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New York City driver jumps curb to pass school buses

New Yorkers are known for being impatient drivers, but some Brooklyn children were put at risk by one person who swerved onto the sidewalk to get around a school bus, WPIX reported.

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The incident occurred Wednesday afternoon in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn. Surveillance video shows the driver stuck behind school buses, and the person jumps the curb and tries to go around the vehicles, the television station reported.

Fortunately, no one was hurt.

New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind said word spread quickly about the sidewalk driver’s identity, WPIX reported.

"The last thing you imagine is that they might get on the sidewalk outside the school because someone is in a rush," Hikind told the television station. "This guy is a calm guy, nice guy. He's not some guy who lost it, which makes it even more incredible.

"I know who it is. Police are looking for him, local guy, family guy -- hey, it could have been his kids," Hikind told WABC. "That's the message to everybody: don't pass school buses."

Colorado 'red flag' gun bill passes first hearing

DENVER (AP) - Colorado Democrats launched another campaign Thursday to pass a "red flag" gun law - an effort backed by many top law enforcement officials to allow weapons to be seized from people who are determined by a court to pose significant risk.

Florida passed its own "red flag" law after the February 2017 Parkland school massacre, and 12 other states have done so. Colorado Republicans defeated a similar bill last year, insisting it infringed on citizens' Second Amendment rights. But Democrats won both statehouse chambers in November, and Democratic Gov. Jared Polis called for a "red flag" law while campaigning last year.

The House Judiciary Committee voted 7-4 along party lines late Thursday to send this year's bill to the chamber's appropriations committee. The vote came after more than eight hours of testimony for and against the bill.

The legislation would allow family or law enforcement to seek a court order to have guns seized if they believe the owner is a threat. If approved, a subsequent court hearing would be held to determine whether to extend the seizure, up to 364 days.

The bill also would leave it up to the person whose guns were seized to prove at any point that he or she no longer poses a risk. That person would be entitled to legal counsel.

"This is the first step to move forward on a solution that is geared at trying to help people in crisis and confront the epidemic of gun violence that's had a significant impact on the state of Colorado," said House Majority Leader Alec Garnett, a co-sponsor along with first-term Rep. Tom Sullivan.

Sullivan's son, Alex, was killed while celebrating his 27th birthday in the 2012 Aurora movie theater shooting.

"Watching your child's body drop into the ground is as bad as it gets," Sullivan told a news conference last week. "And I'm going to do everything I can to make sure that none of you have to do that."

A number of law enforcement officials supported the effort, including Tony Spurlock, sheriff of suburban Douglas County, who lost a deputy in a New Year's Eve 2017 shooting by a suspect who was exhibiting increasingly erratic behavior. The bill is named after the deputy, Zachari Parrish.

Boulder County Sheriff Joe Pelle also supported the bill. His son was wounded in the shooting that killed Parrish.

"This is an issue that comes up constantly. We know who these folks are," Pelle testified. "We absolutely know when and how the time is right to use the courts to help us relieve the situation and make our communities - and our officers - safer."

John Walsh, a former U.S. attorney for Colorado, insisted the legislation protects the rights of gun owners to due process and that courts in other states have upheld similar laws.

House Minority Leader Patrick Neville, a survivor of the 1999 Columbine High School massacre, says the bill would discourage citizens from seeking help because of the "stigma" associated with mental illness.

"No one should feel they have to choose between their guns and getting the help they need," Neville said in a statement.

"I'm saddened that our beautiful state is moving away from due process," said John Anderson, a retired commander of the Castle Rock Police Department and 20-year veteran of SWAT teams. The bill, he said, presumes that "the accused is guilty until proven innocent" and will create dangerous situations when officers try to confiscate firearms.

"You have now singled out one class of citizens in Colorado, and that is gun owners. And you will be challenged in court," said Dudley Brown, executive director of the advocacy group Rocky Mountain Gun Owners.

The bill is backed by numerous gun control groups, including one founded by former Arizona U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords, who was severely wounded in a 2011 shooting, and survivors of the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.

Gun rights are a perennial issue at Colorado's Capitol. Lawmakers approved a ban on high-capacity magazines and added background checks for firearm transfers in 2013 following the Aurora and Sandy Hook shootings. Gun rights groups pushed successful recalls against two Democratic state senators who voted for the bills.

Texas couple finds 57-year-old message in bottle on beach

A Texas couple walking along the beach found a message in a bottle dropped into the Gulf of Mexico 57 years ago by a Galveston laboratory, the Houston Chronicle reported.

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Candy and Jim Duke found the bottle along the Padre Island National seashore near Corpus Christi, KXAS reported. While instructions said to break the glass, the couple removed the message without shattering the bottle.

"My husband and I go out there almost every Saturday morning. We get there before sunrise to take photos, and then drive down the beach to search for treasure," Candy Duke told the Chronicle. "That's where we found the bottle, at around marker 22."

The bottle was part of a 1962 "drift study" by the Galveston Laboratory of the U.S. Bureau of Commercial Fisheries, now known as the National Marine Fisheries Service, the newspaper reported. Research was being conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration andthe bottle was one of several thousand released, KXAS reported. It was part of study of water currents and the movement of shrimp to determine the rate and flow of surface waters in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico, the Chronicle reported.

"The study was done in the early days of shrimp management. It looked at where adult shrimp live, offshore, versus where juvenile shrimp live, inshore. The idea was, if you look at surface currents, you could connect the two," NOAA acting lab director Matthew Johnson told the newspaper.

The Dukes posted a video on Facebook that showed them removing the message.

According to the Chronicle, the message read, in part: "These releases are part of a study to determine the role that water currents play in the movement of young shrimp from offshore spawning grounds to inshore nursery grounds. The person finding this bottle should complete the enclosed postcard and mail it at the first opportunity. A 50-cent reward will be sent for each completed return."

"I told them not to send us the 50 cents," Candy Duke told the Chronicle. "I want to make a shadow box with the bottle and photo to hang in our house."

Texas teen taking selfie survives 50-foot fall off bridge

A Texas teenager’s attempt at a selfie nearly turned tragic in November as he fell 50 feet from a bridge in Dallas, KTVT reported.

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Triston Bailey, 18, suffered a broken pelvis, a lacerated spleen, broken ribs and a fractured face, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. The impact from Bailey’s fall off the Margaret McDermott Bridge left an imprint of his body on the ground, KTVT reported.

“I could have easily passed away that night. I could have easily been gone. If it was just one more rotation I could not be here,” Bailey, who has spent the last four months recovering, told the television station.

On Nov. 12, Bailey was with friends and were driving over bridge when they stopped to take a selfie, KXAS reported.

"I was going over the concrete barrier and they heard me exclaim, and they thought I was joking, that I was just trying to mess with them," Bailey told the television station. "They looked over. Just like the movies, I'm just laid out there on the dirt."

Doctors who treated Bailey were stunned he did not suffer more serious injuries.

“It’s amazing that he didn’t snap his neck. It’s amazing that he’s not a paraplegic – or broke his neck,” Joseph Darryl Amos, trauma chief at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, told KTVT. “It’s truly miraculous.”

Bailey said he has taken selfies since his accident, but nothing that could put him at risk.

“If I see another person on I-30 about to take a picture, I just stop on the side like, ‘Hey, it's not a good idea,’” Bailey told KFDW.

Hackers send porn, racist threats from Tampa mayor's Twitter account

The Twitter account of a Florida mayor was hacked early Thursday, with the culprits posting racist, pornographic and homophobic content for several hours, WTSP reported.

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Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn’s verified Twitter account also posted a bomb threat against Tampa International Airport and anti-Semitic content, the television station reported.

The account was filled with the offensive content from 2:50 a.m. to 9:08 a.m., WFLA reported.

Tampa Police Department spokesman Steve Hegarty said the hack was "very persistent," adding it "went on for several hours and they changed up a lot of things," WTVT reported.

Buckhorn, who is on a hunting trip in South Carolina, said in an email that police are investigating the hack, WTSP reported.

"Nobody wants that stuff out there," Ashley Bauman, the mayor's spokeswoman, said Thursday.

The hackers appeared to take over the mayor’s Twitter account with an initial post that said, “Hacked by @MeeZoid @CxlvxnSwag @SheepKiller69 you can’t touch US ####,” WFLA reported.The threats included an AK-47 attack at Tampa’s City Hall, attacks on blacks and a bomb threat at the airport, the television station reported.

Tampa International Airport spokesman Danny Valentine said the airport was aware of the threats, WFLA reported. Valentine said airport police Chief Charlie Vazquez told him the threat was not credible, but security measures were still taken.

'Yo, bro. Wake up': Video shows 3 people who overdosed on fentanyl at gas pump

  • Editor's Note: The video in this story was provided to WFTV by the Seminole County Sheriff's Office, which blurred the faces of the civilians involved to protect their identities.
  • WFTV also chose to not identify them

"I have three people that are apparently... they seem to be passed out drunk, not waking up in my parking lot."

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The clerk at the Shell gas station in Winter Springs, Florida, called 911 shortly before midnight on Saturday, Aug.18, 2018. One of the people believed to be drunk was inside a white pickup truck parked next to a gas pump. The other two were on the ground. All were unconscious. 

That's how one of the deputies who responded to the emergency call described what she saw when she pulled into the gas station. The deputy saw a can of Four Loko between the driver's legs, a detail supporting the clerk's theory the man was drunk. But when the deputy tried to wake him up, nothing happened. 

"Yo, bro! Wake up!"

"You are smacking at him. Screaming, you're shaking stuff around, moving things, and they are not doing anything," Deputy Caitlin Henry told WFTV.

The incident report filed with the Seminole County Sheriff's Office describes the driver as clammy, with a shallow pulse and labored breathing. He turned blue. Another deputy found the other two people, a man and a woman, in similar condition: light pulses, shallow breathing, unresponsive.

The deputies quickly realized the three people they were tending to weren't drunk -- they had overdosed on drugs. 

"You could tell right away there was something different with this one," Lt. Dwayne Kvalheim said.

This scene isn't uncommon and certainly isn't new in Central Florida; law enforcement agencies around the country have trained officers to aggressively respond to opioid overdoses, arming them with the lifesaving drug naloxone, also known as Narcan. In 2016, Seminole County Sheriff Dennis Lemma introduced a policy requiring his deputies to each carry naloxone after the number of overdoses doubled year to year. 

"Come on bud, come on man, wake up!" 

Body cameras recorded the deputies at work on the three strangers, trying to keep them alive. They administered the Narcan, but the normal measures didn't work.

"Typically when you get the Narcan, you get that deep breathe," said Deputy James Hennessey. "You see the results right away. That didn't happen this time."

Seminole County Fire, also responding to the 911 call, administered more doses of the drug. They also performed CPR on all three people. Their efforts paid off: All of the patients lived. Ambulances rushed them to area hospitals; deputies stayed behind to investigate the scene.

Wearing masks and gloves to protect themselves, deputies found a white powder in the center console of the truck. Henry said the woman told her she thought they were using cocaine, but from experience she knew it wasn't. It turned out to be fentanyl, the synthetic opioid wreaking havoc in communities around the country.

The ending to this story is documented in the incident report: The deputies submitted the plastic bag with the fentanyl into evidence to be destroyed, and the pickup truck was towed from the gas station. The driver, who had passed out with the Four Loko between his legs, was told how to retrieve it. He and the other man told investigators they couldn't remember what kind of drug they took or how much. 

The Seminole County Sheriff's Office told WFTV they hope people will watch the video of the overdoses. Law enforcement wants people to understand the brutal realities of the drug. They recall the 82 people who died of overdoses last year; they said it was almost double the number of homicides and traffic fatalities combined.

If you or someone you love has a substance abuse problem, you can reach out to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration for confidential information about how to get help.

Winning numbers drawn in 'Fantasy 5' game

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) _ The winning numbers in Thursday evening's drawing of the Florida Lottery's "Fantasy 5" game were:


(five, twenty, twenty-four, twenty-six, thirty-four)

Man chops up 53 cacti with machete, costing thousands in damages

An Arizona man is facing criminal charges after taking a machete to cacti in Tempe, causing thousands of dollars in damages.

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Clarence Luke Waite is accused of damaging 53 Mexican fence post cacti under a bridge in the city, according to KNXV-TV.

Waite was arrested and charged with criminal damage Friday after police were called to the scene and saw the destruction to the plants.

City officials estimate Waite caused more than $5,500 in damages, KNXV reported.


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