National
Subscribe To This Feed

Ruskpp/iStock/Thinkstock(MCLEAN, Va.) -- A Labrador retriever named Lulu has flunked out of bomb-sniffing school after she displayed to her handlers that she was no longer interested in detecting bombs, according to the CIA.

"We are sad to announce that Lulu has been dropped from the program," the CIA announced in a press release Wednesday.

Lulu did not make the cut to graduate with her fellow fall 2017 puppy classmates after she began to show signs that she wasn't interested in sniffing out explosive odors a few weeks into training.

We’re sad to announce that a few weeks into training, Lulu began to show signs that she wasn’t interested in detecting explosive odors. pic.twitter.com/c6lxHPfC09

— CIA (@CIA) October 18, 2017

There are a million reasons why a dog has a bad day & our trainers must become doggy psychologists to figure out what will help pups. pic.twitter.com/iaeRpGiSUR

— CIA (@CIA) October 18, 2017


Pups often have off days when they're training for such an important job, the CIA said. The issue -- which can often be fixed with more playtime and breaks -- is often temporary.

"After a few days, the trainers work the pup through whatever issue has arisen, and the dog is back eagerly and happily ready to continue training," the CIA said. "But for some dogs, like Lulu, it becomes clear that the issue isn’t temporary."

Lulu wasn’t interested in searching for explosives.
Even when motivated w food & play, she was clearly no longer enjoying herself. pic.twitter.com/puvhDk1tRX

— CIA (@CIA) October 18, 2017


Lulu was no longer motivated to search for explosives and was "clearly not enjoying herself any longer" when motivated to do so with food and play.

"It's imperative that the dogs enjoy the job they’re doing," the CIA said.

Trainers made the "extremely difficult decision" to drop Lulu from the program for her physical and mental well-being, the CIA said.

Lulu's handler adopted her, so she now enjoys cushy work-free days that include playing with his children and sniffing out rabbits and squirrels in the backyard. She even has a new friend -- a fellow Labrador retriever -- to hang out with all day.

Lulu was adopted by her handler & now enjoys her days playing w his kids & a new friend, & sniffing out rabbits & squirrels in the backyard. pic.twitter.com/WOImM75P1D

— CIA (@CIA) October 18, 2017


"We’ll miss Lulu, but this was the right decision for her," the CIA said. "We wish her all the best in her new life."

We’ll miss Lulu, but it was right decision for her & we wish her all the best in her new life!https://t.co/nPZl6YWNKb pic.twitter.com/Mbcr9C7wUY

— CIA (@CIA) October 18, 2017

Lulu's handler is still on the search for an explosive detection K-9 partner, the CIA said.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

(ABC News)(NEW YORK) -- What happens in the Pacific Ocean with the phenomenon La Niña will likely cause temperature and precipitation changes across the country this winter, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The weak La Niña developing could be the biggest player in the 2017-2018 winter forecast, said Mike Halpert, deputy director of the Climate Prediction Center at NOAA, which released the U.S. Winter Outlook Thursday.

The phenomenon could cause colder and snowier conditions for the north-central U.S. and warmer and drier than normal conditions for the southern U.S, from California to Florida.

The areas around the Great Lakes could also see an increase of Lake Effect snow.

La Niña is the opposite of El Niño; together, they are called the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, or ENSO, and often cause significant differences from average ocean temperatures, winds, surface pressure, and rainfall across parts of the tropical Pacific, according to NOAA.

La Niña is the cool phase of the equatorial Pacific Ocean, as opposed to the warm phase El Niño. The pattern usually swings back and forth about every three to seven years, according to NOAA.

La Niña winters usually bring milder than normal conditions and less snow for the coastal Mid-Atlantic and the Northeast, from Washington, D.C., to Boston. The storm track for the Northeast usually remains more inland with La Niña, bringing mostly rain to the very populated I-95 corridor and snow for the eastern Great Lakes and Appalachian Mountains, Halpert added.

For the Pacific Northwest and the northern Rockies, cooler and wetter than normal conditions are forecast, which means more strong storms with damaging winds and flash flooding for Seattle and Portland are likely.

More than normal snow is forecast for the ski resorts in the northern Rockies from Big Sky Resort in Montana to Steamboat Springs in Colorado.

After a record breaking 2016-17 snow season in the Sierra Nevada Range Mountains, this snow season looks closer to normal. Southern California could be slightly milder and drier than normal.

Though the outlook seems to indicate above-average precipitation this winter, drought is likely to persist in parts of the northern Plains. Some improvement in drought conditions is expected further West.

In scattered areas of the South, particularly in areas that did not receive excess rainfall associated with the active 2017 hurricane season, drought could develop.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock(GAINESVILLE, Fla.) -- Police have geared up for protests expected this afternoon on the University of Florida campus where self-described white nationalist Richard Spencer is scheduled to host an event.

Widespread security measures are in place throughout the city of Gainesville, Florida, where the school is located. The added precaution stems partly from Gov. Rick Scott’s Wednesday decision to declare a state of emergency before the event.

The emergency action "enables various law enforcement agencies to work together more efficiently" and call in support from multiple jurisdictions, according to the school’s website.

Leading up to the start of the event, audience members at the Phillips Center for the Performing Arts began to boo before Spencer even took the stage. Once he did, attendees began chanting phrases like "Go home, Spencer!" and "Say it loud, say it clear, Nazis are not welcome here!"

Spencer berated the audience for believing in free speech but not letting him speak.

"What are you trying to achieve then?" Spencer asked the crowd. "You all have an amazing opportunity to be a part of the most important free speech event perhaps in our lifetime. This is when the rubber hits the road with the question of the First Amendment."

While demonstrations remained peaceful, police continued to circulate among protesters and reporters in the street near the auditorium after the event began.

One flare-up in the crowd occurred when a man wearing a shirt with Nazi swastikas entered the anti-Spencer protest area. The man was in the area for work and wanted to hear Spencer speak, he said.

As the man walked through the crowd, he was quickly surrounded by protesters and chanting. He also appeared to have been punched in the mouth and was seen with blood on his teeth and running down his mouth.

The protesters surrounded the man as he walked off campus. At first, police were not able to keep the crowd away from him and had to fall back several times. Police in riot gear and others with batons eventually formed a line to stop the crowd and escorted the man away.

An armed security guard was arrested for carrying a firearm on school property Thursday afternoon, according to the Alachua County Sheriff's Office. Orlando resident Sean Brijmohan, 28, had a permit to carry a gun, but carrying a firearm on school grounds is a third-degree felony in Florida, punishable by up to five years in prison.

Brijmohan was a privately hired security guard working with a media team. Police immediately disarmed him before placing him in handcuffs and leading him away.

Officials made a second arrest on a 34-year-old Gainesville resident for resisting an officer without violence, the sheriff's office said.

The Gainesville Police Department is investigating reports that an "'average'-looking white male" fired a single shot into a group of people in the parking lot of a CVS off campus. No one was hit by the gunfire, and it is unclear if the incident is related to the protests against Spencer's speech, police said.

Five minor injuries were treated by fire and rescue teams on the scene, officials said.

"Despite our worst fears of violence, the University of Florida and the Gainesville community showed the world that love wins," said University of Florida President Kent Fuchs. "We’re exceptionally grateful to our law enforcement partners and Governor Scott for providing the resources necessary to ensure the safety of our campus and community."

Spencer is president of a group called the National Policy Institute, which asked to organize an event on the public campus. The university originally denied his request in September, weeks after the deadly protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, based on safety concerns. But as a state-run entity prohibited from blocking free expression, the school ultimately honored the request, according to its website.

The Gainesville Police Department posted a message on its Facebook page Wednesday, writing "For months, GPD has been preparing a comprehensive safety and security plan for this week."

The heightened concern about the event stems from the violent protests and counterprotests that prevented his scheduled event in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August. One person died after a car drove into a crowd of protesters and roughly 19 others were injured.

But as a state-run entity prohibited from blocking free expression, the school ultimately honored the request, according to its website.

"We have been very tight-lipped about our security measures for good reason ... and it's to keep you safe," the GPD statement read.

"We won't get in to exact numbers ... but you can rest assured that there are plenty of extra law enforcement officers in town to help in any situation.”

Security costs from for the University of Florida Police Department, Gainesville Police Department, Alachua County Sheriff’s Office, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Florida Highway Patrol and other agencies total more than $500,000, according to the school website.


ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock(FOLSOM, Calif.) -- He has been playing piano for only five years, but 10-year-old Nathan Zhang is already making sure classical music strikes a chord with the future of America.

Nathan attends Theodore Judah Elementary School in Folsom, California, just west of Sacramento, California.

For the past few weeks, Nathan has sharpened his major piano skills during his recess, according to ABC Fresno, California, station KFSN-TV. Instead of taking a break like the rest of his fellow fifth-graders, he stays inside and tickles the ivories as first-graders eat lunch.

He told his school district that he does this because "adding music to their day would be great for them."

The Facebook post of his showing off his forte has been shared hundreds of times, liked over 1,000 times and viewed by more than 32,000 people.

Nathan is quite the accomplished pianist already. He played at New York City’s Carnegie Hall in 2016 after he won a contest online.

He also plays violin but says he wants to focus more on piano.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The husband of Sheila Keen Warren, who's accused of dressing up as a clown and killing his first wife nearly three decades ago, insists his second wife is "falsely accused."

“This is very serious and very unfair,” Michael Warren said, speaking only to ABC News' 20/20.

Twenty-seven years ago, a person dressed as a clown walked up to the front door of Marlene Warren’s Wellington, Florida, home and fatally shot her.

There had been no arrests in the case until this fall, when police detained Sheila Keen Warren on Sept. 27, in Washington County, Virginia, alleging she was the “killer clown,” as the suspect in the case has come to be known. Prosecutors have charged her with first-degree murder and say they will seek the death penalty.

Michael Warren has denied having any involvement in Marlene Warren’s death.

A mysterious killing

On May 26, 1990, Marlene Warren was at her home in the luxurious Aero Club community in Wellington with her 22-year-old son, Joseph Ahrens, and several of his friends, according to Det. Paige McCann of the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

It was just before 11 a.m., and while they were finishing breakfast, when they saw a white sedan pull into the driveway. Someone dressed as a clown came to the front door with flowers and balloons. One of the balloons said, “You’re the Greatest,” according to police.

When Marlene Warren answered the door, police said the person in the clown costume handed her the gifts, pulled out a gun and shot her. Then police said the clown "calmly" walked back to the car and drove away.

“Never to be seen again,” said Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw.

Marlene Warren was shot in the face and died two days later from her injuries. Police later found the white sedan the suspect used in a parking lot.

Neighbor Bill Kramer was out walking his dog when he heard what he thought sounded “like a nail gun,” the kind “used in construction.”

“Some very excited young people came running out saying something on the order of, ‘They’ve shot Joey’s mother,’” Kramer said. “My wife said, 'Stay there, I’ll call 911.'”

Marlene Warren’s husband, Michael Warren, who ran a used car lot and a rental car agency, said he was on his way to a Miami racetrack at the time of the shooting.

One year after Marlene Warren’s death, detectives reportedly identified a woman named Sheila Keen as a suspect, but she was not arrested. At the time of the murder, Keen ran a business to repossess cars and often worked with Michael Warren, though police said they both denied having an affair. Marlene Warren’s parents claimed in 2000 in a published report that she had previously told them they were having marital problems, and suspected that Michael Warren may have had a mistress.

Police were also reportedly suspicious of Michael Warren.

“I told him, I says, ‘Mike … I don't think that you done it. But I know pretty damn well that you know more about it than you're letting out,’” Marlene Warren’s stepfather, Bill Twing, told 20/20. “And he says, ‘Honest. Honest, Bill,’ he says, ‘I don't know,’ and then we changed subject.”

Marlene's parents told 20/20 they were shocked by the news that Marlene was killed and they didn't know anyone who would want to hurt their daughter. They describe their middle child of three daughters as "outgoing, friendly, loving." The Twings say Marlene was a hardworking business woman. They estimated that she owned around 20 rental properties and also worked as a cargo ship inspector.

"[She would] do anything for anybody," said Marlene's mother, Shirley Twing.

Cold case unit reopens investigation

Michael Warren was eventually charged in a separate case. He was convicted of racketeering and odometer tampering and served three-and-a-half years in prison before he was released in 1997.

The case of Marlene Warren’s murder ran cold until Palm Beach County authorities reopened it in 2014. The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office said witnesses were re-contacted and more DNA analysis was conducted on evidence collected at the time, including on orange fibers possibly from a clown wig.

In the nearly 30 years that had passed, Sheila Keen had married Michael Warren in a Las Vegas chapel wedding in 2002. The two had moved to Abingdon, Virginia, where they had built a home and ran a fast food restaurant called The Purple Cow in nearby Kingsport, Tennessee, according to authorities.

Neighbors Brook and Rocky Blevins said they knew the Warrens as “Debbie” and “Mike,” a sociable, hard-working and friendly couple. But the Warrens’ other neighbors, Vicki and John Chittester, said they had a nasty run-in with Michael Warren once, and said he could have a temper. Neither couple said they knew of the Warrens’ previous lives in Florida.

As the 27th anniversary of Marlene Warren’s death approached, Palm Beach Post reporter Barbara Marshall was working on a feature about the case when she said her researcher discovered that Michael Warren and Sheila Keen had gotten married and were now living in Virginia.

"It was like an urban legend... the fact that it was never solved it just went on and on and on," Marshall said. "In May, which was... the 27th anniversary of the killing, my editor said, 'Well, let's, let's re-look at this.'"

Then, in August of this year, Washington County, Virginia, Sheriff Fred Newman said he received an unexpected call from his counterpart in Palm Beach County, Florida, in regards to the infamous “killer clown” murder case. Newman said he and his deputies then began looking into the whereabouts of Sheila Keen Warren.

On Sept. 27, Sheila Keen Warren was arrested in Abingdon, Virginia, and charged with first-degree murder for the death of Marlene Warren.

Joseph Ahrens, Marlene Warren's son, declined to speak with 20/20 but told ABC affiliate WPBF at the time of Sheila Keen Warren’s arrest that the news was a "big shock" but the arrest has made him "happier than I've been in many years."

Marlene Warren’s mother, Shirley Twing, said Sheila Keen Warren’s arrest confirmed their decades-old suspicions.

“I turned angry when I heard … Mike had married Sheila,” she said. “Remembering that she killed my daughter, and he marries her? … There’s got to be something there.”

Prosecution seeks the death penalty

Sheila Keen Warren was extradited to Palm Beach County and appeared at a bond hearing on Oct. 4. The judge set no bond in the case.

“There was actually an excellent job of collection of evidence at the time in 1990,” said prosecutor Brian Fernandes. “And because of that collection, we’re able to now use advances in DNA technology.”

State Attorney Dave Aronberg, whose office is prosecuting Sheila Keen Warren for murder, said that his office is seeking the death penalty.

"I can’t speak specifically to Michael Warren or any of the specific facts of this case,” he said. “I can just say … we're going to investigate anyone who may be culpable and we’ll make a decision on prosecutions as appropriate.”

But even with a looming trial, after all these years, emotions are still raw for Marlene Warren’s parents.

“She [Sheila] got away with it for so long,” Shirley Twing said. “You can’t tell me that he [Mike] didn’t know. No way in heck … if there’s a hell, I hope she rots in it.”

"Marlene was a good person," Bill Twing added. "And it's just a shame that somebody took her away from us ... Nobody deserves that."

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock(SEATTLE) -- A strong storm system wreaked havoc on the western Washington area on Wednesday, toppling trees and knocking out power for thousands as the autumn storm season whipped into full swing.

The storm -- the second of three expected to hit the Washington area this week -- brought as much as 2 inches of rain to some parts of the Evergreen State.

Seattle surpassed its rainfall record for the day with 1.2 inches of rain as of early Thursday, breaking a record that had been held since 1958, according to the National Weather Service.

Nice capture by our coastal radar earlier tonight of the front reaching coast. Green = wind toward radar. Red = wind away from radar. #wawx pic.twitter.com/ZaJCtQe89a

— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) October 19, 2017

Heavy winds of up to 58 mph downed trees and power lines in multiple cities along Washington’s west coast.

In Kent, located about 25 minutes south of Seattle, trees fell down a hillside, tumbling power lines and snapping a power pole on a busy street, according to local ABC affiliate KOMO-TV.

Seven cars were damaged by the falling lines, including one that trapped a woman inside her car for more than 30 minutes, KOMO-TV reported. The woman was not injured.

A woman had been trapped in this car when a falling tree pulled down high voltage power lines that draped over the vehicle. She was freed and is OK #komonews pic.twitter.com/E71ViU1ulv

— Joel Moreno (@JoelMorenoKOMO) October 19, 2017

The National Weather Service warned residents to stay indoors and avoid driving to avoid falling limbs during the height of the storm.

About 56,000 people were without power across the major western Washington utilities, with Puget Sound Energy accounting for 41,000 of them.

ICYMI Watch: Transformer explodes during Western Wash. wind storm: https://t.co/2tLqrHq7XL pic.twitter.com/NscvqwCa6l

— KOMO News (@komonews) October 19, 2017

Most of the wind advisories had expired by late Wednesday, but a separate storm is expected to hit the area this weekend, meteorologists said.

“Another strong front will reach the area for the weekend -- with another round of heavy rain,” the National Weather Service said in a note Wednesday night. “Drier weather is expected to develop early next week as a ridge of high pressure strengthens."

The heaviest rainfall is expected between Seattle and the extreme northern parts of Oregon, meteorologists said. The rainfall is forecast to gradually ease on Sunday night.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock

(EDGEWOOD, Md.) -- A man suspected of killing three co-workers Wednesday in Maryland was captured in Delaware this evening, officials said.

Radee Labeeb Prince, 37, allegedly shot five people, killing three, at the Advanced Granite Solutions office in Edgewood, Maryland, Wednesday morning.

Prince was caught Wednesday evening after a short foot chase in Newark, Delaware, after authorities received a tip that he had been seen in a neighborhood, a law enforcement source told ABC News. State and local law enforcement officers, as well as federal agents, descended upon the neighborhood, fanning out to look for Prince, the source said.

Three ATF agents spotted Prince on foot near the Four Seasons Parkway in Newark as he was smoking a cigar. When the agents approached him, he ran and dropped a gun, the source said. Prince was then quickly apprehended without incident, and authorities recovered the weapon.

Authorities would not have been able to apprehend Prince without efforts from the media, multiple law enforcement agencies and tips from civilians, Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy said at a press conference Wednesday night. Prince was being processed into jail late Wednesday, Tracy said.

The three individuals killed were identified by the Harford County Sheriff's Office as 53-year-old Bayarsaikhan Tudev, 34-year-old Jose Hidalgo Romero and 48-year-old Enis Mrvoljak. The two others injured at Advanced Granite Solutions remained in critical condition Thursday at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center, police said.

On Wednesday, Prince entered the facility just before 9 a.m. and was an employee there, according to Harford County Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler. Police were on the scene within six minutes of being notified, authorities said.

A single handgun was used in the attack, police said. The identities of the victims have not yet been released.

Officials said Prince fled the scene in a 2008 black GMC Acadia with Delaware license plates.

"There's an individual out there on the loose who committed one of the most heinous acts we've ever seen in our county," Gahler told reporters after the shooting. He confirmed that Prince has a criminal history and said he remained "armed and dangerous."

Prince was also wanted in connection to a separate shooting in Wilmington, Delaware, Gahler said. The shooting was targeted, and Prince allegedly "had beefs" with the victim he shot there, Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy said at a press conference Wednesday afternoon.

Wilmington police said they received the first report of a shooting less than two hours after the shooting in Maryland. A person was shot twice -- once near his head and once on his body -- and is expected to survive, Tracy said.

After the shooting in Wilmington, officers spotted Prince's car, but they lost sight of the vehicle during a brief chase as it was heading north. His car was later found in Newcastle County, Delaware, Wednesday afternoon near a high school, police said. Authorities had received a tip that Prince was seen leaving his vehicle and walking toward the high school, Tracy said.

Prince has a long criminal history, with 15 felony convictions and four misdemeanor convictions in Delaware, Tracy said.

In March 2015, Prince was charged in Cecil County with firearm possession with felony conviction as well as three related misdemeanors: possession of a firearm, illegal possession of ammunition and having a handgun in a vehicle, according to court records. It is unclear why the case ended without prosecution three months later.

In February of this year, a man named Philip Siason filed a petition for a peace order against Prince, court documents show. In his account of why he was filing, Siason said Prince was an employee of his at JPS Marble & Granite in Forest Hill, Maryland, and that he fired Prince for "punching another employee in the face."

"He came back to our business justifying what he did was right because the other guy was saying things he did not like," Siason said in the documents.

Siason said Prince later tried to collect unemployment benefits from the company, but the company told the unemployment agency that Prince was already working for another company. On Feb. 27, Prince "cursed and yelled" at Siason about the unemployment benefits, Siason wrote in the filing.

The order was denied because the court said there was no statutory basis for relief and that Siason could not meet the required burden of proof.

Gahler said Prince targeted the Maryland home improvement business where he was an employee.

"We know he worked here," Gahler said. "He was scheduled to be at work today."

He added, "We think it ties into the relationship here at work. I do believe he's targeting for a specific reason and not general."

Kevin Doyle, 47, told ABC News that he was standing next to his work truck in a parking lot next to Advanced Granite Solutions when he saw three employees running out the back of the building with a "look of terror" on their faces.

Two of the Maryland shooting victims were transported to University of Maryland Medical Center and remain in serious condition, Gahler said.

"Everyone shot is in serious condition," he said.

The Harford County Sheriff's Office tweeted a photo of Prince, including his birth date and the vehicle's license plate number.

SEARCH for SUSPECT:
RADEE LABEEB PRINCE 11/5/79
2008 Black Chevy Acadia DE Tag PC064273
Call 911 if you see the suspect. pic.twitter.com/v8y18FOEUi

— Harford Sheriff (@Harford_Sheriff) October 18, 2017

Prince is believed to have acted alone.

"We do not believe anybody else is connected to the shooting," Gahler said.

The Harford County Sheriff's Office is working with the FBI to investigate the shooting. An FBI official told ABC News that the agency is treating the incident as "workplace violence" and there are no indications of terrorism at this point in time.

Edgewood is about a 40-minute drive north of Baltimore and a short distance to the second crime scene in Wilmington.

The close proximity to the crime scene was enough to cause Harford to warn the public that Prince could return quickly.

“He’s mobile," Gahler said. "He could be back here in Harford County in 10 minutes.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

JaysonPhotography/iStock/Thinkstock(HOUSTON) -- Frightening surveillance video shows four armed suspects carjacking a woman while her 11-month-old niece was with her on Monday.

In the video provided to ABC News by Houston, Texas, police, four people can be seen ditching a wrecked car as they run toward a minivan.

As the woman attempts to park the minivan, the suspects approach it, carrying rifles and firing shots into the air, the video shows. They drag the woman and her niece out of the minivan and throw them onto the lawn.

Three of the suspects proceed to get into the minivan, while the fourth suspect flees on foot, the video shows. That suspect was later arrested by police, and now faces murder and felony deadly conduct charges, according to Houston police.

According to police, the suspects in the video are connected to a homicide that took place earlier that day near the carjacking. The previous shooting killed 53-year-old and injured a 22-year-old, ABC-owned station KTRK reported.

Police have yet to apprehend the other three suspects and are asking for the public's help.

Any injuries suffered in connection with the carjacking were not immediately released.



Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

(U.S. Army) Sgt. La David Johnson, 25, died from wounds sustained during enemy contact. He was assigned to 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne) on Fort Bragg.(NEW YORK) -- A moving portrait of one of the fallen U.S. soldiers killed in an ambush in Niger has emerged in the wake of his death this month, with his longtime love speaking out about her devastation and the unfathomable prospect of raising their three children as a single mother.

"For him not to be with us anymore is just heartbreaking and devastating because I don't know what I'm going to do without him," Myeshia Johnson said of her husband, Sgt. La David Johnson.

"He was just everything to us," she told CBS Miami.

Upon hearing the news, she said, “my whole life just changed in an instant because my husband was my soulmate."

Myeshia and La David Johnson met when they were 6 years old while living in Miami.

Rep. Frederica Wilson, who represents his Florida district, told MSNBC's Morning Joe that Johnson was raised by an aunt and uncle. He participated in a mentorship program that Wilson started called 5,000 Role Models in Excellence, as did his two younger brothers.

"I lose a lot of young black boys every year to crime in the street," Wilson told Morning Joe, "but when a community like mine has a hero that we can lift up and celebrate and love, that's all we care about. We're so proud of him and everything that he accomplished. He died as a sergeant. He died as a hero. We are so proud of him."

He was known to people outside of his community as well because of his passion for bike trips. Starting in 2014, he posted a series of videos on YouTube that show his popping a wheelie on a bike. He dubbed himself the "Wheelie King."

More recently, in 2016, he posted several videos of his giving himself a military-style haircut.

Now, those videos are something that his widow is going to use to help remind his children of him.

"We have a lot of memories and videos and pictures and great times with him that we'll cherish forever," Myeshia Johnson told CBS Miami.

The couple had two children -- a 6-year-old daughter and a 2-year old son -- and another daughter on the way. A GoFundMe page has been established to raise money for the children's education and, within a day, more than $315,000 had been raised.

"I told him before he leave that I love him and make sure he come back to me," Myeshia told CBS Miami.

Sgt. Johnson was one of four soldiers killed in Niger when a joint patrol of U.S. and Nigerien forces was ambushed Oct. 4 by militants believed linked to ISIS. He was serving with a Green Beret unit as part of its support team.

He enlisted in the Army in January 2014 as a wheeled-vehicle mechanic and was assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group, a Green Beret unit based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The military says his body was found Friday after an extensive search; his body was initially listed as missing.

Myeshia Johnson told CBS Miami that it was so important to her and her loved ones for his remains to be returned to the U.S.

"That was one of my main goals was for him to come home. He needed to come home because we needed that closure for my family," she said.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

aijohn784/iStock/Thinkstock(MINNEAPOLIS) -- The leaders of a suburban Minneapolis mosque that was bombed three months ago have released new footage in hopes of generating more leads for investigators in the unsolved case.

The blast rang out at the Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington on Aug. 5 as more than a dozen people were gathering inside for morning prayers. Although no one was injured in the explosion, it damaged the imam's office and rattled worshipers there, according to Bloomington Police Chief Jeff Potts.

The investigation was turned over to federal officials that day, and the FBI said at the time that preliminary information indicated the explosion was caused by a destructive device in violation of federal law.

Richard Thornton, special agent in charge of the FBI's Minneapolis Division, said the explosion was caused by an "improvised explosive device."

The following day, Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton condemned the bombing as an "act of terrorism."

The Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center has released surveillance footage from inside the building at the time the explosion occurred, according to ABC affiliate KTSP in Saint Paul. The video shows members of the mosque running for their lives down a hallway next to the room where the bomb detonated, which left massive cracks in the white cinder block walls.

The Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center did not immediately return ABC News' request for comment Wednesday.

The Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center's executive director, Mohamed Omar, told KTSP the footage was released to help law enforcement resolve the case and bring the perpetrator "to justice."

Omar told KTSP he met with FBI agents two weeks ago who told him they were making progress on the investigation. The agents also showed him an image of a man making a purchase at a store who they said is a person of interest, Omar said.

Omar described the man in the image as a white male who appeared to be middle-aged or older. He said the individual was not anyone he had seen in the area before.

"The man was no one I recognized and no one here recognized," Omar told KTSP. "They have now shown me a lot of photos of people, but this time they did say they were narrowing their list of people."

As the investigation continues, Omar said the Islamic Center and the surrounding community has been on edge. According to the latest census data, Minnesota is home to the largest Somali population in the United States, about 57,000 people.

"People here are still shaken by this whole thing and it is very scary for everyone, because you do not know when you can feel completely safe," Omar told KTSP.



Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A heartbreaking moment unfolded on the tarmac of a Florida airport Tuesday when the widow of a fallen soldier received her husband's casket.

Myeshia Johnson, the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed during a mission in Niger, was on hand to receive the remains.

Footage of the moment shows a pregnant Myeshia Johnson weeping as she leaned over the flag-covered casket.

She was accompanied by the couple's 6-year-old daughter, who is seen standing by her mother's side as Myeshia Johnson sobs for several minutes.

According to local ABC affiliate WPLG, the casket was transported from Miami International Airport on an interstate closed to other traffic. WPLG reported that police officers and firefighters saluted the vehicle along the route to the funeral home in Hollywood, Florida.

Johnson was one of four soldiers killed in Niger when a joint patrol of U.S. and Nigerien forces was ambushed Oct. 4 by militants believed to be linked to ISIS. He was supporting a Green Beret unit on the mission.

The handling of Sgt. Johnson's death and the response by President Donald Trump has become a controversial flashpoint.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- A 5,000-long conveyor belt of moisture called an Atmospheric River has developed in the air over the Pacific Ocean, spanning from Asia to North America.

Over the next several days, storms will move along this conveyor belt, bringing more than a foot of rain to parts of western Washington and northern Oregon and several feet of snow to the Cascade mountains. Gusty winds with these storms could be as high as 50 to 60 mph.

The National Weather Service has issued flood watches and high wind warnings for Washington state and Oregon.

A so-called Atmospheric River is a narrow but a long plume of moisture in the atmosphere, about 450 miles wide but several thousand miles long. Atmospheric rivers transport up to half of the West Coast’s precipitation each year during the rainy season, which spans from October to April.

A single Atmospheric River can carry a greater flux of water than the earth's largest river, the Amazon River.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

Google Earth(NEW YORK) -- Ravaged by a slew of deadly wildfires in recent days, northern California is set to get a bit of relief this week in the form of rain.

A storm system is expected to move over the Pacific Northwest later this week and the trailing cold front will most likely bring some much-needed rain to northern California between Thursday and Friday, according to ABC meteorologists.

"It will rain a bit but not enough to fully douse the blazes," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Ken Clark said in a statement Tuesday. "The biggest advantage to firefighters will be the increase in humidity and lower temperatures."

Nearly 10,000 firefighters continued to battle 13 large wildfires burning across California Wednesday that have collectively charred more than 210,000 acres of land in the past week. The fires have destroyed thousands of homes and have been blamed for the deaths of 42 people, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

While most of the remaining fires are halfway contained and many evacuation orders have been lifted in Northern California, over 22,000 people were still out of their homes because of the blazes, authorities said.

“Weather conditions this week will continue to help in the containment progress. In fact, light rain in Northern California is forecast for Thursday night," the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said in its statewide fire summary Wednesday. "Residents returning home are urged to be cautious as hazardous conditions may remain."

The northern parts of the Golden State, which has borne the brunt of the fire damage, is forecast to see an influx of cloudy, cooler and wetter weather later in the week, according to AccuWeather.

But a return of dry air, heat and areas of gusty winds could once again raise the wildfire danger early next week, meteorologists said.

Separately, a band of moisture, referred to as Atmospheric River by weather experts, is currently stretching between Asia and North America. It’s expected to bring several storm systems into many parts of the Pacific Northwest through the rest of the week.

The first of these storms have already hit the Pacific Northwest with wind gusts of between 40 and 74 mph.

A number of wind warnings and flood watches are in effect in the western and northern parts of the United States as the storm approaches.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

 

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

northshorefirefighters/Instagram(SANTA CRUZ, Calif.) -- A prison inmate doubling as a volunteer firefighter suffered smoke inhalation on Tuesday while battling a blaze nicknamed "The Bear Fire," fire officials in California confirmed.

A professional firefighter also suffered wrist and facial injuries after plunging 50 feet from a torched peak in the mountainous Boulder Creek region of Santa Cruz, California.

Each was digging in on a fire line to smother flames that started around 10:30 p.m. local time Monday, Cal Fire officials confirmed to ABC News.

“I don’t want to minimize the death of the water tender, but the fact is the injuries are very low for what we’re up against,” Janet Upton, CAL Fire deputy director of communications, told ABC News. “To have so few injuries is remarkable.”

The inmate was teamed up with firefighters battling a blaze in Las Cumbres, an elevated region of Santa Cruz that had been evacuated, Cal Fire officials said.

The fire has proved difficult to snuff out because of the vertical terrain and limited sunlight that grounded the air support, another Cal Fire official said.

The unidentified inmate who suffered the smoke inhalation injury is among the estimated 4,000 inmates fighting the wildfires in Northern California. They are often called the “Angels in Orange.”

They are made up of men and women -- and even some juvenile offenders -- who don orange-colored fire gear as they fight fires. They earn a daily wage ranging from $2 a day to $1 an hour.

The inmates also command a third of the Cal Fire crews tackling the deadliest cluster of fires in California history, where 41 people have died and thousands of homes have been destroyed.

The inmate program was originally put in place in the 1940s to help maintain roadways.

Today, it allows 4,000 convicts to leave electric-fenced prisons to be on a camp where a state corrections spokesman said they are paid better than other jobs behind bars, eat grilled steak dinners and get double the credit for good behavior.

As volunteer firefighters, they serve under a real fire captain and fan out in 14-member teams where they work like a mowing machine: a team leader or "sawyer" whacks brush and trees down with chainsaws, rakes and pulaskis, which are a cross between an ax and a shovel.

"They are trained to do a very specific job, by working in crews of about 14 with chainsaws and hand tools and they cut firebreaks," Bill Sessa, a spokesperson for California's Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, told ABC News. "Their job is to slow the fire down or stop it or change its direction."

The inmates aren't conscripted.

In fact, the gig is one of the most sought after by inmates.

"They are there because they chose it as a coveted position," Sessa said. "They feel a sense of pride in doing what they do."

He went on, "You go into a camp and you would swear that except for their obvious inmate T-shirts and pants, that it's just another firefighter."

The vetting process is also very intense. Sessa said the circumstances of an inmate's conviction, the nature of the crime, their behavior in prison, and if they have taken advantage of education and rehabilitation resources are factored into the decision.

"We tell these inmates, 'You are going to be treated like firefighters. We're only going to treat you like inmates if you are out of bounds,'" Sessa said.

Sessa said that it is very rare to have inmates try to abscond from the camps, and almost unheard of for one to cut out on a fire line.

But that is exactly what happened on Monday when Armando Castillo, 31, vanished at around 4:45 p.m. near Peters Canyon Regional Park while a crew was engaged in fighting the Canyon Fire 2 in Orange County, according to a statement released by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

"The people that I've talked to who have been here a long time say they never had that happen before," Sessa said.

Castillo, who was set to be released in May of this year, was originally sentenced to five years behind bars for gun possession and evading a police officer while driving recklessly, according to the statement by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Before he became a fugitive, Castillo was supposed to be released on probation in May 2018.

When fires aren't terrorizing the state, Sessa said the volunteers keep busy "doing projects everyday," like clearing brush and flood channels before heavy rains and taking down diseased trees.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



Subscribe To This Feed

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Trump administration's most recent attempt to ban immigration to the United States from certain foreign countries was put on hold Tuesday by a Hawaiian federal judge.

U.S. District Court Judge Derrick Watson, responsible for blocking President Donald Trump's second travel ban in March, authored the ruling again Tuesday, which notes that the third executive order on the matter ignored the "guidance afforded" by the earlier legal proceedings related to the issue.

"EO-3 suffers from precisely the same maladies as its predecessor: it lacks sufficient findings that the entry of more than 150 million nationals from six specified countries would be 'detrimental to the interests of the United States,' a precondition that the Ninth Circuit determined must be satisfied," reads the ruling.

"And EO-3 plainly discriminates based on nationality in the manner that the Ninth Circuit has found antithetical to... the founding principles of this Nation," the ruling continues.

The court granted the plaintiffs' request for a temporary restraining order which will block the order from going into effect Wednesday. The order prohibited immigration to the U.S. from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

The White House responded to the ruling with a statement Tuesday afternoon, writing that the "dangerously flawed district court order undercuts the President’s efforts to keep the American people safe and enforce minimum security standards for entry into the United States."

"The entry restrictions in the proclamation apply to countries based on their inability or unwillingness to share critical information necessary to safely vet applications, as well as a threat assessment related to terrorism, instability, and other grave national security concerns," the statement added. "These restrictions are vital to ensuring that foreign nations comply with the minimum security standards required for the integrity of our immigration system and the security of our Nation."

The White House further indicated that the Department of Justice will defend the action.

Doug Chin, the attorney general of Hawaii, the state which challenged the ban, issued a statement which noted that "this is the third time Hawaii has gone to court to stop President Trump from issuing a travel ban that discriminates against people based on their nation of origin or religion."

"Today is another victory for the rule of law," Chin said in the statement. "We stand ready to defend it.”

Tuesday's ruling does not impact travelers from North Korea or certain Venezuelan government officials and their families because the plaintiffs did not challenge those aspects of the executive order.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

0
comments



God Bless America & Our Home Louisiana

970 KSYL On Air Now
Michael Savage
Michael Savage
8:00pm - 11:00pm
Savage Nation
HD Radio
Kim Komando

Click For Kim Komando's Daily Tip!!

Kdixie.com

The Best Of The 60's & 70's

Now On Air At 100.3 HD2

Or Click The Logo Above

To Listen.

 

State Wire
North Rapides Business & Industry Alliance

Weekends

 

All Weekend Long

It's a

Political Free Zone!

Resources
LinkedUpRadio Envisionwise Web Services