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SCOTUS Blocks Enforcement of La. Abortion Clinic Law


The U.S. Supreme Court Friday put a hold on Louisiana’s abortion clinic law, NBC News reported.

Doctors and clinics said the 2014 law, which required doctors to be affiliated with nearby hospitals, would force clinics to stop the procedures.

Justice Clarence Thomas would have allowed the Louisiana law to continue in effect while a legal challenge moves through the courts, the brief order said.

The court’s action could suggest a similar provision in Texas is also in trouble. A statement by the court Friday said the order should not be read to suggest how the Texas case will be decided.  

Senator Says Flint Doesn't Need Federal Aid


A Utah senator said Friday that federal money in Flint, Michigan, is not needed, after putting a bill on hold to provide federal aid to the city, NBC News reported.

"The state of Michigan has an enormous budget surplus this year and a large rainy-day fund, totaling hundreds of millions of dollars," Sen. Mike Lee, a Republican, said in a statement Friday. He accused lawmakers of “political grandstanding.”

The $220 million bill would provide funds to help Flint and other cities fix and replace lead pipes, and prevent and address lead poisoning. Lee’s “hold” only stops the speedy consideration of the bill, and can be bypassed procedurally.

Nearly 1000,000 residents of the city were exposed to lead poisoning when the city switched water sources in a bid to save money.

Photo Credit: The Washington Post/Getty Images

More Evidence of Zika's Risk to Pregnant Women


The Zika virus may be linked to a wider variety of "grave outcomes" for developing babies than previously reported — threats that can come at any stage of pregnancy, researchers reported Friday.

The findings are preliminary results from the first study tracking pregnant women in Brazil from the time they were infected, and do not prove that Zika is to blame. But they come as separate laboratory research released Friday strengthens the case that Zika causes a serious birth defect called microcephaly — babies born with abnormally small heads — by targeting embryonic brain cells.

"It's much more than microcephaly," said Dr. Karin Nielsen of the University of California, Los Angeles, who led the pregnancy study with colleagues at the Fiocruz Institute in Brazil. "It seems like it can act on multiple fronts."

The mosquito-borne virus, which is spreading in Latin America and the Caribbean, normally causes only mild symptoms, if any, in adults. But it raised alarm when Brazilian health officials reported an apparent surge in babies born with microcephaly, which can signal their brains didn't develop properly. Reports have documented traces of the virus in the brains of affected babies who died soon after birth, and in fetal brain tissue after abortion.

The study from Brazil, reported Friday in the New England Journal of Medicine, took a closer look during pregnancy.

The study so far is tracking 88 otherwise healthy pregnant women who sought care for Zika-like symptoms at a clinic run by the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation in Rio de Janiero between September and last month. Tests showed 72 were actively infected with the virus. Forty-two of the infected women, and all of the presumably non-infected ones, agreed to fetal ultrasound exams. Those ultrasounds found abnormalities in 12 of the infected women, or 29 percent. The non-infected women all had normal ultrasounds.

The exams did uncover some abnormal brain development. But they also detected two fetuses that died in utero during the last trimester; poor growth even without microcephaly; problems with the placenta; and one case that prompted an emergency C-section because of low amniotic fluid, Nielsen said.

Six live births have occurred so far. One baby has severe microcephaly. Two were born too small for gestational age, one of whom had lesions in the eyes that signal vision problems if not blindness. Two other babies had normal ultrasounds and indeed, appear healthy. The baby delivered by emergency C-section struggled initially but now also appears healthy, Nielsen said.

Importantly, the researchers linked problems to infections during each trimester of pregnancy, not just the first trimester that doctors have speculated would be the riskiest.

"Unfortunately, we still have many unanswered questions," said Dr. Christopher M. Zahn of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. But the new findings provide "additional evidence suggesting an association between Zika virus and negative obstetrical outcomes, including birth defects and fetal demise."

"We're starting to build the case epidemiologically that maternal infection with this virus is linked to poor fetal outcomes," added Dr. Sallie Permar, a specialist in maternal-fetal infections at the Duke Human Vaccine Institute.

In an unrelated study Friday, researchers found that Zika can infect embryonic cells that help form the brain, and harm them in two ways: killing some outright and damaging the ability of others to divide and grow in number.

Those cells, when healthy, help build the part of the brain that is affected in microcephaly, said Hengli Tang of Florida State University, a lead author of the work published by the journal Cell Stem Cell. But he stressed that his study does not prove that Zika causes microcephaly, nor that it works by that route. A number of other viruses are known to trigger the condition.

Researchers did not take the brain cells from embryos; they created them from stem cells obtained from other sources.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who did not participate in the research, agreed that the study doesn't prove a link. But "it certainly adds weight to the argument," he said.

Researchers also found that infected cells pump out more virus.

Dr. Guo-li Ming of Johns Hopkins University, another lead study author, said researchers can now explore questions like how Zika infects the cells.

Tang said he is collaborating with other labs to look for substances that will block Zika infection of cells, in hopes of eventually creating a treatment for pregnant women that reduces the risk of passing the infection to their babies.

Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images

Knife Found on OJ's Former Estate


Los Angeles police confirmed Friday morning a knife was found on the former Brentwood property of O.J. Simpson and said they are investigating a report that it was discovered years ago by a construction worker who handed it over to authorities.

A report, published Friday by TMZ and citing unidentified law enforcement sources, said a construction worker found a knife several years ago buried on the perimeter of the former Simpson home and gave it to a police officer working security for a nearby film shoot.

The officer, now retired, was recently ordered to surrender the knife for testing by authorities after he contacted a friend at the department for information about the 1994 murder case for which Simpson stood trial, according to the report.

LAPD Capt. Andrew Neiman told NBC4 Friday morning that police are investigating the report.

The mansion on Rockingham Avenue in Brentwood, where Simpson lived when his ex-wife and her friend were stabbed to death in June 1994, was demolished by a new owner in 1998. TMZ reported, citing law enforcement sources, that the knife was found sometime from "several years ago to 1998."

"We still don't know if that's an accurate account," Neiman said.

Neiman confirmed at a Friday morning news conference that an individual identified by the officer as a construction worker gave the knife to him when he was working security at a film shoot near the former Simpson estate. The officer retired in the late 1990s, but it's not clear whether the officer was retired at the time the knife was found, Neiman said.

"If this story is accurate, I would think an LAPD officer would know that anytime you come into contact with evidence you should submit that to investigators," Neiman said.

The officer will likely not face administrative charges because he is retired, Neiman said, adding that an investigation will determine whether criminal charges are possible.

Police became aware of the knife within the last month, but authorities did not discuss details about how they obtained the item. It has been submitted to an LAPD forensics team for examination.

It was not clear to whom the knife belonged and authorities are attempting to determine the identity of the individual who turned it over to the officer, Neiman said.

"With all cases that remain open, unless there's an actual arrest or conviction to prove we've actually closed the case, the case remains open," Neiman said of the killings of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman.

Neiman did not provide a description of the knife at the Friday news conference, but multiple law enforcement sources familiar with the investigation told NBC News that the knife undergoing tests is a relatively inexpensive, smaller-bladed utility blade typically used by construction workers, gardeners, landscapers or other laborers.

The murder weapon in the case has remained a mystery. A 15-inch retractable-blade knife that Simpson bought at Ross Cutlery in downtown Los Angeles drew the interest of murder trial prosecutors, but the defense presented the knife in a preliminary hearing. Tests later showed the knife in pristine condition with no signs it had been used in the double killing.

In 1998, a residential construction crew found a folding-blade knife in Simpson's former neighborhood but police said there was no evidence to show it was related to any crime.

The mansion, where Simpson married Brown in 1985, was one of the landmarks of the murder trial. The infamous white Ford Bronco pursuit from Orange County ended in the mansion's driveway. It's also where Det. Mark Fuhrman said he found a bloody glove during the investigation into the slayings of Brown and Goldman.

Simpson was forced to sell the Rockingham Avenue estate to comply with requirements of the civil court judgment after the criminal trial. An investment banker hired a demolition crew to raze the house and clear the way for a new mansion four years later.

"It's not my house and I could care less," Simpson told The Associated Press in a telephone interview at the time the house was demolished. "I am a sentimental guy, but there's things you've got to compartmentalize."

The former NFL and USC football star was acquitted of murder in the slayings of ex-wife and Goldman, but a civil jury found him liable. In September 2007, Simpson was arrested in Las Vegas and charged with several felonies after an armed robbery and kidnapping at a hotel in an attempt to recover sports memorabilia.

He was sentenced to 33 years in prison.

No matter what is determined through the knife investigation, Simpson cannot be tried again in the Brown-Goldman murders because of the Double Jeopardy Clause of the Fifth Amendment. Attorney Carl Douglas, a member of Simpson's legal team that secured the 1995 acquittal, said an investigation involving the knife would be a waste of time and money.

"I am amazed at the latest frenzy surrounding this ridiculous frenzy about some knife found on OJ's former property," Douglas said. "As a proud citizen of Los Angeles, I will be offended if the Los Angeles Police Department spends one minute of city time or one dollar of the city's limited resources chasing this ridiculous, supposed lead. I hope there are other investigations more deserving of the city's resources than this failed attempt, now 22 years old.

"OJ left the house two days after the murders and never returned until October 3rd, 1995. I certainly hope the LAPD used all of the resources then to scour every inch of his property looking for relevant evidence. It is pure fantasy to believe that there's anything relevant with this knife that has now been turned over. I'd rather talk about the Easter Bunny instead."

Photo Credit: Associated Press

Lee was a Defense Witness in the Original Trial


Connecticut’s own Dr. Henry C. Lee was a key forensics witness during the double murder trial of O.J. Simpson for the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman.

Dr. Lee’s testimony bolstered the defense team's theory that more than one attacker was responsible for the murders.

Dr. Lee tells NBC Connecticut fairly quick lab testing and results will reveal whether there is a link to the homicides on the knife now being investigated by LAPD Detectives.

Dr. Lee's testimony for the defense was critical to their theory that more than one attacker was involved in the murders.

The weapon used in the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman has remained a mystery for more than two decades. Dr. Lee added, “If this is from the O.J. Simpson home, kind of embarrassing."

Fresh reaction tonight, to the news Los Angeles Police are now investigating a knife found at OJ Simpson's former estate sometime after he was acquitted of double murder. The knife was handed over to a now-retired policeman working security near the property at the time.

NBC Connecticut spoke with Dr. Henry Lee by phone Friday afternoon. Dr. Lee stated, “How can you miss the knife? It’s big, single-edge, long knife, pretty sharp."

You'll recall, the internationally known forensic expert from right here in Connecticut was called as a Defense witness at OJ Simpson's trial back in 1995.

Reporter Jill Konopka asked Dr. Lee, ‘Can you even recover DNA from the knife? Dr. Lee responded, "If the knife underneath someplace, yes, if protected. If knife exposed to environment you probably can still find some mitochondrial DNA. If you find hairs, because that's a really brutal murder so there should be sufficient amount of blood, or tissue, or cells still, or hair on them. “

Dr. Lee says the first order of business is doing a lab test to find out if there's blood on the knife in question.

Dr. Lee stated, “Second, is that human blood? If it’s human blood what is the DNA type? Code? Then you establish the link between this knife and homicide, then of course you want to link this knife to OJ Simpson or not, then find out whether OJ Simpson DNA on the knife because he supposedly cut himself.”

The person who had the knife last, needs to give good details to forensic experts.
Dr. Lee added, “If the knife is already rusted, going to have some problems, because rust is going to give false positive.”

Dr. Lee says he has not been called for any expert opinions with these new developments.

According to the constitution, Simpson cannot be re-tried for the murders even if the knife is proven to be linked to the case.

Knife Found on Simpson Property Inconsistent With Killings: Sources


A knife found a dozen years ago on land where O.J. Simpson once lived appears to be inconsistent with the 1994 murders of the former football star's wife and her friend, multiple law enforcement sources told NBC News.

Los Angeles police said Friday they were testing the knife, which was recently handed over by a retired LAPD traffic officer, for any possible connection to the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman.

Simpson was acquitted in the case, and can't be retried for the killings. The case has remained open.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Hartford's New Fire Chief Sworn In


He’s been on the job for almost a month, but Friday night Hartford’s new fire chief, Reginald Freeman, was officially sworn in, promising leadership and discipline.

“My focus is to get everyone pointed in the right direction, to move forward,” Fire Chief Reginald Freeman said.

The new direction comes after criticism that the department was moving in the wrong direction for too long.

“I think a lot of people understand that it was time for a new level of accountability,” Hartford mayor Luke Bronin said.

The mayor’s decision comes after a number of disciplinary issues among firefighters, and controversy over how they responded to the fire that killed firefighter Kevin Bell.

“He sets a clear tone that we are going to keep our standards high, that we are going to hold our department accountable and I think that’s exactly what our department needed,” the mayor said.

Chief Freeman raised his hand to be sworn in Friday night, but he’s been raising issues on the job for nearly a month, visiting firehouses to hear firsthand about what they think needs to be fixed.

“Our radio reception as we go into multi-family homes particularly is inadequate,” Freeman said.

Chief Freeman says more resources are key and Hartford’s budget crisis doesn’t make it easy, but his top priority does not cost a thing.

“First and foremost everyone is held accountable from my office to the newest member,” he said.

The department is in the process of adopting a progressive disciplinary plan, and he says more changes will be coming.

Twenty-three other firefighters were also honored at Friday's promotional ceremony.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Philly Police Car Hit By Gunfire


With guns drawn, Philadelphia police officers searched broken garages and dark alleys in the city's Frankford neighborhood Friday night in a search for four men who allegedly shot up a police car.

The shooting happened just after 7 p.m. along the 5300 block of Hedge Street near SEPTA's Frankford Transportation Center, police said.

An undercover narcotics officer in an unmarked car was responding to reports of gunshots in the area when the men opened fire, police said.

"Just a whole bunch of gunfire," said Ruby Johnson. "It sounded crazy."

As many as 12 shots may have been fired, based on witness accounts and evidence markers on the ground.

At least one bullet hit the front of the brown Ford sedan, police said. The officer wasn't hurt.

The men scattered after the shooting as police flooded the area on the ground and by air.

One person, who was seen being taken to a nearby ambulance, was taken into custody within minutes. The extent of the person's injuries are unclear.

Another man was caught sometime after, police said. Two others remain on the run.

Photo Credit: NBC10

New Haven Police Investigate Homicide


New Haven police are investigating a deadly shooting that occurred Friday night.

Police say they were called to the intersection of Orange and Eld Streets around 9:05 p.m. by a woman who said the passenger in her car was suffering from a gunshot wound. After a brief search, police discovered a white Honda parked on State Street between Eld and Bradley Streets.

The male victim was suffering a gunshot wound to the chest. EMTs transported the victim to Yale-New Haven Hospital where he was pronounced dead shortly before 11 p.m.

The victim’s identity and age have not been confirmed, and police are still investigating where the shooting occurred. Officers are on scene at a possibly connected crime scene at an apartment on Walnut Street, about six blocks from where the victim was found.

Anyone who witnessed the shooting or who may have information is asked to call detectives at (203) 946 6304. Calls may be made anonymously.

Check back for updates.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Trump Rallies: Tense, Racially Charged, Successful


Among the many ways Donald Trump has redefined presidential politics, he stands alone for how he has used large, protest-ridden rallies, often bubbling with raw anger, to fuel his candidacy.

The Republican front-runner says the massive events are evidence of a "movement" of a "silent majority" frustrated by everything from the nation's uneven economy and immigration laws to a government run by "stupid people."

"And you know what?" he asked from the stage in Louisville, Kentucky, this week. "It's not about me. I'm a messenger. It's really about you. We're going to take our country back and make it great again."

While Trump generally exaggerates his crowd sizes, thousands routinely line up for hours to attend. There are almost always protests, and the response to them isn't always peaceful. Yet Trump supporters, some driving hours to see the former reality television star, appreciate the boisterous performance and see in it a strength they don't find in Washington leaders.

"Hell yeah, I'm voting for Trump ... that's a man right there — a man," said Joe Hash, a 57-year-old building contractor, after a raucous Monday rally at Virginia's Radford University.

In Texas last week, Arlene Smart attended her fourth Trump rally. "It's just the feeling," said Smart, 58, who said she'd be traveling the country to his events if she didn't have a construction business to run. "There's pride in America. There's a reason to believe."

Detractors see something darker.

"It's a spectacle driven by pure hate," said Michael Marmol, a 20-year-old student who was ejected from the Radford event after he yelled at Trump over his plan to construct a wall on the Mexican border.

Indeed, crowds from Nevada to New Hampshire have devoured Trump's hour-long offerings of economic populism and unrepentant nationalism, all wrapped in promises to "win, win, win" and "make you so proud of this country again."

A natural showman, Trump peppers his speeches with humorous asides, imitation and dramatic acting. In Texas last week, he threw water across the stage and then tossed the bottle behind him to mock a rival's sweat. He frequently holds events in open airplane hangars, circling in his private jet with giant gold "T-R-U-M-P" letters as thousands hold cellphones up to capture its descent as soaring music from the movie "Air Force One" plays.

The crowd anticipates applause lines like rock concert throngs.

"We're going to build a wall. And who's going to pay for the wall?" Trump shouts.

"MEXICO," they yell.

"Who's going to pay for the wall?"

"MEXICO," they thunder back.

But the atmosphere sometimes turns darker, with booming chants that can shake arenas. Young men pound their fists in anger, attendees sometimes shout racial slurs.

Police are investigating at least two alleged assaults against protesters at a recent Kentucky rally. One, captured on video, involves a young African-American woman who was repeatedly shoved and called "scum."

In recent weeks, one of Trump's biggest applause lines has been his vow to bring back waterboarding and other methods of torture. "We don't go far enough," he told a Las Vegas crowd before the Nevada caucuses, prompting thundering applause and chants of "USA! USA!"

Anti-Trump protesters have also becoming increasingly common as the election calendar has moved away from the more subdued early-voting states.

"Get 'em outta here, get 'em outta here," Trump often booms when he spots one. "Are you protesting, darling?" he asked a demonstrator at Radford. He mocked another: "He just got on television. He's happy." Sometimes, he suggests they're high on drugs.

Occasionally Trump complains police are being too gentle with protesters, bemoaning the "old days" when police didn't fear for their jobs when they roughed up citizens.

"You know what they used to do guys like that when they were in a place like this?" he asked in Las Vegas as a protester was removed. "They'd be carried out on a stretcher, folks." Amid cheers, he added, "I'd like to punch him in the face."

On Friday, Trump recalled an incident at a New Hampshire rally where a protester started "swinging and punching." Trump said some people in the audience "took him out."

"It was really amazing to watch," he told an audience in Warren, Michigan.

Later Friday in New Orleans, Trump's rally was interrupted by a near-constant stream of protesters, including many from the Black Lives Matter movement. At points, campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was spotted personally assisting police as they escorted protesters out of the building. Members of Trump's personal, private security detail were also on hand to assist.

Months ago, Trump's team began telling supporters they should not harm demonstrators. Instead, crowds are instructed before rallies to surround protesters with signs and chant "Trump! Trump! Trump!" until authorities arrive.

Some incidents have carried racial undertones. At Radford, Trump asked one protester, who appeared to be of Asian descent, "Are you from Mexico?"

Later, as black demonstrators were led out, Trump recalled Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders once yielding his microphone to Black Lives Matter protesters. "That's never gonna happen here," Trump boasted, saying the Vermont senator acted "like a little boy."

While Trump often talks about how much he likes protesters — suggesting he'll hire some because they encourage television cameras to show his crowds — his aides have, at times, become aggressive about ejecting them.

On Monday, black Valdosta State University students were escorted out of a campus event in Georgia before it began. Ameer Junious, 19, said police directed him to the back of the arena — with no explanation given — before Trump arrived. Videos shot by Junious show a person who appeared to be police officer telling him, "They asked me to have y'all moved," adding, "I can't explain that, OK?"

In a statement, Trump campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks said the campaign "had no knowledge of the incident."

Video of a fall rally in Birmingham, Alabama, captured Trump supporters physically assaulting Mercutio Southall Jr., an African-American activist Trump ordered removed — "Get him the hell out of here, will you, please?" — after Southall shouted "black lives matter!"

Trump later said on Fox News, "Maybe he should have been roughed up."

Yet as he continues his march toward the nomination, Trump reassures his backers they have the moral high ground. "I'm not an angry person," he said at Radford. "You're not angry people." Then, pointing at demonstrators, he said: "They're angry people."

Photo Credit: AP
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Men Sold Cocaine From Wallingford Pizza Restaurant: Police


Four people are under arrest, charged with selling drugs from a Wallingford pizza restaurant.

James Mazziotti, 34, Brandon Preston, 33, Leonard Tartaglia Jr., 31 and Joshua Albee, 33 were arrested this week after a 4-month police investigation.

According to police, the four men were selling cocaine out of Colony Pizza House & Restaurant at 32 Center Street.

Mazziotti, of Wallingford, hosted karaoke and trivia nights at the restaurant, police said.

Albee was arrested in 2013 as part of a narcotics investigation at the now closed Monte Carlo Cafe, according to police.

The four men face charges of sales of narcotics, and other various drug-related offenses.

Preston appeared in court on Thursday and was released on $110,000 bond. The other three were released on bond and will appear in court later this month.

Photo Credit: Wallingford Police

Caretaker Charged After Boy Dies of "Shaken Baby Syndrome"


The caretaker of a 14-month-old baby has been charged with manslaughter in the boy's death.

Keith Frost, 29, was arrested Friday on first-degree manslaughter charges in the death of the toddler, who was found unresponsive at the Econo Lodge Inn and Suites in December.  

Frost was the boyfriend of the baby's mother.  The mother, who has not been named, was at work for most of the day and left her son in Frost's care, according to the arrest affidavit.

The baby was not breathing and was rushed to the Middlesex Medical Center Shoreline Clinic and then transferred to Yale-New Haven Hospital on December 19. The baby had a fractured skull, bleeding behind his eyes a broken eye socket and was suffering from brain damage, according to doctors.  They concluded the boy was a victim of shaken baby syndrome.  He was taken off life support and died on December 20.

Frost was arrested in the days following the child's death on charges related to a robbery in New York. He has been in custody in Connecticut since then.

"Today law enforcement speaks for an innocent victim who sadly no longer has a voice," Old Saybrook Police Chief Michael Spera said on Friday.

Frost is being held on $150,000 bond.

Photo Credit: CT Dept. of Correction

Italy Seeks UNESCO Recognition for Neapolitan Pizza Making


Italy has submitted the Neapolitan pizza as a candidate for inclusion in UNESCO'S cultural heritage list for next year.

The national commission for UNESCO said in a statement it had voted unanimously to protect the Neapolitan pizza as part of the country's cultural and gastronomic tradition.

If UNESCO accepts the bid it will win a place on the world body's list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as "The Traditional Art of Neapolitan Pizza Makers." 

Photo Credit: File -- Bloomberg via Getty Images

Yard Goats Have 2nd Weirdest Minor-League Baseball Name


The name isn't so bahhhd.

Hartford's Yard Goats were ranked second on a list of "weirdest" minor-league baseball team names put out by Sports Illustrated

New York's Batavia Muck Dogs took the spot for first place. Maybe next time, Yard Goats.

The unique name was picked last March when the team, formerly known as the New Britain Rock Cats, hosted a "Name the Mascot" contest, according to the Hartford Courant.

The Courant said the name "Yard Goat" refers to an old railroad slang term for an engine that switches a train to get ready for another locomotive but the team has taken more of an animal angle. 

In February, released a new jingle for the team called, "Eat it Up!"

"Once you hear it, you'll not be able to unhear it," Yard Goats Assistant General Manager Mike Abramson told NBC Connecticut.

It's not all upbeat.

The team's new stadium in Hartford has caused some problems for the city and developers to be completed by its scheduled opening day on May 17. The Dunkin' Donuts stadium is said to be over budget and Hartford said it will finance $5 million of the $10 million shortfall.

Here's the full list:

17) Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs
16) Wichita Wingnuts
15) Orem Owlz
14) El Paso Chihuahuas
13) Modesto Nuts
12) Fort Wayne Tin Caps
11) Traverse City Beach Bums
10) Savannah Bananas
9) Normal CornBelters
8) Topeka Train Robbers
7) Akron Rubber Ducks
6) Toledo MudHens
5) Richmond Flying Squirrels
4) Albuquerque Isotopes
3) Montgomery Biscuits
2) Hartford Yard Goats
1) Batavia Muck Dogs

Newspaper Takeover Protesters Tear-Gassed In Turkey


Turkish police fired tear gas and rubber bullets on Saturday to disperse protesters outside the country's biggest newspaper after authorities seized control of it in a crackdown on a religious group whose leader the government accuses of treason.

A court on Friday appointed an administrator to run the flagship Zaman, English-language Today's Zaman and Cihan agency, linked to U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who President Tayyip Erdogan says was plotting a coup.

Rights groups and European officials condemned the takeover, seeing it as proof that Turkey's government silences dissident views. 

Photo Credit: AP

Dad in Hot-Car Death Indicted for Sexual Exploitation


The Georgia father accused of intentionally leaving his toddler to die in a hot car two years ago was indicted Friday on new counts involving the sexual exploitation of minors, NBC New reported.

Justin Ross Harris is now facing an additional two counts of sexual exploitation of children and six counts of disseminating harmful material to minors, his attorneys said.

The charges stemmed from an investigation into the June 2014 death of Harris’ 22-month-old son, Cooper. He is accused of exchanging lewd photos with two underage girls and sending nude photos to another underage girl, and then engaging in sexually explicit conversations with all three from January to May 2014. 

Harris is set to go on trial in April on multiple murder-related charges, including malice murder and felony murder, and cruelty to children.

Photo Credit: AP

Crews Put Out Fire in Bristol


Crews responded to an early morning fire in Bristol on Saturday.

The second-alarm fire was in a vacant home on Stafford Avenue, Bristol Fire Department said. 

There were no other details. 

Photo Credit: Bristol Fire Department

Univ. Denies 'Patriots' Day' Shoot


The school Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev attended will not allow an upcoming movie about the terror attacks to shoot at the location.

Producers of "Patriots' Day" had hoped to shoot at UMass Dartmouth, but the school announced its decision Saturday.

"After discussing the situation with students, staff, faculty, and other university stakeholders, we have decided to decline the request," acting chancellor Gerry Kavanaugh wrote in a statement. "We have concluded that the production activities would be too disruptive to our campus community. We are hopeful that the movie does justice to the many courageous victims of the Boston Marathon tragedy and their families, as well as the public safety officers who demonstrated such selfless dedication to their duty."

The film will star Boston native Mark Wahlberg.

Tsarnaev, then a student at UMass Dartmouth, returned to his dormitory after placing improvised explosive devices near the finish line with his brother, Tamerlan, killing three people and injuring dozens more on April 15, 2013.

Watertown, where a gun battle with the Tsarnaevs took place, also turned down a "Patriot's Day" shoot. The film's producers had hoped to recreate the shootout there, but Town Manager Michael Driscoll said last week that filming was "not in the best interest" of the town.

Photo Credit: File – Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

Ski Report: 70+ Ski Club


Last week we introduced you to future Olympians at the Jr. National Ski Championship, this week, we talked to skiers with a bit more experience.

"I'm 92,” says World War II Veteran Joe Carey, “And I started skiing when I was 42. So that's 50 years."

Joe was in good company as 32 members of the 70 plus Ski Club competed in their annual race and fun day at Butternut Mountain. And for Joe...Skiing and racing is all about the thrill.

"It's a lot like I used to experience, I was a navy fighter pilot during World War II,” explains Carey. “ And I used to like to go fast."

They go fast, and they go far! With over 3,000 members nationwide, the club travels all across the US, and even as far as Europe, Argentina, and Chile! And skiers aren't the only ones allowed in the club... Peter Habicht has been snowboarding for almost 20 years.

"It's fun. It simple as just fun. Camraderie,” says Habicht. “You know everybody's out for a good time."

While it's all in good fun, the day is still a competition.

"We do three or four of these races a year and of course everybody has the be over 70,” explains skier Bill McDevitt. “And we do it by 5 year intervals 70-74, 75-80, etc all the way up."

And at 76 years old, McDevitt took home the gold for his age group.

The ladies and gentlemen skiing today were some of the most inspirational and dedicated skiers I have ever met. And hanging with the 70 plus club is not for the faint of heart....

"I exercise to stay in shape so I can do it. And I love it,” says Carey. “I don't wanna quit. My theory is use it or lose it"

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Suspects Plead Guilty in 'Road Rage' Killing of Las Vegas Mom


Two men pleaded guilty to killing Tammy Meyers, a Las Vegas other of four, NBC News reported.

The incident initially appeared to be a random road rage incident. Meyers was shot in the head in front of her home last Feb. 12, 2015, and died two days later.

Meyers and her 15-year-old daughter encountered a driver of a silver car earlier that day. Angered by the driver, Meyers and her armed son went looking for him, found a similar-looking car, and followed it, prosecutors said. The people in that car — Erich Nowsch, 20, and Derrick Andrews, 27 — then exchanged gunfire with Meyers' son out on the road and again in front of their home, police said.

On Friday, Nowsch pleaded guilty to charges including second-degree murder with a deadly weapon, while Andrews, who is accused of driving the getaway car, pleaded guilty to one count of voluntary manslaughter and one count of accessory to commit murder. Both previously pleaded not guilty.  

Photo Credit: AP
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