<![CDATA[NBC 10 Philadelphia - Top Stories]]>Copyright 2017http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/NBC10_40x125.png NBC 10 Philadelphia http://www.nbcphiladelphia.comen-usThu, 19 Oct 2017 18:11:34 -0400Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:11:34 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Elderly Vet's Death at Assisted Living Home Ruled a Homicide]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 17:43:51 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Daniel+Scanlan+Assisted+Living+Death.jpg

An 84-year-old man's death at a Lehigh Valley assisted living facility was ruled a homicide this week.

Daniel Scanlan died on April 4 from complications of blunt force trauma to the head, according to the Northampton County coroner. The injuries prompted the coroner to rule the man's death a homicide.

Scanlan, a U.S. Army veteran and former Conrail freight conductor, was a resident of Arden Courts of Old Orchard along Freemansburg Avenue in Easton, Pennsylvania.

It's still unclear how Scanlan was injured.

The Northampton County District Attorney's Office is investigating. A spokesperson said prosecutors have yet to determine whether charges will be filed.

In a statement, a spokesperson for Arden Courts said they can't comment on Scanlan's death because of the on-gong investigation, but that resident safety and well-being is a "primary concern."



Photo Credit: NBC10]]>
<![CDATA[What We Know About the Victims in Delaware, Maryland Rampage]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:06:48 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Radee+Prince+victims.jpg

There's the Wilmington car dealer quick to lend a helping hand. Another is a native of Mongolia who emigrated to the United States in 2005.

In all, six people were shot, three fatally, during a two-state shooting rampage Wednesday, allegedly by a man who police say was acquainted with all of the victims. Those killed have been identified as Bayarsaikhan Tudev, Oscar Hidalgo and Enis Mrvoljak.

Here's what we know about the victims. They include five employees of Advanced Granite Solutions in Maryland and a Delaware small business owner.

Jason Baul

The 36-year-old owner of 28th Street Auto Sales and Service in Wilmington is engaged to be married.

His future mother-in-law Ethel Jenkins said her daughter was devastated by the sudden attack. She and other relatives said Baul is an gregarious young man willing to lend a helping hand, especially to those most in need.

Recently, he loaned tow trucks to help out after a recent hurricane.

“He was the type of person if he could help you he would help you. He’s a good-hearted man,” John Broomer, of Wilmington, said.

He was shot twice shortly before 11 a.m. Wednesday, but later in the day, police said Baul was conscious at a nearby hospital. Relatives and friends didn't know what his relationship to Prince is, but police said they were acquaintances.

Bayarsaikhan Tudev

The Arlington, Virginia, husband and father was born in Mongolia and came to the United States with some of his family in 2005, NBC4 in Washington, D.C., has reported.

He worked as a polisher at Advanced Granite Solutions. He was 53, his daughter said. Two of his sons still live in Mongolia.

Tudev was a devout Christian who hosted Bible studies.

""He was the best dad and the best husband, the most humble person," his daughter said daughter said. "He was a very friendly, soft-hearted, very easygoing guy."


Oscar Hidalgo

The 34-year-old polisher at Advanced Granite Solutions was a native of El Salvador, and has a child living there, according to his brother. He lived in Maryland.


While picking up his brother's car Thursday, Noah Orellana said they had the devastating task of figuring out how to get Hidalgo's body returned to his native country in Central America for the funeral and burial there.

"It’s hard to see how this is happening for us, how this lunatic took his life," Orellana said. "This was a great man here. He was a very humble guy. He was just from home to work (to) church. He was not one of the guys in a bar. Or, you know, doing bad things out there."

Enis Mrvoljak

The 48-year-old reportedly lived in Dundalk, Maryland. He also was a polisher at the granite company in the Emmorton Business Park in Edgewood, Maryland. According to a Facebook page, he too emigrated to the East Coast, coming from Bosnia with his family.

Two unidentified survivors

Both are workers at Advanced Granite Solutions. They remain at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in critical condition.



Photo Credit: FILE
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<![CDATA[Recently-Diagnosed Cancer Patient Wins Big at Flyers Game]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 13:54:40 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Kayne+Lermitte+Flyers+Game+Main.jpg

"Kayne of PA" had a heck of a night at the Philadelphia Flyers game Tuesday.

That's how the Flyers nicknamed Kayne Lermitte on the out-size check for $16,730 they presented to Lermitte after he won the 50/50 raffle held during home games at the Wells Fargo Center.

To the lifelong Bryn Athyn resident, the surprising cash windfall is the most recent sign of optimism after tough news he received last month.

On Sept. 29, the 33-year-old husband and father of three learned he has a rare form of leukemia.

"I work out a lot and play volleyball on a hard floor. I thought, 'Well, I'm getting bruised a lot,'" Lermitte said. "Then I went to the Eagles game last month and I threw the ball around maybe 30 times. My rotator cuff was hurting me the next day."

After a couple trips to doctors, he was diagnosed with the immunodeficient disease.

"I had a 2,000 (blood) platelet count. A healthy person has 150,000 to 400,000," he said.

Lermitte is a huge Philadelphia sports fan. Ironically, his form of leukemia involves what is known as the Philadelphia chromosome. (It was so-named because of research done by two local researchers.)

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But Lermitte has vowed to stay optimistic through the treatment process ahead. And he pointed out his diagnosis coincides with winning ways by all of Philly's sports teams in the last several weeks.

And he's going to give back some of his winnings to the place where he has put much of his hopes: the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania.

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Before the winning numbers were announced Tuesday night, he and his friend Garrett Nash were laughing about holding the winning ticket.

"I was joking around with him and said, 'It's only 10 minutes until they announce us as the winners,'" Lermitte said. "When they announced 466605, it's how it is whenever they announce the winning ticket, 'Oh, I don't have that number.'"

And then he realized that, incredibly, he did. "There was no screaming or jumping up and down," he said. "Just shaking our heads."

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For now, he said he's vibing off everyone's kindness. And he feels great, for now.

"I'm in the honeymoon phase of the treatment," Lermitte said. His treatment will eventually include chemotherapy commonly associated with cancer: hair loss and fatigue.

"I'm just trying to live it up however I can," he said, noting that going to Flyers games will not be part of the routine as he goes through treatment.

Lermitte is on leave from his work at a Bucks County technology consulting company. His doctors, he said, are encouraged by his reaction to treatment so far.

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And his sister just found out she's a 10-out-of-10 bone marrow match. Lermitte will eventually need a marrow transplant.

"Winning the 50/50 was longer odds than that, but having a 10-out-of-10 match was even better news," he said.



Photo Credit: Courtesy of Kayne Lermitte
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<![CDATA[2-State Shooting Spree Suspect Held on $2.1M Bail]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:02:40 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/md_shooting_trip.jpg

A Delaware judge has ordered the man accused of killing three people and wounding three others during a two-state shooting spree to remain jailed on $2.1 million cash bail.

Radee Labeeb Prince was arraigned via video in Delaware Thursday morning on attempted murder and three weapons charges.

Prince was prohibited from possessing a gun after being found guilty of third-degree burglary in New Castle County, Delaware, in 2003, police said in court documents obtained by NBC10.

A preliminary hearing was set for Oct. 31.

It's unclear when Prince will be sent back to Maryland to face possible murder charges.

The 37-year-old shot five co-workers at a kitchen countertop company in Maryland Wednesday morning before driving to Wilmington, Delaware, and opening fire on a man with whom he had "beefs" in the past, wounding him, police said.

The shooting rampage set off a multi-state manhunt. Police cruisers were stationed in medians along the Interstate 95 Northeast corridor, and overhead highway signs displayed a description of Prince's sport utility vehicle and its Delaware license plate. The FBI assisted state and local authorities in the manhunt.

Prince was arrested by ATF agents Wednesday night after his unoccupied getaway vehicle was found next to Glasgow High School in Newark, Delaware. Police say Prince was spotted by a witness leaving the vehicle and walking toward the high school. The witness then contacted law enforcement. 

Prince was spotted walking nearby and taken into custody by the three ATF agents after a brief foot chase, police said.

During the chase, Prince allegedly discarded a .380 firearm which was later recovered by police, according to Wilmington Police Chief Robert J. Tracy. No one was hurt during the arrest.

"A coordinated effort brought this to a very successful conclusion on a very, very bad day," Chief Tracy said.

The rampage began at about 9 a.m. Wednesday when Prince reportedly walked into Advanced Granite Solutions, which designs and installs countertops, and opened fire on is co-workers. 

Barak Caba, the company's owner, told the Associated Press that Prince worked there as a machine operator for the past four months. He was scheduled to work Wednesday.

Five staffers were hit. Three were killed, police said. The two victims who survived were left in critical condition.

The sheriff's office said Wednesday night on its Facebook page that the people who died were Bayarsaikhan Tudev, 53, of Virginia; Jose Hidalgo Romero, 34, of Aberdeen, Maryland, and Enis Mrvoljak, 48, of Dundalk, Maryland. The company set up the Edgewood Donations fund to support the victims families.

Prince then sped 51 miles north in his black 2008 GMC Acadia to Wilmington where he confronted an acquaintance, Jason Baul, investigators said. 

Baul was working at his used car dealership, 28th Street Auto Sales and Service, along the 2800 block of Governor Printz Boulevard when Prince shot him twice around 10:30 a.m., police said.

Prince shot Baul in the head and body, but Baul is expected to survive, police said.

Prince's SUV was still near the second shooting scene when Wilmington police arrived. Baul pointed out the SUV to police but Prince sped away before police could chase him, Tracy said.

The motive for both shootings remains unclear, though Tracy said Prince "knew the people he wanted to shoot."

"How do you get into a mind of a person that's capable of shooting five people that are coworkers? What gets in his mind? What precipitated that? It's tough to rationalize," Tracy said during a Wednesday night news conference following Prince's arrest.

Co-workers said Prince kept to himself and barely talked. They remain baffled by the killings and say there were no signs of any issues.

Four workers at the company said they were only feet away as Prince opened fire and killed their three co-workers.

"They were all family," said Ibrahim Kucuk, a manager at Advanced Granite Solutions. "We've been working together for a long time. It's just tragic."

Friends and relatives of Baul said they don't recognize Prince and didn’t know why he allegedly targeted Baul. Investigators, however, said they believe Prince targeted Baul because of a previous issue related to a criminal case. 

The Baltimore Sun reports, citing court documents, that Prince has had problems with employers before. He was fired from a job earlier this year after he allegedly punched a co-worker in the face and threatened other staffers, the Sun reported.

The assaulted co-worker tried to get a restraining order against Prince in February, but a Harford County District Court judge denied the order, saying the case didn't meet the required burden of proof.

Real estate records link Prince to a home along the 500 block of Kiamensi Road in Wilmington.

Margaret Melton, a woman who resides at the home, told NBC10 that Prince didn't "officially" live at the Wilmington address, but stayed there "on and off when he had issues."

"He lives in Maryland," Melton said. Court records show he most recently lived in Elkton, Maryland.

Another neighbor, who did not want to be identified, said she knows Prince's family.

"That boy had a good upbringing," she said. "It wasn't like he was a madman or he was a crazed maniac, because he wasn't."

Prince faced several gun charges in March 2015 in Cecil County, including being a felon in possession of a firearm and carrying a handgun in vehicle. However, the charges were dropped about three months later. It's not clear why.

Wilmington police said Prince was arrested 42 times in Delaware alone and had 15 felony convictions there.

In King County, Washington, in 2014, he was cited for leaving the scene of an accident and driving with a suspended license. Court records also showed that he was required to undergo drug and alcoholism counseling at the time.Prince racked up four traffic citations in King County in 2012 and 2013, mostly for speeding.

"If there's violent people that are causing carnage in the community and have some violent crimes, we've gotta find a way to keep them behind bars, so they can't go out and re-offend," Tracy said.

The FBI says they are treating the case as workplace violence and don't see ties to terrorism.


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<![CDATA[GM to Pay Pa., NJ Millions in Ignition Switch Settlement]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 14:05:46 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/GM+Cars+General+Motors.jpg

General Motors is going to fork over $120 million — with about $10 million going to area states — as part of a settlement over the cover-up of safety issues related to faulty ignition switches that resulted in dozens of deaths including a 21-year-old Pennsylvania woman, state attorneys general Josh Shapiro and Christopher Porrino announced Thursday.

"We’re holding General Motors accountable for misleading consumers about the safety of their cars and changing their corporate behavior so public safety comes first," Pennsylvania AG Shapiro said in a news release announcing the settlement between GM and 49 state attorneys general and the District of Columbia. "This settlement will help us investigate and prosecute similar cases of corporate misconduct in order to protect Pennsylvanians."

About $4.7 million of the settlement will go to Pennsylvania to investigate and prosecute "future deceptive practices" that harm consumers, Shapiro said.

"This case is about much more than GM paying for their deception," Shapiro said. "It’s about changing corporate behavior and protecting Pennsylvanians well into the future."

Another $4.1 million will go to New Jersey.

"Like any other business — large or small — automakers have an obligation to represent the products they sell honestly, to ensure those products are safe, and to alert consumers when they discover a product defect that threatens consumer safety," New Jersey AG Porrino said. "When they fail to do so, as was the case with GM, we are committed to holding them accountable."

Delaware will get $1.12 million for its consumer protection fund, according to Attorney General Matt Denn's office.

The faulty GM ignition switches caused vehicles to lose power and turn off, officials said. Kelly Ruddy, 21, was one of the victims of the faculty switches when she lost control of her mother’s Chevy Cobalt while driving along Interstate 81 in 2010, Shapiro said.

"General Motors took our last surviving child, everything we had," Mary Ruddy, who lost her oldest daughter to an illness shortly before Kelly died, said Thursday. "I’m glad to see Attorney General Shapiro standing up for us and our daughter and deeply appreciate this group of Attorneys General holding GM accountable for their corporate misconduct and defective vehicles."

Individual families have already settled with GM over the ignition switch problem that impacted about 9-million GM cars recalled nationally — and 412,000 cars recalled in Pennsylvania.

In a statement, GM acknowledged the settlement and its purpose of safety.

"The resolution includes a financial component, and assures GM will continue ongoing improvements made to ensure the safety of its vehicles," GM said. "These improvements include continuation of a new organizational structure devoted to global vehicle safety and the company's 'Speak Up for Safety' program."

Under the settlement, GM is required to improve the recall process, ensure safe vehicles and protect whistleblowers and empower employees to report safety issues, Shapiro said.

Theses are areas of focus, Shapiro said:

  • Maintain a Vehicle Safety Owner Engagement Team to improve and enhance recall awareness to car owners with open recalls – GM has to provide a report within 60 days after the one-year anniversary of this agreement summarizing their efforts.
  • Not represent that any GM car is safe unless they have complied with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards as set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  • Maintain a Global Vehicle Safety Organization that identifies and investigates safety issues.
  • Maintain a "Speak Up for Safety" program for its employees to report safety-related issues and require all U.S. employees to confirm annually that they have reported safety issues appropriately -- and not faced internal reprisals as a result.

The hope is to also continue to hold GM responsible.

"General Motors’ conduct here was unconscionable," Porrino said. "It put profit ahead of integrity and, more disturbingly, sat on its corporate hands as unwitting drivers and their passengers traveled throughout New Jersey – and throughout our nation – in GM vehicles that had the potential to fail and become uncontrollable at highway speeds."



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[President Obama Speaks in New Jersey]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:06:02 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/President_Obama_Speaks_in_New_Jersey.jpg

Just ahead of the New Jersey November elections, President Obama spoke in the state on Thursday. Mr. Obama addressed the upcoming election, his own achievements, and the current political climate. NBC10's Rosemary Connors explains.

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<![CDATA[Police Investigating Caring Facility Death]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:04:51 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Police_Investigating_Nursing_Home_Death.jpg

After an 84-year-old died in a care facility from blunt force trauma, police are determining whether charges will be filed, even though the death was ruled a homicide. NBC10's Steven Fisher explains.

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<![CDATA[Looking for a Seasonal Job? Try These Places]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 11:29:23 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-498622670.jpg

Snowflakes, hot chocolate, good cheer... and lots of spending are just around the corner. As companies get an influx of extra customers during the holiday season, every year they ask for extra help in serving them.

From retail to hard labor, take a look at these companies hoping to bring joy to the world by hiring for the holidays.

FedEx

FedEx announced the addition of 700 available positions at their Allentown SmartPost Hub. "FedEx offers its team members the chance to grow and reach their full potential thanks to excellent training, affordable medical benefits and a strong 'promote from within' culture," hub senior manager Brad Hoffman said.

Aéropostale

This clothing store hires seasonal help every year. Applications can be found online and sometimes in store. 

Amazon

Amazon will be hiring thousands of applicants for the holiday season. The job opportunities range from shift leads to warehouse associates. 

American Eagle

Just like Aéropostale and other clothing stores, American Eagle seeks seasonal help every holiday season. Applications can be found online and sometimes in store. 

Anthropologie

Some of the Anthropologies looking for seasonal help include the Glen Mills, Philadelphia and Hoboken locations. Apply here.

Barnes & Noble

Barnes & Noble has hundreds of temporary job openings on their website.

GAP/Old Navy

GAP Inc. holiday team members receive a 50% discount off of GAP Inc. merchandise. Apply here for a seasonal position.


Kohl's

Kohl's is on the lookout for seasonal hire, offering discounts in addition to pay. After working for Kohl's for the season, employees can apply for open positions. 

Lowe's

Lowe's has seasonal jobs available in their store, distribution and corporate lines of business.

LUSH

The majority of seasonal jobs for LUSH available are seasonal sales ambassadors. The LUSH stores in Cherry Hill, Lawrence and Freehold, New Jersey as well as in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania are all hiring. 

Macy's

According to Money Magazine, Macy's will have 80,000 seasonal job openings.

Nordstrom 

Nordstrom is hiring for a range of positions this holiday season from overnight stock team members to cashiers. Apply here.

PennDOT

PennDOT tweeted Tuesday morning, in all caps, that they are "NOW HIRING" full and part time seasonal CDL Drivers to get rid of the snow potentially coming our way. To apply for the position, click here.

Sears

In addition to online applications, Sears is hosting a National Day of Hiring on Tuesday, October 17 at all of its Sears and Kmart stores. However, to attend the event, Sears suggest you apply online beforehand.

Target

Target will have 104,500 seasonal job positions open, according to Money Magazine.

Toys "R" Us 

Toys "R" Us is not backing down after its file for bankruptcy in September. The mega-toy store will have 13,000 seasonal job openings this year according to Money Magazine.

UPS 

According to Money Magazine, the United Parcel Service (UPS) has about 95,000 seasonal openings with some locations offering bonuses. 

Walmart 

Walmart seasonal jobs can also open up doors at Sam's Club. 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[How Much Will Boardwalk Renovations Cost?]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:01:30 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Ocean_City_Boardwalk_Gets_Facelift.jpg

The worn wood on the Ocean City boardwalk between 10th and 12th streets is now closed for repairs, but what is the construction costing the city? NBC10's Ted Greenberg explains.

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<![CDATA[NBC10 First Alert Weather: Warm Weekend Ahead]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:00:19 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/NBC10_First_Alert_Weather__Warm_Weekend_Ahead.jpg

If you're planning to go pumpkin picking or to go on a hayride, this weekend is the weekend to do it. Some warmer temperatures will return to our region, but how long will they stay? NBC10 Chief meteorologist Tammie Souza has your forecast.

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<![CDATA[Deer Found Hanging From Football Stadium]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 17:32:22 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Deer_Found_Hanging_From_Football_Stadium.jpg

Police in Doylestown are investigating after a deer was found hanging from a high school football field. Now, students and parents are expressing concern. NBC10's Cydney Long explains.

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<![CDATA[Philly Fights for Amazon Headquarters]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 17:31:50 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Fight_for_Amazon_Headquarters.jpg

Major cities across the country are pulling out all the stops to convince Amazon to build their new headquarters there. Philadelphia is among those cities pushing for the spot. NBC10's Aundrea Cline-Thomas explains what Philadelphia is doing.

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<![CDATA[Cameras Take Aim at Making Schuylkill River Trial Safer]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 16:25:27 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/215*120/Schuylkill+River+Trail+Ground.JPG

After a series of sex assaults and attacks targeting women, security cameras are being installed along Philadelphia's Schuylkill River Tail as city officials take steps to make the popular recreational trail safer.

Democratic City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson announced Wednesday that installation has begun of 21 cameras covering eight entrances along the trail from Arch Street to the South Street Bridge.

Johnson joined Council President Darrell Clarke in funding the $150,000 safety project along that trail that has had some highly-publicized public safety troubles recently.

"If you're outside enjoying yourself in any public space here in the city of Philadelphia you should feel safe" regardless of where you are, Johnson said.

The first camera was being put in place near Locust Street Wednesday. Johnson hopes the rest of the cameras will be installed in the coming weeks.

The city will also dispatch undercover and bicycle officers and town watch volunteers to look over the trail. Improved lighting and added mileposts will make it easier for people who are victimized to report their location, Johnson said.

In the future, Johnson wants to also have call boxes installed since people running along the trail may not have their cellphone phone on them.

"We know at the end of the day that we're not going to eliminate all sort of crime along the trial but this is a step in the right direction because no incident should be taking place along the trail at all," Johnson said.

The overall goal is "more public safety along the Schuylkill River Trail," Johnson said.



Photo Credit: NBC10]]>
<![CDATA[New Crash Test Reveals Safety Flaw for Front-Seat Passengers]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 14:10:36 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/crash-test-20.19.jpg

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has developed a new crash test program to address passenger-side airbag systems, saying that automobile manufacturers were not prioritizing the safety of front-seat passengers as much as drivers.

The new "small overlap front crash test" sends only part of the front of a vehicle into a barrier, mimicking a collision with another vehicle or a tree. 

It resulted in 10 out of the 13 midsize vehicles earning good ratings. Among them were the Ford Fusion, Honda Accord and Nissan Altima. A good or acceptable passenger-side rating will be required to qualify for the Institute’s 2018 Top Safety Pick award.

The Vokswagen Passat and the Chevy Malibu, on the other hand, had marginal ratings due to insufficient airbag protection. 

"The restraint system didn't do a good job of protecting the dummy's head from contacting the dash," senior research engineer Becky Mueller said in a statement.

NBC reached out to Volkswagen and Chevrolet for comment.

For the full crash results, click here



Photo Credit: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety ]]>
<![CDATA[Buck Stuck on Beach in New Jersey]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 07:19:17 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/BUCK+STUCK+ON+BEACH+NJ+VO+-+01000119_WNBC_000000018270405.jpg

A buck has been stuck on a New Jersey beach all day Wednesday, hours after it was spotted roaming the streets in nearby Seaside Heights Tuesday night.

The buck was seen sitting on Ortley Beach, one block north of Seaside, and was barely able to move Wednesday afternoon, a law enforcement source tells News 4. Waves were washing up close to the animal as it lay on the sand. 

The source claimed state wildlife officials won't respond and the local Toms River animal control says there's nothing they can do. 

But a wildlife spokesman tells News 4 that Toms River animal control did respond, and whenever they tried to approach to shoot the deer with a dart gun, it ran into the surf, sparking concerns it might drown.

They also called in a state police marine unit, similar to a Zodiac, and at several points it blasted its horn to try to get the buck to move -- but the animal would not leave the surf. 

The wildlife spokesman says sometimes the trauma of rescue efforts can kill an animal.  Officials are hoping the deer will wander off on its own when it gets dark. If they see signs of severe stress before then -- that it's just stuck and can't move -- then wildlife officials will move in.



Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY]]>
<![CDATA[587K Wind-Up, Musical Plush Toys Recalled Over Choking Risk]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 16:49:48 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Waggies_Recall-AllItems.jpg

More than half a million plush toys that wind up to play music have been recalled because the wind-up handle can detach from the toys — sold nationwide at Walmart, Target and other stories — posing a choking hazard.

No injuries have been reported as of the Thursday recall, but six instances of the handle detaching have been reported to the toys' maker, Kids Preferred.

The recall affects 587,000 units, which came in a variety of characters and colors sold between January 2016 and August 2017; they should be taken away from young children immediately. Kids Preferred is offering a free replacement.

To see which models and batch codes are named in the recall, click here.

To reach Kids Preferred, call toll-free at 888-968-9268 between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays, email recall@kidspreferred.com or visit this site.



Photo Credit: Kids Preferred]]>
<![CDATA[What Stores Will Be Open or Closed on Thanksgiving Day?]]> Wed, 18 Oct 2017 22:44:19 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/TLMD-wawa-generica-shutterstock_538639009.jpg What stores will be closing their doors on Thanksgiving day, and who will be welcoming shoppers?

Photo Credit: Shutterstock]]>
<![CDATA[Emergency Alerts Unable to Reach Millions in Bay Area]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 14:26:06 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/180*120/firefighter19.jpg

U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris delivered a scathing letter to the Federal Communications Commission Tuesday evening, criticizing the agency for its failure to develop an effective cell phone emergency alert system. This comes after Sonoma County emergency officials told the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit that that the current wireless emergency alert system is unsuitable for evacuations because it cannot be geo-targeted to specific areas and can only be sent out to all of the county’s 500,000 residents.

WARNING RESIDENTS
The devastating fires throughout the North Bay exposed a growing problem for emergency planners across the state. As communication technology improves, their ability to alert millions of residents following an impending disaster becomes more of a challenge.

In Sonoma County, there were two groups of evacuees – those who received an evacuation alert, and those who did not.

“I came out and it was a wall of fire,” Santa Rosa native Brett Gripe told NBC Bay Area. The longtime resident escaped his Mark West Estates home of 30 years after his friends fled their burning home on Wikiup Bridge and woke him up in the middle of the night.

“They pounded on neighbors’ doors and woke others up several neighbors. They saved our lives,” Gripe said.

Gripe says he never received a call from the county to evacuate.

“Nothing was on my cell phone or home phone. I’m an old timer I have two landlines.”

WIRELESS EMERGENCY ALERTS
Gripe is one of several residents the Investigative Unit spoke to who never received an evacuation alert. Thursday, Sonoma county emergency manager Christopher Helgren told NBC Bay Area that his staff decided not to activate the county’s Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) system because he feared the alert would reach too many people, causing widespread panic and traffic jams.

“It was an evacuation situation and we wanted to specifically target the residents that were in immediate danger,” Helgren said. “In situations requiring evacuation, until that system has greater granularity so I can target areas that are affected; I can’t use that system for evacuations.

WEA allows county officials to send an alert to all cell phones within a few miles of targeted cell phone towers. Since 2013, the California Highway Patrol has used the system to send out Amber Alerts. FEMA approved Sonoma County’s application to use the system in July of 2016, but the county has never used it.

Instead, Helgren said the county chose to evacuate residents using SoCo Alert, which allows the county to target specific neighborhoods. However residents have to sign up for SoCo alert. Prior to the fire, roughly 15,000 of Sonoma County’s 500,000 residents were registered, roughly 3 percent.

San Mateo County emergency coordinator Jeff Norris says poor registration is a problem facing many Bay Area counties. In San Mateo, only 65,000 of the county’s 765,000 residents are registered.

“We can't notify you if we can't reach you,” Norris told NBC Bay Area. “When reaching people is going to save lives, we're going to use every tool we can.”

In the event of a wildfire, Norris said he plans to evacuate residents by sending a carefully crafted WEA message with instructions and directions.

“The better we make the message… the more likely we are to save lives,” Norris said.

While WEA can be an effective tool to send out a mass alert, very few jurisdictions have the authority under FEMA regulations to use the system. Instead, counties rely on local alert systems that residents must sign up for.

COUNTY ALERT SYSTEM PARTICIPATION
Click on your county system below to sign up.

County

System

Registered Userts

2015 Population Estimate

Alameda

AC Alerts


80,000

1,638,000

Contra Costa

Community Warning System (CWS)


No Response

1,127,000

Marin

Alert Marin


53,000

261,221

Napa

My Napa County


No Response

142,456

San Francisco

AlertSF


74,000

864,816

Santa Clara

AlertSCC


66,874

1,918,000

San Mateo

SMC Alert


64,823

 765,135

Sonoma

SoCo Alert


15,000

499,674

Solano

CityWatch Notification System

Transitioning to new system

436,092

As for Brett Gripe, the 22-year Novato PD veteran is unsure where he will spend his retirement after building a life in Santa Rosa.

“I don’t know what happens to a town when so many neighborhoods are devastated,” Gripe said.

In addition to local alert systems, county leaders can also reach residents through reverse 911 calls to landlines. But even those systems still will not reach everyone with a landline if residents don’t sign up to receive an alert.



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Iranian General Helped Iraq Seize City From US Ally: Sources]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 10:25:09 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/iran-iraq-kirkuk.jpg

A few days after President Donald Trump announced his get-tough approach to Iran, one of its top military commanders helped engineer the seizure of an important Iraqi city from a U.S. regional ally, Iraqi, Kurdish and American officials told NBC News.

Iran brokered seizure of oil-rich Kirkuk from the Kurds by the Iraqi government and the Shiite militias it partners with, according to former U.S. national security officials. The move heightens the risk of civil war in Iraq, and amounts to an embarrassing strategic blow for the United States.

"It is a catastrophic defeat for the United States and a fantastic victory for Iran's Revolutionary Guard, proving that Qassem Soleimani gets his way once again," said Ali Khedery, a senior adviser on Iraq policy in the Bush and Obama administrations.

Soleimani, who heads up the Iranian military's special forces and extraterritorial operations, helped negotiate a deal in which one Kurdish faction would abandon its positions to allow Iraqi government forces and Iranian-supported militias to take the city uncontested, Kurdish and former U.S. intelligence officials said.



Photo Credit: Anadolu Agency / Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Two-State Shooting Spree Suspect Faces Charges]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 09:18:56 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Radee-Prince-SOCIAL---00000510_25579348.jpg

UPDATE: Radee Prince was arraigned on attempted murder charges in Delaware Thursday morning.

The man sought for a pair of shootings that spanned two states — leaving three dead and three others hurt — was caught in Delaware following a daylong manhunt, police in Wilmington said.

Radee Labeeb Prince, 37, was captured on foot along Four Seasons Parkway near Clover Mill Drive in Newark, Delaware at 7:05 p.m. Wednesday, police said.

Prince was the central character in a massive manhunt that stretched from Maryland to New York.

Local, state and federal authorities spent nearly 12 hours looking for Prince. It was ATF agents who ultimately took him into custody about an hour and a half after his unoccupied getaway vehicle was found on Cobblecreek Creek Curve next to Glasgow High School in Newark. Police say Prince was spotted by a witness leaving the vehicle and walking toward the high school. The witness then contacted law enforcement. 

Officers from multiple departments arrived at the scene, secured the vehicle and set up a perimeter around the area.

Around 6:45 p.m., police received another tip that Prince was spotted walking on foot on Thanksgiving Way behind the Four Seasons Shopping Center, according to investigators. Prince was then taken into custody by the three ATF agents at 7:05 p.m. after a brief foot chase, police said.

During the chase, Prince allegedly threw away a .380 firearm which was later recovered by police, according to Wilmington Police Chief Robert J. Tracy. No one was hurt during the arrest.

"This couldn't have been done without our federal, state and local officers working together," Chief Tracy said.

"A coordinated effort brought this to a very successful conclusion on a very, very bad day."

Prince was arraigned on attempted murder charges in Delaware Thursday. It's unclear what charges he could face in Maryland.

Prince is accused of walking into his job at Advanced Granite Solutions, a Edgewood, Maryland granite company, just before 9 a.m. Wednesday and opening fire on his co-workers.

Five staffers were hit. Three were killed, police said. The two victims who survived are in critical condition.

The gunman then sped 51 miles north in his black 2008 GMC Acadia to Wilmington where he confronted an acquaintance, Jason Baul, according to investigators. 

Baul was working at his used car dealership, 28th Street Auto Sales and Service, along the 2800 block of Governor Printz Boulevard when, around 10:30 a.m., police say Prince shot him twice.

He suffered gunshot wounds to his head and body, but was alert when officers arrived, Chief Tracy said. He remains hospitalized in stable condition.

Prince's SUV was still near the second shooting scene when Wilmington police arrived. Baul pointed out the SUV to police and it sped away before they could give chase, Tracy said.

The vehicle was recovered by police near Wilmington around 6:30 p.m. A short-time later, Prince was taken into custody.

The motive for both shootings remains unclear, though he knew all of the victims.

"How do you get into a mind of a person that's capable of shooting five people that are coworkers? What gets in his mind? What precipitated that? It's tough to rationalize," Tracy said during a Wednesday night press conference following Prince's arrest.

Barak Caba, owner of Advanced Granite Solutions which designs and installs stone countertops, told the Associated Press that Prince worked there as a machine operator for the past four months. He was scheduled to work Wednesday.

Prince's co-workers said the man kept to himself and barely talked. They remain baffled by the killings and say there were no signs of any issues. Four workers at the company told NBC10 they were only feet away as Prince opened fire and killed their three co-workers, including one victim identified as Jose Hidalgo Romero.

"They were all family," said Ibrahim Kucuk, a manager at Advanced Granite Solutions. "We've been working together for a long time. It's just tragic."

A moment of silence was held for the victims in Maryland. Several members of the community gathered for the candlelight vigil Wednesday night.

"Community is great," Kucuk said. "They are doing great support. Everybody has been very helpful."

Friends and relatives of Baul didn’t know why he was allegedly targeted by Prince. They said they actually don’t recognize Prince at all. Investigators say however they believe Prince targeted Baul because of a past history related to criminal case.

Baul is the type of person, they said, who loaned tow trucks to help out after a recent hurricane.

“He was the type of person if he could help you he would help you. He’s a good-hearted man,” John Broomer, of Wilmington, said. Broomer's granddaughter is engaged to Baul.

"My daughter called me she was hysterical crying saying Jason had got shot," said Ethel Jenkins, of Wilmington, whose daughter is engaged to Baul.

Real estate records link Prince to a home along the 500 block of Kiamensi Road in Wilmington.

Margaret Melton, a woman who resides at the home, told NBC10 that Prince does not officially live at the Wilmington address. "He lives in Maryland," Melton said. Court records show he most recently lived in Elkton, Maryland — along the Maryland-Delaware border.

She has known Prince since he was in the fourth grade, she said.

"He lived here on and off, when he had issues," Melton said. She did not go into details about what issues he had.

Another neighbor, who did not want to be identified, said she knows Prince's family.

"That boy had a good upbringing," she said. "It wasn't like he was a madman or he was a crazed maniac, because he wasn't."

Prince, according to court records in Washington state, lived in the Seattle area for a few years earlier this decade. The online records indicated he had court cases for unspecified proceedings between 2010 and 2014.

He apparently was back on the East Coast by 2015, as court records in Cecil County, Maryland, show he was in court on illegal firearm possession charges. Those charges apparently were dropped.

But court documents cited by The Baltimore Sun claim Prince has had run-ins with people he worked with in the past.

Prince was fired from a job in February after he allegedly punched a co-worker in the face and threatened other staffers, the Sun reported citing court documents

The assaulted co-worker later asked a Maryland judge for a restraining order against Prince. The request was denied because a burden of proof was not met, Maryland court records show.

In all, Prince was arrested 42 times in Delaware alone, including 15 felony convictions, leading some people to wonder why he was free when he allegedly went on a shooting rampage.

"If there's violent people that are causing carnage in the community and have some violent crimes, we've gotta find a way to keep them behind bars, so they can't go out and re-offend," Tracy said.

The FBI says they are treating the case as workplace violence and don't see ties to terrorism.


This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Being Tired Vs. Chronic Fatigue]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 10:52:59 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Tired_vs._Chronic_Fatigue.jpg

The NBC10 Morning Team explores a condition keeping people in bed as part of its sleep series.

]]>
<![CDATA[Museum Says Real Renoir Hangs in Chicago, Not Trump's NYC Home]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 00:28:10 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Renoir_Two-Sisters.jpg

A famed impressionist painting has been hanging in the Art Institute of Chicago for nearly 100 years, the museum confirmed Wednesday, despite a recent report that President Donald Trump claims to be in possession of the original.

French artist Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s "Two Sisters (On the Terrace)," an oil on canvas painting depicting a young woman and a child surrounded by vegetation on a patio, has been part of the Art Institute’s collection since 1933, spokeswoman Amanda Hicks confirmed to NBC Chicago.

In an interview on Vanity Fair’s podcast "The Hive," Trump biographer and Chicago native Tim O’Brien discussed the painting controversy. O’Brien wrote the 2005 book, “TrumpNation: The Art of Being The Donald,” which chronicles the now president’s empire as an entrepreneur and reality star.

While working on the book several years ago, O’Brien accompanied Trump on his private jet on a trip to Los Angeles — where he first saw the painting hanging. When questioned about its authenticity, Trump insisted it was the real deal, O’Brien said.

"Donald, it's not. I grew up in Chicago, that Renoir is called 'Two Sisters on the Terrace,' and it’s hanging on a wall at the Art Institute of Chicago,” O’Brien recalled telling Trump. “That’s not an original.”

Trump refused to yield his position, O’Brien said, so the biographer dropped the conversation and moved on to other topics.

Years later, however, O’Brien noted to Vanity Fair the painting could be seen in the background of a “60 Minutes” interview in Trump’s New York City apartment after he was elected president in 2016.

“I’m sure he’s still telling people who come into the apartment, ‘It’s an original, it’s an original,’” O’Brien said on the podcast.

The White House did not immediately respond to request for comment and a tweet sent to the president’s account was not responded to.

Hicks declined to comment on O’Brien’s reporting.

The Renoir was given to the museum in 1933 by Annue Swan Corburn, who had bought it from Paul Durand-Ruel for $100,000. Ruel had acquired the piece from Renoir himself in 1881.

Trump sued O’Brien in 2006 for defamation over the book but a superior court judge in New Jersey dismissed the suit in 2009. An appeals court affirmed that decision two years later.



Photo Credit: Art Institute of Chicago]]>
<![CDATA[Catch Up Quickly: Judge Denies Sandusky New Trial]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 06:58:57 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Jerry+Sandusky+New.jpg

Here are the top news stories you need to know to start your day from your friends at NBC10.


TODAY'S TOP STORY 

Suspect in Shootings in MD, Del. Captured: A sweeping multistate manhunt that kept the Mid-Atlantic region on high alert for more than 10 hours ended when law enforcement officers on foot chased down a man they say shot six people, killing three, in two separate shootings. Radee Labeeb Prince, 37, was captured on foot along Four Seasons Parkway near Clover Mill Drive in Newark, Delaware, about 7 p.m., police said. He shot five of his co-workers at a granite company about 25 miles northeast of Baltimore just before 9 a.m., police said. Three of them died. Harford County police identified them as Bayarsaikhan Tudev, 53; Jose Hidalgo Romero, 34, of Aberdeen, Maryland; and Enis Mrvoljak, 48, of Dundalk, Maryland. Prince then drove to Wilmington, where he shot an acquaintance in the head and the body at a used car lot, NBC Philadelphia reports that Wilmington police said. The second shooting occurred about 10:45 a.m. Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy said in a news conference Wednesday night police found Prince's SUV, a black 2000 GMC Acadia, about 5:35 p.m. near Glasgow High School in Newark. Police then received a tip Prince had been seen walking toward the school from the SUV. Officers convened on the area and took him into custody less than 2 hours later. During a brief foot chase, Prince threw down a gun, Tracy said.

    WHAT YOU MISSED YESTERDAY

    Judge Denies Sandusky New a Trial: Jerry Sandusky lost a bid Wednesday for a new trial and a second chance to convince a jury he is innocent of the child sexual abuse charges that landed him in state prison to serve a lengthy sentence. Judge John Foradora denied Sandusky's requests for a new trial or for dismissal of charges. The former Penn State assistant football coach's lawyers said they were disappointed and planned to appeal the decision to Superior Court. "The court's decision is not the end of Jerry's case, it is only the closing of a chapter which we need to go through in the course of our endeavor to obtain a new trial, a reversal of his conviction, and ultimately his release and vindication," said defense attorney Al Lindsay. Sandusky, 73, has consistently maintained he was wrongly convicted. He argued that he did not receive adequate representation at his 2012 trial and that prosecutors should have disclosed more details about changes to victims' stories.

    YOUR FIRST ALERT FORECAST  

    Thursday is expected to see sunshine and temperatures in the 70s. Sunshine and 70 degree temperatures are also expected for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Temperatures on Sunday could near 80 degrees. Rain may return for Monday. Get your full NBC10 First Alert forecast here.

        TODAY'S TALKER                

        Everyone from Pittsburgh Was in Philly, According to Facebook: Many Pennsylvania natives woke up to a notification from Facebook welcoming them to the City of Brotherly Love Wednesday morning. Except ... they were across the state in parts of Western and Central Pennsylvania. And, according to some very snippy social media posts, definitely not in Philly. According to the Pittsburgh Tribune, Facebook spokesperson Emilie Fetterley reports that the site “fixed the issue.” Despite the fix, the glitch in Facebook’s location services caused a lot of confusion to those affected, and Pittsburgh natives had some interesting perspectives on the mistake.

        AROUND THE WORLD

        Poll: America's Fear of North Korea is On the Rise: A majority of Americans, both Republicans and Democrats, view North Korea as the most immediate threat to the United States, according to a new NBC NewsSurveyMonkey poll. The majority opinion represents a shift since July, when 41 percent of Americans said North Korea was the greatest immediate threat and 28 percent cited ISIS. But now, Americans across party lines agree that North Korea poses the most significant threat. A majority of Republicans (53 percent) and Republican-leaners, independents (53 percent) and Democrats and Democratic-leaners (55 percent) agree.


        That's what you need to know to Catch Up Quickly, but we've got more stories worthy of your time. Click here to check them out



        Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
        <![CDATA[US Rep. Calls Trump a 'Liar,' Niger Attack His 'Benghazi']]> Wed, 18 Oct 2017 23:33:36 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/180*120/AP_171284199158.jpg

        Calling Donald Trump a "liar," U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson on Wednesday fiercely defended her statements over his call with a fallen U.S. soldier's widow. She is also demanding answers on the Niger attack in which her constituent and three other soldiers died, saying it will be "Mr. Trump's Benghazi."

        Wilson gave several interviews in which she discussed Trump's call and also detailed the exemplary service of U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson, a Miami Gardens native.

        Trump has been under heavy criticism after Wilson recounted her version of the conversation on Tuesday.

        "I heard him say 'Well, you know ... I'm sure he knows that this is what he signed up for, but it still hurts,'" Wilson told "The View." "And the saddest part of this, he kept referring to La David as 'your guy.' He never called his name. It was almost as if he forgot his name, and that's what hurt the mother so badly, the wife, she said 'he doesn't even know his name.'"

        Wilson said Trump had to be aware that there were multiple people who could have heard the conversation between him and Myeshia Johnson, the pregnant widow.

        Wilson, Wilson's driver, the limousine driver, Johnson's aunt and uncle, Myeshia, and a U.S. Army official were all present in the car at the time of the call, Wilson recounted.

        When Trump called, Myeshia had recently found out that her husband would not receive an open-casket funeral because of the condition of his body.

        Wilson said Myeshia was "grief-stricken."

        After hearing Trump's comment, Wilson said she demanded to speak to him.

        "And they said 'No ... You can't speak with him. Why did you want to speak with him?' I said 'because I wanted to curse him out,'" Wilson added.

        Wilson unapologetically responded when the ladies of "The View" mentioned Trump has denied making the comments.

        Earlier on Tuesday, Trump took to Twitter to state: "Democrat Congresswoman totally fabricated what I said to the wife of a soldier who died in action (and I have proof). Sad!"

        Trump did not elaborate on what proof he could provide.

        "President Trump is a liar. If he was taping the conversation, bring it on!" Wilson said.

        A White House spokeswoman said later there was no recording of the call.

        Johnson’s mother, Cowanda Jones-Johnson, told The Washington Post that she did hear the conversation and that Trump "did disrespect my son," also corroborating Wilson's account of the conversation.

        In demanding answers about the attack that killed Johnson and three other U.S. special forces soldiers, Wilson said she wants to know why it took two days to discover his body, why he was not protected in an armored truck while traveling and why he had weapons weaker than those of the militants that carried out the deadly Oct. 4 ambush.

        "This is going to be Mr. Trump's Benghazi because I cannot get the answers. Nobody can get the answers, and until we get those answers ... It is his Benghazi and this whole thing about what he said to the widow is a cover-up," Wilson said.

        A GoFundMe page was created Monday in Myeshia's name to benefit her and the sergeant's kids' college funds. As of Wednesday night, it had raised more than $515,000.

        On an earlier appearance on MSNBC, Wilson said Myeshia was "crying the whole time, and when she hung up the phone, she looked at me and said, 'He didn't even remember his name.'"

        "He was almost like joking. He said ... something to the fact that 'he knew what he was getting into when he signed up but I guess it hurts anyway," Wilson said. "You know – just matter of factly, that this is what happens, anyone who is signing up for military duty is signing up to die and that's the way we interpreted it. It was horrible. It was insensitive. It was absolutely crazy and unnecessary. I was livid."

        When asked if she was complicit in politicizing the conversation about the deaths of soldiers, Wilson said she was just answering a question asked by the local press.

        "Someone asked me a question. 'Did you hear the call? Tell us what you heard.' I told them what I heard. That's not politicizing anything. That was my constituent," Wilson said.

        Wilson also further cemented her position on Wednesday by releasing an official statement.

        “Despite President Trump’s suggestion that I have recanted my statement or misstated what he said, I stand firmly by my original account of his conversation with Myeshia Johnson, the widow of Sgt. La David Johnson," Wilson wrote. "Moreover, this account has been confirmed by family members who also witnessed Mr. Trump’s incredible lack of compassion and sensitivity."

        White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders strongly criticized Wilson's statements.

        "The hardest job he has is making calls like that. I think it is appalling what the congresswoman has done in the way she's politicized this issue and the way she is trying to make this about something that it isn't," Sanders said Wednesday.



        Photo Credit: AP Images for TV One 2016]]>
        <![CDATA[Woman Who Survived Vegas Massacre Loses Home in Wildfire]]> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 02:06:35 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Michella+and+Bailey+Flores.jpg

        When Michella Flores hopped off the plane in Oakland, she thought the worst was over. The Santa Rosa woman had just escaped the Las Vegas massacre at a country music festival that left 58 dead and another 500 wounded — the deadliest mass shooting in the country’s history. 

        She had survived by running as fast as she could, taking shelter in a nearby hotel's conference room. The next morning, with the sounds of gunfire etched in her memory, she was desperate to leave Sin City.

        "After that, I couldn’t wait to be home," Flores, a flight attendant, said. "I was obsessed with it. That was all I cared about; all I wanted was to be home with my family and my dog."

        But her reprieve would be short-lived. Exactly one week later, the Sullivan Street house she shared with her parents erupted in flames, burning to the ground as a spate of wildfires wreaked havoc on the North Bay. Almost everything her family owned — photo albums, clothing, furniture, irreplaceable Christmas ornaments — was destroyed in the blaze.


        "I haven’t had a chance to sit down and process everything, really," she said. "I don’t think it’s hit me yet because I’ve been so focused on looking forward and doing what needs to be done." 

        And there is a lot that needs to be done in the coming weeks, even though her family has moved out of the evacuation center where they were temporarily holed up.

        Flores and her parents, who are in their seventies, have been sleeping in a temporary rental. She will need to look for an affordable long-term place to stay, find daycare for her beloved dog, and muster up the energy to complete the seemingly endless array of documents that fire victims are required to fill out to receive assistance.


        "I’ve always been the person that keeps the priorities in mind, and knowing what needs to be done," she said. "That’s who I am. Breaking down isn’t even an option right now. I don’t think of it because I know it just can’t happen. There’s just too much to do."

        Her parents, who had moved to Sullivan Street after their first home was foreclosed upon during the Great Recession, were renters. They did not have insurance. 

        "We’re not going to be able to afford to stay in the Bay Area," Flores said, matter-of-factly. "That’s just the way it is. It’s killing my mother; she’s in love with Sonoma County. Santa Rosa has been our home for more than 32 years. That’s something I worry about, how this is all going to affect her." 

        Flores, who previously worked as a firefighter and a police dispatcher, credits her professional history with helping her get through the tragedies. Immediately throwing herself into "work mode," she even helped battle the flames as they tore apart her house. Her experience as a first responder trained her to compartmentalize rather than fall apart, she said.


        She hasn't lost her dry sense of humor, either. On the phone, she even manages to crack a few jokes about a load of her work uniforms that were left in the washing machine when the fire erupted. 

        "Yeah, they got washed, alright," she quipped, letting out a small chuckle. 


        Throwing pity parties is simply not her style. It has never been, according to her sister, who lives in Virginia. 

        "She’s resilient and amazing, and she’s done amazing things with her life," Krista Flores said. "But I worry about my sister. She’s just always been so busy. She doesn’t take time to take care of herself, and I’m afraid for when it all hits her." 

        Michella Flores, who still hasn’t taken a day off work since her horrendous October began in Vegas, thinks the realization of what happened to her will come sooner rather than later. She is dreading staying overnight in a hotel at the end of this month for work. Once there, she’ll be alone, with no one else to look after. 

        "I’m imagining that’s when it’s going to hit me, and I’ll deal with it then," she said. "But I’ll only be able to deal with it for a moment. The next morning I’ll have to be perky for the passengers. I can’t very well sit in the middle of the aisle, telling them my woes. ‘Oh my god, I was shot at, my house burned down’....they don’t want to hear that."


        Instead, she turns to her dog for comfort, and her spirits have been lifted by a community that has rallied around her parents and provided support. A GoFundMe page, created by her sister, has been flooded with donations and well wishes from across the country. 

        "The outpouring has been so great," she said. "I’ve been amazed by people who have been donating. I almost feel unworthy, because of everything happening elsewhere. You know, you look at Puerto Rico and some people don't even have clean water. But I’m lucky, my family is alive, I’m alive. Things could be worse." 

        When asked what would be the best outcome for her family, she said they would like to stay in Santa Rosa. But she’s not holding out hope, and she doesn’t expect anyone to hand them anything.

        "The world isn’t perfect, but in a perfect world, of course, we would like to stay," she said. "Even though it’s smoky and it looks like a bomb hit the town, I still don’t want to leave. Santa Rosa is still my town. It’ll always be our home." 

        Find the GoFundMe page for Michella Flores and her family here. 

        Comments, corrections or tips? Contact author Gillian Edevane at Gillian.Edevane@nbcuni.com. Story originally heard through Lisa Fernandez.



        Photo Credit: Flores Family
        This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>