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    Two men in Pennsylvania who are former members of the Kutztown University football team have been arrested. Shahaid and Kali Smith, who are half brothers, are facing charges in separate armed robberies that happened on and off campus.

    A spokesman for Kutztown University says Shahaid Smith, 19, was arrested Thursday in connection with an armed robbery of an on-campus dorm. Police say in the early morning hours of March 8, students were inside their room at Deatrick Hall when they heard a knock at the door.

    When they opened it, police say they were met by three masked men dressed in black. Two of the men were armed, according to investigators. The intruders allegedly struck one of the students, searched the room and then left without taking anything.

    Kali Smith was also arrested Thursday and charged in connection with an incident that happened off-campus, according to a Kutztown University spokesman.

    The charges were linked to an armed robbery that happened at an off-campus house in March of 2012, according to the Reading Eagle.

    Shahaid Smith is a special education major. His brother, Kali, is a business administration major.

    Both have been placed on interim suspension from Kutztown University.
     



    Photo Credit: Kutztown University

    Kali Smith (left), Shahaid Smith (right)Kali Smith (left), Shahaid Smith (right)

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    The Peace Officers Research Association of California became the second entity to reject paying its share of the reward pot issued during the manhunt for a murderous ex-police officer, union president Ron Cottingham said Friday.

    The 64,000-member union joins the city of Riverside in California, which on Monday pulled its $100,000 from the $1.2 million reward saying conditions were not met. Payout of the reward was contingent on Christopher Dorner’s arrest and conviction, a spokeswoman for the city told NBC4.

    The Peace Officers Research Association had previously offered $50,000 to the reward.

    After killing two law enforcement agents and a newly engaged couple in a revenge-fueled shooting spree, Dorner died in an apparent suicide on Feb. 12 during a standoff with authorities and cabin burning near Big Bear.

    With little debate or discussion, the Riverside City Council voted unanimously to post the reward during the frenzied manhunt, even after it was told the fugitive's demise was likely to be announced soon.

    Riverside city leaders defended their decision to vote after Dorner didn't emerge from the burning cabin following a gunfight with law enforcement.

    There were conflicting reports the night of the vote about whether Dorner's body had been found, said Councilman Mike Gardner.

    "There was never an intent to authorize a reward knowing it wouldn't be paid," Gardner said.

    After Riverside pulled its slice of the reward, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Police Chief Charlie Beck said they want to the see the reward paid.

    Cobbled together quickly as the manhunt for Dorner went cold on a snowy mountain where the ex-officer abandoned his truck, the reward was hastily announced over a weekend by multiple police chiefs and mayors.

    It was never formally put in writing and was offered before public boards were able to authorize the money or set conditions for payment. Officials are expected to announce the payout by mid-April.

    A lawyer for the couple who called police after Dorner tied them up in their Big Bear Lake condominium and fled in their car shortly before his death accused Riverside of reneging on an offer that was never genuinely made.

    "The mayor knew full well that he wasn't going to be convicted when he authorized the resolution," attorney Kirk Hallam said.

    "It is completely disingenuous for him to stand up there now and say, ‘Oh we weren't legally authorized to issue this.’ Really? That's not what you said when you offered the ordinance to the City Council after the facts were already known."

    Hallam, who represents Karen and Jim Reynolds, said his clients deserve the money because they put police on Dorner's trail. Despite being bound and gagged, and told not to alert police, Karen Reynolds managed to call 911 to report that Dorner had fled in their purple SUV.

    During the ensuing pursuit, Dorner crashed their SUV and carjacked a pickup truck from Rick Heltebrake, who also called authorities. He, too, filed a claim for the reward.

    Hallam said Riverside should consider reviewing a state law that provides for the governor to pay rewards in police officers' killings even if the arrest or conviction is "rendered impossible by an intervening event, including but not limited to, the death of the person during a pursuit by law enforcement."

    Frank Zimring, a law professor at the University of California, Berkeley, said the city of Riverside can legally not pay the reward, but it could hurt the city in the future.

    "The problem is going to come the next time Riverside wants to get the public's attention by offering a reward, because the issue is really the community's long-term credibility," Zimring said.

    While the city of Riverside has pulled its reward, the county specifically changed its reward language to assure it wasn't only symbolic.

    The Riverside County Board of Supervisors met the day after Dorner's death to authorize its $100,000 contribution. After some debate, the board voted unanimously to approve the amount and to change the language from "arrest and conviction" to "apprehension."

    "The bottom line is if these individuals were helpful to get law enforcement to put this issue to an end ... then it should be offered," Supervisor John Tavaglione said during the meeting.



    Photo Credit: AP

    Rick Heltebrake is one of two parties that have filed claims for the reward posted during the manhunt for ex-police officer Christopher Dorner. Heltebrake was carjacked by Dorner before the murderous ex-officer’s final standoff. He is pictured here on Feb. 15, 2013, surveying the burned-out Big Bear-area cabin where Dorner’s remains were found after a police standoff.Rick Heltebrake is one of two parties that have filed claims for the reward posted during the manhunt for ex-police officer Christopher Dorner. Heltebrake was carjacked by Dorner before the murderous ex-officer’s final standoff. He is pictured here on Feb. 15, 2013, surveying the burned-out Big Bear-area cabin where Dorner’s remains were found after a police standoff.

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    The NYPD is again planning to beef up patrols in Times Square and Midtown the night of Easter Sunday, a day that in recent years has seen violence as part of a yearly gang initation ritual following the Javits Center car show.

    Police say the Easter Day "wilding" started years ago but became especially violent in 2010, when hundreds of gang members attended the annual auto show at the Javits Center, then conducted gang initiations in Times Square. 

    Two women were shot during the sprawling brawl, two other people were wounded and several police officers injured. More than 50 people were arrested. 

    Since then, police have beefed up Easter patrols and monitored activity at the car show. The Daily News reports the NYPD is also monitoring social media to look for gang members who may be planning a "mobbing" through Times Square. 

    There have not been any gang incidents on Easter since 2010, and the NYPD is looking to keep it that way. 

    "For me, it's a religious holiday and it should be respected," said Michael Hoard in Times Square Friday night. 

    The police "are here to protect us, that's the bottom line," said Al Centrella of Hempstead, who was in the area with his wife to see a show.


    NYPD patrol cars in Times Square Friday night.NYPD patrol cars in Times Square Friday night.

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    A Newtown home destroyed by a fire Wednesday was owned by a couple whose children survived the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in December.

    The fire left Hans and Audra Barth and their three children homeless, according to Monsignor Robert Wise, of St. Rose of Lima Church.  The American Red Cross has put them up in a hotel and the church is collecting donations for the family.

    Two of their children attended Sandy Hook Elementary School, including Peter, a first-grader in teacher Kaitlin Roig's classroom.  Roig has been called a hero for barricading her students in a bathroom as the shooter killed 20 other first-graders and six educators.

    The Barth family lost everything in the fire, and their pet dog and several baby chickens died, but they are grateful to all be safe.

    "I think the experience in December made us strong enough to see this as a small thing, because I mean, we're still going through the struggles of that, and it's beyond what one could imagine there," Hans Barth said Friday.  "This is just a house."

    The Barths are still recovering from the tragedy of the shooting, but know others in Newtown are suffering more than they are.

    "That day, we picked our kids up," Audra Barth said about Dec. 14.  "We picked them up, we took them home, we held them, we loved them.  This is our home, yes, but it's a house.  Our kids are safe."

    The family has been overwhelmed by the support they've been shown by neighbors and strangers in town.

    "It was just so amazing.  We never had to say 'help us.' Our community was there," Audra said.

    The cause of the fire is under investigation.

    A close family friend, Christine Wilford, is helping collect donations for the Barths.  To donate, email Wilford at thewilfordfamily@gmail.com or donate to the Barth Family Fund here.



    Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

    The home of Hans and Audra Barth, whose children survived the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, was damaged by fire Wednesday night.The home of Hans and Audra Barth, whose children survived the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, was damaged by fire Wednesday night.

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    Two men were struck by a car at the intersection of Route 1 and Jade Court in Old Saybrook early Saturday morning according to police.
     
    Police and emergency personnel responded to the scene around 4 a.m. They found two men in their 20’s suffering from injuries sustained after being struck by a motor vehicle. One man was transported by LifeStar and the other by ambulance to Yale-New Haven Hospital.
     
    According to Lt. Kevin Roche, the driver of the vehicle stayed at the scene and is cooperating with police.
     
    Old Saybrook Police Detectives and the Accident Reconstruction Team are on the scene investigating.

     



    Photo Credit: Shutterstock

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  • 03/30/13--08:21: Fatal Shooting in New Haven

  • New Haven Police are asking for the public's help as they investigate an early morning shooting that left one man dead.

    Police responded to the area of 39 Thompson St. around 2 a.m. to investigate a report of shots fired. 

    When they arrived, they discovered Eric Forbes, 33 of Hamden, suffering from a gunshot wound to the back. Forbes was transported to Yale-New Haven Hospital. He was pronounced dead at 2:28 a.m.

    Detectives learned that Forbes had left the Taurus Club just minutes before he was shot. Witness told police that the victim had an altercation with two unknown males prior to the shooting.

    Anyone with information is asked to call the New Haven Police at 203-946-6304 or New Haven Detectives at 203-946-6316.


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    Hamden Police are investigating after a teenage girl was sexually assaulted by a man she met on a social networking website.

    Around 1 a.m. on Saturday, police were called to a home on Mountain Road after the residents called to say that a young girl was banging on their door screaming for help.

    The teenage girl told police that she had met up with a man she met online, Edwin Arpi, 21 of Hamden. During the meeting, she claimed that Arpi sexually assaulted her inside a car.

    During the assault, the victim said that Arpi strangled her and threatened to kill her. The victim tried to call 9-1-1 from inside the car but stated that Arpi took the phone from her.

    The victim was able to escape from the car and ran to get help.

    A short time after, Arpi was located by Hamden Police while sleeping inside of his car. He was arrested and charged with Sexual Assault in the 1st Degree, Unlawful Restraint in the 1st Degree, Risk of Injury to a Minor, Strangulation in the 3rd Degree and Interfering with an Emergency Call.

    Arpi, who was detained on a $250,000 bond, is scheduled to appear in court in Meriden.

     



    Photo Credit: Getty Images

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    The National Zoo announced Saturday that a team of scientists and veterinarians had artificially inseminated the zoo's female giant panda after natural breeding failed to occur.

    The statement said that Mei Xiang was artificially inseminated with a combination of fresh and frozen semen taken from the zoo's male panda, Tian Tian. The fresh semen was taken earlier Saturday morning, while the frozen semen had been held since 2003.

    Scientists determined that Mei Xiang was ready to breed earlier this week after observing a rise in her urinary estrogen levels.

    "We are hopeful that our breeding efforts will be successful this year, and we’re encouraged by all the behaviors and hormonal data we’ve seen so far,” Dave Wildt, head of the Center for Species Survival at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute said. "We have an extremely small window of opportunity to perform the procedures, which is why we monitor behavior and hormones so closely.”

    Panda pregnancies last between 95 and 160 days. Experts say that it is impossible to determine from behaviors and hormones whether a panda is actually pregnant or not because a fetus does not begin to develop until the final weeks of gestation.

    Mei Xiang gave birth to a female cub on September 16 of last year, but the cub died one week later due to lung and liver damage. Mei Xiang and Tian Tian have produced one surviving offspring, Tai Shan, who was born in 2005 and currently lives in China.

    The panda habitat at the National Zoo has been closed since Tuesday, when Mei Xiang was deemed ready to breed. The zoo plans to re-open the habitat to visitors Sunday.

    A photo released by the National Zoo of Saturday's insemination of Mei Xiang. For more pictures of the procedure, you can check out the National Zoo's Flickr page here.



    Photo Credit: Devin Murphy, National Zoo

    Veterinarians and scientists oversee the insemination of Mei Xiang, the National Zoo's female giant panda.Veterinarians and scientists oversee the insemination of Mei Xiang, the National Zoo's female giant panda.

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    A suspect armed with a BB gun fired at a U.S. Postal Service truck in Mission Valley, San Diego Friday afternoon, police confirmed.

    The incident happened around 3:15 p.m. in the 1900 block of Camino De La Reina.

    A U.S. postal worker was at a mailbox when one of the windows of his vehicle was shot out according to officials.

    “He heard what he believed to be gunshots, shattered his window on his vehicle, turned out to be pellet fire from a BB gun,” said U.S. Postal Inspector Ricky Vida.

    The worker was not injured and even continued his rounds for the day.

    San Diego Police began focusing on an apartment building across the street.

    They fanned out and then, something pretty unbelievable happened: more shots were fired. No one was was hit.

    "Initially we got that there were four that were fired at the original postal truck that caused the damage. That got police response," said Lt. Duane Voss with San Diego police.

    "Subsequent to that, the officers estimate that there were maybe four to six more while they were on scene here."

    Officers discovered the shots from a pellet gun were coming from a third-story corner unit.

    When they moved in to make an arrest, officials reported yet another surprise.

    Officers say they found the pellet gun and also an AK-47, and an illegally modified rifle.

    Richard Cook, 34, was arrested on weapons charges and for firing at the postal worker, according to police.

    Jonathan Hankla, 30, was arrested on narcotics charges after police say they found Oxycontin in the apartment.

    No injuries were reported, but the mail truck did sustain some minor damages.

    San Diego Police were working with federal authorities. It was not clear if the suspects will be facing local or federal charges or possibly both.
     

     


     



    Photo Credit: NBC 7 San Diego

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    A 14-year-old teen mom, who had been missing with her 2-week-old son were found safe Saturday night.

    State Police put out a silver alert for the mom and son Saturday afternoon.

    Shiandra Davis, 14, and her 2-week-old son Jeremiah Davis were last seen at the St. Anges Home on Mayflower Street in West Hartford at 10:15 a.m.

    Authorities were concerned because the child has nutritional issues and he is supposed to be monitored by staff.

    "Shiandra may not have adequate means to provide the appropriate level of care due to Jeremiah's health concerns," said police.

    According to investigators, Shiandra and her son were found at a relatives house in Hartford after the family member contacted police.

    The child is now in the custody of  the Department of Children and Families.

     

     

     


    Police are looking for Shiandra Davis, 14, and her 2-week-old son Jeremiah Davis.Police are looking for Shiandra Davis, 14, and her 2-week-old son Jeremiah Davis.

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    Investigators named a 30-year-old parolee as wanted in the case of a missing 10-year-old girl from Northridge in southern California, who turned up barefoot and wounded in Woodland Hills last week.

    Tobias Dustin Summers, who has a distinct tattoo on his right arm (pictured below), is wanted in connection with the girl's abduction, LAPD Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese said at a Saturday afternoon news conference.

    Summers has a lengthy criminal history dating back to 2002, Albanese said. He was released from prison in July 2012 under California’s AB 109, an initiative aimed at easing prison overcrowding, and was on "post-supervised release," Albanese said.

    Probation officials believe the 30-year-old is a transient known to frequent the North Hollywood and Devonshire areas. Summers is about 6 feet tall, 160 pounds, with blue eyes and cropped blond hair. He not a registered sex offender.

    "We really need the public's help to take this guy into custody. If they see him, we can't emphasize enough, call 911," LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith said.

    Investigators said Summers is the only person they are looking for right now, though the victim told detectives that two men took her from her bedroom, police said last week.

    Detectives from LAPD’s Robbery-Homicide Division are petitioning the court for an arrest warrant.

    The FBI is assisting in the investigation. Federal authorities said they are prepared to issue a federal warrant for Summers' arrest if he leaves California.

    "Should he leave the state, we will have multitude of resources throughout the United States and international, if necessary, to take him into custody," Bill Lewis, of the FBI’s Los Angeles division, said.

    The case involves a 10-year-old girl who was kidnapped from her home March 27 between 1 and 3:30 a.m.

    She was taken to an abandoned home near a storage facility in Chatsworth before being dropped off at a Kaiser hospital in Woodland Hills.

    She walked about a mile to a Starbucks where a passerby recognized her from media reports and alerted police.

    She was found barefoot and with bruises and cuts on her face at 3 p.m. the same day she went missing, police said.

    Since the girl has been found, NBC4 is no longer identifying the girl by name or in images that had been released by authorities.

    The girl told investigators two men she did not know took her from her home and held her for more than 10 hours before dropping her off.

    She said she rode in a black pickup truck, which police found during a search of a Bekins A-1 Moving Solutions yard in Chatsworth, police said.

    Police were searching for a second vehicle they believe was used in the case.

    Police -- working with the FBI -- fanned out across the San Fernando Valley, to conduct interviews and search locations where the girl said she believed she was taken with the hope of finding the men responsible.

    As many as 20 detectives were believed to be working on the case. Police established a tipline for people to provide information about the investigation: 213-486-6890.

     Related:

    Tipline Set Up in Northridge Kidnapping Case

    Aunt of Northridge Kidnapping Victim Saw Own Son Abducted

    Missing 10-Year-Old Northridge Girl Found, Two Wanted in Abduction



    Photo Credit: Los Angeles Police Department

    Tobias Dustin Summers, 30, is wanted in connection with the kidnapping of a 10-year-old girl, the Los Angeles Police Department announced on Saturday, March 30, 2013. He has a distinct tattoo on his right arm.Tobias Dustin Summers, 30, is wanted in connection with the kidnapping of a 10-year-old girl, the Los Angeles Police Department announced on Saturday, March 30, 2013. He has a distinct tattoo on his right arm.

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    Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife Cynthia were found shot to death inside their northern Texas home Saturday, nearly two months to the day after his top assistant was gunned down on his way to work earlier this year.

    Kaufman County Sheriff's Department investigators confirmed the deaths to Dallas-Fort Worth station NBC 5 Saturday evening, but had little else to say in the early stages of the investigation.

    One source close to the probe said the top prosecutor and his wife were found by a concerned relative or close friend who had gone to the house in Forney about 4 p.m. after being unable to reach them.

    Other sources told NBC 5 that the McLelland's front door may have been kicked in and that gunshots had been fired, though police have not independently confirmed that information.

    There was no immediate confirmed link between Saturday's murders and the Jan. 31 slaying of Kaufman County Assistant District Attorney Mark Hasse, but it would be hard to not speculate on possible connections. With that in mind, officials contacted all Kaufman County officials to ensure their safety Saturday. One former Kaufman County prosecutor was "in hiding" Saturday evening and said others were as well.

    The FBI was also checking to see if Hasse's killing could be related to the March slaying of Colorado Department of Corrections executive Tom Clements, who was gunned down after answering the doorbell at his home, The Associated Press reported.

    While police officers are frequently the target of violence while trying to apprehend criminals, attacks on prosecutors are extremely rare though not unheard of. McLelland said as much in January when speaking about his slain friend when he said Hasse was aware of the dangers associated with being a prosecutor.

    At the time, he described Hasse as a really, really good man that was an excellent friend and a spectacular prosecutor who wouldn't be easily replaced. He also vowed to catch Hasse's killers saying, "I hope that the people that did this are watching. Because we're very confident that we're going to find you, pull you out of whatever hole you're in, bring you back and let the people of Kaufman County prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law."

    FBI agents and Texas Rangers, who were still investigating the unsolved slaying of Hasse, are now leading the investigation into Saturday's murders, according to a federal law enforcement source.

    McLelland and his wife, Cynthia Woodward McLelland, have five children including two daughters and three sons. One of the sons is a Dallas police officer.

    Investigators are expected to hold a news conference Sunday morning. More information is expected to be released at that time.

    NBC 5's Ray Villeda and Scott Gordon contributed to this report.

     



    Photo Credit: Kaufman County

    Mike McLelland, Kaufman County District AttorneyMike McLelland, Kaufman County District Attorney

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    A 3-year-old and his mother were fighting for their lives after a car jumped the curb and struck some scaffolding in Brooklyn around 6:50 p.m Saturday, officials said.

    Twelve people were injured when a Lincoln sedan crashed through a bus stop and hit a sidewalk shed, causing it to collapse, New York Post reported. Four of those injured by the incident are in critical condition.

    A woman was driving the car with a male passenger when the accident occurred, according to The Associated Press.

    The scaffolding partially collapsed and rescuers worked to secure it while others tended to the injured, officials said.

    The child, his mother, and two other women in critical condition were taken to Kings County Hospital, New York Post Reported. Five people with serious but non-life threatening injuries were taken to Brookdale Hospital.


    A woman was driving the car with a male passenger when the accident occurred, according to The Associated Press.A woman was driving the car with a male passenger when the accident occurred, according to The Associated Press.

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    A 19-year-old man was held without bail Saturday after he was charged in the fatal shooting of his grandfather who was killed on his way to a dialysis appointment earlier this month.

    William Strickland was charged Friday with one count of first degree murder and one count of armed robbery with a firearm.

    Strickland was charged after his 72-year-old grandfather, also William Strickland, was shot six times in the back in his gangway on the Far South Side in what appeared to be a robbery, police said. 

    Strickland admitted in court to stealing his grandfather's gun and commiting the crime with that gun. He also said he stole money from his grandfather to purchase tattoos, new shoes, a cell phone and other items.

    A life sentence may be imposed, though Strickland has no criminal background.

    Strickland's grandfather had recently retired from a steel mill after 28 years of employment and his family said he was a kind-hearted, generous man.

    Neighbors were suprised by the shooting on the corner of 95th Street and Eberhart Avenue and said the area is mostly filled with retired or older residents and typically has very little violence.

    "We're not used to [violence] here. It's a close neighborhood," said Jonathan Garener. "William was a wonderful guy. I feel like I lost a role model."


    William Strickland was charged Friday with one count of first degree murder and one count of armed robbery with a firearm.William Strickland was charged Friday with one count of first degree murder and one count of armed robbery with a firearm.

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    A 28-year-old Philadelphia man says he accidentally shot and killed his girlfriend after his neighbor threatened him Saturday.

    The man told police he was arguing with his neighbor in front of his home on E Seltzer Street in the Kensington section of the city around 7:45 p.m. The man claims his neighbor pulled out a hammer and threatened him during the heated exchange.

    The man says he was scared for his safety and pulled out a gun but then tripped over his own feet and accidentally pulled the trigger, shooting his 27-year-old girlfriend in the neck. She was taken to the hospital where she was pronounced dead.

    The man, who hasn't been identified, was taken into police custody as officials continued to investigate the shooting. Neither the man or his neighbor was charged as of early Sunday.

    Police sources told NBC10's Nefertiti Jaquez the man has a license to carry a firearm as well as a clean record.

    The woman wasn't identified.

     



    Photo Credit: NBC10.com

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  • 03/31/13--06:52: Waiting for Cherry Blossoms

  • Tourist season in Washington DC is here in full effect but the main attraction still has not arrived... The Cherry Blossoms. Darcy Spencer reports

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    South Florida Police are investigating after a 4-year-old girl died after she was shot inside a car Saturday night.

    The shooting happened just after 6 p.m. in Miami-Dade, as the girl was sitting in a parked Mercedes Benz with several other small children, police said.

    Somehow the girl, later identified as Rahquel Carr, was shot in her upper body. Carr was taken to Ryder Trauma Center where she later died, police said.

    3-Year-Old Girl Pulled From Pool at Miami Home, Rushed to Hospital

    Police said it's unclear if one of the other children in the car was responsible for the shooting. An adult was nearby when the shooting happened, police said.

    Under Florida law, a firearm must be securely encased when in a vehicle. It is unclear where the firearm was located at the time of the shooting.

    "We will be looking at who this firearm belonged to, were the firearm was in the vehicle at the time, along with who was present when the gun was fired," said Miami-Dade Police spokesman Det. Roy Rutland.

    Miami Beach Holds First Ever Gun Buyback

    No arrests have been made. Children were witnesses to the shooting and Miami-Dade Police will be forced to interview them, as well as many family members, Rutland said.

    "There's a lot of speculation right now as to who had that firearm at the time, but we're not in the business of speculating, we're in the business of facts," Rutland said.

    Distraught family members and friends arrived to the home Saturday night to give them support.

    "Someone called my daughter, and told her she got shot," said Sonia Wheelers, who said she is like a grandmother to the child. "It's horrible, it's sad."

    The shooting is still being investigated and the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner Department will be conducting an autopsy on the child, police said.

    More Local Stories:



    Photo Credit: NBC6.com

    Miami-Dade Police are investigating after a 4-year-old girl died after she was shot inside a car Saturday night.Miami-Dade Police are investigating after a 4-year-old girl died after she was shot inside a car Saturday night.

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    A fire broke out at a Hamden farm Sunday afternoon, burning acres of land and a number of storage units and tractor trailer containers, fire officials said.

    According to the Hamden fire chief, a brush fire started around 4 p.m. at 50 Doolittle Lane and spread as a result of high winds. The fire consumed several acres of farmland and a number of storage containers.

    The Wallingford and Bethany fire departments sent out tankers to help fight the blaze, which seemed to be contained after about an hour. The fire did not reach a nearby farm house.

    No one was home at the time of the fire. No injuries were reported.


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    Doors opened at 7 a.m. Monday for the White House Easter Egg Roll, with a star-studded list of guests expected to entertain a crowd of 35,000.

    The White House released the full guest list Friday for the 135th annual event.

    Among the celebrities due to show up: British boy band The Wanted, Academy Award-nominated actress Quvenzhane Wallis ("Beasts of the Southern Wild"), singer Jordin Sparks, NASCAR driver Danica Patrick, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson -- and the Nationals' Racing Presidents, who will swing by despite the fact that they'll also be needed over at Nats Park for opening day.

    The massive crowd -- who will gain admission via staggered entry -- includes guests from the District and all 50 states. Members of the public received their passes via an online lottery earlier this month. A number of military families also received tickets.

    The event will aim to teach kids fun ways to stay fit, in keeping with this year's theme "Be Healthy, Be Active, Be You!" Among the special features will be a yoga garden for children.

    It's all happening despite fears earlier last month that the annual bash would become a victim of the sequester.

    The weather is also cooperating, with the forecast calling for sunny skies and temperatures in the 60s.

    This year's souvenir Easter eggs will come in purple, blue, yellow and pink. A special teal egg features the paw print of the Obama family dog, Bo.



    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 09:  Crowds of children and their families take part in the White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House April 9, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 09: Crowds of children and their families take part in the White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House April 9, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

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    Three men robbed a West Hartford jewelry store at gunpoint Saturday night, police said.

    The men broke into Solid Gold Jewelry, 38 Kane Street, around 8 p.m., taking numerous gold chains and firing a revolver. They fled the scene and are still on the run. The suspects were wearing dark clothes and ski masks.

    Police haven’t determined the value of the stolen jewelry.

    No injuries have been reported.

    Anyone with information should contact the West Hartford Police Department at 860-523-5203.


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