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Security guard pleads not guilty after pulling gun on Ohio sheriff's deputy in IRS office

iStock(TOLEDO, Ohio) -- A security guard at an IRS office in Toledo, Ohio, pleaded not guilty Monday to charges stemming from an incident in which he allegedly pulled a gun on a sheriff's deputy in full uniform who refused orders leave his service weapon in his car.

The security guard, Seth Eklund, 33, entered his plea in Lucus County Common Pleas Court to one count of aggravated menacing stemming from the encounter with Lucas County Sheriff's Deputy Alan Gaston.

The episode unfolded on May 31 when Gaston went to the IRS office in Toledo to ask a question about a letter he received from the agency, he told ABC affiliate station WTVG-TV.

Instead of getting an answer, Gaston got an order from Eklund to leave his gun in his car, Gaston refused.

"There's really no way to know how you're going to act when there's a gun pointed at you and when you think you're going to lose your life," Gaston told WTVG.

The incident was captured on surveillance video and shows Gaston in full uniform and badge with his weapon holstered at his side.

Gaston, who is a defensive tactics instructor, said that when he told Eklund he couldn't take his gun back to his car, he said the security guard pulled his own handgun and aimed it at him.

The security video shows Gaston turning and walking away from Eklund, who followed the deputy pointing a gun at his back. The footage shows Eklund following Gaston to an elevator and blocking the elevator doors from closing.

At one point, according to Gaston and the video, Eklund attempted to place the deputy into custody.

Gaston said he vividly remembered the encounter, saying he was "bracing for a shot in my back."

Eklund could not be reached for comment. It is unclear if he has retained an attorney.

Toledo police were called to the scene to investigate the disturbance, but the unidentified 911 caller never told a dispatcher that the incident involved a sheriff's deputy in uniform.

Gaston said he attempted to de-escalate the situation because he feared for the safety of people at the office.

"If I'm going to get shot, like I thought I was, it's not fair," Gaston said.

Gaston, who is on medical leave from the sheriff's office and his wife, filed a civil lawsuit against Eklund and the security company he works for; alleging emotional and psychological distress and lost wages.

Asked if he had a message for Eklund, Gaston said, "I would say, 'Clearly your training is lacking and the fact that you went from 0 to 100, lethal force is unacceptable.'"

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Two women at a Burger King tell manager to 'go back to Mexico'

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(EUSTIS, Fla.) -- The video of a heated exchange between a Burger King manager and two white customers who told him to “go back to Mexico” has gone viral.

Neyzha Borrero of Eustis, Florida, was grabbing a bite to eat at a local Burger King with her boyfriend earlier this month when she overheard two women say they were offended after they overheard the Burger King manager, Ricardo “Ricky” Castillo, speak to one of his employees in Spanish. That’s when Borrero started filming.

In the video, one of the women can be heard telling Castillo, “You’re being very rude,” after hearing him speak Spanish.

“No, you’re being rude by being prejudiced,” Castillo replies.

The conversation escalates when one of the women says, “This is America and our main language is English…Go speak your Mexican at home!”

“Guess what ma’am, I’m not Mexican," Castillo responds. "You’re being very prejudiced and I want you out of my restaurant right now.”

Castillo then threatens to call the police after one of the women tells him to “go back to Mexico” if he wants to keep speaking Spanish.

“I was shocked and I didn’t know what to do,” Castillo told ABC News. “I wasn’t going to call the cops,” he admitted. “I was raised to respect my elders and I wasn’t going to do that to them.”

This past weekend, outrage erupted after a series of tweets from President Donald Trump seemingly aimed at progressive freshman Democratic congresswomen of color.

“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came?” he wrote.

Trump's comments were widely criticized by Democratic lawmakers, many of whom characterized his attacks as racist.

Many on social media have described the refrain “go back to your country” as a common attack against people of color in the U.S.

Last year, a Sikh man was attacked and told to go back to his country while he was putting up campaign signs near Turlock, California.

Castillo, who has worked as the general manager for the Burger King in Eustis for a year and a half, said he has never experienced anything like this, but added he isn’t surprised. He hopes the video serves as a lesson on how people should treat others.

“Everybody has their different opinions, nobody is the same,” said Castillo. “We’re all human beings and we deserve to be treated with respect.”

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Great white shark drags fishing boat around San Francisco Bay for 2 miles: 'Everybody was just amazed'

iStock(SAN FRANCISCO) -- A group of people sport fishing in the San Francisco Bay over the weekend got the shock of their life when a great white shark snagged their bait and dragged the boat around for two miles.

Joey Gamez, owner and captain of Golden State Sportfishing, told ABC News that he and six others set off Saturday morning with the intent of catching sevengill and soupfin sharks.

The boat was near the infamous Alcatraz Island around 11 a.m. when a line that Gamez cast began to pull. The experienced fisherman assumed he was fighting a large sevengill, so the group pulled the anchor up and let the fish pull the 26-foot boat around for a bit while they tried to reel it in, he said.

"Once we got it to the top, we realized what kind of fish it was," Gamez said.

The shark dragged the boat for about an hour and two miles before Gamez carefully cut the line, he said.

Gamez estimated the shark to have measured somewhere between 6 to 8 feet.

"I really didn't get a good look at it," he said. "I was kind of worried about getting it off the hook."

Video posted to Facebook shows a fisherman struggling with the fishing pole for several minutes before the group realized what they had snagged.

"First time I've had to pull an anchor on a shark," Gamez said in the video. "...Not sure what it is, but it's a big one."

Minutes later, another fisherman took over to try and reel in the behemoth. Once the great white surfaced, they exclaimed in excitement before stating that they had to "let it go."

The great white bobbed along the side of the boat for several seconds before Gamez cut the line and it swam away with the bait.

The 42-year-old said he has been fishing in the area since he was a "little kid" and has never seen a great white in the bay, he said, adding that the whole group was "stunned" at the catch.

"Everybody was just amazed," Gamez said.

Last week, the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office issued an alert of great white sharks that were spotted nearby off the coast of Half Moon Bay, ABC San Francisco station KGO-AM reported.

Gamez went back out on the water on Sunday but did not spot any more great whites, he said.

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Milwaukee road rage shooting leaves 3-year-old dead; suspect in custody

iStock(MILWAUKEE) -- Outrage and agony engulfed residents of Milwaukee over the death of a 3-year-old girl who was fatally shot when police say an apparent road rage incident allegedly sent an armed motorist into a fury and prompted him to open fire on a car carrying the child, her three young siblings and her mother.

The incident marked at least a dozen road rage shootings in seven states across the country in just the past 45 days that have left five people dead and 11 injured.

In the latest incident, Brooklyn Harris was riding in a car Saturday morning -- with her mother and three siblings, ranging from ages 1 to 4 -- when her mom nearly collided with a black Ford SUV, whose driver opened fire, killing Brooklyn.

"They didn't give that baby a chance to live. She just turned three," Brooklyn's grandmother said at a vigil for the child on Saturday night. The fatal incident unfolded just before 9 a.m. in a northwest Milwaukee neighborhood, police said. The suspect, apparently angry over the near accident with Brooklyn's mother, allegedly opened fire on the family's white sedan and attempted to drive away, police said.

Officers responding to the scene spotted the suspect's fleeing SUV and gave chase, police said. The suspect crashed, jumped out of his vehicle and ran, police said.

After a brief search, he was found hiding in bushes and placed under arrest.

The suspect's name was not immediately released. Police were still investigating the case Monday and had yet to submit it to the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office for review, officials said.

In an emotional news conference on Saturday, Assistant Police Chief Ray Banks expressed frustration over the shooting.

"If our community has gotten to the point where we can get angry over a traffic accident and we start shooting at kids in a car, and we have a 3-year-old old dead, every one of you should be just as angry about this as I am," Banks told the community. "We are consistently burying our children. That's not supposed to happen."

The shooting came just days an apparent road rage incident on July 4 near Houston left two children, ages 1 and 2, and their parents injured when an 18-year-old motorist allegedly opened fire on their pickup truck, igniting fireworks the family had just purchased.

On Monday morning, a 28-year-old man was fatally shot and his 26-year-old passenger critically wounded when a traffic collision apparently escalated into a shooting in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia, police told ABC station WPVI-TV in Philadelphia.

Since June 1, road rage encounters have also led to fatal shootings in Indiana, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida and Pennsylvania, according to police.

A woman in Dodge City, Alabama, was arrested after she allegedly tried to shoot a motorist in a road rage encounter on July 6, and ended up shooting her husband in the head, police said. Erica Cole was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, assault and reckless endangerment, authorities said. Her husband survived.

The Dodge City incident came a day before a woman, identified by police as Zakia Bibbs, 23, was shot to death and two passengers riding with her were wounded in a road rage incident on a freeway in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

On June 12, two men were fatally shot in a gunfight that erupted over a road rage incident in Memphis, Tennessee. Truck driver Keith Byrne, 41, apparently cut off a BMW that Andre Sinclair, 22, his girlfriend and baby were riding in, police said.

Bryne was apparently on the phone with a friend at the time and said he was pulling over to apologize to the occupants of the BMW, police said. But when he stopped, Sinclair allegedly got out of the car with a gun and he and Bryne, who was also armed, fatally shot each other, police said.

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Border officials: 62 employees, 8 former under investigation for crude online posts

iStock(NEW YORK) -- U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Monday that 62 employees and eight former employees are under investigation for lewd and offensive posts on a private Facebook group that mocked House Democrats and migrants.

Matthew Klein, the acting commissioner of CBP's Office of Professional Responsibility, said the probe was not considered a criminal investigation at this point but rather an internal investigation to determine whether the employees were involved in "serious administrative misconduct."

Klein declined to identify any individuals involved or whether all 70 people would be punished.

"To be clear, the expectations of professional conduct don't end at the end of one's shift," Klein told reporters. "CBP has set standards of conduct that prohibit the types of posts we saw in this case. CBP has also made it clear to employees that messages posted on a private social media page that are discriminatory, harassing or offensive are not protected and could violate CBP's standard of conduct, and importantly, may have a nexus to the workplace."

Officials launched the investigation on July 1, after a report by ProPublica revealed the posts in the Facebook group known as "I'm 10-15," which included some 9,500 members of current and former Border Patrol personnel. Some posters responded to a teen boy's death in U.S. custody with comments of "oh well' and "if he dies, he dies," while another post questioned whether the image of a father who died trying to save his daughter in the Rio Grande River was authentic.

The site also included memes with altered images of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., involved in a sex act with President Donald Trump. The posts were made shortly before Ocasio-Cortez and others were due to visit Border Patrol stations, following allegations of massively overcrowded and unsanitary conditions.

An internal CBP memo by Klein showed that he had been aware as early as February 2018 of at least one private Facebook group that included "inappropriate and offensive posts" by its personnel. It was not clear whether the Facebook group mentioned in the 2018 memo was "I'm 10-15." In the all-hands memo at the time, Klein noted that the leadership was aware of "inappropriate and offensive posts" and said it must stop.

"The bottom line is the Agency may bring discipline against an employee who posts offensive messages on a social media page where there is nexus to the Agency workplace," Klein wrote in 2018, a statement similar to what he said Monday.

Democrats have accused Trump of enabling a toxic culture to fester at Border Patrol stations, where agents are overwhelmed and under resourced.

"How on earth can CBP's culture be trusted to care for refugees humanely?" Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.

Following the ProPublica report, Trump told reporters he hadn't seen the posts, but he also didn't condemn them.

"I will say this. I think that the Border Patrol has been treated very, very badly by certain members of Congress, very, very badly," the president said on July 5. "Certain Members of Congress say very bad things and lie and exaggerate, and Border Patrol people are tough people. They're not happy about it."

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3-year-old dies after falling into grease trap behind Tim Horton's in New York

Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images(NEW YORK) --  A 3-year-old boy has died after he fell into a grease trap behind a Tim Horton's in Rochester, New York, according to police.

The child's mother had called 911 at 10:56 a.m. to report him missing, Rochester Police investigator Frank Camp told reporters during a news conference Monday. Emergency dispatchers received a second call at 11:03 a.m. stating that the child had been found in the grease trap.

A witness was giving the child CPR when police arrived, Camp said. An officer then took over while they waited for paramedics to arrive.

The child was then taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead at noon after "every rescue attempt was made to resuscitate him," Camp said.

"Our hearts go out to the family of this child, who are right now suffering unspeakable, unimaginable tragedy," he said.

The grease trap is embedded to a manhole on the ground and covered by a plastic lid about 2 to 3 feet in diameter, Camp said. The child, who was in his mother's care, went outside and "made his way on top" of the grease trap and fell in after the lid "gave way," Camp said.

It is unclear how deep the trap is or how long the child was inside, Camp said, adding that the oil was not hot and there is no wall surrounding it that the boy would have had to climb over.

Restaurant employees appeared "distraught" as they were being interviewed by police, ABC Rochester affiliate WHAM-TV reported.

The family are residents of Rochester, Camp said.

The investigation is ongoing. Additional information was not immediately available.

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Charlottesville car rammer James Alex Fields gets life plus 419 years for state charges

iStock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- The man who killed a female counter protester when he rammed his car into a crowd at a 2017 Charlottesville rally will not be getting out of prison in his lifetime. 

Based on a new sentencing issued Monday, James Alex Fields was sentenced to many lifetimes in prison.

Fields will spend life plus 419 years in prison for the state charges connected to his actions at the Aug. 12, 2017, rally.

The state sentencing is in addition to a life sentence he was given in connection to the federal charges he faced for the same incident.

The jury recommendation was announced in December after Fields was found guilty of first-degree murder, five counts of aggravated malicious wounding and three counts of malicious wounding in the incident.

Susan Bro, the mother of counter protester Heather Heyer, spoke after the federal sentencing in June, apologizing "to the tax payers, for saddling you with this burden" by having Fields spend life in prison, "but it was the judge's call."

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Alleged victims confront Jeffrey Epstein in court

iStock(NEW YORK) -- In an extraordinary detention hearing, Jeffrey Epstein on Monday came face-to-face with two alleged victims.

Annie Farmer said she was 16 when Epstein had her sent to New Mexico where he was “inappropriate” with her. Courtney Wild told the judge she was 14 when Epstein sexually abused her in Palm Beach, Florida.

Both women spoke in support of keeping Epstein locked up without bail. He appeared to watch them address the judge but his face showed no emotion.

Judge Richard Berman said he would decide Thursday whether to grant Epstein’s release or, as pre-trial services recommended, keep him jailed.

In suggesting Epstein represented an “extraordinary risk of flight,” federal prosecutors revealed that “piles of cash,” dozens of diamonds and an expired, phony passport were allegedly found in a locked safe in Epstein’s mansion.

The passport was from a foreign country, had Epstein’s photo but not his name and listed his country of birth as Saudi Arabia.

Epstein, who in 2008 served 13 months in jail after pleading guilty to state prostitution charges in Florida, was arrested on federal sex trafficking charges this month for sexually exploiting and abusing dozens of minor girls at his homes in Manhattan, New York, and Palm Beach, Florida, among other locations, according to federal prosecutors. He has pleaded not guilty to the federal sex trafficking charges in New York.

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Coroner: Louisiana African-American museum founder Sadie Roberts-Joseph was suffocated

iStock(BATON ROUGE, La.) -- A beloved 75-year-old community activist in Louisiana whose body was discovered in the trunk of her car died from "traumatic asphyxia, including suffocation," according to an autopsy.

Sadie Roberts-Joseph, who teamed up with police on an anti-drug and violence program, was found slain Friday afternoon when police were directed to her car parked in a residential neighborhood northeast of downtown Baton Rouge, police said.

"It is with great sadness and respect to investigate any unexpected or traumatic death. When our investigation involved an innocent victim, such as Ms. Sadie Joseph, it is particularly tragic," Dr. William "Beau" Clark, the East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner, said in a statement.

Police have yet to identify a suspect in Roberts-Joseph's homicide but said investigators are working around the clock to solve the case.

"She's special. She's touched so many people in this community over the years. She was a true public servant," Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul told ABC News.

Roberts-Joseph was last seen alive visiting her sister about 11 a.m. on Friday. Her body was discovered in her car a little over three miles from her home about 3:45 p.m. on Friday, police and relatives said.

"We do know the time when she was last seen and the time, obviously, when the body was discovered. We're working on that time frame and we're focusing in on what happened between that time," Paul said.

The slaying of Roberts-Joseph, who was well known in Baton Rouge, came as a complete shock for her family and the community.

"We're devastated that someone has actually killed her and put her in the trunk of her own car," Roberts-Joseph's niece, Pat McCallister-Leduff, told ABC News.

The victim's sister, Beatrice Johnson, told The Advocate newspaper of Baton Rouge that Roberts-Johnson stopped by her house around 11 a.m. on Friday. She said her sister lived near her in the Scotlandville neighborhood of Baton Rouge and would check in with her daily.

"Friday, she came by [because] she had mixed some cornbread, but her oven went out, and she brought it here to put in the oven," Johnson told the newspaper. "The bread is still there. She never came back to get it."

Roberts-Joseph helped found the Odell S. Williams Now and Then African-American History Museum in 2001. The museum, now known as the Baton Rouge African-American History Museum, is housed on the campus of New St. Luke Baptist Church in Baton Rouge.

She also organized the city's annual Juneteenth festival at the museum, commemorating the abolition of slavery in the U.S., and partnered with Baton Rouge police to launch a Community Against Drugs and Violence program.

In a recent interview with ABC affiliate station WBRZ-TV in Baton Rouge, Roberts-Joseph said her work at the museum and the annual Juneteenth event was meant "to celebrate, to embrace" African American history and to "learn of our past and to be able to move forward in unity."

Baton Rouge police are asking anyone with information on the case to contact homicide detectives immediately.

"I have no idea why someone would do such a heinous act or commit such a heinous act for someone who had nothing but love for this community and love for people," Baton Rouge Mayor Sharon Weston Broome told ABC News.

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New York facing Russian roulette' with future power outages, Gov. Andrew Cuomo says

Scott Heins/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- New York City is facing "Russian roulette" with future power outages, the governor warned Monday in the wake of this weekend's massive blackout that left a swath of Manhattan in the dark.

"Blackouts cannot happen. They cannot happen in the city of New York and they can't happen for no reason," Gov. Andrew Cuomo told WNYC Radio's Brian Lehrer on Monday. "We were lucky that nobody died."

The five-hour long Saturday night outage impacted 73,000 customers in midtown Manhattan and the Upper West Side, trapping people in elevators and on subway trains, blacking out Times Square and leaving New Yorkers sweating in their apartments. All systems have since been restored.

While officials said no injuries or hospitalizations were reported, Cuomo called the blackout "a serious public safety risk."

"People could have died, there could have been chaos, could have been looting," Cuomo told WNYC.

Con Edison said it has identified the equipment that failed but has not said why it failed.

In a statement on Monday ConEd said "the relay protection system at our West 65th Street substation did not operate as designed."

"That system detects electrical faults and directs circuit breakers to isolate and de-energize those faults. The relay protection system is designed with redundancies to provide high levels of reliability," ConEd said. "In this case, primary and backup relay systems did not isolate a faulted 13,000-volt distribution cable."

"The failure of the protective relay systems ultimately resulted in isolation of the fault at the West 49th Street transmission substation, and the subsequent loss of several electrical networks," the company said.

"We initially believed the 13,000-volt cable fault was unrelated to the transmission disturbance," ConEd said. "While the cable fault was an initiating event, the customer outages were the result of the failure of the protective relay systems.”

ConEd continued, "We have restored our system to its normal state to continue providing our customers with the high level of reliability they expect and deserve. Our analysis of data and testing of the relay protection equipment is continuing, and will provide more insight into why the system, and its multiple redundancies, did not operate as designed."

Cuomo told WYNC earlier Monday that he was launching an independent investigation.

"When I was there with ConEd once the power was restored, I debriefed and toured the facility. But I want an independent investigation to determine what happened," he said. "Because it can't happen again."

Cuomo said Con Edison was preaching patience after the blackout hit, but the governor said, "With public safety, we don't have to be patient, we shouldn't be patient."

"We need performance, we pay ConEd," Cuomo told WNYC. "When people get their bills, they can't say to be patient. This is a vital service they're providing.  That's why they're regulated. That's why it's a public utility. If they do not perform, they can be replaced."

"ConEd has the attitude of too-big-to-fail banks," Cuomo continued. "This is a franchise, this is a license. This is not a God-given right, and if they don't perform well, they can be replaced."

As a utility in New York State, ConEd is regulated by state government.

Meanwhile, when the blackout hit, New York City Mayor and Democratic presidential candidate Bill de Blasio was campaigning in Iowa.

"You have to be in charge wherever you are… I was in touch with my folks to make sure that things were being taken care of," the mayor told reporters on Sunday.

"I was waiting to understand what was going on," he said. "On a Saturday evening, it was a long travel so I couldn’t make it back. As soon as it happened I was made aware of it and kept up to date. Once it was apparent the outage was continuing, I came back."

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California hiker who disappeared with small dog found alive: Authorities

iStock(HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif.) -- An experienced hiker who went missing on Friday along with her small dog has been found alive, according to authorities in California.

The Inyo County Sheriff's Office said Monday that Sheryl Powell had been located alive by a ground search team near the Montenegro Springs area.

"Searchers describe her as resilient and strong but exhausted after being lost in an extremely remote area above Big Pine, CA. Mrs. Powell was met at the Bishop Airport by ambulance and will be taken to the local hospital for medical clearance.

We are beyond grateful for the continued support from her family, local residents, visitors and the media. We also cannot thank our assisting agencies enough for their amazingly hard work in difficult terrain throughout this 4-day search," the sheriff's office said on its Facebook page.

Powell, 60, of Huntington Beach, was camping with her husband Friday along with her small dog at the Grandview Campground in the Bristlecone Pine Forest area when he reported her missing to authorities.

Authorities said that after Sheryl Powell and her husband picked a remote campsite, she got out of the vehicle to walk the dog while her husband re-parked their Jeep.

When he finished, Sheryl Powell's husband could not find her or their dog, authorities said. After about an hour of searching on his own, he reached out to law enforcement via his satellite device, they said.

Searchers were into their fourth day of looking for her when she was found, the sheriff's office said. Earlier Monday, authorities said her husband was not connected to her disappearance.

On Monday, before it was announced that Sheryl Powell had been located, the Inyo County Sheriff's Office said that a dog "matching the description" of the Powells' had been found alive 2.5 miles from her last location.

Authorities described Sheryl Powell as an experienced hiker who is 5 foot, 3 inches tall, 120 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. The campground is located at 8,600 feet and is the closest campground to the ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest.

"Challenges include multiple gullies, shale slopes, low shade, direct sun and rattlesnakes," the sheriff's office said.

On Monday, Sheryl Powell's children, Farrah and Greg Powell, told ABC News that their parents went on remote camping trips once or twice a month. Greg Powell said his parents had left on Friday and planned to return Sunday to have dinner at his home in Hermosa Beach on Monday.

"They liked to camp away from other people -- that's nothing new," Greg Powell said. "They had gone just under a mile on this dirt road past the main camp site, found a really nice site off the road there that they liked. So they pulled in front, facing forward to check it out. Both got out of the car, decided they really loved the camp site. And then they -- my mom and our dog Miley -- got out of the car to stand in the shade and my dad went down the hill, did a five-point turn and came up backwards on the hill so they could facilitate unloading the vehicle. When they (his father) came back, they were gone without a trace."

Greg Powell said that his mother had nothing with her when she vanished besides the dog and that she has a bad leg, making it hard for her to run fast.

Still, Farrah Powell said, her mother has a great sense of direction and is very resourceful.

"Our main concern for her is that she had nothing on her -- no water, no food, absolutely nothing," she said.

Greg Powell said authorities had also not seen any large animal prints or any signs of struggle or blood in the area around where his mother disappeared.

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Animal rescuers save dog 'bleeding from every inch of her body' that was buried on Hawaiian beach

iStock(HONOLULU) -- Animal rescuers in Hawaii have saved a badly injured dog who was buried alive on a beach.

The pup was found by a member of Oahu-based organization Paws of Hawaii on Tuesday after someone armed with a machete, presumed to be the owner, had just buried her beneath the sand on the west side of the island, the group posted to Facebook last week.

The dog, named Leialoha for "beloved child," was swollen, sunburned, missing most of her fur and "bleeding from every inch of her body" when she was picked up, according to the organization. Her leg had also been cut with the machete.

Leialoha was rushed to a veterinary clinic, and caregivers were finally able to give her a bath two days later.

On Saturday, Leialoha's foster parents posted an update stating that she has "come so far." At first, she would only leave her kennel to go to the bathroom, but she has since ventured out to "see what was for dinner" and has found her safe space under a coffee table.

"She has a long way to go, but the worst is over," a Facebook post read.

The organization is asking the community for donations for Leialoha's recovery.

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Gruesome new details revealed in death of Kentucky mom

Richmond Police Dept. (RICHMOND, Ky.) -- Gruesome new details were revealed in court Monday surrounding the death of Kentucky mom Savannah Spurlock, whose remains were found behind a home in Garrard County months after she vanished.

Spurlock's body was wrapped in plastic trash bags when she was discovered in a 19-inch deep grave last week, a Kentucky State Police detective testified Monday, reported ABC Lexington affiliate WTVQ-TV.

The testimony came as David Sparks, 23, one of the three men last seen with Spurlock in January, appeared in court. Sparks was arrested Thursday and charged with abuse of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence, authorities said.

Sparks' family owns the property where Spurlock's body was found Wednesday night, Kentucky State Police spokesman Trooper Robert Purdy said at a news conference last week.

Last week, one of Sparks' relatives reported a "foul odor coming from his property and he became concerned," according to the Commonwealth of Kentucky's uniform citation for Sparks' arrest.

At the property, Spurlock's remains were found underground, "concealed in an unnatural position," the citation said.

Spurlock's feet were bound with tape, her body was folded over and a rug was behind her back, the detective testified Monday, according to WTVQ, adding that the rug came from Sparks' bedroom. Blood in a closet in Sparks' house matched Spurlock's DNA, the detective said, per WTVQ.

Spurlock, a 23-year-old mom of four, went missing in January after leaving a bar in Lexington with three men, according to authorities.

Sparks allegedly told police that Spurlock came back to his house, fell asleep, and later woke him up to ask him where she was, the detective testified, according to WTVQ. Sparks allegedly said he gave her the address and went back to sleep, waking up later to find her gone.

An official told ABC News in February they knew the three men took Spurlock to a home in the rural county, but not "when, how she left, or what happened to her after that." The property where Spurlock was found had been searched several months ago, but no body was found then, Purdy said.

All three men were interviewed, but not charged at the time. Sparks was a primary suspect in her disappearance, according to the citation.

Authorities on Thursday did not discuss the possibility of additional charges, and Sparks was held without bond, WTVQ reported. A not guilty plea was entered for Sparks last week, according to CBS affiliate WKYT-TV.

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Flooded Louisiana cleans up from Barry but dodges 'worst-case scenario'

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- As Louisiana residents clean up from the hit of Hurricane Barry, flood alerts are in effect from Texas to Illinois as heavy rain from the storm streams north.

On Saturday, Barry slammed the Louisiana coastline as a Category 1 hurricane with 75 mph winds, becoming the first hurricane to hit Louisiana in July since Cindy in 2005.

Barry knocked out power to over 150,000 customers in the state.

Barry quickly weakened to a tropical storm but it dropped torrential rain and left massive flooding throughout parts of Louisiana.

Rainfall reached 12 inches in southwestern Louisiana while storm surge climbed to 7 feet in Amerada Pass.

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday he was "extremely grateful" that the rain and flooding wasn't as severe as forecast and that "the worst-case scenario did not happen."

"This was a storm obviously that could have played out very, very differently," he said.

But Edwards still warned residents to not let their guard down.

For Mandeville, Louisiana, resident Kit Roth, who lost her home of 14 years in Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the biggest impacts from Barry were the waves and storm surge.

Roth said her house was only 4 feet up when Katrina destroyed it, so she rebuilt higher on that same spot. Barry has left her with some cleanup to do, but the house made it through.

"Everything's fine, we're OK," she told ABC News on Sunday. "We're very practiced, we know what we have to do."

Though she was able to rebuild on her same property after Katrina, she said the trauma still sticks with her.

"It'll never be the same for us," she said. "It just changed everything."

By Monday night, the remnants of Barry are forecast to reach Arkansas and Missouri, possibly bringing heavy rain and flash flooding.

By Tuesday night, the remains of the storm will dump heavy rain into Tennessee, Illinois and Indiana.

Some parts of Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee could see up to 10 more inches of rain this week.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Chicago officials close park in hopes 'calm and quiet' will cause alligator to resurface

LagunaticPhoto/iStock(CHICAGO) -- Chicago officials have closed a portion of the park where a wayward alligator has been lurking in hopes of catching it.

The noise from the onlookers gathering near the Humboldt Park Lagoon may be causing the gator, nicknamed "Chance the Snapper," to remain underwater, Kelley Gandurski, executive director of Chicago Animal Care and Control, said in a statement on Sunday.

Animal control officials are hoping that "keeping the lagoon and surrounding areas as calm and quiet as possible" will help them humanely capture the gator," Gandurski said.

"It is likely that residents who have been watching from the lagoon banks and paths in the park have been influencing the animal’s behavior," she said. "We are taking these steps in an attempt to create an environment that lends to the animal’s safe capture so we can quickly re-open the entire park to activity."

Chance the Snapper, a 4 to 5-foot indigenous American alligator, was first spotted in the lagoon on July 9. The gator is believed to have been a pet that someone dropped off at the lagoon, Jenny Schlueter, a spokeswoman for Chicago Animal Care and Control, told ABC News last week.

The City of Chicago has brought in expert Frank Robb, who owns Crocodilian Specialist Services in St. Augustine, Florida, to assist in the capture. Robb arrived in Chicago on Sunday and has assessed the park and lagoon, according to the CACC. The closure of parts of the park began Sunday night, and will continue until further notice.

Just 20 alligators have been seen in Chicago since 1998, Schlueter said. It is believed that Chance is the first gator to surface in the Humboldt Park lagoon.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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