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Man accused of robbing thrift store smiles in mugshot after arrest

A Texas man apparently was all smiles after he was arrested in connection with a thrift store robbery.

According to KWES, police arrested Shawn Paul Melonakos, 36, of Odessa, on Saturday after he was accused of trying to steal items from the Door of Hope Thrift Store.

>> Teacher accused of improper relationship with student smiles in mugshot

"Investigation revealed that a male subject, later identified as Melonakos, took merchandise and exited the store without making any attempt to pay," Odessa police said in a news release. "When the complainant confronted Melonakos about the stolen merchandise, Melonakos picked up a large rock and threatened him with it."

The complainant then pulled out a gun and fired a round, police said. Melonakos fled, but the complainant and another man caught and detained him until police arrived, the news release said. Nobody was hurt in the incident, authorities said.

>> Read more trending news 

Melonakos had methamphetamine on him when officers arrested him, the news release said. He also gave police a fake name, but officers were able to identify him and found that he was wanted on a parole violation warrant, the release said. He was charged with robbery, methamphetamine possession, providing false identification and violating parole.

Melonakos' unusual mugshot, which featured a big, toothy smile, quickly sparked hundreds of comments and shares on social media.

"Well, ain't he proud of himself," quipped one commenter on KWES's Facebook page

"Priceless," another Facebook user wrote

Read more here or here.

Don't vacuum while wildfire smoke is in the air, health officials say

Poor air quality will be common across parts of the Pacific Northwest this week as winds push smoke from surrounding wildfires into the region, forecasters and regulators said.

Air quality alerts are in effect for much of Washington state through Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.

>> On KIRO7.com: How to protect yourself during smoke days

Officials with the Washington State Department of Health shared tips on how to stay healthy during smoky wildfire air. 

"Don’t add to indoor pollution," officials with the department wrote. "Don’t use food boilers, candles, incense, fireplaces or gas stoves."

"Don’t vacuum unless your vacuum has a HEPA filter, because vacuuming stirs up particles already inside your home," said Washington health officials.

>> Read more trending news 

Read the entire list of smoky air tips from Washington health officials here.

Find a map here with real-time air quality conditions by city.

On Monday, conditions around Washington state ranged from moderate to hazardous. 

Smoky, hazy conditions are making a return to the Puget Sound region because of wildfires in British Columbia and the Cascade Mountains, according to the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency.

– The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Girl, 15, says Georgia police officer sexually assaulted her for hours

A Georgia police officer is under investigation after a 15-year-old girl accused him of sexual assault.

The girl’s mother told Atlanta's WSB-TV that her daughter was terrified and eventually told her about the incident.

“She just broke down and was crying,” the girl’s mother told WSB-TV's Mark Winne.

>> On WSBTV.com: Body of missing 24-year-old kayaker recovered in lake

The family's lawyer, Thomas Reynolds, told WSB-TV that he believes the 15-year-old, another girl and two boys may have been followed from a Waffle House by the East Point police officer. 

The four people stopped at Sykes Park, and that's when he said the officer approached the group. Reynolds said the officer let three people go, but not the alleged victim.

>> On WSBTV.com: Bosnian War survivor identified as victim in Walmart parking lot shooting

Reynolds said the girl was detained for violating curfew.

At that point, Reynolds said, the officer took the girl to the Village of Highlands apartment complex and sexually assaulted her. Reynolds said the officer kept the girl for three hours before bringing her home to her apartment.

>> Read more trending news 

East Point police Chief Tommy Gardner told WSB-TV that his department received a complaint of sexual misconduct against one of its officers, and that officer was immediately placed on administrative leave with pay.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation was called to conduct the investigation.

Dramatic video shows father and son's drive through Montana wildfire

A father and son trip in Montana's Glacier National Park took a turn for the worst in an instant as a raging wildfire ripped through the area.

>> Read more trending news

Charles Bilton and his son Justin were backcountry camping earlier in August when they got caught in a bad situation. A wildfire had engulfed more than 2,000 acres and was going for more.

The duo was in their car driving through the fire, filming their drive through the flames. 

Justin can be heard on camera saying, "This is insane," as the two tried to stay calm in the car.

"It was pretty intense," Charles Bilton said. "It happened so quickly, and you could see the trees exploding, like fireworks were going off."

In the video, Justin is heard saying that the car was heating up, saying, "It's going to explode" and worrying that the duo wouldn't make it out as they came across a fallen tree on fire.

"I'm getting out!" Bilton said, before the video ends.

Instead of trying to move the tree out of the way, the duo turned around until they reached a campground.

"No cars, no people, I said, 'Jus, this isn't good,'" Bilton said.

There was one boat in the area, with two park workers.

"Those two kids saved us, we got in the boat," Bilton said.

From a distance, the duo then had to watch their rental car burn.

"When we got out, some of the firefighters said, 'We don't know how your fuel lines didn't go up!'" Bilton said. "I guess I have an angel looking over me."

When the Bilton family left, the fire was burning about 2,500 acres. Weeks later, the fire is burning nearly 8,000 acres, and will likely continue to burn until November.

2018 MTV VMAs: Madonna criticized for Aretha Franklin tribute

One of the biggest nights in music celebrated achievements in music videos, and took some time out to honor the late Queen of Soul.

Close to the very end of the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards, the life of Aretha Franklin, who died of pancreatic cancer at age 76 Aug. 16, was celebrated. 

>> Read more trending news 

Returning for a commercial break before the end of the show, the show opened with a clip of Franklin performing “Say a Little Prayer” in 1970.

Madonna then walked onstage with a monologue about the inspiration Franklin was to her and how she auditioned in France with a performance of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.”

Related: 2018 MTV VMAs: Winners list

“You’re probably all wondering why I’m telling you this story,” she said. “There’s a connection because none of this would have happened -- could have happened -- without our lady of soul. She led me to where I am today and I know she influenced so many people in this house tonight. In this room tonight.

“And I want to thank you, Aretha, for empowering all of us. R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Long live the queen.”

Related: 2018 MTV VMAs: Red carpet arrivals

The monologue, which many thought Madonna made about herself and not Franklin, was criticized by Twitter users.

This isn’t the first tribute to a late musician Madonna was criticized for. Her 2016 tribute to Prince at the 2016 Billboard Music Awards was also the subject of Twitter critique.

2018 MTV VMAs: Winners list

The 2018 MTV Video Music Awards are celebrating the return of Jennifer Lopez with a special honor, but she won’t be the only artist taking home a trophy.

Cardi B, The Carters -- Beyonce and Jay-Z, Drake and Childish Gambino are among the most-nominated of the night.

>> Read more trending news 

See the winners at the 2018 VMAs below in italic and bold.

VIDEO OF THE YEAR Ariana Grande – “No Tears Left to Cry”Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B – “Finesse (Remix)”Camila Cabello ft. Young Thug – “Havana”The Carters – “APE(expletive)”Childish Gambino – “This Is America”Drake – “God’s Plan”

ARTIST OF THE YEAR Ariana GrandeBruno MarsCamila CabelloCardi BDrakePost Malone

SONG OF THE YEAR Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B – “Finesse (Remix)”Camila Cabello ft. Young Thug – “Havana”Drake – “God’s Plan”Dua Lipa – “New Rules”Ed Sheeran – “Perfect”Post Malone ft. 21 Savage – “rockstar”

BEST NEW ARTIST (Presented by Taco Bell®) BazziCardi BChloe x HalleHayley KiyokoLil PumpLil Uzi Vert

BEST COLLABORATION Bebe Rexha ft. Florida Georgia Line – “Meant to Be”Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B – “Finesse (Remix)”The Carters – “APE(expletive)”Jennifer Lopez ft. DJ Khaled & Cardi B – “Dinero”Logic ft. Alessia Cara & Khalid – “1-800-273-8255”N.E.R.D & Rihanna – “Lemon”

PUSH ARTIST OF THE YEAR July 2018 – Chloe x HalleJune 2018 – SigridMay 2018 – Lil XanApril 2018 – Hayley KiyokoMarch 2018 – Jessie ReyezFebruary 2018 – Tee GrizzleyJanuary 2018 – Bishop BriggsDecember 2017 – Grace VanderWaalNovember 2017 – Why Don’t WeOctober 2017 – PRETTYMUCHSeptember 2017 – SZAAugust 2017 – Kacy HillJuly 2017 – KhalidJune 2017 – KyleMay 2017 – Noah Cyrus

BEST POP Ariana Grande – “No Tears Left to Cry”Camila Cabello ft. Young Thug – “Havana”Demi Lovato – “Sorry Not Sorry”Ed Sheeran – “Perfect”P!nk – “What About Us”Shawn Mendes – “In My Blood”

BEST HIP HOP Cardi B ft. 21 Savage – “Bartier Cardi”The Carters – “APE(expletive)”Drake – “God’s Plan”J. Cole – “ATM”Migos ft. Drake – “Walk It Talk It”Nicki Minaj – “Chun-Li”

BEST LATIN Daddy Yankee – “Dura”J Balvin, Willy William – “Mi Gente”Jennifer Lopez ft. DJ Khaled & Cardi B – “Dinero”Luis Fonsi, Demi Lovato – “Échame La Culpa”Maluma – “Felices los 4”Shakira ft. Maluma – “Chantaje”

BEST DANCE Avicii ft. Rita Ora – “Lonely Together”Calvin Harris & Dua Lipa – “One Kiss”The Chainsmokers – “Everybody Hates Me”David Guetta & Sia – “Flames”Marshmello ft. Khalid – “Silence”Zedd & Liam Payne – “Get Low (Street Video)”

BEST ROCK Fall Out Boy – “Champion”Foo Fighters – “The Sky Is A Neighborhood”Imagine Dragons – “Whatever It Takes”Linkin Park – “One More Light”Panic! At The Disco – “Say Amen (Saturday Night)”Thirty Seconds to Mars – “Walk On Water”

VIDEO WITH A MESSAGE Childish Gambino – “This Is America”Dej Loaf and Leon Bridges – “Liberated”Drake – ‘God’s Plan”Janelle Monáe – “PYNK”Jessie Reyez – “Gatekeeper”Logic ft. Alessia Cara & Khalid – “1-800-273-8255”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY Alessia Cara – “Growing Pains” – Cinematography by Pau CastejónAriana Grande – “No Tears Left to Cry” – Cinematography by Scott CunninghamThe Carters – “APE(expletive)” – Cinematography by Benoit DebieChildish Gambino – “This Is America” – Cinematography by Larkin SeipleEminem ft. Ed Sheeran – “River” – Cinematography by Frank Mobilio & Patrick MellerShawn Mendes – “In My Blood” – Cinematography by Jonathan Sela

BEST DIRECTION The Carters – “APE(expletive)” – Directed by Ricky SaixChildish Gambino – “This Is America” – Directed by Hiro MuraiDrake – “God’s Plan” – Directed by Karena EvansEd Sheeran – “Perfect” – Directed by Jason KoenigJustin Timberlake ft. Chris Stapleton – “Say Something” – Directed by Arturo Perez Jr.Shawn Mendes – “In My Blood” – Directed by Jay Martin

BEST ART DIRECTION The Carters – “APE(expletive)” – Art Direction by Jan HoulevigueChildish Gambino – “This Is America” – Art Direction by Jason KisvardayJ. Cole – “ATM” – Art Direction by Miles MullinJanelle Monáe – “Make Me Feel” – Art Direction by Pepper NguyenSZA – “The Weekend” – Art Direction by SZA and SolangeTaylor Swift – Big Machine Records – Art Direction by Brett Hess

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS Ariana Grande – “No Tears Left to Cry” – Visual Effects by Vidal and Loris Paillier for BufAvicii ft. Rita Ora – “Lonely Together” – Visual Effects by KPPEminem ft. Beyoncé – “Walk On Water” – Visual Effects Supervisor Rich Lee for Drive StudiosKendrick Lamar & SZA – “All The Stars” – Visual Effects by Loris Paillier for BUF ParisMaroon 5 – “Wait” – Visual Effects by TIMBERTaylor Swift – “Look What You Made Me Do” – Visual Effects by Ingenuity Studios

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B – “Finesse (Remix)” – Choreography by Phil Tayag & Bruno MarsCamila Cabello ft. Young Thug – “Havana” – Choreography by Calvit Hodge and Sara BivensThe Carters – “APE(expletive)” – Choreography by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Jaquel KnightChildish Gambino – “This Is America” – Choreography by Sherrie SilverDua Lipa – “IDGAF” – Choreography by Marion MotinJustin Timberlake – “Filthy” – Choreography by Marty Kudelka, AJ Harpold, Tracy Phillips, and Ivan Koumaev

BEST EDITING Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B – “Finesse (Remix)”– Editing by Jacquelyn LondonThe Carters – “APE(expletive)” – Editing by Taylor Ward and Sam OstroveChildish Gambino – “This Is America” – Editing by Ernie GilbertJanelle Monáe – “Make Me Feel” – Editing by Deji LarayN.E.R.D & Rihanna – “Lemon” – Editing by Taylor WardTaylor Swift – “Look What You Made Me Do” – Editing by Chancler Haynes for Cosmo

SONG OF THE SUMMER

Calvin Harris & Dua Lipa “One Kiss” 

Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Balvin “I Like It” 

DJ Khaled ft. Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper, Quavo “No Brainer” 

Drake “In My Feelings” 

Ella Mai “Boo’d Up” 

Juice WRLD “Lucid Dreams” 

Maroon 5 ft. Cardi B “Girls Like You” 

Post Malone “Better Now”

Protesters topple Silent Sam Confederate statue at UNC

The controversial "Silent Sam" statue on the campus of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill has been toppled by protesters.

>> Read more trending news

More than 300 people gathered at the Peace and Justice Plaza at about 7:30 on Monday evening before marching to the Confederate statue's base and calling for its removal. At 9 p.m., protesters had marched down Franklin Street before returning back to the statue's base. By 9:30 "Silent Sam" was down.

Students, faculty and alumni have called the statue a racist image and asked officials to remove it.

Last month, the school board said a 2015 state law prevented them from removing it from campus.

The statue was given to the university by the United Daughters of the Confederacy in 1909. It was erected in 1913.

“Around 9:20 p.m., a group from among an estimated crowd of 250 protesters brought down the Confederate monument on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill," university officials said in a statement. "Tonight’s actions were dangerous, and we are very fortunate that no one was injured. We are investigating the vandalism and assessing the full extent of the damage.”

Manhunt underway for fugitive accused of threatening to shoot President Donald Trump

Authorities are searching for a Pennsylvania man who allegedly threatened to shoot President Donald Trump and a state district attorney, according to news reports.

>> Read more trending news 

The U.S. Marshals Service is offering a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Shawn Richard Christy, 27, of McAdoo, Pennsylvania, WCAU TV reported.

Christy was last seen Sunday night in Cumberland, Maryland, driving a stolen vehicle, according to CNN

He is also accused of threatening Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli.

“Keep it up Morganelli. I promise I’ll put a bullet in your head as soon as I put one in the head of President Donald J. Trump,” investigators said Christy posted on Facebook in June.

Investigators have multiple warrants on Christy, including one for burglary, another for probation violation and one for failure to appear in court on an aggravated assault charge, WCAU reported.

>> Trending: Neighbors find 16 dead dogs apparently executed a month after owner was reported for animal cruelty

Law enforcement said Christy has threatened to use “lethal force on any law enforcement officer” he encounters.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Christy is asked to call authorities.

 

Neighbors find 16 dead dogs, apparently executed a month after owner was reported for animal cruelty

When Stephanie Maro heard a Georgia dog owner was recently evicted from his home, her heart was with his pets

>> Read more trending news 

A concerned Maro and her husband went to the Old Sanders Farm Road home to check on the animals only to find 16 dead dogs on the property, the Athens Banner Herald reported. 

Maro immediately called the property owner and the Oglethorpe County Sheriff’s Office, who had warned the dog owner about maltreatment of the dogs just last month, the paper reported. 

The dogs, which appeared to be “executed,” had already decomposed and were damaged by buzzards by the time authorities bagged the carcasses and sent them to the University of Georgia for necropsies, Oglethorpe County sheriff’s Capt. Mike Tyndall told the newspaper. 

According to the sheriff’s office, they did not order the necropsies sooner because they were told the examinations would cost between $8,000 and $12,000, the paper reported. However, arrangements were made for the necropsies to be completed for $500. The Humane Society also assisted in transporting the dogs to UGA. 

>> Trending: Crocodile caught on camera using swim noodle to cross canal

Deputies were first called to the home on July 19 on a report of animal cruelty. 

“He had more than 20 dogs on site,” Tyndall told the paper. “They did need some attention.” The dogs also had issues with worms and fleas.

Tyndall said the owner, who at the time fell on hard times and didn’t have the money for proper care, was “put…on notice” and instructed to give the dogs food and water. The man eventually took the dogs to the veterinarian, the paper reported. When deputies returned to the home, they said the dogs looked to have improved. 

By Aug. 1, the man was evicted by the property owner. According to the paper, a judge granted the dog owner an extension to find homes for the pets. 

“It appeared everything was going well and there was no violations that could be prosecuted,” Oglethorpe County Sheriff David Gabriel told the paper. 

A day later, Maro would find the dogs. 

Since then, authorities have been searching for the owner, whose name has not been released. 

>> Trending: 7 swimmers rescued from dangerous rip currents; 2 dead

No charges have been filed in the case. 

“It depends on the results of the necropsies and a follow up investigation,” Tyndall told the newspaper. “We don’t know his exact whereabouts right now, but we need to talk to him, obviously.” 

Man spends nearly a month in jail for crime he didn’t commit

When Kobe Jones was robbed at gunpoint, he hoped Atlanta police would find those responsible. But instead of being treated like a victim, Jones was arrested and charged with a crime in Clayton County.

>> Read more trending news

It was a crime he didn’t commit.

Jones, 21, had the same name as the real suspect accused of breaking into a rental home, damaging floors and walls and stealing a power tool. That Kobe Jones was a teenager whose mother had recently been evicted, and he was seen at the townhouse when it was vandalized.

It was a case of mistaken identity that cost one man his job. But it could happen to anyone, according to legal experts. In Georgia, a private citizen can apply for an arrest warrant that only needs a judge’s approval. The homeowner who applied for a warrant against Jones had many details about the alleged crime, but when he did a quick online person search, he found a different Kobe Jones and submitted the wrong date of birth, according to a WSB-TV investigation.

“They said I broke into somebody’s house. I put bleach on the floor. I stole a power screw. I stole a power screw drill,” Jones said. “I cut hair, you know? What am I going to do with a power drill?”

Jones was preparing for his barber exam in December when a Clayton County townhouse was damaged. The property owner, Andy Bloch, called police to report the damage, but was told there was little investigators could do because the suspect was a juvenile.

Bloch then filed a warrant application, but was initially turned away because he didn’t know the suspect’s date of birth, according to WSB-TV. After finding a Kobe Jones in Clayton County by searching online, Bloch submitted that date of birth and a judge signed the warrant.

The wrongly accused Jones had no idea there was a warrant for his arrest until he was robbed at gunpoint in April. When Atlanta police did a routine search on Jones, an outstanding warrant showed up.

He was taken first to the Atlanta jail and then to the jail in Clayton County, where Jones said he considered killing himself because he was so distraught. No one listened when Jones tried to explain he wasn’t a suspect.

“There are a lot of flaws in our system, and this is one that just snagged this kid big-time,” James Studdard, Jones’ attorney, said.

Jones stayed behind bars for three weeks. Just before a court hearing, Studdard asked Bloch to meet him at Jones’ holding cell.

“I don’t see him. He’s not here,” Jones heard Bloch say. “Wrong person.”

Studdard then told the judge about the mistaken identity and Jones was released. The ordeal cost him his job and clients he had worked hard to get, and nearly ruined his relationship with his girlfriend, who at the time of the arrest was pregnant with the couple’s first child. Jones now has his life back on track, but is considering a civil lawsuit.

The real suspect in the vandalizing and theft has not been charged for the alleged crimes.

Atlanta attorney Esther Panitch called Jones’ ordeal a nightmare and said it’s the result of state law that makes it relatively easy to take out warrants.

“I understand there are pros to having citizens accessible to the magistrate court, however, there’s so much abuse that can happen, and we are seeing an example of that right now,” Panitch said. “Though law enforcement has their challenges, they are set up to try to avoid these kinds of errors that citizens can easily make.”

2018 MTV VMAs: Red carpet arrivals

Celebrities arrive at the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York City on Aug. 20.

Mentally disabled store employee robbed and kidnapped

Police said a mentally disabled man was kidnapped and robbed in Memphis, Tennessee.

>> Read more trending news

The victim told police he was working at the Kroger in Midtown when he received a call from Krystal Flowers.

When Flowers asked the victim to come outside, he got in the front passenger’s seat of her vehicle.

That’s when a man in the backseat put a gun to the victim’s side and told him they were going to the bank.

The victim told investigators a man told him to withdraw $700 in cash from his account. He also told police that he thought they would harm him if he didn’t get the money out of the account.

Once he got back to the car, he gave the money to the unknown man in Flowers’ vehicle.

When Flowers drove him back to work, he was told to not call the police.

A bank teller at the bank confirmed the victim withdrew $700 from his account.

The victim identified Flowers in a six-person photographic lineup as the person involved in this robbery.

Flowers admitted to picking the victim up from work. She also said he gave her $500 dollars, but she denies that a robbery took place.

Flowers has been charged with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated robbery. She has a $75,000 bond.

1 in 10 Airbnb hosts in America is a teacher, report finds

new report from Airbnb shows one-tenth of the company’s American hosts are teachers, further highlighting the financial burdens of the industry.

>> Read more trending news 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the National Center for Education Statistics and the National Education Society, the average annual salary for K-12 public school teachers hovers between $45,500 and $58,000, often depending on where you live.

In metro Atlanta, teacher pay averages roughly $55,000. And the state boasts one of the widest pay gaps in the nation.

>> Related: Which Georgia school systems pay teachers the most?

According to Airbnb’s “Celebrating our Community of Teacher Hosts” report, 45,000 teacher hosts in the U.S. earned a total $160 million in 2017, making up nearly one-third of that bundle during the summertime months.

Hosting on Airbnb offered teachers an average $6,500 of supplemental income, according to the report. Hosts said the extra money helped with bills, retirement savings and vacation spending.

>> Related: Auditors: Georgia can’t prove $120 million in teacher bonuses did much

Educators in Wisconsin, Utah and Ohio dominated the report, while city dwellers in New York, Seattle and San Francisco made the highest profits.

Many teachers praised the experience of hosting as a way of meeting people from all over the world and using their teaching skills to share the knowledge.

“But this relationship, even if mutually beneficial, only exists because for so many teachers, their primary career isn’t enough to sustain them,” The Atlantic’s Alia Wong reported.

>> Related: Are you cut out to be an Airbnb host? Ask yourself these questions first

According to the NCES, 94 percent of public school teachers in the United States spend their own money on school supplies. 

And even when adjusted for inflation, teachers last year earned less than they did in 1990.

With rising housing and living coasts from coast to coast, it’s hardly surprising teachers are opting for supplemental income streams.

>> Related: 7 reasons teaching in Georgia may be for you

And hosting on Airbnb isn’t the only way teachers have thickened their wallets.

According to the Atlantic, many teachers in recent years have also started driving for rideshare companies during their free time.

Teachers are also five times more likely than the average American full-time employee to have a part-time jobVox reported in April.

>> Related: How to get a job as a substitute teacher in metro Atlanta

Crocodile caught on camera using swim noodle to cross canal

A photo posted to Instagram earlier this month is creating a stir in Key Largo, Florida.

>> Read more trending news

According to WKRG, Victor F. Perez (@vfpkeys) took a photo of a crocodile apparently crossing a canal using a “pool noodle.” In his comments he said that he took the photo near mile marker 105 of the Overseas Highway, a 113-mile road that connects the Florida Keys.

According to WTVJ, the photo got the attention of the National Weather Service in Key West:

Yes. Yes, that is a crocodile on a noodle. Even they know to #PlayItSafe when heading into the water!

Crocodiles can be found in the waters around the Florida Keys but are considered to be shy and reclusive

Colorado father charged with killing pregnant wife, two daughters, says wife killed children

A Colorado father has been charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of his pregnant wife and two daughters, according to Denver 9 News.

>> Read more trending news 

Chris Watts, 33, was charged Monday with five counts of murder, one each for his wife and two daughters, and two counts for the murder of a victim under 12, according to CBS Denver.

Watts was also charged with one count of unlawful termination of a pregnancy and three counts of tampering with a deceased human body, 9 News reported.

>> Related: Shanann Watts ‘beat all the odds’ to have her children, brother says

Shanann Watts, 34, and her daughters were reported missing on Aug. 13.

The pregnant woman was found in a shallow grave Thursday. Her two daughters, Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3, were found hidden inside oil tanks on the property of Anadarko Petroleum Corp. Their father worked for the oil and gas exploration company.

>> Related: Bodies of 2 missing Colorado girls recovered as father appears in court

Watts, who reportedly confessed to the murders, is jailed without bail, and is expected in court Tuesday where he’ll be formally charged, according to local news reports. 

According to an affidavit released Monday, Watts claimed Shannan Watts strangled the two children and he flew into a rage and strangled her, CBS Denver reported, then he removed the bodies of all three from the home, taking them to the property where he worked.

>> Related: Colorado man who pleaded for return of missing wife, daughters arrested in deaths

Investigators believe the children were killed sometime between Aug. 12 and Aug. 13. Shanann Watts was out of town on a business trip until around 2 a.m. on Monday Aug. 13.

Investigators also revealed they discovered Chris Watts was having an affair with a co-worker, which CBS Denver reported he denied in earlier interviews.

Bode Miller’s wife shares photo of last time she held her dying daughter

 

Top U.S. ski champion Bode Miller and his wife, Morgan, lost their youngest child, Emeline “Emmy” Grier Miller, in a pool drowning accident in early June.

>> Read more trending news 

The grief-stricken couple publicly talked about their loss in late July and now Morgan Miller has shared a heartbreaking photo of the last time she held her 19-month-old daughter.

Miller is weeping in the photo as she cradles Emmy, who is hooked up to machines with tubes and wires.

“I wish I could have one more day to hold you,” Miller wrote. “Your footprint will forever be left on this world,” she said.

Emergency crews were called to a neighbor’s home in the upscale gated community of Coto de Caza in Orange County, California, on June 9 on reports of a pool drowning.

Morgan Miller had been visiting the neighbor when the drowning occurred.

>> Related: Former Olympic skier Bode Miller's 19-month-old daughter drowns in pool

Paramedics tried unsuccessfully to revive the little girl, but she died in the hospital the next day.

Emmy was the youngest of the Millers’ four children.

Miller said she was releasing the photo to bring awareness to the issue of child drowning, CNN reported

After birth defects, drowning is the leading cause of death for children between the ages of 1 and 4, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Report: Google to open first flagship retail store in Chicago

Tech giant Google is reportedly planning its first brick-and-mortar retail shop.

The Chicago Tribune reported that, according to unnamed sources, the flagship store is expected to open in Chicago’s Fulton Market District, close to the company’s city headquarters.

Google has finalized the property lease, the Tribune reported, but the company has not yet confirmed plans for long-term shops.

>> Read more trending news 

“We don’t comment on rumor or speculation,” Google spokeswoman Kayla Conti told the Tribune.

The building will reportedly be 14,000 square feet of multiple two-story brick buildings.

Tech experts believe the retail shop would prominently feature the company’s growing bundle of electronic products, including smartphones, home security systems and more.

With the new store, Google would join other tech giants with flagship locations, such as Apple, Amazon and Microsoft.

But if Google cancels its plans, it wouldn’t be the first time. In 2015, Crain’s New York Business reported that the company abandoned plans to open a store in New York.

Asia Argento, #MeToo activist, settled sex assault claim against her, report says

A prominent #MeToo activist and Harvey Weinstein accuser recently agreed to pay $380,000 to settle a sexual assault complaint against her, according to a new report.

>> Before Alyssa Milano, #MeToo began with activist Tarana Burke 10 years ago

The New York Times reported Sunday that actress Asia Argento, who said last year that Weinstein raped her in 1997, settled a claim by former child star Jimmy Bennett, now 22.

In a notice of intent to sue that Bennett filed shortly after Argento, 42, went public with her Weinstein allegations in October, Bennett claimed Argento sexually assaulted him in 2013, when he was 17, the Times reported. The alleged incident occurred in a hotel room in California, where the age of consent is 18.

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Weinstein's attorney, Benjamin Brafman, said in a statement released Monday to CNN that the reported settlement shows "a stunning level of hypocrisy by Asia Argento."

"What is perhaps most egregious is the timing,” Brafman said. According to the Times, Bennett’s notice of intent to sue was sent to Argento in November, one month after she went public with her allegations against Weinstein.

"An unidentified party" sent the Times documents related to the case, including a selfie of Bennett and Argento in bed, the newspaper reported, adding that "three people familiar with the case" had confirmed the documents' authenticity.

The complaint said Bennett was traumatized by the incident, which "hindered [his] work and income and threatened his mental health," the Times reported. Bennett, who starred in a 2004 movie with Argento and played her character's son, had viewed their bond as a "mother-son relationship," the complaint said.

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The Times also reported that celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain, who met Argento in 2016 and began dating her, helped her "navigate the matter." Bourdain committed suicide in June.

Bennett declined to comment on the Times' piece, and Argento did not return requests for comment, the newspaper reported.

Woman stabbed, strangled by man she met online, police say

A woman is recovering after she was stabbed and beaten in her home by a man she met online, according to Clinton police.

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Officers were called just after midnight Saturday to the emergency room at Golden Valley Memorial Hospital. A woman with severe injuries had been dropped off at the hospital by a man who told staff that they had been robbed. However, the victim told police that she was actually attacked by the man, identified as 39-year-old Michael Pullums, of Country Club Hills, Illinois.

Authorities said the woman had met Pullums online and started a relationship with him. He was in Clinton on Saturday to visit her, according to police.

Officials said that while at her home, the victim and Pullums got into an argument that escalated into a physical confrontation.

“The man stabbed her several times with a knife and a pair of scissors and then (he) strangled her,” police said Monday in a news release.

After the attack started the woman played dead, hoping to create an opening to flee from Pullums, authorities said. She tried to run outside to escape the attack, but officials said Pullums caught her behind her home and beat her with a metal chair.

“Only when he heard sirens, which turned out to be from a passing ambulance, did he stop his attack on her,” police said.

Pullums loaded the woman into her vehicle and drove her to the emergency room, where he told staff they had been robbed, officials said. He left the hospital in the victim’s vehicle, according to police.

He was arrested a few hours later after deputies in Warren County, Missouri, spotted the victim’s car headed back to Illinois. Police said Pullums was still covered in the victim’s blood when deputies found him.

He was arrested on charges of first-degree domestic violence with serious physical injury.

Woman jailed after calling 911 on herself, officials say

A northeast Georgia woman was arrested after she called 911 on herself and reported she accidentally left her 3-year-old son in a car for about three hours, officials said.

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Alejandra Suarez, 26, of Gainesville, is in the Hall County Jail on a charge of second-degree cruelty to children, sheriff’s spokesman Lt. Scott Ware said Monday in an emailed statement.

Just after 8 p.m. Aug. 13, Suarez realized her oversight and called 911, according to the sheriff’s office.

“She stated that she had dropped off her other two children at their grandmother’s home, and the third child had apparently fallen asleep in the car,” Ware said in the statement. “Ms. Suarez departed the grandmother’s home without realizing this and did not discover the child until sometime after she had already been back at home.”

Deputies found the child at the grandmother’s residence in the 2300 block of 4th Street in the Chicopee Village area of Gainesville. He was taken to Northeast Georgia Medical Center as a precaution and released.

“The child,” Ware said, “is in good physical condition.”

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And while Suarez was “cooperative with investigators throughout the course of this investigation,” a warrant was issued for her arrest on Friday. She was arrested Sunday and taken to the county jail. 

Bond has not been set at this time.

“This case remains under investigation,” Ware said.

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