<![CDATA[NBC 6 South Florida - National & International News]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/national-international http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC+6+LOGO+GOOGLE.png NBC 6 South Florida http://www.nbcmiami.com en-us Wed, 01 Apr 2015 13:52:47 -0400 Wed, 01 Apr 2015 13:52:47 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Cop's Degrading Tirade Against Uber Driver Probed]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 11:39:29 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/uber+rant.jpg

The NYPD says the Civilian Complaint Review Board has taken over the investigation into a video that appears to show a police officer verbally abusing an Uber driver in an at-times xenophobic roadside tirade in the West Village Monday.

Police confirmed late Tuesday afternoon that the plain-clothed man seen screaming in the now viral video is a member of the NYPD, but they did not identify him. A spokesman said the department is "aware of the incident and video and it is under review."

The NYPD later said that the CCRB, an independent city agency with subpoena power, has taken over the investigation. 

The video was posted to YouTube by Sanjay Seth, one of the passengers in the Uber car. According to Seth's YouTube post, his Uber driver honked his car horn at the officer later seen screaming in the video because the officer was trying to park on a Sixth Precinct street in the middle of the afternoon without using any blinkers or hazard lights, and the Uber driver's path to a green light was blocked.

The officer, seen wearing a green tie and blue shirt at points in the passenger video, got out of his unmarked car, which had flashing blue and red lights on the dashboard, and flagged down the Uber driver.

The three-minute video begins as the officer approaches the Uber driver's window and starts yelling at the driver, raising his voice over the Uber driver's muted apologies and efforts to interject.

"Stop it with your mouth, stop it with your, 'For what, sir,'" the officer is heard saying in the video as he curses. "Stop it with that ... and realize the three vehicle and traffic law violations you committed."

"You understand me? I don't know what [epithet] planet you think you're on right now," the officer yells, making fun of the Uber driver's accent.

The officer then slams the hood of the Uber car and walks away; the Uber driver tries to apologize to his passengers, who tell him it was not his fault and inform him a video of the exchange was recorded. One of the passengers said it appeared the officer was on a "power trip"; the other called the man's behavior "really inappropriate."

The officer returns to the Uber car about 90 seconds after slamming the hood and storming off, the video shows, and continues to curse at and belittle the driver. The driver keeps trying to defuse the situation with respectful apologies. Then the officer goes off on him. 

"I don't know where you're coming from or where you think you're appropriate in doing that," the man yells, apparently in reference to the car honk from earlier. "That's not the way it works. How long have you been in this country?"

"Almost how long? Two years?" the officer yells after the driver whispers a response. "I got news for you, and use this lesson: Don't ever do that again. The only reason you're not in handcuffs going to jail and getting summonses in the precinct is because I have things to do.

"That's the only reason that's not happening, because this isn't important enough to me, you're not important enough," he says.

The officer turns toward the passengers in the back seat, asks if they are fares and says something about the Uber driver wasting their days, too. The officer hands the driver some kind of piece of paper that looks like a ticket and leaves as the passenger cellphone video pans to the flashing lights on the dashboard of his vehicle, parked behind the Uber car. 

Seth posted video of the exchange on multiple social media accounts. On his Facebook page, he wrote, "Our Uber driver, Humayun, was abused by a police officer today in New York. The rage, door slamming, throwing items into the car, threatening arrest without cause was bad enough -- but the officer's remarks at the end really took it to another level."

Seth wrote on Facebook that he reported the exchange to the Civilian Complaint Review Board. According to his profile, Seth works at a nonprofit in the city and used to work for the parks department.

Asked about the exchange by NBC 4 New York, Seth wrote, "This very unfortunate incident is between the driver, Uber, the officer, and the relevant authorities."

Uber called the behavior in the video "wrong" and "unacceptable," and said it appreciated the NYPD investigating.

"We are in touch with our driver-partner who was subjected to this terrible experience and will continue to provide any support he needs," Matthew Wing, a spokesman for the ride share company, said. 

The CCRB handles complaints about four kinds of alleged police misconduct: force, abuse of authority, discourtesy and offensive language. 

Photo Credit: Sanjay Seth]]>
<![CDATA[Top News Photos of the Week]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 07:39:12 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/AP864694241047_3_IsraelPassover.jpg View weekly updates on the very best photos in domestic and foreign news.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[2015 April Fools' Day Pranks: Selfie Car, Twelfie Stick and More]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 13:51:07 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/selfie+car.JPG

Celebrities and companies did not disappoint this April Fools’ Day. Some unique pranks surfaced this year that you may not have noticed. Here's a look at some of the most creative.

The Honda Selfie Car

Honda says it prides itself for being on the forefront of the latest automobile technologies. The company "rolled out" its 10 camera-equipped HR-V that is equipped to take selfies. They said the technology uploads photos hands-free to social media sites via HondaLink.

'Twelfie Stick'

Twitter unveiled its "Twelfie Stick" Wednesday, a "highly sophisticated and first-of-its-kind device" that the company says would allow users to tweet out "selfie" pictures directly. Twitter said the device will be available in time for the holiday shopping season for $39.99.

Army Drones to Deliver Pizzas

The U.S. Army proposed using drones to deliver 3-D printed pizzas to men and women on the front lines across the world. Calling this "an expected breakthrough," the Army said the first drone pizza deliveries are to be made by April Fools' Day 2016.

Sam Smith is Straight

The "Stay with Me" singer tweeted that he is straight, which had a female fan asking, "Can you date me now?" One hour later, he posted that is was all a joke.

A Samsung Smart Knife?

Samsung presented its Galaxy BLADE edge, "the world's first smart knife with smart phone capabilities." The phone features a "razor-sharp diamond edge that is tough enough to cut through a lobster tail and sharp enough to slice through tender heirloom tomatoes."

Selfie Shoes

Are selfie sticks too much to handle? Why not get Selfie Shoes from Miz Mooz? The company said the tool adds functionality without sacrificing "comfort our women on-the-go have come to love about our footwear." How does it work? Just insert your phone into the port at the front of any shoe, raise your photo to the perfect angle and click the internal button with a tap of your toe to take a selfie.

Pac-Man Returns?

Google announced in celebration of April Fools' Day that you can now play Pac-Man on Google Maps. How does it work? Open maps in your browser, scroll to the bottom left and click on Pac-Man. Before you know it, you'll have something to eat.

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<![CDATA[Tips for Coping With Spring's "Intense" Allergy Season]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 12:25:34 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/allergy-season-168997935.jpg

While people across much of the country are looking forward to milder spring temps following a winter that saw record cold and snow, experts warn the seasonal shift could bring bad news for allergy sufferers.

Allergists say the majority of the country can expect higher pollen this year thanks to the bitter winter, leading to an uptick in allergy-related symptoms.

A delayed pollination season nationwide has prompted the prediction.

In the Midwest, trees that were supposed to pollinate during January to mid February, during sporadic periods of warmth, were just starting that process in March, according to Warren Filley, a board-certified allergist/immunologist at Oklahoma Allergy and Asthma Clinic. The result, Filley said, is an increase in pollen being released at once. A similar trend is being seen in the snow-battered Northeast.

“We’re looking at a compressed spring pollination season,"  Aidan Long, director of Allergy and Immunology at Massachusetts General Hospital, said. "It should be very intense but pass quickly.”

Here are some tips on how to cope with pollen-related allergies in the spring:

  • First, make sure that you take you take your allergy medication before your symptoms start. As Filley put it, "There’s an Oklahoma saying, ‘Don’t close the barn door after the horse is gone."
  • Avoid being outside during peak hours of pollen — from 5 a.m. to 11 a.m., and a second surge after 4 p.m. — recommends Donald Dvorin, a board-certified allergist and pollen counter from the National Allergy Bureau and partner at the Asthma Center.
  • When in the car, make sure to turn your air conditioner on and avoid rolling down your windows, in order to allow for better ventilation. Cabin filters should be maintained to reduce exposure.
  • Take your shoes off before you go into your house, to make sure you don’t track pollen in. After you come inside, make sure to wash your clothes and take a shower. Wash your hair, too, as it can hold a lot of pollen, according to Dr. Jim Sublett of president of American Association. Let someone who is not allergic to pollen vacuum the house, and let the dust settle for 30 minutes before coming back into the house, as Filley warns.
  • When mowing the lawn or working in the garden, wear a mask, gloves, and goggles. Try to avoid gardening on windy days.

To track pollen levels in your area click here

Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.]]>
<![CDATA[Oil Heir Andrew Getty Found Dead]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 03:20:22 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/150331-andrew-getty-death-hollywood-hills-home.jpg

Andrew Getty, the grandson of oil tycoon J. Paul Getty, died at his Hollywood Hills home Tuesday, a spokesman for his parents confirmed in a written statement.

Police are investigating his death. Getty was 47.

The short statement, issued through PR Newswire, on behalf of Ann and Gordon Getty asked for privacy and said additional statements will be made as more information is available.

LAPD officers were dispatched after 2 p.m. to Getty's longtime home in the 2900 block of Montcalm Avenue after a call came in from an unidentified woman who reported someone dead in the bathroom.

Tuesday night, LA County Coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter said the cause of death appeared initially to be "natural or an accident" and not criminal. Winter said prescription bottles were collected at the home.

"He was not feeling good for the last couple of months and he supposedly had an appointment scheduled for tomorrow with a personal physician," Winter said.

Sources familiar with the investigation told NBC News that there was trauma to Getty's body but that its cause wasn't immediately unidentifiable.

Getty was found lying on his side between a bathroom and hallway.

Earlier in the day, LAPD spokesman Andrew Smith said the cause of death was "undetermined" and the case will be investigated by the LAPD’s Robbery Homicide Division, which handles high profile and complicated investigations.

Sources said it was not immediately clear if they were dealing with a homicide or a death by other means. The sources confirmed there was trauma to the body but details about the cause of death were not immediately available.

The Los Angeles County Coroner typically takes the lead in a death investigation. But if there is a crime, the LAPD will take the lead for the duration of the investigation.

Andrew Getty is a son of Gordon P. Getty, who was reported by Forbes in 2011 to have a net worth of $2 billion. Forbes last year listed the Getty family as No. 54 on a list of America's Richest Families.

The Los Angeles Times reported that Getty filed court papers two weeks ago seeking a restraining order against a woman.

The Getty family has had a colorful history. J. Paul Getty had five children over the course of five marriages. One of his daughters-in-law died of a heroin overdose. J. Paul Getty III was kidnapped in the 1970s and had one of his ears cut off before his grandfather agreed to pay the ransom.

About a decade after J. Paul Getty died in 1976, Gordon Getty arranged the sale of Getty Oil to Texaco.

NBC News' Andrew Blankstein and City News Service contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: KNBC/Robert Kovacik]]>
<![CDATA[Woman Trespasses at SJ Airport]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 13:38:03 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/214*120/sjc6.jpg

San Jose police on Wednesday identified the woman they arrested in connection with scaling a fence at Mineta San Jose International Airport as 20-year-old Deanna Predoehl of Sunnyvale.

Predoehl was taken into custody after a UPS airline employee spotted her Tuesday about 5:15 p.m. at the southeast corner of the airport and alerted San Jose Airport police. A preliminary investigation shows she possibly jumped the fence near the southwest corner of the airport near Gate 168, according to airport spokeswoman Vicki Day. Day added the security breach did not interrupt the airport's schedule, and passengers didn't know what was going on. She added the Transportation Security Administration and the police department are investigating.

San Jose police said Predoehl resisted arrest, but was eventually detained and "subdued" by officers. She had no identification and refused to identify herself to officers, Officer Albert Morales said.

She  is the fifth security breach at the San Jose airport in less than 12 months, including the high-profile cases of the 15-year-old boy stowed away in the wheel well of a Hawaiian Airlines jet to get to his mother in Africa in April, and 62-year-old serial stowaway Marilyn Hartman, who bypassed security in August, hopping on a flight to Los Angeles. NBC Bay Area's Investigative Unit was the first to report Hartman's story.

On Nov. 23, Miguel Zaragoza was arrested after he was caught trespassing on the Atlantic Aviation ramp at the airport alone Coleman Avenue. When airport employees took him to a lobby to wait for police, Zaragoza fled, allegedly stole a city maintenance truck and drove through the airport before he was taken into custody at Terminal B. He never made it to the runway.

Finally, on Jan. 29, Jose Mendoza was arrested on a misdemeanor trespassing charge after he was spotted by a security guard around 11:50 p.m. walking on a vehicle road on the tarmac-side of the airport inside the security fence, according to police.

A few airport passengers were surprised to learn the news. Traveler Lisa Mednick said she's "always kind of amazed that security doesn't drive by" the outside airport gate more often. "I see people lined all along the sides," she said. "I don't know if they're taking pictures or what they're doing."

Passenger Tom DeSchryver didn't know about the arrest and wasn't too concerned. "A woman?" he said. "Wow. No, I'm not worried."


NBC Bay Area's Shawn Murphy, Kristofer Noceda, Alan Waples and Lauren Inderhees contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[K-9 Overcomes Pepper Spray, Ravine Throw to Capture Burglars: Cops]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 11:09:59 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/171*120/4-1-2015-K-9CracksRing.JPG

A courageous K-9 overcame pepper spray and being thrown down a ravine to help bust a suspected burglary ring.

German Shepherd Bo gave chase after four suspected burglars caught in the act by officers fled the scene in Glendora just after 3 p.m. Wednesday, a Glendora Police Department spokesman said.

One of the suspects was carrying pepper spray and used it on the K-9. However that did not stop the pugnacious pooch, and he bit his attacker on the arm. 

The man then threw the dog down a ravine, but Bo, who was involved in his first ever fight, landed on his feet and kept up the chase.

Eventually the suspects were caught and escorted out of their hiding place, which police said was deep in poison oak.

Four accomplices in getaway cars sounded their horns to alert the suspects, and officers ended up arresting them, too. Officers matched the burglars cellphone numbers with those of the getaway crews.

Investigators believe the suspects are a part of a ring operating out of Los Angeles.

<![CDATA[Extreme Weather 2015]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 08:49:41 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/extreme-weather-firefighters-PA-AP74131131273.jpg See photos of extreme weather from the U.S. and around the world.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Canadian Diplomat's Son Arrested After Brother Killed in Miami]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 08:13:01 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/033115+roxanne+dube.jpg

The 15-year-old son of a prominent Canadian diplomat working in Miami has been arrested, according to a report in The Miami Herald, after authorities say he was involved in a drug deal that ended with his older brother and another teen dead.

As NBC 6 South Florida first reported, police believe the teens, the sons of diplomat Roxanne Dube, were going to rob the drug dealers when the shootout happened Monday.

The 15-year-old faces a charge of felony murder.

The Canadian Government is working with Miami Police detectives to investigate the incident.

It was still a crime scene at Southwest 36th Street and 17th Terrace Tuesday, a day after three people were shot.

Multiple sources told NBC 6 that the 15- and 17-year-old sons of the woman in charge of the Canadian consulate in Miami showed up to buy or participate in some kind of drug activity and now one of them is dead and so is another 17-year-old.

Cellphone video captured paramedics rushing off with one of the three people who were shot. Blood could be seen inside the doorway after the gunfire, as police begin to get to the bottom of what unfolded.

Multiple law enforcement sources said Dube's sons showed up in a vehicle with an official license plate from the Consulate. Dube's 17-year-old son later died from the gunshot wounds he suffered here, sources said.

Also dead is 17-year-old Joshua Wright, whose family identified him as one of the victims. One law enforcement source indicated the older Dube went into Wright's apartment and that's when the shooting started. The younger brother remained in the Canadian government vehicle outside to act as a lookout, sources said.

Another man, Anthony Rodriguez, was wounded and drove away but was later found.  Rodriguez is charged with felony murder and possession of marijuana with intent to sell.

At least one other young man was wounded in the shootout.

Dube, who worked in the Canadian Parliament before being appointed to head the Miami delegation in November, is now mourning the loss of her son.

Miami Police have impounded the Canadian government car and investigators from Canada are working alongside Miami detectives to get to the bottom of the tragedy.

Canadian government officials said they are aware of the reports and said assistance is being provided to the family.

"A full investigation is underway and we will continue assisting local authorities," said John Babcock, spokesman for Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.

<![CDATA[Woman Trespasses at SJ Airport]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 08:47:15 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/sjairportinvestigation.jpg

A woman was arrested after she allegedly trespassed on airport property on Tuesday at Mineta San Jose International Airport - the fifth security breach in less than a year at this airport.

Airport Public Information Officer Vicki Day said at about 5:15 p.m. a UPS airline employee spotted the woman at the southeast corner of the airport and alerted San Jose Airport police.

Police said the woman resisted arrest, but was eventually detained by officers. The woman did not have identification and refused to identify herself to officers, San Jose Police Officer Albert Morales said.

A preliminary investigation shows the woman possibly jumped the fence near the southwest corner of the airport near Gate 168.

"The suspect continued to walk eastbound across the airfield until she was contacted by San Jose Airport Police and taken into custody," Morales said in a statement.

Day said the security breach did not interrupt the airport's schedule.

No other details were immediately available.

Tuesday's security breach is the fifth in the past year.

Airport officials recently released video of a security breach at the airport that took place on Jan. 29.

The most notable security breach at the airport happened last April. A teenager scaled the fence and hid in the wheel well of a plane heading to Hawaii. The 16-year-old survived freezing temperatures during the five-hour flight. He was not charged.

<![CDATA[Fans Remember Selena]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 21:40:33 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/selena033115.jpg

It has been 20 years since the music world lost Tejano superstar Selena, but devotion to the singer runs deep in Texas, especially on the anniversary of her death.

At KNON 89.3-FM in Dallas, the requests for Selena come in daily.

“If we don’t play it for a whole show, folks will call up and ask us to play some Selena,” said radio disc jockey Jesse Gonzales.

Gonzales was 13 years old when the “Queen of Tejano” was murdered inside a Corpus Christi hotel on March 31, 1995. He had just seen her perform in Oak Cliff months before.

“She always put on a show,” said Gonzales. “She never just sang to you. She made sure you were part of what she was doing.”

Selena's death at the hands of her fan club president, Yolanda Saldivar, sent shock waves through the Latino community. Cars with ribbons and messages of mourning could be seen driving across North Texas following her death in 1995.

Twenty years later, the sorrow has turned to celebration. Parties in Oak Cliff over the weekend honored her life, and the movie version of her life story played at the Texas Theatre. The celebrations were attended by fans of all ages – including many young people who were not alive at the time of Selena’s death.

Gonzales said that’s because her soulful sound remains relevant.

“She spoke to us, our culture, who we are,” said Gonzales. “Everything that is going on in her music back then is still going on in our communities today. Our people are still going through the same things that they’ve been going through for the last 20 years.”

Saldivar is serving a life sentence in the singer's death.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Couple Found With Chainsaw Wounds]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 13:09:12 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/178*120/Lower+Moreland+Home.JPG

A community is in mourning after a teen boy discovered his parents dead with wounds from a chainsaw inside a Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, home Tuesday.

"It strikes home," said Eric Shallcross, a family friend. "It's unbelievable."

The 14-year-old boy told police he found his parents unresponsive inside their home on the 1100 block of Country Lane in Lower Moreland around 12:50 p.m. Investigators said the victims, a 48-year-old man and his 43-year-old wife, had lacerations from a chainsaw that was found lying nearby. 

Prosecutors confirmed one of the deaths was a homicide while the other is under investigation. Officials also say they are not searching for any suspects in the case.

Police are not identifying the couple pending the notification of all family members.

Aside from their 14-year-old son, the couple had two other boys who were not in the home when they were found dead. Eric Carswell, the pastor of Bryn Athyn Church, was teaching religion class to one of the children when the school learned about the incident.

"This is not what we would wish for anybody," Carswell said. "I'm very grateful for a sense that the boys have an extended family that is really taking good care of them."

Friends of the victims gathered at Bryn Athyn Cathedral Tuesday night for a prayer vigil.

Friends also told NBC10 there were problems in the couple's marriage.

"I knew they had some complications with their marriage," Shallcross said. "But a lot of marriages do. Most marriages do, I'm sure."

An autopsy on the couple is scheduled for Wednesday, said prosecutors.

<![CDATA[Girlfriend Runs Over Sex Offender]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 22:45:21 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/160*120/nobleboro+ax.jpg

A Maine woman ran over her boyfriend with her car after she allegedly walked in on him attempting to sexually assault his 12-year-old niece, according to police.

On Saturday around 11:30 p.m., police responded to East Neck Road in Nobleboro after a domestic disturbance was reported. Investigation yielded that Linda Currier, 63, walked in on her boyfriend, James Oliver, 48, attempting to sexually assault his niece. Oliver is a convicted sex offender.

A fight ensued between them, which resulted in Currier running over Oliver with her car in the driveway of the residence. Both of them had been consuming alcohol.

Oliver was transported to Miles Memorial Hospital and then to Maine Medical Center for treatment of serious, but non-life-threatening injuries to his leg. He was later transported to Two Bridges Regional Jail and is charged with attempted gross sexual assault, unlawful sexual touching, and failing to comply with the sex offender registration act for not updating his address.

Currier was charged with operating under the influence and aggravated assault at Two Bridges Regional Jail. She was released on bail pending her court appearance.

The young girl was taken away from the scene and is in the custody of her family. 

Photo Credit: Lincoln County Sheriff's Office]]>
<![CDATA[Pat Haden Refuses to Head to Indy]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 19:28:43 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/180*120/134210519.jpg

USC athletic director Pat Haden says he won’t be heading to Indianapolis this week for the College Football Playoff selection committee meeting in response to Indiana Gov. Mike Pence’s decision to sign the widely-protested “Religious Freedom” bill.

“I am the proud father of a gay son,” Haden wrote to his 17,000 followers on Twitter Tuesday. “In his honor, I will not be attending the CFP committee meeting in Indy this week. #EmbraceDiversity”

The law sparked outrage from many in Indiana's business community and others with ties -- established and planned -- to the Hoosier state.

The public-employee union known as AFSCME announced Monday it was canceling a planned women's conference in Indianapolis this year because of the law. The band Wilco said it was canceling a May performance.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe issued an open letter to Indiana corporations saying Virginia is a business-friendly state that does "not discriminate against our friends and neighbors," while Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel sent letters to more than a dozen Indiana businesses, urging them to relocate to a "welcoming place to people of all races, faiths and countries of origin."

Pence, on the other hand, says the bill he signed into law week has been "grossly mischaracterized" and subjected to "shoddy reporting," but on Tuesday announced that he and legislators have been working around the clock to draft new legislation to clarify its intent.

"We've got a perception problem here ... and we intend to correct that," Pence told reporters.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Man Dies in Police Custody]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 07:10:21 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/Phillip-White.jpg

Officials are investigating the death of a New Jersey man who died while in police custody Tuesday.

"As many of you have already heard, earlier today a tragedy occurred involving Officers and a citizen," said Vineland Police Chief Timothy Codispoti. "Sadly, this call for service resulted in an “in–custody, non-shooting death” which is being investigated by the Cumberland County Prosecutor’s office"

The man, identified as Phillip White, was arrested at a home on the 100 block of Grape Street in Vineland, New Jersey around 11 a.m. Tuesday. He died shortly after while in custody.

Witnesses told NBC10 officers were extremely physical with White after he was already restrained and unconscious on the street.

"They punched him, stomped him, kicked him and then they let the dog out of the car," said Ricardo Garcia. "The dog bit him on his face and around his body. There's no call for that. Once a man is handcuffed and unconscious, you should have stuck him in the patrol car and take him to the police station. Instead they decided to beat him right here." 

A dog is heard barking on a police dispatch recording of the incident.

"118 West Grape," the dispatcher says in the recording. "Subject...hyperventilating. Officers out."

An officer is also heard on the recording.

"Slow all units down," the officer says. "Subject under...tried disarming me." 

The Cumberland County Prosecutor's Office is currently investigating the incident. A spokesperson for the office told NBC10 White was being arrested but they haven't revealed why.

White's aunt, Valerie White, told NBC10 she is desperate for answers.

"Why, what he was doing, I don't know," she said. "I'm trying to get answers and closure now. He lived a street life but he was a human being. Bottom line." 

While police have not yet released information regarding what led to the arrest or how White died,  Chief Codispoti expressed his condolences for his family.

"Our sincere thoughts and prayers are with the family of the deceased and with the Officers involved," he said. " I ask that everyone allow time for our justice system to now investigate this matter to its truthful conclusion. The Vineland Police Department is cooperating with the prosecutor’s office and I urge anyone with information regarding this incident to contact the prosecutor’s office with your information. At this time updates regarding the progress of this investigation are being released through the prosecutor’s office."

<![CDATA[Man Carved Name on Girlfriend: DA]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 17:07:07 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/3-31-2015-Mendoza.jpg

A California man accused of using a razor blade to carve his name onto his girlfriend's chest was arraigned Monday on kidnapping and domestic battery charges, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

Sergio Joaquin Mendoza, 25, was arrested after allegedly abusing the woman on numerous occasions between March 17 and 20, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

The DA's office had first reported Mendoza was 39 years old but corrected his age to 25.

The Santa Ana man was charged with a felony count of kidnapping, a felony count of criminal threats, two felony counts of domestic battery with corporal injury, and a sentencing enhancement for personal use of a deadly weapon, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office said.

Mendoza allegedly got into multiple verbal fights with the victim and punched her on several occasions, prosecutors said. He is also accused of making her sit in his car while he was at work under the threat of violence.

On March 22, he allegedly tried to stop her from leaving a relative's house where he was staying, only allowing it on the condition she let him carve his name on her body, the DA's office said. Mendoza then used a razor blade to cut his first name on onto her chest, according to prosecutors. 

That evening he allegedly forced her into his vehicle, then drove around Santa Ana while threatening to hurt her if she tried to leave, according to the district attorney's office. The next day, he allegedly punched her on the head, attempted to strangle her and head-butted her in the face, prosecutors claim.

Eventually, she managed to escape, with an employee calling police after she ran into a local business. Mendoza was arrested March 26, prosecutors said.

Mendoza is being held on $100,000 bail and is scheduled for a pretrial hearing on April 8. He faces a maximum sentence of 11 years and eight months in state prison if convicted.

It was not immediately clear whether he obtained an attorney.

<![CDATA[Driver Crashes Into Store; 1 Dead]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 13:22:18 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/starmart-zazueta-adams.jpg

One person was killed and seven others were injured Tuesday after a driver crashed a truck into a store in Fort Worth while fleeing the scene of a hit-and-run crash, police say.

Officials investigating the crash said the driver, identified as 19-year-old Isaac Adams, was first involved in a minor crash at Riverside Drive and U.S. Highway 287.

“Yeah, he did stop,” said Bobby Washington, the driver into whom Adams reportedly first crashed. “At the time it seemed like they were on something, you know? It seemed they wasn’t in their right mind.”

After informing Adams he intended to call police, Washington said Adams and his passenger ran back to their truck and sped away.

As Washington called 911 and followed in an attempt to track the man down, Adams raced away on Riverside Drive at speeds of up to 100 mph, officials said.

Adams then lost control of his truck and crashed into the Star Food Mart near the intersection of Riverside Drive and East Lancaster Avenue, trapping several people.

Fort Worth firefighters arrived and began working to free the trapped victims while also stabilizing the building. At one point, firefighters used a fire truck to pull the pickup from the building, freeing a woman who was trapped.

Employees at neighboring businesses rushed to the scene to help the victims and worked to remove some of the debris. Nearby construction workers were able to quickly shut off the electricity to the building since electrical wires were exposed.

One of the eight injured was 24-year-old Sylvia Zazueta, who was trapped by the truck and had to be extricated by firefighters. She was transported to John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth in critical condition, but did not survive her injuries.

Zazueta was married with three children.

Don Jones, a cook who was working in the back of the store preparing hot food, walked away with barely a scratch.

“Just a big boom and glass shattering,” Jones said. “Then all I saw was dust and a truck sitting in the store. I thought, ‘My God, what happened?’”

Seven other patients were transported to area hospitals with minor injuries; three were transported to Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth and four to JPS. One of the injured was a passenger in the truck, the other was the driver who was transported to JPS for treatment.

Fort Worth police confirmed to NBC 5 they believe Adams was under the influence of a narcotic. He now faces several charges, including intoxication manslaughter.

Family of Victim Pulls Together

The mother of Sylvia Zazueta said Tuesday she’s devastated by the loss and what it means to her grandchildren.

Laticia Galdiano said she was with her daughter and two of her grandchildren inside the family’s car at the Star Food Mart, while Zazueta went inside to buy a drink for her son and pay for gas.

Galdiano said her daughter stayed home with the children — ages 8, 4 and 8 months — while her husband worked two jobs. Zazueta’s 8-year-old daughter, Analisa, asked to speak to NBC 5 about her mother.

“She didn't leave us. Where ever she would go, she would take us,” said Analisa.

Zazueta’s grandfather, Elizardo Quinones, said she brought joy to the world. With time, he said he may forgive the driver responsible for the crash.

“We are all human beings. We make mistakes, and with time, I might forgive him," Quinones said. "But now, I can't.”

NBC 5's Holley Ford, Chris Van Horne, Jocelyn Lockwood, Ben Russell and Bianca Castro contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Indiana Gov: We Intend to Fix "Perception" Problem of Law]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 14:55:30 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/pence-presser-468206814.jpg

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence on Tuesday said a bill he signed into law week has been "grossly mischaracterized" and subjected to "shoddy reporting," but said he and legislators have been working around the clock to draft new legislation to clarify its intent.

"We've got a perception problem here ... and we intend to correct that," Pence told reporters during a morning press conference from Indianapolis.

The Republican reiterated earlier comments that the intent of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act was not to discriminate but to protect religious freedom. The measure prohibits state laws that "substantially burden" a person's ability to follow his or her religious beliefs. The definition of "person" includes religious institutions, businesses and associations.

Gays and lesbians are not a protected class under Indiana’s civil rights laws, and critics of the law alleged it could provide some businesses the opportunity to refuse providing services or selling goods to some people based on religious grounds.

Pence said he found that claim "offensive," and called upon the state's General Assembly to address the issue.

"This law does not give businesses a right to deny services to anyone," he said. "The intent of the law was to give the courts in our state the highest level of scrutiny in cases where people feel that their religious liberty is being infringed upon by government action."

His comments Tuesday were a follow-up to an op-ed piece he penned for the Wall Street Journal that the law was not a "license to discriminate."

"I abhor discrimination," he wrote. "I believe in the Golden Rule that you should ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

The law sparked outrage from many in Indiana's business community and others with ties -- established and planned -- to the Hoosier state. The public-employee union known as AFSCME announced Monday it was canceling a planned women's conference in Indianapolis this year because of the law. The band Wilco said it was canceling a May performance. Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe issued an open letter to Indiana corporations saying Virginia is a business-friendly state that does "not discriminate against our friends and neighbors," while Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel sent letters to more than a dozen Indiana businesses, urging them to relocate to a "welcoming place to people of all races, faiths and countries of origin."

In a separate editorial with a clear message, Indiana's largest newspaper, the Indianapolis Star, stressed urgency: "Fix this now."

Photo Credit: Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA["Stop Pooping" Along Trail]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 07:31:46 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/ss3-31-15-1.jpg

To whoever has been pooping on the public bike path in Hampton, Illinois – please stop, officials have asked.

“Stop pooping on bike path,” read two new signs along the trail. And no, it’s not a message directed towards pets.

Apparently joggers who poop along the path have been an increasing problem for Hampton over the past two years, the city’s Public Works supervisor Scott McKay told NBC station KWQC.

"When the individual does it, it does it right in the lane. It’s not on the center line. It’s not off on the grass," he said. 

McKay said there's certainty the act is done by a human and not an animal because the culprit adorns it with toilet paper and leaves the same footprints.

So now he's taken matters into his own hands. In case the runners were under the guise that it was okay to use Mother Nature’s open roadways as their personal toilet, they now have a friendly reminder educating them otherwise.

McKay said he hopes the signs solve the problem.

Photo Credit: Tiffany Liou/KWQC]]>
<![CDATA[Motorist Drives Off From Tow Truck]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 16:50:28 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/223*120/Tow+Truck.jpg

Chicago resident Tony Marengo says he is used to seeing vehicles get towed out of the Walgreen’s parking lot across from his River North apartment at Clark and Ontario – but never with a driver still behind the wheel of the car.

Marengo said he was at home around 8:30 p.m. Sunday when he heard loud yelling from outside. When he went to the window, he saw a tow truck traveling with a white jeep on the back.

Seems normal, but soon he noticed the yelling was coming from inside of the car being towed – the driver was still inside.

“We could hear the guy in the driver’s seat of the car yelling out of the window,” Marengo said.

“He was like, ‘Hey! Hey! Hey, buddy!’” he said of the frantic driver trying to get the tow truck operator’s attention.

Marengo says it was then that the tow truck finally pulled over to the side of the road. And once he did, he was the one in for the surprise – as the man behind the Jeep put his car in drive and sped off.

“It was crazy,” said Marengo, who is CEO and President of Chicago-based Company The MacTutor, Inc. “Then he was just sitting there, I imagine calling a supervisor or something.”

Marengo captured the whole ordeal on his phone and uploaded the video to his YouTube account. It has garnered nearly 10,000 views in less than 24 hours.

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<![CDATA["She's Not a Murderer": Daughters Defend Mom in NY Train Crash]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 12:13:40 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/metronorth+crash+kids.jpg

The daughters of the New York woman who died when her SUV got trapped in a railroad crossing and was hit by an oncoming Metro-North train, sparking an explosion that also killed five train passengers, spoke publicly Tuesday for the first time since last month's accident, remembering -- and defending -- their mother, who has been criticized for not moving out of the train's path.

On the night of Feb. 3, Danielle, Julia and Alexa Brody heard that a woman had stopped on the tracks in Valhalla after a train crossing came down on the back of her car. The three didn't know that the woman in the news was their mother, Ellen Brody.

"I thought that maybe she committed suicide," Julia Brody said. "So I was like, 'Why? Why? Why would this woman do that?' When we were watching that, though, when he described the woman, I was like, 'That could've been Mommy.' And my sisters were just like, 'Julia, no.'''

Julia Brody says she called her mother and became increasingly worried when she couldn't reach her. She contacted her father, who was also concerned. He said he'd drive around to look for her mother; later, he arrived home with two police cars.

"When he came in, he's like, 'She's gone,'" Alexa Brody said.

The three sisters slept together that night.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash. Although the exact cause of the collision has not been determined, Ellen Brody's SUV was stuck inside the railroad crossing gates moments before the train hit. Instead of backing up, she drove forward onto the tracks.

The sisters say they're trying to remember the way their mother lived, but the unanswered questions -continue to haunt them, as do critical comments online.

"I went on Google, and I searched my mom's name and I was just reading the comments,'' Julia Brody said. "And just the fact that people are like, 'You know, I don't even feel bad for her. How could she possibly do that?'"

The sisters say their mom was a caring person who enriched the lives of those around her.

"I know who my mom was," Alexa Brody said. "I know that she would never, never intentionally hurt people."

Danielle Brody says it's hard in such a tragic situation for people to put themselves in the victim's shoes.

"A lot of times people just want to find a reason," she said. "It's just not true. It was an accident."

"She's not a murderer," added Julia Brody.

Alexa Brody memorialized her mother at a funeral last month, saying she would think of her every time she smiled.

"I needed to let people know how much I loved her," Alexa said. "She was my best friend."

The Westchester County crossing has no barrier between the street and the tracks, and such crossings present safety issues, officials have said. The chairman of the MTA, which runs Metro-North Railroad and the Long Island Rail Road, has said the agency is considering all possible safety enhancements that would prevent such deadly accidents in the future. It is also partnering with a nonprofit that educates the public about the dangers at rail crossings. 

Photo Credit: AP/NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[Escaped Prisoner Captured After 9-Hour Manhunt: Source ]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 23:19:17 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/217*120/2015-03-31_1209.jpg

A prisoner who escaped from a Northern Virginia hospital — and evaded capture for most of Tuesday morning — is back in the custody of U.S. marshals.

Wossen Assaye was found near Minnesota Avenue SE in Washington, D.C., following a massive manhunt that lasted about eight hours. He was taken into custody without incident about 11:15 a.m. after someone who saw Assaye's picture on social media spotted him getting off a Metrobus. The gun he was carrying was recovered.

Assaye appeared in federal court Tuesday afternoon and was ordered held without bond. He is charged with one count of escaping from federal custody and with one count of bank robbery.

Assaye was wearing a white plastic protective suit, which was open to his navel. He was not wearing socks or shoes, and he was surrounded by law enforcement in the courtroom.

He is in the custody of U.S. marshals, who are not commenting on his location. In a statement Tuesday night, the U.S. Marshals Service said, "Events such as today's escape will be investigated and reviewed. If changes are needed, they will be made."

"I'm thanking each and every community member in this region for apprehending a violent felon,'' Fairfax County Police Chief Col. Edwin C. Roessler Jr. said at a news conference.

Assaye, 42, was arrested by federal authorities last week in connection with a series of bank robberies in Northern Virginia. Assaye allegedly committed the robberies while on a bike, and is known to the FBI as the bicycle bandit.

While being held at the Alexandria City Jail, Assaye attempted to hang himself with a bedsheet and was taken to Inova Fairfax Hospital for medical treatment Friday. Deputies with the Alexandria Sheriff's Office guarded Assaye for the first 24 hours of his hospital stay before he was turned over to two Allied Protective Service guards, who were contracted by the U.S. Marshals Service.

At about 3:15 a.m. Tuesday, Assaye overpowered one of the guards while her partner used the restroom, taking her weapon. Assaye used the female contract guard as a shield as he fled down the hall and then released her and fled down a stairwell, U.S. Marshal Bobby Matheson said.

Police say one shot was fired, but no one was injured. It's not clear who fired the shot.

Assaye fled with the weapon and wearing only a hospital gown into a nearby neighborhood, where he broke into the truck of a resident's 2002 Toyota Camry. The driver got into the car to go to work, and during the commute, police say Assaye began to kick out the back seat from inside the truck. The driver crashed the car, and Assaye carjacked the vehicle. Police say they later found the Camry near Monterey Drive in Annandale.

At one point in the chase, Assaye drove into the garage of a home on Oak Court in Annandale owned by Lorraine Giovinazzo. Then he entered the almost-empty house, apparently by jimmying the handles on a set of glass doors.

Assaye left behind the hospital gown he had been wearing and took some of Giovinazzo's old clothes, Giovinazzo said.

"I'm just so grateful that we had just moved, because otherwise my mother would have been in there by herself, and that would have been terrifying," Giovinazzo said.

Assaye was on foot for a short time before stealing a 2008 gray Hyundai Elantra in the same area.

Police say they've also located the Hyundai Elantra.

Police searched neighborhoods in Annandale with helicopter and heavily armed officers for a portion of Tuesday morning. In one neighborhood, Spence Limbocker said he heard a helicopter, went outside and saw a massive police presence.

"They told me to get back in the house and lock all my doors ... It was a little scary,'' Limbocker said.

Assaye was arrested March 20 and charged with a robbery at Apple Federal Credit Union in Alexandria. In a court document, an FBI agent suggests that Assaye, of Arlington, is responsible for a string of 12 bank robberies in northern Virginia over the last year and a half.

In court documents about the robberies, the FBI agent said the robber seen in surveillance photographs and video recordings is "physically similar'' in the dozen robberies that end with the robbery of the Apple Federal Credit Union.

In all, the banks were robbed of about $32,000. In most cases, the agent said the robber entered the bank with a cellphone to his ear, demanded money and fled with cash on a bicycle.

According to a 2012 Virginia Parole Board document, Assaye has an "extensive criminal record" and "history of violence," indicating a "serious risk to the community," NBC News reports.

He has been charged with a variety of felonies — including breaking and entering in 1998 — with at least one conviction, for purse snatching in 1994, for which he was given a recommended maximum 12-month jail sentence.

The lockdown at the hospital, located in suburb just outside of Washington, D.C., lasted from 3:30 a.m. to 7:50 a.m., hospital officials confirmed.

During that time, no one could enter or leave the hospital. Emergencies were diverted to other emergency rooms. Patient care continued, though some elective surgeries had to be delayed.

Staff members inside the hospital told News4's David Culver that during the lockdown, some employees hid in backrooms and hallways for safety. 

Stay with News4 on-air and online for more on this developing story. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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<![CDATA[Indiana's Religious Freedom Law: Who Opposes, Favors]]> Wed, 01 Apr 2015 10:53:52 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/mike-pence-protests-split.jpg

Indiana’s new religious freedom law provoked fierce reaction from both sides — critics who believe it provides a poorly disguised excuse to discriminate against gays and lesbians and supporters who say it protects religious beliefs.

Gov. Mike Pence signed the law last week and but the backlash was so widespread that on Tuesday he called for additional legislation this week to clarify that the law was not a license to discriminate.  He continued to insist that the bill had been mischaracterized and did not permit the denial of services to anyone, including gays and lesbians.

"Heavens no," he said, when he asked whether he expected the reaction.

The federal government and 20 other states have similar religious protection laws but some legal experts say the Indiana law broadened who could claim a religious burden and under what circumstances. Gays and lesbians are not a protected class under Indiana’s civil rights laws.

Here’s a look at who has been speaking out about the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Those Speaking Out Against the Law

The head of the NCAA told NBC News on Monday that he was "deeply concerned" about the Indiana law. Indianapolis hosts the Final Four in the National Collegiate Athletic Association's men's basketball tournament on Saturday.

The chief executives of nine major Indiana-based companies wrote to Pence on Monday saying they were worried about their own employees and the reputation of Indiana. Among the companies: Angie’s List, Anthem Blue Cross & Blue Shield, Eli Lilly and Co. and Roche Diagnostics.

Salesforce, the cloud computing company, said it was canceling all company travel to Indiana and in a Washington Post op-ed, Apple CEO Tim Cook, who is gay, called the new wave of legislation dangerous.

The Indiana Chamber of Commerce called the law unnecessary.

AFSCME, the country’s largest public-employee union, said it would move a planned women's conference out of Indianapolis this year because of the law.

Among politicians, Hillary Clinton, widely expected to run for the Democratic 2016 presidential nomination, tweeted: "Sad this new Indiana law can happen in America today."

Gov. Dannel Malloy of Connecticut signed an executive order banning state-backed travel to Indiana, and called the law “disturbing, disgraceful, and outright discriminatory.” Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the mayors of Oakland, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C., are among officials restricting government-sponsored travel to the state.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent, told Fusion that Pence was on the wrong side of history.

Entertainers also took stands against the law.

The band Wilco said it was canceling a May performance.

"Parks and Recreation" star Nick Offerman canceled a comedy show in Indianapolis in May, citing the new law. But he said he would go forward with a show Wednesday at Indiana University and donate the proceeds to the Human Rights Campaign.

Supporting Indiana's Law

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a candidate for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, said Pence was protecting religious liberty. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who is weighing a run for the Republican nomination for the presidency, said on Fox News that he thought people should be allowed to live out their religious faith.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, another likely Republican candidate, said the law would allow people of faith to express their beliefs. Speaking on the Hugh Hewitt radio show, he said that once the facts were established, he thought people would see that the law was not discriminatory.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Coyote on Bar Rooftop in NYC]]> Tue, 31 Mar 2015 15:10:17 -0400 http://media.nbcmiami.com/images/213*120/lic+bar+coyotoe+2IMG_1484.jpg

A wild animal resembling a coyote wandered onto the roof of a bar in Queens where it appeared to be stranded for several hours Monday, witnesses reported. 

It was spotted by tenants living above LIC Bar on Vernon Boulevard and 46th Avenue in Long Island City, according to LIC Post.

They think the coyote managed to get on the roof from a broken window of an adjacent empty warehouse building, LIC Bar owner Brian Porter told the website. 

"It looked well-fed, it wasn't a scrawny thing," he said. 

LIC Post reported a veterinarian from Citi Vet clinic a few blocks away went up on the roof to see whether it was a dog or a coyote, took a look, then quickly descended, as captured in a photo by witness Paula Kirby.

Matt Quigley of Plaxall Properties, whose office has a direct view of the bar rooftop, told NBC 4 New York in an email the coyote eventually got back into the abandoned Paragon Paints building through an open window.

Video taken by another neighbor shows the animal darting away from NYPD emergency services unit officers on the rooftop, and dashing back into the old factory building through an open window. 

The NYPD confirmed officers responded to a call for a wild animal on a rooftop there, but couldn't say whether it was a coyote. 

Quigley said police officers staked out the area for a few more hours, then left.

The ACC said it was sending officers out to the area to investigate. 

In January, two coyotes were captured by NYPD officers separately on the Upper West Side and in the Stuyvesant Town complex. Each was released in wilderness areas in the Bronx. 

Photo Credit: Paula Kirby
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