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@FayettevillePD/Twitter(NEW YORK) -- Florence, which made landfall as a hurricane Friday, dropped about 8.04 trillion gallons of rain on North Carolina, the National Weather Service said Tuesday, citing "the unofficial, radar-estimated storm total rainfall."

At least 32 people are dead, including several young children, as a result of the storm, which brought unprecedented rainfall and flooding to North and South Carolina.

North Carolina's governor on Monday called Florence an "epic storm" and warned that some parts of his state "have not seen the worst flooding yet."

"This remains a significant disaster," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said at a news conference. "The next few days will be long ones as the flooding continues."

First responders have rescued and evacuated more than 2,600 people as of Monday.

"We, the people of North Carolina, will get through this," Cooper said.

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Animal Legal Defense Fund(WASHINGTON COUNTY, Oregon) -- A horse is a horse, of course, of course -- even when that horse is filing a lawsuit.

A judge in Oregon tossed out a lawsuit filed by Justice -- a horse -- against his owner over allegations of animal neglect.

Washington County Circuit Court Judge John Knowles issued his ruling on Tuesday, saying the $100,000 lawsuit will not be allowed to proceed on the basis of the horse being a "non-human animal."

"The court grants with prejudice defendant’s motion to dismiss based on a lack of standing for Justice the horse," the ruling stated. "The court finds that a non-human animal such as Justice lacks the legal status or qualifications necessary for the assertion of legal rights and duties in a court of law."

The Animal Legal Defense Fund filed the suit on Justice's behalf alleging owner Gwendolyn Vercher was neglectful in caring for the horse, leaving him outside and not providing proper food or water.

"He was extremely emaciated -- about 300 pounds below body weight for a horse -- and most significantly, he suffered from penile frostbite as a result of his exposure to the cold and that was left untreated for months," Matthew Liebman, Justice's lawyer from the Animal Legal Defense Fund, told ABC News’ daily podcast, Start Here, back in May when the suit was filed.

Vercher called the suit "outrageous" in an interview with ABC News at the time. She pleaded guilty to first-degree animal neglect in criminal court in July 2017, and says she paid for the animal's care as a result.

But the lawsuit for $100,000 was to be used for further care necessary for the animal's remaining years, Liebman said.

In the ruling, the court argued the case would open a "flood" of lawsuit filed by animals.

"There are profound implications of a judicial finding that a horse, or any non-human animal for that matter, is a legal entity that has the legal right to assert a claim in a court of law," the court wrote. "Such a finding would likely lead to a flood of lawsuits whereby non-human animals could assert claims we now reserve just for humans and human creations such as business and other entities."

The ALDF told the Portland Mercury it plans to appeal the judge's ruling.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Numerous flash flood watches have been issued across the Northeast on Tuesday as the remnants of Hurricane Florence make their way into the region.

Flood watches stretch from Virginia all the way to Massachusetts on Tuesday morning, including Washington, D.C.; Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Albany, New York; Hartford, Connecticut; and Boston.

Remnants of Florence will continue to move through Pennsylvania and into southern New York and northern New Jsersy with heavy rain to the north in the Hudson Valley and parts of New England on Tuesday morning.

A cold front will begin to push remnants of Florence toward the coast by Tuesday afternoon with heavy rain expected along the I-95 corridor from Philadelphia to New York City and Boston. Some flash flooding is possible.

The cold front pushes all the heavy rain off the coast and the Northeast begins to dry out by Tuesday night.

Additional rainfall will be the heaviest in New Jersey and parts of New England, where there could be an additional 1 to 3 inches of rain.

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ABC News(SWANSBORO, N.C.) -- North Carolina's governor on Monday called Florence an "epic storm" and warned that some parts of his state "have not seen the worst flooding yet."

"This remains a significant disaster," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said at a news conference. "The next few days will be long ones as the flooding continues."

First responders have rescued and evacuated more than 2,600 people and at least 300 animals from flooded areas, with rescues ongoing, Cooper said.

Rainfall totals in North Carolina and South Carolina have set new records from a tropical cyclone, with 35 inches and 23 inches respectively.

"We, the people of North Carolina, will get through this," Cooper said.

Dozens of people have died since Florence made landfall Friday.

Among the victims is 1-year-old Kaiden Lee-Welch, who was swept away by floodwaters in North Carolina.

His mother was driving on highway 218 when rushing water pushed the vehicle off the road.

"Her vehicle left the roadway and came to rest amongst a group of trees. She managed to free herself and Kaiden, who was in a car seat, but lost her grip on him in the rushing water," the Union County Sheriff's Office said in a Facebook post. The boy's body has since been recovered.

Rivers across the Carolinas continue to swell and threaten neighborhoods with devastating floods as hundreds of roads have become largely impassable.

Residents in South Lumberton, North Carolina, were evacuated Sunday as the Lumberton River continued to rise.

Mandatory evacuations were also issued late Sunday in Hoke County, west of Fayetteville, North Carolina, due to the potential breach of a dam at McLaughlin Lake.

With 500,000 people without power Monday, trucks are having a hard time getting into some areas cut off by the flooded roads.

Getting food to people stranded by rising waters is also a problem.

"We have no way of getting food for ourselves or the animals," one trapped resident told ABC News.

"Power is not gonna come back for awhile. Our road is washed out."

As residents of the Carolinas are trapped in the dangerous floodwaters, the remnants of Florence brought storms to the mid-Atlantic, including tornadoes to Virginia.

One person died Monday in Chesterfield County, Virginia, when a building was hit by a tornado and collapsed, according to the Chesterfield Fire Department.

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iStock/Thinkstock(LELAND, N.C.) -- A video of the rescue of six North Carolina dogs that were locked in a cage rapidly filling up with Hurricane Florence flood water went viral on social media.

In the video, the dogs can be seen panicked, barking and standing on their hind legs against the bars of their cage, trying to get out. The water is nearly up to their heads when they are on all fours. When the rescuers approach them, they wag their tails and paw at the bars.

"They were wet and hungry and very happy to see us," Ryan Nichols, one of the rescuers, told ABC News.

Nichols said he was with his friend, David Rebollar, trying to help people stranded in a church in the town of Leland, when they heard the dogs barking and found them imprisoned in fast-rising waters.

Their guide in the area, a journalist named Marcus DiPaola, caught on camera the moments that the dogs were released and posted the video on Twitter.

"Rescued six dogs in Leland, NC, after the owner LEFT THEM locked in an outdoor cage that filled with flood water that was rapidly rising," he wrote in the post.

"We got them out, but by the time we left, the water was so high that they would have drowned. BRING YOUR PETS WITH YOU! #HurricaneFlorence."

After their release, the dogs can be seen in the video swimming away from the cage, trying to keep their heads above water until they reach higher ground.

Nichols said they reached the backyard of their owner's house, which was on much higher ground, and which had food for them.

Nichols said a neighbor told the rescuers that the owners were a family with children that may have had a medical situation, and that they fled when the waters began rising.

Nichols and Rebollar, both Texas natives, began rescuing hurricane-affected people with the help of a boat when Harvey hit their state last year. That was when they decided they would try to carry on their rescue work in the future.

"We plan on putting larger teams together to do this in the future for all storms," Nichols said.

Rebollar is a Marine in the U.S. Navy and Nichols has a business in Houston.

News of another animal rescue mission also caught people's attention -- and gratitude --- on social media.

Tony Alsup, a trucker from Tennessee, won hearts on Facebook as he travelled in a giant yellow bus from animal shelter to animal shelter, picking up dogs, cats and other animals that needed to be evacuated from the hurricane's path.

His motto: "No one left behind."

"So it begins," Alsup wrote on his Facebook page on September 11, two days before Florence hit.

"I'm absolutely amazed at the cooperation taking place with the animal rescue groups and individuals...Volunteers are stepping up and reaching out to receive new pets from all over the country."

With the help of his bus, Alsup rescued 53 dogs and 11 cats from shelters in South Carolina, according to Greenville News.

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ABCNews.com(GASTON COUNTY, N.C.) -- Since Florence made landfall Friday morning as a Category 1 hurricane, it has taken the lives of at least 18 people, ranging in age from 3 months to 81 years.

The devastating storm's latest confirmed casualty is 1-year-old Kaiden Lee-Welch, who went missing Sunday when he was swept away by floodwaters in North Carolina.

The boy was separated from his mother when she was driving and rushing water pushed the car off the road, the Union County Sheriff's Office said. His body has since been recovered.

The youngest confirmed victim was a 3-month-old who was killed when a tree fell on the child's mobile home Sunday in Gaston County, North Carolina.

Also among those killed was a 41-year-old mother and her 7-month-old son. The two died in Wilmington, North Carolina, when a tree fell on their home, officials said. The woman's husband was injured in the incident and taken to a nearby hospital, according to police.

A 78-year-old man in Kinston, North Carolina, was electrocuted when he tried to connect two extension cords outside in the rain, according to Lenoir County Emergency Services Director Roger Dail.

An 81-year-old man died in Wayne County when he fell and struck his head while packing to evacuate, officials said.

In Lenoir County, a 77-year-old man fell and died from "a cardiac event" while checking on dogs outside during the storm, officials said, and a 68-year-old man died when he was electrocuted while plugging in a generator.

The list of victims also includes a husband and wife who died in a house fire in Cumberland County, officials said.

In South Carolina, a woman was killed when she struck a tree while driving, officials said.

Also in South Carolina, Mark Carter King, 63, and Debra Collins Rion, 61, died from carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator operated inside their home, according to the Horry County Coroner's Office.

"This remains a significant disaster" for much of the state, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said Monday. "The next few days will be long ones as the flooding continues."

"We, the people of North Carolina, will get through this," he said.

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ABC News(NEW BERN, N.C.) -- Many parts of the North Carolina coast are grappling with the damage done by Florence over the weekend.

The city of New Bern, located about 240 miles east of Charlotte, was particularly hard hit.

"Our city has suffered obviously one of the most devastating storms in its 308 year history," New Bern city manager Mark Stephens said at a news conference Monday. "As you can expect this is a significant setback at the hands of mother nature but we will prevail."

More than 4,300 homes were damaged or destroyed in the storm and over 300 businesses faced the same fate, he said.

City officials estimate there has been $6 million in damages so far, Stephens said.

New Bern has not reported any Florence-related deaths, "truly a blessing in such a significant, record-setting storm event," he noted.

Teams are intent on "restoring New Bern to the picturesque city that we know and love," he added.

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Webb County Sheriffs Office(WEBB COUNTY, Texas) -- An arrest warrant for a suspected serial killer reveals new details of how a Texas woman managed to fight off a Border Patrol agent who allegedly killed four women.

Police in Webb County, Texas, credited a woman who escaped from Juan David Ortiz, a U.S. Border Patrol supervisor, for his arrest.

Ortiz, 35, was found hiding in a hotel parking lot on Saturday after the woman escaped and told police that he pulled a gun on her. Ortiz, a 10-year veteran of the agency, was arrested after a brief foot chase and told police that he shot and killed four sex workers in the past two weeks, police said.

The suspect allegedly picked up each of the victims, shot them in the head and dumped their bodies, according to police. Two of the killings occurred early Saturday morning, just hours before his arrest, police said.

"We do consider this to be a serial killer," Webb County District Attorney Isidro Alaniz said Saturday. "It meets the qualifications or definition of being a serial killer -- in this case we have four people murdered."

The woman who escaped said Ortiz picked her up in a white pickup truck and took her to his home, according to an affidavit. She said she began feeling uneasy when they began discussing the death of her friend, a fellow sex worker who was recently found dead.

After leaving his home, the two stopped at a gas station where Ortiz allegedly pulled a gun on her and grabbed her by her shirt, according to the affidavit. She screamed for help and tried to fight him off, police said.

She said Ortiz eventually ripped her shirt off, allowing her to break free and run to a police car that happened to be nearby, according to the affidavit. She described the suspect and told police where he lived, according to the affidavit.

Ortiz was arrested at around 2 a.m. Saturday, after a brief foot chase, when police found him hiding in a truck at a hotel parking garage, authorities said.

Authorities have not released a motive in the case.

The U.S. Border Patrol said it was cooperating with the investigation.

"Our sincerest condolences go out to the victims' family and friends," the U.S. Border Patrol said in a statement. "While it is CBP policy to not comment on the details of an ongoing investigation, criminal action by our employees is not, and will not be tolerated."

Ortiz was charged with four counts of first-degree murder, one count of aggravated assault and one count of unlawful restraint, court records show. He was being held on a $2.5 million bond at Webb County Jail in Laredo, Texas. It was not clear if he had obtained an attorney.

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Ronald Smith from Aliquippa(PITTSBURGH) -- A camel ended up getting loose and running wild at a circus in Pittsburgh on Sunday, dragging one rider on a harrowing experience and injuring six children.

The six children suffered minor injuries, though one broke their arm, officials said. An adult also suffered a minor injury in the incident.

The camel was apparently spooked during a mid-show event by the Shrine Circus at PPG Paints Arena in which guests are invited down to the floor to see the circus animals up close and even ride some of them, including camels, according to Pittsburgh ABC affiliate WTAE.

"We've had the circus for 69 years without incident," Shrine Circus Chairman Paul Leavy told WTAE. "Unfortunately this is the first one and we are ready to handle things like this, we are insured for this, so we'll get back together and see what we're going to do next year."

The rides continued after the camel was corralled and the second half of the circus went on as planned.

"I was like, 'This happens everywhere else, not here,'" eyewitness Michelle Cioppa said. "It was like it was not even real. It was just the craziest thing."

Video shot by an attendee showed the camel bucking as it traversed the crowded arena floor with a rider clinging to its back and two handlers chasing after it. It's unclear if the rider was one of those injured in the incident.

People on the floor can be seen scrambling to avoid the animal before handlers brought it under control after about 10 seconds.

An announcer in the arena can be heard saying, "Ladies and gentleman remain calm," as parents hurriedly ushered children from the floor.

"Praying for the little girls at the circus and the mother that was traumatizing," Ronald Smith, who shot the video, wrote on Facebook. "My first and last time going to a circus."

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW BERN, N.C.) --Florence weakened to a tropical depression Sunday, but that is cold comfort to residents in North Carolina who have seen over 2 feet of rain and are now battling major-river flooding and possible tornadoes.

"Flood waters are still raging across parts of our state, and the risk to life is rising with the angry waters," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said at a midday news conference.

He added that "this storm has never been more dangerous than it is right now" in certain areas of the state.

Some parts of the state were getting 2 to 3 inches an hour, Cooper said.

"That's enough to cause flooding in areas that have never flooded before until now," Cooper said.

Since the storm made landfall as a hurricane in North Carolina on Friday morning, it has been blamed for 16 deaths.

Officials said at least 17 people have died in both states. The death toll included a person killed Sunday in a pickup truck crash near Gilbert, South Carolina, that occurred when the motorist drove through standing water on a roadway, according to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety.

Hundreds of people have been rescued by local authorities, Cajun Navy volunteers and the U.S. Coast Guard since Friday morning.

New evacuation orders were issued Sunday for a mile-long area along the Cape Fear and Little rivers in North Carolina. More than 700,000 households and businesses in the state were still without power as of Sunday afternoon, an estimated 15,000 people were in shelters, and 171 primary roads were closed including parts of two interstates, authorities said.

The state Highway Patrol advised people to stay off the roads, saying troopers responded to 48 collisions from Saturday night and into Sunday morning.

Adding to the threat of further flooding, a tornado watch was in effect for most of Sunday for the areas of Wilmington, Fayetteville, Myrtle Beach, Jacksonville, Oak Island, and Florence.

"It's bad right now, and we do expect it to get worse over the coming days," Michael Sprayberry, director of North Carolina Emergency Management, said on ABC's "This Week" Sunday. "We know that's going to be a major mission going forward because this is historic and unprecedented flooding."

Major-river flooding a threat

Catastrophic flooding unfolded Sunday morning in parts of North Carolina, exceeding flooding 19 years ago in Hurricane Floyd, the National Weather Service said.

One waterway -- the Cape Fear River -- rose 15 feet in just 24 hours from early Saturday to early Sunday. It reached flood stage in Fayetteville, North Carolina, where mandatory evacuation orders were issued Saturday.

"This will be very dangerous flooding over the next few days," the National Weather Service said in a tweet Sunday morning.

The Coast Guard head echoed this view.

"My biggest concern is the rising water," Schultz said on This Week, noting that Wilmington, North Carolina, got 24 inches of rain and could potentially get 15 inches more.

"We're looking at a high-water situation," he said. "The rivers could potentially crest here into the early part of this week. So we have not seen the worst of the flooding."

Schultz was among the emergency officials who briefed President Trump on the storm on Saturday.

"We talked about the massive risk the storm poses -- catastrophic flooding, prolonged flooding," he said of the briefing. "We gave him an update on response capabilities in the theater, and the president is completely leaning in -- anything the feds need to do to support the local, the state partners here in South Carolina and North Carolina. We feel fully supported."

The Lumber River, near Lumberton, North Carolina, will rise into major flood stage Sunday morning. It is expected to reach a level very near the record Hurricane Matthew set in 2016. Mandatory evacuations were issued for South Lumberton on Saturday.

Major-river flooding is also expected on some rivers from southern Virginia to northern South Carolina.

The Northeast Cape Fear River, near Chinquapin, North Carolina, will rise above record flood levels set by Hurricane Floyd in 1999. This will cause devastating flooding across much of Onslow County with travel made impossible and many homes completely flooded.

The Neuse River -- both near Goldsboro and Kinston, North Carolina -- will reach major flood stage late Sunday and into Monday. The Waccamaw River, near Conway, South Carolina, will rise near record levels by the end of the week.

Florence has dropped a tremendous amount of rain in eastern North Carolina, with a widespread 20 to 30 inches already reported. Radar is estimating that some areas between Wilmington and New Bern, North Carolina, have received over 30 inches of rain.

These are some of the latest rainfall totals as of 11 p.m. Saturday:

-- Swansboro, N.C. -- 30.59 inches
-- Newport/Morehead City, N.C. -- 25.20 inches
-- Elizabethtown, N.C. -- 20.17 inches
-- Jacksonville, N.C. -- 16.13 inches
-- Conway, S.C. -- 9.90 inches
-- Myrtle Beach Airport, S.C. -- 6.74 inches

Florence is now the third storm to set a tropical cyclone state rainfall record in just the last 12 months. Harvey dropped 60.58 inches of rain last year in Texas, setting the state’s new record. Just last month, Lane dropped a maximum of 52.02 inches of rain in Hawaii, breaking the state record. The 30.59 inches that have fallen in Swansboro sets a new record for North Carolina.

Florence also currently stands as the sixth-highest tropical cyclone rainfall total across the U.S. for records dating back to 1950.

Heavy rain spreads inland

Heavy rains bands are still coming onshore in eastern South Carolina and North Carolina on Sunday morning. Some of the heavier bands have shifted toward Fayetteville, Charlotte and Raleigh.

Torrential rain is causing inland flooding with major roadways closed, including large portions of I-95.

An additional 6 to 10 inches of rain is still possible along the southeast border of North Carolina and South Carolina.

Life-threatening, catastrophic flash flooding is likely over the southern to central Appalachians from western North Carolina into western Virginia and eastern West Virginia. Torrential rain will cause flash flooding and increase the risk for landslides in the higher terrains.

Florence is still moving very slowly inland. The track shows Florence moving west through Sunday, and then gradually turning north by Monday. Florence will likely become a remnant low within 36 hours.

Even though Florence is weakening, it will still bring significant rainfall inland to the Appalachians before moving toward the Northeast on Tuesday. Totals could exceed 4 inches locally for inland New York and Massachusetts.

"People need to heed the warnings from their local emergency management experts and stay in safe ground," the Coast Guard's Adm. Schultz said.

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Mark Wilson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- As Florence continues to move through the Carolinas, the head of the U.S. Coast Guard said the slow moving nature of the storm is exacerbating flooding worries.

"My biggest concern is the rising water…The storm is moving very slow,” Adm. Karl Schultz said in an interview on "This Week." "It’s southwest of Florence, South Carolina. It’s going to be in the state another, you know, good part of 24 hours before it moves out up through the Ohio Valley. So we’re looking at a high -- high water situation."

President Trump declared a state of emergency in South Carolina on Monday ahead of the storm, which moved into the state late Friday. In North Carolina, the president approved a major disaster declaration on Saturday, which allows for more federal funding and coordination in the state. Florence is now classified as a tropical depression.

The federal government has said that that aid is flowing into North Carolina, and the number of federal employees assisting with recovery totals in the thousands.

Michael Sprayberry, the director of emergency management for North Carolina, said this morning in another interview on "This Week" that the situation in his state is "bad right now and we do expect it to get worse over the coming days."

"You've witnessed a lot of major storms, a lot of big hurricanes in North Carolina. How does this one compare?" asked Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl.

"I would tell you that this is one that’s for the record books. We’ve had unprecedented rainfall... We’ve also had some extreme coastal storm surge… and we had some pretty high winds," Sprayberry said. "I will tell you that the winds ended not -- thankfully not being as high as expected. But we had that triple threat. There’s going to be a lot of damages…we have a lot of work cut out for us."

In a statement to ABC News, the U.S. Coast Guard said that its helicopter teams have rescued 57 people so far, and that more than 3,000 Coast Guard members are involved in the emergency effort.

Schultz said that Trump is staying up to date on the federal emergency management efforts.

"The president is completely leaning in," Schultz said. "Anything the feds need to do to support the locals, the state partners here in South Carolina, North Carolina. We feel fully supported."

ABC News has confirmed at least 14 deaths as a result of the storm.

President Trump took heat this week from both sides of the aisle after he called into question George Washington University Milken School of Public Health’s report that found 2,975 people had died in Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. The study was commissioned by the government of Puerto Rico, which has accepted its findings.

"I’m not calling any numbers into doubt," Schultz said on the question of the death toll in Puerto Rico. "As our team was part of it, we were very much supported, and empowered to get down there and try to be helpful."

"I saw what I saw and I know the fed efforts that I saw were very much committed to the -- to the citizens of the commonwealth of Puerto Rico," said Schultz

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iStock/Thinkstock(WILMINGTON, N.C.) -- Five people were arrested for looting after a group broke into a Dollar General store in Wilmington, North Carolina, following Hurricane Florence.

The arrests came after police shared on Twitter they were asked by a nearby Family Dollar's owners not to arrest different individuals seen looting on video filmed by a CBS affiliate in the city.

"Moments ago, officers arrested five individuals who broke in and looted the Dollar General at 5th & Dawson streets," the Wilmington Police Department tweeted. "Charges are pending, and those details will be released as they become available."

Police had publicly complained on Twitter Saturday afternoon after social media video emerged of people breaking into and looting a Family Dollar about a mile away.

"We are aware of the looting occurring at the Family Dollar Store at 13th & Greenfield Sts, unfortunately management has asked not to intervene at this time," the department tweeted.

Wilmington Deputy Police Chief Mitch Cunningham said the department spoke to the owner, who then changed his mind.

"Initially, our officers responded to the first one that occurred -- the Family Dollar over on Greenfield Street -- and unfortunately the owner did not want to pursue charges," Cunningham said Saturday, speaking to a handful of reporters, including Wilmington ABC affiliate WWAY-TV. "Later, in contact with the owner, he reversed his decision. We're working with the DA, and charges will be filed.

"It's important to take a strong stand against looting," he added. "This community has been through a lot right now, and we feel very strongly that looters are exploiting people that are vulnerable at a time like this. We need to take a strong stance. The owner agreed with us, and therefore it's under investigation."

Arrests have not yet been made in the first looting incident.

A curfew was instituted at 5 p.m. for the area surrounding the Family Dollar, where the first incident of looting took place. The curfew went into place at 5 p.m. Saturday and will last until 6 a.m., police said.

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iStock/Thinkstock(LAREDO, Texas) -- A longtime U.S. Border Patrol agent is being called a "serial killer" after he was arrested and charged with the murder of four women in southern Texas on Saturday.

Juan David Ortiz, 35, was arrested on Saturday in Laredo, Texas, after he allegedly attempted to abduct a fifth woman, the Webb County Sheriff's Office said. He has been charged with the murder of four women over the past two weeks, as well as unlawful restraint, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and evading arrest.

The sheriff's office said all four bodies have been found, and no other victims are expected. Two of the women have not been fully identified, officials said. None of the women's names have been released, pending notification of family members.

"We do consider this to be a serial killer," Webb County District Attorney Isidro Alaniz said. "It meets the qualifications or definition of being a serial killer -- in this case, we have four people murdered."

The first murder took place Sept. 3, authorities said.

Ortiz has worked for the Border Patrol for 10 years, according to the sheriff's office.

The police got their break overnight Saturday when Ortiz allegedly tried to abduct another woman. However, when the suspect pulled a gun on the woman inside his vehicle, she fled and was able to contact police.

"Apparently, the suspect pulled out a gun on her and she was able to escape," Webb County Sheriff Martin Cueller said.

Ortiz was approached by police at approximately 2 a.m. Saturday and initially fled troopers. He ran to a nearby hotel where he was arrested on the third floor of a parking garage hiding in a truck, authorities said.

"This case broke open yesterday with an aggravated kidnapping that led to a lookout for a suspect -- in this case, Ortiz -- so he will be looking at charges of aggravated kidnapping," Alaniz said. "The evidence then collected by the law enforcement investigators indicates that there was probable cause to indicate that this individual was responsible for this series of murders, which I would qualify as a serial murder that we have."

Alaniz said it is believed all four women were sex workers.

"Our sincerest condolences go out to the victims' family and friends," the U.S. Border Patrol said in a statement. "While it is CBP policy to not comment on the details of an ongoing investigation, criminal action by our employees is not, and will not be, tolerated."

Laredo, which has a population of about 250,000, according to the 2010 census, is located directly on the U.S.-Mexican border.

"Laredo is not the sleepy town that we grew up in," Alaniz said. "This is crime that is consistent with bigger cities. Laredo is a bigger city. We're seeing more and more serious crimes. It can happen. People need to be careful."

Cueller thanked the Department of Public Safety, the Texas Rangers and the district attorney’s office for their assistance in the investigation.

Ortiz is being held on $2.56 million bond.

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Scott Eisen/Getty Images(BOSTON) -- Residents of three neighborhoods north of Boston racked by fires and explosions caused by overpressurized gas lines last week will be allowed to return home Sunday morning.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said door-to-door inspections conducted in the aftermath of Thursday's gas explosions in Lawrence, Andover and North Andover were expected to wrap up Saturday night, and all residents should be able to return home at 7 a.m. Sunday morning.

There are at least 12 families whose homes were destroyed that will not be able to return home, officials said.

They've done inspections on more than 5,000 residences and turned the power back on to all of them.

National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Robert Sumwalt said the explosions did not appear to be "nefarious" or "intentional."

Baker declared a state of emergency and removed Columbia Gas, which operated the gas lines, from inspecting the homes after saying they were not able to live up to the task. The governor had the Department of Public Safety install fellow energy supplier Eversource to conduct the testing. About 100 technicians from the company began going door to door checking homes Friday night.

Baker said Eversource was put in charge "after it became clear to us that Columbia Gas was simply inadequately prepared to take the steps necessary to effectively manage relief efforts."

"The only reason we're in this state is because we got asked by Columbia Gas to do two very important things: First, evacuate everyone.' Are you sure you evacuated everyone south of the river?' 'Yes.' So we did it," Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera said Friday at a press conference with Baker. "The second thing they asked us to do was shut off the power.’ Are you sure?' 'Yes, shut off the power.' Those are the last two coherent pieces of information we got from Columbia Gas. Everything since then has been obfuscation, and they've not met their mandate."

"They've promised hundreds of teams of technicians. None have materialized," he added.

Leonel Rondon, 18, was killed after one of the explosions sent a chimney crashing onto his car, Massachusetts State Police said. Rondon had received his driver's license the same day, his friend Anthony Gil told ABC News. Twelve others were injured in the explosions and fires.

Columbia Gas has been fined $100,000 over the past seven years by the state of Massachusetts for violations, including improper pressure testing, according to Boston ABC affiliate WCVB-TV.

Lawrence, Andover and North Andover are about 30 miles north of Boston, near the New Hampshire border.

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(WILMINGTON, N.C.) -- The total extent of devastation from Florence, which has turned from a hurricane into a tropical storm, remains unknown as rain and flooding continue to wreak havoc in the Carolinas.

There have been at least 13 storm-related deaths since Florence, then a Category-1 hurricane, made landfall Friday morning. Not all of their identities have been publicly released but some details about the ways in which they died are available.

A 41-year-old mother and her 7-month-old son were killed in Wilmington, North Carolina, when a tree fell on their home, officials said. The woman's husband was injured in the incident and taken to a nearby hospital, according to police.

A 78-year-old man in Kinston, North Carolina, was electrocuted when he tried to connect two extension cords outside in the rain, according to Lenoir County Emergency Services Director Roger Dail.

A 77-year-old man in Lenoir County, North Carolina, fell and died from "a cardiac event" while checking on dogs outside during the storm, officials said.

An 81-year-old man died in Wayne County when he fell and struck his head while packing to evacuate, officials said.

A 68-year-old man in Lenoir County who died when he was electrocuted while plugging in a generator.

A husband and wife also died in a house fire in Cumberland County, officials said.

The only storm-related death in South Carolina was confirmed by South Carolina Highway Patrol who said that a woman died Friday night after the car she was driving struck a tree.

Heavy rain and flooding are expected to continue at least through the weekend, and local officials said hundreds in areas hit by Florence still need rescue.

Mandatory evacuations were ordered ahead of Florence’s landfall in parts of North and South Carolina, though many people chose to remain in their homes for reasons ranging from financial concerns and the need to care for pets that they may not have been able to take to some evacuation shelters, some who stayed in their residences told ABC News ahead of the storm.

"Honestly, I'm not sure" why some people refused to follow evacuation orders, David Cotton, county manager for North Carolina's Onslow County, told "Good Morning America" on Saturday. "More than likely it's maybe a mindset of 'we've been through this before,'" he said.

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