People in the news

Taylor Swift’s dad fights off burglar

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Taylor Swift’s father recently fought a burglar who broke into his $4 million Florida penthouse, a newspaper is reporting.

The Tampa Bay Times said that Scott Swift returned to his home in the Vinoy Place Towers in St. Petersburg on Jan. 17 just moments after 30-year-old Terrence Hoover used an emergency escape stairwell to climb 13 floors to enter it.

The men fought before Hoover ran away, the paper reports, citing police records. Hoover has a lengthy arrest record that includes domestic violence by strangulation, aggravated battery, burglary, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and kidnapping and false imprisonment, the paper said.

Swift picked Hoover out of a photo lineup and police say Hoover called them to report the altercation. Hoover could not be found, however, until last week, when he was arrested on burglary charges. He was being held Monday on $50,000 bond.

Taylor Swift was not with her father and it is unclear whether the intruder targeted the home. The 30-year-old singer lives elsewhere.

Hoover’s mother told the newspaper that her son got lost while searching for his estranged wife and should only be charged with trespassing.

The penthouse encompasses the entire top floor of one Vinoy tower and includes 5,359 square feet, three bedrooms and three full baths.

Bezos commits to fight climate change

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon founder Jeff Bezos said Monday that he plans to spend $10 billion of his own fortune to help fight climate change.

Bezos, the world’s richest person, said in an Instagram post that he’ll start giving grants this summer to scientists, activists and nonprofits working to protect Earth.

“I want to work alongside others both to amplify known ways and to explore new ways of fighting the devastating impact of climate change,” Bezos said in the post.

Amazon, the company Bezos runs, has an enormous carbon footprint. Last year, Amazon officials said the company would work to have 100 percent of its energy use come from solar panels and other renewable energy by 2030.

The online retailer relies on fossil fuels to power planes, trucks and vans in order to ship billions of items all around the world. Amazon workers in its Seattle headquarters have been vocal in criticizing some of the company’s practices, pushing it to do more to combat climate change.

Bezos said in the post Monday that he will call his new initiative the Bezos Earth Fund. An Amazon spokesman confirmed that Bezos will be using his own money for the fund.

Despite being among the richest people in the world, Bezos only recently became active in donating money to causes as other billionaires like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett have done. In 2018, Bezos started another fund, committing $2 billion of his own money to open preschools in low-income neighborhoods and give money to nonprofits that help homeless families.

Bezos, who founded Amazon 25 years ago, has a stake in the company that is worth more than $100 billion.

By Kerry Minor

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