Viewer’s Guide Washington Insider Jamie Dupree spent weeks putting together an election viewer’s guide that provides an hour-by-hour rundown of what states and what races might be important in the battle for Congress.   By the time Wednesday morning rolls around we should know the results of the race for Florida Governor, Florida Senate, and possibly which party has control of the U.S. House and Senate.  Tune in to a special 8 a.m. hour of Jacksonville’s Morning News on Wednesday for in-depth coverage of the results and analysis.  
  • 46 suspected gang members are off the streets and Jacksonville Police are still searching for five other suspects in a months-long investigation of the Rolling 20’s gang.  “This particular street gang is dismantled and disrupted. We shouldn’t see them anytime soon”, said Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams about the subset of the national Bloods gang.   The Sheriff, who was joined by State Attorney Melissa Nelson, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and representatives from the ATF, announced the arrests at a morning news conference.  “Jacksonville is safer because of this”, said State Attorney Melissa Nelson.  A two-phase investigation into the gang started in April 2016 during a homicide investigation into the murder of Michael Wright.  Quintae Hudson was arrested and subsequently convicted of murder.  The Sheriff’s Office began working with outside law enforcement agencies within and outside Northeast Florida to uncover other crimes committed by members of the Rolling 20’s. 22 arrests were made during an initial phase of the investigation.  The Sheriff says other members of the gang were looking to fill a vacuum of leadership following those arrests.  A second phase of the investigation began early this year and, on October 22nd, additional gang members and associates were identified.  “20 additional Rolling 20 gang members and associates had either state or federal arrest warrants issued”, Williams said.  15 of those suspects were arrested during a sweep by ATF and JSO arrest teams.  Five suspects are still at large and the Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone who may have information about their whereabouts is asked to come forward.  Natario Peterson, Bryant Wright, Keron Taylor, Bruce Wilson and Kirkland Lawrence.  The entire investigation resulted in 46 suspects connected to the Rolling 20’s being arrested on felony charges.  “Ranging from murder to cocaine sales and lengthy prison sentences that they will see in their future”, said Williams.  30 firearms, over 396 grams of powder cocaine, 42 grams of crack cocaine, 72 grams of marijuana and other drugs were seized during the investigation.  “ATF, DEA and the United States Attorney’s Office who have worked closely with our prosecutors at the State Attorney’s Office and our local police to insure that the worst of worst in this gang receive appropriate federal investigation and prosecution”, said State Attorney Nelson. 
  • The mother of 5-year-old Zykerria Robinson has been ordered held with no bond on a murder charge.  At a court hearing this morning, a judge also ordered no bond for Michelle Cannimore’s boyfriend, Jonte Harris.  Both were charged with murder on Monday following the August death of the 5-year-old, who died from multiple injuries.  The couple was initially charged with aggravated child abuse.  Jacksonville police responded to the couple's westside apartment in August after Zykerria was found unresponsive in a bathtub.  Authorities said Zykerria had head trauma and adult bite marks on her body.  According to an arrest report, Harris admitted the previous story about the victim falling in the bathtub was a lie fabricated to protect him.  The injured child was left on a couch for hours because the suspects were worried about the legal and criminal repercussions, the report said.  Both Cannimore and Harris are expected in court next month. 
  • Rich Jones

    Host of Jacksonville's Morning News

    Rich Jones has been News Director of WOKV AM/FM since October 2006. Since joining the team, WOKV News has been recognized by the Associated Press as the most awarded radio news team in the state of Florida including awards for Best Newscast, Best Reporting, Best Public Affairs Coverage, and Best News Series, among others.

    Rich has been involved in many organizations and causes on the First Coast. He has twice been captain of WOKV's team at the Heart Walk, and has raised funds for the American Heart Association. 

    Rich is “the face” of WOKV in the community and is the Master of Ceremonies for many philanthropic causes such as the Annual WOKV Careathon, a day-long benefit for the Child Cancer Fund of NE Florida, which raises hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

    Rich enjoys spending his time away from the studio with his wife, daughters and son as well as watching sports and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

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The Latest News Headlines

  • Over a week after being publicly ridiculed for losing her seat in Congress by President Donald Trump, Rep. Mia Love (R-UT) on Friday night was on the verge of pulling off a stunning comeback in her re-election bid, as the continued counting of ballots in her Utah district finally pushed her into the lead by a slender 419 votes. “Hard to see how she relinquishes that now,” said Dave Wasserman, an elections expert who has been forecasting a possible comeback by Love for several days. Still being tabulated are thousands of provisional ballots in Utah and Salt Lake counties, which take time to verify, as Utah and a number of other states slowly push their way through the votes of the November mid-term elections. The jump into first place for Love came as a judge tossed out a lawsuit that she filed – which oddly would have stopped vote counting in Salt Lake County – a move that her opponent said ‘smacks of desperation.’ “Utah voters deserve better than this,” said Democrat Ben McAdams. With the Utah County numbers posting, Rep. Mia Love has taken a 419-vote lead over Ben McAdams. #utpol — #VoteGehrke (@RobertGehrke) November 16, 2018 But the McAdams lead over Love has slowly withered away in recent days, leaving Love favored by many to win re-election. A comeback victory would be filled with irony, especially after the mocking ridicule heaped upon Love and a number of other House Republicans by President Donald Trump, who said the day after the elections that Love and others were defeated because they refused to embrace him. “Mia Love gave me no love and she lost,” the President said, almost seeming to enjoy the outcome. “Too bad. Sorry about that Mia.” President Trump lists Republicans who didn't embrace him and lost. 'They did very poorly. I'm not sure that I should be happy or sad, but I feel just fine about it.' 'Mia Love gave me no love and she lost. Too bad. Sorry about that Mia.' pic.twitter.com/ZV7EKcWjLX — CSPAN (@cspan) November 7, 2018 Two weekends after the elections, a small number of races remained undecided – with some that could stretch until after Thanksgiving: FLORIDA SENATE – With a manual recount finishing up, and Florida’s 67 counties waiting through Saturday to deal with any other stray ballots, Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) seems headed for victory over Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL). This will give the GOP a big victory, and a 2 seat margin in the U.S. Senate. From a statistical/electoral/historical perspective, Scott's defeat of Nelson is pretty much unmatched in recent political history. Beating a swing state opposition party senator without a hint of scandal in a midterm… It's quite impressive. — (((Harry Enten))) (@ForecasterEnten) November 17, 2018 CALIFORNIA 39 – This is the first of six (or maybe seven) undecided House races. After holding the lead for days, Republican Young Kim has now been swamped by late votes coming from both Orange and Los Angeles counties, and now trails Democrat Gil Cisneros by over 3,000 votes. This should complete what is a total GOP wipeout in Orange County, as Democrats would gain six GOP seats in the Golden State. Congressional districts in Orange County, Calif. in 2016 and in 2018 pic.twitter.com/TWRQ1pPzS4 — Morning Joe (@Morning_Joe) November 16, 2018 CALIFORNIA 21 – This seat has already been called by the AP and other news organizations for the Republicans, but as the votes keep coming in, Rep. David Valadao’s lead keeps shrinking, and some wonder if he can hold on. This might be a long shot, but it bears watching. It’s hard to fathom that Democrats could gain a seventh seat in California. We've been watching CA-21 like a hawk for more than a week now, and the chance for Democrat T J Cox to catch up to Valadao has gone from remote but intriguingly possibile to plausible. We're moving this one to our uncalled races tab. https://t.co/FeGWU7SsoE — Daniel Donner (@donnermaps) November 17, 2018 UTAH 4 – As mentioned above, Rep. Mia Love (R-UT) now has the lead. This would be a big save for Republicans, who have had very little to cheer about in the past 10 days since the elections. In fact, there has been an almost daily drumbeat of Democratic victories each night since then, as they edge closer to a possible pickup of almost 40 House seats, their largest gains since 1974 after Watergate. BREAKING: As expected, #UT04 GOP Rep. Mia Love (R) has pulled into the lead over Ben McAdams (D) by 419 votes. Hard to see how she relinquishes it now. https://t.co/nfsptUdHiN — Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) November 16, 2018 NEW YORK 22 – This seat can probably be called for the Democrats by the AP and other organizations, as absentee ballot counts on Friday went clearly for Democrat Anthony Brindisi, leaving Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY) behind by over 3,000 votes in this northern New York district. This is not a spot where the GOP should have lost. @Redistrict Brindisi lead in NY22 has surged to more 3000 votes! I see no path to victory for Tenney. She's falling further behind as more ballots are counted, that's a losing combination, a larger deficit, and fewer votes left to count. https://t.co/ae1Ny8Osws — Kevin O'Connell (@Kevtoco) November 17, 2018 NEW YORK 27 – Indicted Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) still leads by over 1,000 votes in this western New York district, with one big cache of absentee ballots and provisionals to count next Tuesday around Buffalo. Democrat Nate McMurray has been winning a majority of absentee ballots in recent days in counties where he lost the Election Day vote, making some wonder if he has a chance to win this race at the last minute next week. This is the equivalent of betting a horse that’s maybe 9-1. It might win. Nate McMurray continues to gain ground in counties that he lost to Rep. Chris Collins in. Biggest test will be Tuesday when the Erie County absentee and affidavit votes will be counted. https://t.co/f5nincKkZx — WGRZ (@WGRZ) November 16, 2018 GEORGIA 7 – While the race for Governor is over, Rep. Rob Woodall (R-GA) has a 419 vote edge in this suburban Atlanta district, with all of the votes counted. Democratic challenger Carolyn Bourdeaux announced on Friday afternoon that she would ask for a recount. While a recount doesn’t usually switch the outcome, we have certainly seen in Florida and other states in recent days where there are tabulation errors uncovered – so you can’t say this is in the bag for the GOP – but they are favored. News: We will file for a recount of the 7th district race. With a margin of only 419 votes (0.14%), we want to make sure every vote was counted correctly & fairly. It is crucial that every eligible vote is counted & every voice is heard. #GA07 #GAPol — Carolyn Bourdeaux (@Carolyn4GA7) November 16, 2018 TEXAS 23 – Even though she’s behind by just under 1,000 votes, Cindy Ortiz Jones spent the week in Washington going through freshman orientation, but that may not work out for the Texas Democrat, as Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX) seems like he’s in good position in this race, leading by 0.5 percent. Hurd’s people on Friday were declaring victory, but it wasn’t clear if Jones would press for any kind of vote review. Republicans are favored to hold on to this border district, but it was much closer than anyone had predicted. Bexar County has finished counting, leaving only six votes left to count (Kinney & Upton). @WillHurd has won by 928 votes, this race is over #TX23 — Connor Pfeiffer (@ConnorPfeiffer) November 16, 2018 Democrats right now have a net gain of 36 seats – they should win at least two of the undecided races left, and have an outside chance at others. Right now, the new Congress stands at 231 Democrats to 198 Republicans, with six seats undecided. One final note – this extended time of vote counting is totally normal. Reporters follow it every two years, but many partisans think there is something amiss.
  • The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office says an active investigation is underway after their officers were involved in a shooting in the Paxon area on the Westside.  The Director of Investigations and Homeland Security with JSO, Ron Lendvay, says the shooting stemmed from a traffic violation at around 4:00 PM Friday.  'A field training officer and his recruit were working in the area of St. Clair and Detroit Street, when they observed a traffic violator. The violator was observed running a stop sign and increasing his speed. The officers activated their overhead emergency lights and noted that the passenger side kept opening and closing as the vehicle continued on,' explains Lendvay.  At some point, the officers say the vehicle stopped to let someone out of the passenger side on Melson Avenue. JSO says that person was seen by the officers with a pistol in his hand.  Officers stopped to chase that man and the field training officer was able to catch up to him. At some point during their interaction, police say the officer fired several shots at him.  The suspect was hit by the gunfire, taken into custody, and then to the hospital, where police say he underwent surgery. He's now described as being in critical condition, but currently stable at the hospital.  As this chase and shooting was occurring, Lendvay says the original driver abandoned the vehicle nearby and fled on foot as did another passenger. At this time, neither of those individuals have been found.  Lendvay says several officers involved in different portions of this incident were wearing body cameras. That video is still in the process of being collected and will be reviewed.  At this time, police say it's not clear if the suspect fired any shots or what exactly occurred during the interaction with the officer.  The sheriff's office plans to release further information on this shooting on Saturday. WATCH FULL BRIEFING FROM JACKSONVILLE SHERIFF’S OFFICE:
  • Gas prices are down across the country right now, which is good news if you plan on driving to visit friends or family for Thanksgiving. Depending on which way you are going, you might want to fill up before you leave, says Patrick DeHaan, Head of Gas and Petroleum Analysis at Gas Buddy.  'Generally, if you are heading out of the state, wait until you cross out of Florida to fill up,' he says.  But if you are heading south to places like Miami or the Florida Keys, you'll want to get your gas before you get too far south, because that's where the prices are the highest.  Although prices are down right now across Florida, states like Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama are generally going to be cheaper to top off your tank, DeHaan says.  GasBuddy.com is a website with a free app that directs you to the most affordable gas stations in your area. But DeHaan says as a general rule in the Southeast, the farther south you go the higher the gas prices get.  DeHaan says in Georgia into the Carolinas it can be anywhere from 10 to 15 cents cheaper per gallon than Florida. Gas Buddy can help you find the cheapest prices no matter where you go.
  • A Middleburg man has been found guilty of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and leaving the scene of a crash involving injury, after an incident involving his ex-girlfriend. The State Attorney's Office says Larry Jamison now faces a maximum of 15 years in Florida State Prison, after they say surveillance video showed the entire incident.  According to investigators, Jamison drove his car into his ex-girlfriend as she was walking to church back in February. Investigators say just after hitting her, he got out of his car and yelled at her, and then drove off.  He was then later found by police in the church and acting as if the incident hadn't happened.   Jamison's sentencing hearing has been set for the week of December 3rd.
  • A former Alabama nurse accused of poisoning her private investigator husband had a preliminary hearing Thursday, at which time the shocking details of the crime were revealed for the first time. Marjorie Nicole “Nikki” Cappello, 32, of Huntsville, is charged with murder in the September death of her husband, New York native Jim Cappello Jr. AL.com reported that Jim Cappello, who was reported missing by his wife, was found dead at the couple’s south Huntsville home Sept. 22.  The registered nurse surrendered her license six days later, Alabama Board of Nursing records show.  Nikki Cappello, who jail records show is out on $100,000 bond, waived her right to appear at the preliminary hearing, but members of Jim Cappello’s family were in the courtroom as prosecutors and investigators laid out their case.  >> Read more trending news “Honestly, the family gets a lot of respect from me,” Assistant Madison County District Attorney Tim Douthit told WAFF 48 News. “I don't know if I would be able to sit there and listen to all of that and keep a straight face the way that they did. The evidence that came out today was pretty clear and horrendous.” Lead investigator Mike DeNoon testified Thursday that the investigation showed Jim Cappello, 37, had become suspicious that his wife was abusing narcotics. According to WAFF, he had begun gathering evidence against her, so he could file for divorce and obtain custody of their 4-year-old daughter, Ryleigh. According to his LinkedIn profile, Jim Cappello worked for Posey Investigations for several years before opening his own business, Cappello Investigative Agency, in 2012. DeNoon testified that Nikki Cappello reported her husband missing Sept. 21. The detective said that Jim Cappello’s co-workers had become concerned because he had not shown up for work. When they went to the couple’s home, however, Nikki Cappello would not let them inside, DeNoon said. Jim Cappello’s car was parked outside the house. According to WAFF, DeNoon testified that Nikki Cappello called a friend, Crystal Anderson, the following day and admitted she had killed her husband with insulin. Anderson told investigators that her friend asked her to come and help her get rid of the body. DeNoon said that Nikki Cappello put Anderson on hold for a few moments before returning to the line and telling her not to worry, that another friend was on the way to help her.  A concerned Anderson called police, WAFF reported. Police officials are trying to determine who the other friend was, the news station said.   A foul odor and a freshly dug grave Patrol officers were dispatched to the Cappello home, where one officer went to the front door and a second went around back, WAFF said. DeNoon testified that the officer at the front door smelled the odor of a dead body when Nikki Cappello answered the door. The officer around back found what appeared to be a freshly dug grave, DeNoon testified. The officers detained Nikki Cappello on the front porch and called detectives in.  WAFF reported that DeNoon, who was one of the investigators called to the scene, testified he also smelled the odor of human decomposition when he arrived. He said he asked a visibly nervous Nikki Cappello for permission to search her home. She gave permission for the investigators to search everywhere but the garage, the news station reported. DeNoon said Nikki Cappello was taken to the police station for questioning and he obtained a search warrant for the entire property. Jim Cappello’s body was found sprawled on a tarp on the garage floor, his feet on the floorboard of a car as though someone had tried to move him into the vehicle.  DeNoon told the court that the defendant acted as though nothing was wrong when she was told about the discovery, according to WAFF.  “You know I went inside. You know I found him, right?” DeNoon testified that he asked her.  “Yes, I knew he was there,” Nikki Cappello allegedly responded.  Though Jim Cappello’s final autopsy report is pending, the medical examiner told DeNoon the private detective was poisoned using insulin, WAFF reported.  DeNoon told the court that investigators went to the hospital where Nikki Cappello was a charge nurse and spoke to her co-workers, who said she often talked about her problems with her husband and said she would only be rid of him if he were dead, the news station said.  Hospital workers who looked through their medication supply found that some insulin was missing, WAFF reported. DeNoon said Nikki Cappello told him she’d accidentally brought a bottle of the diabetes drug home with her.  Jim Cappello apparently found the bottle and took a photo of it before texting the photo to a friend, WAFF said. At the time, he appeared not to know what the drug was.  Madison County District Judge Claude Hundley III ordered that the murder case go before a grand jury.  ‘Please make today like your last’ Jim Cappello’s obituary described him as an asset in multiple facets of his life, especially to the legal community. “He was an avid car enthusiast, passionate about helping people and providing for his family (was a) priority,” the obituary read. “Jim was a well-known proud father who cherished every smile and laugh from his baby girl.” Jim Cappello’s father and sister sat through Thursday’s testimony. Afterward, they told WAFF they felt it was important to be there, even though they had to come from out of state.  “It was pretty intense but I'm glad it’s going to move on,” Jim Cappello Sr. told the news station. 'We want to be part of the whole thing. He didn’t deserve this, but he deserves justice. He’s my son and I miss him.” The younger Jim Cappello’s sister, Jamie Weast, said she’s hopeful the family can get some closure through the legal process.  “He’s shining down on us right now. He’s with us every step of the way,” she said. “We’re doing everything that we're capable of every day to remember and honor him.” The family started a Facebook page, Legacy of James Cappello, for relatives and friends to share memories of him so Ryleigh, who is being cared for by the Cappello family, will remember her doting father. Many friends shared memories addressed directly to the little girl. “Your dad worked at McDonald’s during high school,” one man wrote. “Happy Meals included a Beany (sic) Baby doll. He used to complain about being surrounded by these furry toys. “Yet he fell in love with them when you came along. You were his hero. With or without fries.” Weast posted a text message her brother sent her on Mother’s Day, in which he said a friend’s mother had died and he was helping the friend out. He told her he was thinking of the people in his life and things happening to them. “So please make today like your last,” he wrote, according to Weast. “We don’t know. Enjoy it. And have everyone around you enjoy it. Love you so much. Can’t handle the thought of you not there.”  

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