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Mother furious when people recorded 8-year-old son on fire instead of helping

A mother is furious that people watching her 8-year-old son on fire started recording instead of helping.

>> Read more trending news 

Sanquon King is now listed in critical condition at Grady Memorial Hospital after suffering burns over 38 percent of his body.

The child's mother, Willtrivius King, told WSB-TV adults watched her son frantically running around  Friday evening after he caught fire at Covington Housing Authority Units and did nothing.

Someone shot video of him screaming for help. One woman can be heard barking instructions.

"Lay down in the grass and roll. Lay down in the grass," she said.

The same woman also made a comment to someone who thought what was happening was entertaining.

It’s unclear exactly what happened and how the boy caught on fire.

Nationalism and 4 more political terms to know

President Donald Trump escalated his immigration rhetoric at a midterm rally in Houston, on Monday, accusing Democrats of “encouraging millions of illegal aliens to break our laws, violate our borders and overwhelm our nation.”

>> Read more trending news

He also criticized so-called globalists, declaring, “You know what I am? I’m a nationalist.”

Here’s a quick look at some of the  terms that have been, and still are being, bandied about on the political scene.

Nationalism – Nationalism refers to loyalty to the nation. Nationalism is often reflected in an emphasis on the nation’s culture or other social factors. Some during the 2016 election used the term “white nationalists” to ascribe racist motives to others.

Authoritarian – An authoritarian government is one that favors a concentration of power in a leader or in someone who is not constitutionally responsible to the citizens, yet wields political power.   

Despot – A ruler who has absolute power over every aspect of the lives of his or her subjects.

Fascism – Fascism calls for the needs of the nation be placed above the needs of the individual. A fascist government is centralized and headed by a dictator. Economic and social interactions are regimented and opposition is met with strong reaction from the government’s forces.  

Oligarchy – An oligarchy refers to the rule of a nation by a small group, especially for corrupt and selfish purposes, according to Webster’s Dictionary. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Amy Schumer announces she's pregnant with help of White House journalist Jessica Yellin

Amy Schumer took an unconventional route to announce that she was expecting her first child with her husband, Chris Fischer.

UsWeekly reported that, on Monday, the comedian directed fans to CNN White House correspondent Jessica Yellin’s Instagram page to share the news.

>> Read more trending news 

“About to announce some exciting news on @jessicayellin insta page. Please follow her for up to the minute #newsnotnoise she breaks down what’s really going on,” Schumer said on Instagram. “She agreed to post a lil noise today for me! Follow her and VOTE!!”

The caption went with a Photoshopped image of Schumer and her husband as Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.

On Yellin’s Instagram story, she posted a screenshot of a list of Democratic candidates in the midterm elections.

At the bottom of the list, it read, “I’m pregnant -Amy Schumer.”

This is the first child for Schumer and Fischer. They married in a secret ceremony in February.

University of Utah student Lauren McCluskey killed by ex-boyfriend, police and family say

The man suspected of shooting and killing University of Utah college athlete Lauren McCluskey previously dated the 21-year-old, according to police and a statement released Tuesday by the McCluskey family.

>> Read more trending news 

Police said officers found the suspect, identified as 37-year-old Melvin Rowland, dead early Tuesday of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at a Salt Lake City church.

University officials identified the student who was killed as Lauren McCluskey of Pullman, Washington.

Here are the latest updates:

Update 4:25 p.m. EDT Oct.23: The University of Utah Athletics Department has issued a statement on the murder of  student athlete Lauren McCluskey.

“Everyone associated with our program is devastated by the loss of Lauren,” head coach Kyle Kepler said in a statement Tuesday afternoon.

“There are no words to express the emotions and grief we are experiencing right now,” Kepler said.

“Lauren was a wonderful person, an excellent student and a dedicated member of our track and field team,” he said.

“She showed a relentless drive to improve every day over the last three and a half years and was also kind and supportive of her teammates. Those are just some of the reasons why her loss has hit us so hard.”

Update 12:10 p.m. EDT Oct. 23: University of Utah police Chief Dale Brophy confirmed at a news conference Tuesday that McCluskey filed a police report against Rowland just over a week before her death.

Citing the ongoing investigation, Brophy declined to detail the report, which was made on Oct. 12, with some follow-up from police on Oct. 13.

“All we know at this point (is) they had a prior relationship and it ended,” Brophy said.

McCluskey’s mother, Jill McCluskey, said in a statement to news stations that her daughter dated Rowland for about a month after he lied to the college student about his age and criminal history. Officials said Rowland was a registered sex offender. Jill McCluskey said her daughter’s relationship with Rowland ended on Oct. 9.

Brophy said police got a call around 8:30 p.m. Monday from Jill McCluskey, who worried something might be wrong with her daughter after she abruptly cut off their conversation. Officers were immediately dispatched and investigators found Lauren McCluskey dead in her car. 

Authorities later learned that the shooter, identified as Rowland, had gotten a ride off campus. Brophy said Tuesday that officers had spoken with the person who gave Rowland a ride, although it was not immediately clear whether the person knew of the shooting before picking up the 37-year-old. Brophy said the person was not in custody Tuesday.

Rowland was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound early Tuesday morning after a brief chase by officers with the Salt Lake City Police Department.

Authorities continue to investigate.

Update 9:55 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: In a statement released to KUTV and KSL, McCluskey’s family members said they were on the phone with the 21-year-old as she was heading to her apartment from school on Monday night.

“Suddenly, I heard her yell, ‘No, no, no!’” said her mother, identified by KSL as Jill McCluskey. “I thought she might have been in a car accident. That was the last I heard from her. … In a few minutes, a young woman picked up the phone and said all of Lauren’s things were on the ground.”

University of Utah police Lt. Brian Wahlin told KSTU that McCluskey had a prior relationship with Rowland. Family members told KUTV and KSL that she had dated Rowland for about a month.

Family members said McCluskey had previously complained to University of Utah police that she was being harassed by Rowland. 

They described her as a star athlete and an outstanding student set to graduate in May 2019.

"She loved to sing and had strength and determination," family members told KUTV and KSL. "She was dearly loved and will be greatly missed."

Update 7:44 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: Mark Harlan, athletics director for the University of Utah, issued the following statement Tuesday morning about McCluskey, a member of the school’s track and field team:

“Last night, the University of Utah lost one of our own,” the statement began. “Senior track standout Lauren McCluskey was tragically killed in a senseless act. This news has shaken not only myself but our entire University of Utah athletics family to its core. We have university counselors and psychologists on standby to support Lauren’s teammates, coaches and friends. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family and all of those dear to her.”

>> See the tweet here

Update 7:20 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: The University of Utah has identified the student who was shot and killed on campus Monday night.

Lauren McCluskey of Pullman, Washington, was a senior communication major and member of the school’s track and field team, university President Ruth V. Watkins said in a statement Tuesday morning.

A vigil will be held in her honor at 5 p.m. MDT Wednesday, the statement said.

Watkins also included the following details about the shooting:

“The police investigation is still underway, but here is a brief overview of what happened last night. Around 8:20 p.m., university police received a report of a possible abduction in a parking lot outside a residence hall. Police responded and as they searched the area, they discovered Lauren deceased in a parked car near the south tower of the Medical Plaza, a residential hall on campus.

“Police issued a secure-in-place order for campus as they searched for a suspect. That order remained in effect until just before midnight, after police determined the suspect had left the area. He was later found deceased at an off-campus location.”

Read the full statement here.

Update 4:26 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: Police said Melvin Rowland, the suspect in the shooting death of a University of Utah student, has died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, KSL and KUTV are reporting.

Authorities said Rowland “forced entry to the Trinity AME Church on 600 S after a foot pursuit, then shot himself,” KUTV’s Bronagh Tumulty tweeted early Tuesday.

>> See the tweet here

Update 4:09 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: Police have located Melvin Rowland, the suspect in the shooting death of a University of Utah student, the school tweeted early Tuesday.

>> See the tweet here

Officials did not release any further details, but area news outlets reported a large police presence outside Trinity AME Church in Salt Lake City.

>> See a video from the scene here

Previous report: A homicide suspect is at large after a University of Utah student was shot and killed on campus, police said Monday night.

According to the Salt Lake Tribune, university police received several reports of an argument followed by gunfire around 9 p.m. MDT. Once at the scene, authorities found a woman dead in a car.

Police identified the suspect as Melvin Rowland, 37, a 250-pound, 6-foot-3 black male wearing a white hoodie, black pants, white shoes and a gray beanie. Officials said Rowland, a convicted sex offender, fled the scene on foot.

>> See his photo here

The campus was placed on lockdown as police searched for Rowland, KSL reported. The university lifted the lockdown at 11:47 p.m. MDT Monday, tweeting that police believed Rowland had left the campus. The school also canceled all Tuesday classes.

>> See the tweet here

Read more here or here.

6 children dead, 12 sick in viral outbreak at NJ rehabilitation center

Six children have died, and 12 others have become sick as part of an adenovirus outbreak at a rehabilitation center in New Jersey, state health officials said Tuesday.

>> Read more trending news

Officials said they had confirmed 18 cases of adenovirus among pediatric residents at the Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation in Haskell. Six of the cases were fatal.

According to the rehabilitation center’s website, the Wanaque Center works with “medically fragile children,” from newborns to people who are 22 years old.

“Unfortunately, the particular strain of adenovirus (#7) in this outbreak is affecting medically fragile children with severely compromised immune systems,” New Jersey Department of Health officials said Tuesday. “The strain has been particularly associated with disease in communal living arrangements and can be more severe.”

Adenovirus is typically spread through close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands with an infected person, in the air through coughing or sneezing, or by touching an object or surface with adenoviruses on it and then touching one’s mouth, nose or eyes before washing hands, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

New Jersey health officials said an inspection team found “minor handwashing deficiencies” during a check of the facility Sunday.

In a statement obtained by WABC, Wanaque Center administrator Rowena Bautista said staff members notified government agencies, including the New Jersey Department of Health and the CDC, after determining that the facility was in the midst of an adenovirus outbreak.

“The Wanaque Center continues to fully cooperate with these agencies and has sought out their medical guidance with respect to the virus,” she said. “As a result, facility staff have diligently implemented all available infection control and prevention measures in order to protect the health and safety of the Wanaque Center's residents."

According to the CDC, adenoviruses can cause a wide range of illnesses that typically range from mild to severe, though severe cases are less common. People with weakened immune systems or respiratory or cardiac diseases are at higher risk of developing severe illnesses from an infection of adenovirus.

New Jersey Department of Health officials said Tuesday that employees of Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation have been instructed not to admit any new patients until after the outbreak ends.

'Most Stuf Oreos' coming in 2019, will have the most filling ever

After weeks of speculation and rumors, Oreo has confirmed it is coming out with Most Stuf cookies, which will have the most creme filling of any Oreos.

People reported the company will have the cookies in stores by early 2019.  

>> Read more trending news 

Before the announcement, Oreos had Mega Stuf Oreos, which were released around 2013. 

The details of the new Oreos -- including exactly how much creme will be in the center -- haven’t been released. According to People, Oreo said it would be giving out free items to some fans to celebrate the new product. Those items have not been announced.

Broncos backup QB Chad Kelly arrested on criminal trespass charge

Denver Broncos backup quarterback Chad Kelly was arrested early Tuesday on a charge of first-degree criminal trespass, KDVR reported.

>> Read more trending news 

According to a release from the Englewood Police Department, officers were called to a house at 1:17 a.m. when a man later identified as Kelly was standing outside the residence. While officers were en route, the man entered the house.

According to an arrest affidavit, one of the homeowners, a 25-year-old woman, was sitting on a couch while holding her young child when Kelly entered uninvited and sat down next to her, mumbling incoherently.

The woman asked for help from another resident, who hit Kelly in the upper back with an aluminum vacuum tube and forced him out of the residence, according to the arrest affidavit.

After viewing security video, police found Kelly, 24, inside a black SUV in front of a theater near the woman’s residence, KDVR reported.

The man identified himself to officers as Kelly, the television station reported.

“We’re going to look into this and look into it very seriously,” Broncos general manager John Elway said in a radio interview Tuesday afternoon. “The charges are very, very serious and we understand that so we will look into this and then make decisions as we go.”

Kelly made an appearance in an Arapahoe County courtroom later Tuesday morning. He posted a $2,500 bond and is due back in court on Wednesday.Kelly is the nephew of Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Kelly. He was drafted with the final pick of the 2017 NFL draft out of the University of Mississippi. He played high school in western New York, the Buffalo News reported.

"We are disappointed that Chad Kelly was arrested early this morning," the Broncos said in a statement. "Our organization has been in contact with Chad and we are in the process of gathering more information."

Kelly has played in one game this season.

Fort Bragg soldier accused of snatching girl he met online

A soldier stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, has been charged after a 12-year-old girl was snatched from her bedroom and a ransom note left in her place. 

James Murdoch Peele, 19, was arrested Sunday night in Fayetteville, where he was found with the girl. He has been charged with first-degree burglary and first-degree statutory rape, Craven County Sheriff Jerry Monette said during a Monday news conference

Additional charges -- including one of kidnapping -- are likely to be filed against Peele, and those may include military charges, the sheriff said. The Army Times reported that Peele is a paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne Division. 

Federal charges could also apply if Peele crossed state lines with the girl. Fayetteville is about an hour from the South Carolina state line. 

>>Read more trending news

The Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call around 6 a.m. Sunday from the girl’s grandmother, who had gone into the girl’s room to find the window open and a ransom note on the bed, Monette said. Detectives responded to the grandmother’s home, located in the Carolina Pines area of Craven County, about two hours from Fayetteville and Fort Bragg. 

State and federal agents were immediately brought into the investigation. That included agents from the FBI’s Cellular Analysis Survey Team, which Monette said was a particular boon to the investigative team.

“That is a cellphone tracking unit that was very beneficial to us in helping us resolve this case and locate this missing juvenile,” Monette said.

The ransom note found on the girl’s bed may have been put there to throw investigators off the real reason the girl was taken. Monette indicated Monday that Peele met the girl online, and the Army Times reported that investigators began looking at Peele as a potential suspect because he and the girl were Facebook friends.  

“Now, I will tell you that this case is relevant to internet chat rooms and conversations, and we want to make people specifically aware that you need to try to be on top of what’s going on with your child’s chat information, on computers and also cellphones,” Monette said. “We’re living in a generation now where our young people are so much more literate and computer-savvy than the adults are.”

Monette, who said the girl’s online friendship with Peele came as a shock to her family, said that in 2018, parents and guardians cannot respect their children’s privacy online. 

“There are those out there that would seek to take advantage of our children,” the sheriff said. “Many are deviant. Their intent and purpose are not for good things.”

See the news conference with Craven County Sheriff’s Office authorities below.

The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, the FBI, the U.S. Army CID, the U.S. Secret Service, the Craven County District Attorney’s Office and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children were among the agencies participating in the hunt for Peele and the missing girl. Local law enforcement agencies across multiple states were also involved in the search. 

“The coordination between all of the law enforcement agencies was exceptional,” Monette said. “Our communication divisions got busy with the Amber Alert. They did a phenomenal job working with our folks and hand-in-hand, they were able to resolve this in a timely fashion, before something could have befallen this young lady.”

Peele was returned to Craven County Monday and booked into the county jail in New Bern. 

Utah state senator films himself trying marijuana for first time

A Utah state senator turned over a new leaf Saturday.

>> Read more trending news 

Jim Dabakis (D-Salt Lake) drove to Las Vegas and tried marijuana, filming himself on Facebook outside a dispensary, KUTV reported. Dabakis said he wanted to try cannabis before Proposition 2, which would legalize medical marijuana in Utah, comes up for debate in a special legislative session, and then a vote on Nov. 6, the television station reported.

“Until this moment, I was a marijuana virgin,” Dabakis wrote on Facebook. “Ending that now. At least one legislator ought to try the stuff before we change the law!”

In the video, Dabakis explains he went into the dispensary and spent $30 for edible marijuana that looked like a gummy bear. Following instructions to cut the tangerine-flavored gummy bear in half, the legislator popped it into his mouth.

“Here it goes, I am going to try it,” Dabakis said in the video.

Dabakis said there wasn’t much of a taste at first.

“I wouldn’t recommend it as sheer candy; it’s kind of bitter,” Dabakis said in the video. “I will not be bringing the rest of this to Utah, believe me.”

In an interview with KUTV on Monday, Dabakis said he was on a fact-finding mission.

“It dawned on me Wednesday on the floor of the Senate that the Legislature is going to have the final say on this medical marijuana," Dabakis said. “I thought, 'Maybe nobody on this floor has ever tried marijuana.'”

Dabakis said he supports Proposition 2 and believes if it does not pass, his fellow legislators will defeat medical marijuana legislation in Utah.

“If the people vote 'no' now, they are going to go ‘Well, the people voted 'no' so we’re not going to pass this,'" Dabakis said.

Former Georgia choir teacher accused of sexual battery against student

A former high school chorus teacher is facing charges of sexually assaulting a student.

Ryan Parker McKendrick, 36, was arrested Saturday on charges of sexual battery against a child under the age of 16, sexual assault while a teacher, attempted sexual exploitation of a child and tampering with evidence, as well as four counts of distributing obscene material.

>> Read more trending news 

McKendrick resigned his post as director of the Woodstock High School chorus and orchestra on Oct. 15, according to the Cherokee County School District. He had been employed with the district since 2007.

He is the third metro Atlanta teacher to be accused of sexual misconduct involving a child in the last month. Two teachers, one employed with the DeKalb County School District and the other a music instructor who gave lessons out of his home, were found dead after the allegations were brought to light. Authorities said both men appear to have killed themselves.

Related: Teacher accused of sexually abusing sixth-grade boy found dead

“The Cherokee County School District takes the safety and security of our students very seriously,” district spokeswoman Barbara Jacoby said. “After conducting an immediate investigation into allegations of inappropriate and unprofessional conduct, our CCSD School Police Department filed charges against the former teacher. We want all students, parents and staff to know that inappropriate behavior by staff toward students will not be tolerated.” 

According to an arrest warrant obtained by, over a period of two years McKendrick allegedly inappropriately touched a girl on multiple occasions while she was in his class. The student took McKendrick’s class from fall 2016 to spring 2018, during her freshman and sophomore years.

Related: Piano teacher accused of child molestation found dead in jail cell

In incidents as recent as September, McKendrick is accused of showing a student an obscene photo of a sex act while the student was in his office. He also allegedly asked a student to take nude photos of the student’s friend and  jokingly suggested he would pay for them.

“We appreciate those who reported these allegations,” Jacoby said, directing others to report such behavior to school police or administrators. 

McKendrick was arrested by Roswell police and was briefly held in the county jail before he posted a $34,306 bond, a Cherokee Sheriff’s Office spokesman said. 

As conditions of his bond, McKendrick must remain under house arrest and cannot contact anyone with the district or anyone under the age of 18, except his own children. He may have supervised visits with his children if another adult is present, court records show.

Photos: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry tour Australia

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex began their 16-day tour of Australia and the South Pacific on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018.

2018 Midterms: Who is Stacey Abrams, candidate for Georgia governor?

“An engine revved behind her, and she could hear the hiss of a power window sliding down its pane of glass. With instinct born of experience, she dodged between two buildings as the pop of a silencer registered its fury. Glass shattered and sprayed the ground, shards tinkling in the quiet morning. A second shot was fired, and she could feel the bullet pierce skin, singe flesh.”

That harrowing chase scene comes from the 2006 novel “Hidden Sins,” one of eight romance suspense books by Selena Montgomery, who has sold more than 100,000 copies and will likely draw even more attention if she wins a certain election in November. Montgomery is the pen name for Stacey Abrams, a Democrat better known as the former Georgia House minority leader, entrepreneur and whip smart tax attorney who has jumped into the spotlight as the candidate who just might turn conservative Georgia blue.

Related: Midterm 2018: What should you do if you are denied the right to vote? Here are some tips.

With a victory on Election Day, Abrams would become the nation’s first black female governor, though her sights were not always set on politics. Growing up, she was so captivated by James Bond movies and “General Hospital” that she dreamed of becoming a bestselling spy novelist. She finished her first novel while at Yale Law School.

Abrams is now focusing full-time on her groundbreaking campaign. Yet storytelling, she said, remains central. She said it helps her connect with voters and clearly communicate her platform to expand Medicaid, bolster public schools and support small businesses. Like writers, Abrams said, successful politicians must have empathy.

“Storytelling is absolutely a necessary part of how you do politics,” Abrams, 44, said in an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “because people need to understand that you get their story and that you can explain complicated ideas to them in ways that resonate, especially if it is not their own story.”

Lost and found

Last month, Abrams showcased those skills in a cavernous ballroom in Columbus. She was the featured speaker at the “True Blue Gala,” a fundraiser for the Muscogee County Democratic Committee. A band performed Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me” as the guests — many who wore blue gowns in keeping with the theme of the event — dined on beef Burgundy. Abrams stood atop a platform festooned with red, white and blue bunting. This was her territory. Hillary Clinton handily won Muscogee in the 2016 presidential election.

For the next 30 minutes, Abrams played off the theme of lost and found, employing metaphors, detailed personal anecdotes and old-fashioned red meat for her supporters. First, she poked fun at herself for getting lost on her way to speak at the same gala six years ago.

Related: ELECTION 2018: Inside the Georgia governor’s race 

Related: ABRAMS & KEMP ON: SpendingEducationTransportationSocial issues

“It turns out,” she said, “I am not the only one who has been lost for a while — because we are a state that is a little bit lost. We are driving in the direction of prosperity, but unfortunately, we have left some folks out of the car. And a lot of times, we are only heading in one direction and we aren’t following the signs.”

The daughter of United Methodist ministers, Abrams bemoaned Georgia’s double-digit poverty and maternal mortality rates and its loss of many rural hospitals. Her listeners enthusiastically signaled their support for her as she spoke — “Yes!” “Um-hum!” and “All right!” —  almost as if they were in church responding to a pastor’s sermon.

“So we have the responsibility not only to acknowledge that we are lost, but now it is time for us to be found,” Abrams said.

She closed with a vivid story about growing up in Mississippi. Because her family had only one car, her father would walk or hitchhike home from the shipyard where he worked in Pascagoula. One cold and rainy night, Abrams’ mother grew worried about him, so she and her children piled into their car and went looking for him on U.S. 90. They spotted him on the side of the road, without a coat, wet and shivering. He told them he had given his coat to a homeless man on the beach.

“He is still shivering a little bit,” Abrams recalled about her father, “but he looks at us with this look that tells us about being lost and being found and he says, ‘Look, I came upon the man on the beach and I gave him my coat because he was alone and I knew that when I left him there, he would still be alone. But I could give him my coat because I knew you were coming for me.’ So Muscogee County Democrats, if we stand together on Nov. 6, we are coming for Georgia.”

Becoming a writer

Asked how she got into writing, Abrams said she was literally surrounded by books when she was a kid. The second of six children, she was born in Madison, Wisconsin, while her mother studied for her graduate degree in library science at the University of Wisconsin. Abrams attended kindergarten at William Carey University in Mississippi, where her mother served as the university librarian. When school was over, Abrams would come to her mother’s library and sleep among the books. She began reading chapter books at age 4 and spent only a few weeks in first grade before she was promoted to second grade, said her mother, Carolyn Abrams.

“Sometimes, Stacey’s precociousness got her in a little trouble. Even in kindergarten she got in trouble for writing in cursive instead of in print,” said Carolyn Abrams, who lives with her husband, Robert Abrams, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. “In 10th grade, before we moved to Atlanta, we had to go over to her school because she had sort of gone on strike and refused to participate in class. And when we got to the bottom of it, it was because the teacher said her vocabulary was too advanced and that she needed to tone it down.”

Abrams’ oldest sister, Andrea Abrams, helped her learn to read when they played school together. Andrea remembers the two sneaking into their mother’s collection of romance novels.

“I remember we got caught at church when my mother found the books hidden in our purse when we were in the choir,” said Andrea Abrams, an author who teaches anthropology at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky. “That was one of the first things Stacey and I really shared — was sneaking and sharing romance novels with each other. We both kind of had a dream of being romance novel writers. And she got there first.”

Abrams reveals more about her childhood and teenage years in a nonfiction book she published this year. A cross between a memoir and a how-to book, it is entitled “Minority Leader: How to Lead from the Outside and Make Real Change.” In it, Abrams writes that at age 18, she mapped out her life for the next 40 years in a spreadsheet. Heartbroken at the time by a breakup with her boyfriend, she set to work outlining her goals: become a bestselling spy novelist, a millionaire corporate leader and Atlanta’s mayor, all by the age of 35.

Further, Abrams critically weighs in her memoir how others view her. She may be considered “sloppy and unkempt,” she writes, because she is curvy and keeps her hair natural instead of pressing it. She adds that because she is unmarried some may see her as a lesbian, though she discloses one of her goals is to fall in love with the man of her dreams and have two children.

Abrams wants to eventually get back to her writing. In her memoir, she reveals she has other books in the works, including a “teenage amnesiac superhero story, a kids’ book about the mishaps of a nine-year-old alien, a finished legal thriller awaiting edits, and a final Selena Montgomery story to wrap up a trilogy.”

‘I have lived a real life’

In March, Abrams released financial disclosure forms that laid bare her challenges: She owed $54,000 to the Internal Revenue Service and about $170,000 in credit card and student loan debt. Her Republican opponent, Secretary of State Brian Kemp, has blasted Abrams for loaning her campaign $50,000 while owing taxes, saying: “If that’s not criminal, it should be.”

Abrams deferred her tax payments in 2015 and 2016, according to her campaign, and entered into a payment plan with the IRS because she was helping her family. Abrams said she financially supported her parents after Hurricane Katrina damaged their home and the church where her mother worked. Her mother and father — the latter of whom has required treatment for prostate cancer — have taken in Abrams’ 92-year-old maternal grandmother, who fell and broke her back. They also adopted their 12-year-old granddaughter, Faith. They took in Faith because their son, Walter, and his wife were addicted to drugs and lost custody of her.

>> Read more trending news 

Abrams said she has paid her 2016 taxes. And the $150,000 advance she got for her memoir, she said, made it possible for her to loan her campaign money. Her campaign, she added, has paid her back.

“You may have heard a little bit about my personal debt. That’s because I have lived a real life,” she said at the Democratic gala in Columbus last month. “I have had to take care of my parents and my niece and my grandmother. But I have never shirked my responsibilities.”

Abrams has also faced criticism for refusing to reveal the names of donors who contributed $12.5 million to a pair of nonprofit, tax-exempt foundations she created to increase voter participation — and that paid her almost $500,000. Questions have been raised about whether the effort was a ploy to boost Abrams’ profile and introduce her to wealthy donors now bankrolling her gubernatorial bid. She has defended the groups’ work registering and mobilizing Georgia voters.

Related: 2018 Midterms: Who is Brian Kemp, candidate for Georgia governor?

Her bid for statewide office has been, in a sense, head-spinning. In the Democratic primary, she was cast by her rival as too willing to compromise with Republicans over landmark legislation such as the Hope scholarship overhaul. In the general election, Kemp and his allies have painted her as an “extremist,” “radical” and too liberal for Georgia.

She’s tried to thread that needle, emphasizing her pragmatic streak working with Republicans while also highlighting her progressive stance on debates over abortion and guns. And at the center of her campaign is a pledge to expand Medicaid, a proposal she believes is now firmly in the mainstream.

But for some Abrams critics, the problem comes down to simple politics.

“Some of the ideas she has are just a little, I wouldn’t say extreme, but they’re a little out of touch with what I view,” said Logan Waldrop, a 19-year-old junior at the University of Georgia. “She’s wanting to increase government spending. That kind of goes against what I believe.”

Walter’s story

When Abrams talks about what she would do as governor she occasionally shares her younger brother Walter’s story, saying expanding Medicaid would help people like him, a heroin addict living in Mississippi. When Walter first landed behind bars in 2014, he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, a disease that can cause sudden and extreme mood swings. In prison, he sobered up and was stabilized with medication. But when he was released from prison, he lost his health coverage and access to medicine and struggled to find a job and a home. Relapsing, he went behind bars again.

“This is personal for me. I have a younger brother who is bipolar and who is also a heroin addict,” Abrams said at a campaign stop last month in Plains, Georgia, where former President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter stood by her side.

“And he is in and out of the criminal justice system because he lives in a state that like Georgia refused to expand Medicaid. Expansion of Medicaid saves lives. It also saves dollars and it makes our states healthier.”

Days earlier, Abrams delivered a similar message about expanding Medicaid at a campaign stop in the shadow of Grady Memorial Hospital. Alexis Dunn, an Emory University nursing professor from McDonough, showed up to support her, drawn by Abrams’ focus on health care.

“She just has a platform that feels real — that actually seems like it is going to address some actual issues — with a realistic plan to accomplish those things,” said Dunn, a nurse midwife. “One of the key things to being a good writer is clarity of thought. And you can tell that she thinks about a lot of things and she knows how to put things together and present it in a way that people understand.”

Greg Bluestein with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.

New Orleans police respond 17 hours after woman reports break-in

A New Orleans woman is angry that police took nearly 17 hours to respond after she reported that a man broke into her house and stole her car, WDSU reported.

>> Read more trending news 

Christie Thomas said that according to her surveillance camera, someone entered from the home’s back door at 5 a.m. Saturday, stole some belongings and took the car keys off the counter, the television station reported.

She reported the theft at 9 a.m. Saturday. The New Orleans Police Department said it sent a unit to her home around 1:40 a.m. Sunday, WDSU reported.

"(An )hour passed (after calling police). Well you know, I said they might be busy, even though it's a Saturday morning. I don't hear any crime, I'm looking at the news," Thomas told WWL. “Seventeen hours later, the doorbell finally rings. It's a new recruit and a field training officer.

"Two officers came to the door. ‘Oh! You called 911.’And I was like, ‘I did. Saturday at 9. It's Sunday morning almost 2 a.m., but yeah, I did call.’”

New Orleans police said Thomas’ call was classified as Code 1, which is not a high priority, WWL reported.

Police Department spokesman Gary Sheets said in a statement that “All emergencies and in-progress calls receives an immediate high-priority response. Emergencies impacting human life will always take precedent.

“Non-emergency calls and report calls will have a higher wait time.”

Thomas said she understood that her call was not a high priority, but said a 17-hour wait was unacceptable.

"What's going to motivate me to stay here and continue to pay taxes?” Thomas told WWL. “This will not.”

2018 Midterms: Who is Brian Kemp, candidate for Georgia governor?

Growing up, Brian Kemp spent days working on a farm outside Athens. Getting trampled by a 750-pound bovine in the cattle chute didn’t faze young Kemp, recalls his friend Mitch Malcolm. And when a pregnant cow died one freezing Christmas Eve, Kemp and Malcolm labored in the sleet for hours to pull the calf. It survived.

Kemp has held elected office for roughly 12 of the last 16 years but as he travels the state campaigning for governor, he is using those “everyman” credentials to win over voters.

Related: Midterm 2018: What should you do if you are denied the right to vote? Here are some tips.

“He understands the hardships of making payroll,” said Malcolm, who would go on to work as a developer with Kemp. “Work would start about 7 a.m. Brian’s the guy who’s going to be there at 5:30 in the morning.”

Nobody’s going to outwork Brian Kemp.”

Casey Cagle learned that the hard way. Earlier this year, the lieutenant governor appeared to have the GOP nomination for governor in the bag. But with the help of a series of controversial ads — and an embarrassing covert recording of Cagle - the 54-year-old secured President Donald Trump’s endorsement and rode the latest anti-establishment wave to an upset win.

Now Kemp, a married father of three daughters, meets Democrat Stacey Abrams in the Nov. 6 contest to succeed two-term Gov. Nathan Deal. Polls have shown that despite Georgia’s strongly conservative leanings, the race is tight.

“We had to try to survive”

On a recent bus tour around the state, Kemp focused on topics like combating gang violence, boosting teacher pay and rural hospital tax credits, and increasing school safety. Long gone are two stars of the primary season ads: Kemp’s gun collection and “Jake,” the fictitious suitor of one of Kemp’s daughters, who notes with a gulp that he has a “healthy respect for the Second Amendment.” Those ads — which showed Kemp brandishing a shotgun and bragging of using his pickup truck to round up “criminal illegals” — won Kemp scores of critics. But Trump supporters loved his embrace of the politically incorrect. “Yep, I just said that,” he says with a lopsided grin.

During his recent stump speech -- delivered from an actual stump -- at Appalachian Gun, Pawn & Range in Jasper, Kemp told supporters “to get some gas in that chain saw, get your ax and mattock out and keep choppin’ wood.” At a stop in Ellijay, the secretary of state mentioned firearms only after prompting from the crowd.

“I started with a pickup truck, a shovel and a toolbox,” he said, laying out his small business bona fides.

“Your gun, too!” a supporter interjected.

“I had a gun in there, as well as a chain saw,” Kemp said to applause.

Related: ELECTION 2018: Inside the Georgia governor’s race Related: ABRAMS & KEMP ON: SpendingEducationTransportationSocial issues

In fact, he had to save up a while for the chain saw during the early days of his construction career, he said in an interview after one of his tour stops.

“I built two spec houses and then I started another one, and I couldn’t sell any of them,” he said. “I almost didn’t make it through all of that. Marty and I were living in a house in a little subdivision. So I finally told her one day, look, if we’re gonna go broke we might as well change our luck, move in one of the spec houses and see if maybe that’ll help it sell.”

The strategy worked, but it meant moving again after less than a month. Then again. And again.

“We were trying to sell everything we had to try to survive,” Kemp said.

Finally, they put down some roots. Wheels, actually.

“I bought a demo double wide mobile home and set it up and told her, ‘We’ll just live here a year to see how we like it,’” Kemp said. “Three years later we were still there.”

When their first child, Jarrett, now 19, was on the way, Marty Kemp told her husband: “You better start building me a house.’”

“I know first-hand how hard it is to start a business,” he said. “Those first few years are rough. I was working, literally, seven days a week to pay the bank and pay my bills and survive.”

>> Read more trending news 

Kemp has done well since those early days. He’s amassed a net worth of more than $5 million, mostly through real estate investments, records show.

But as his wealth has soared, some of his investments have gone sour. He is embroiled in a lawsuit over a loan he personally guaranteed for a now-struggling agricultural business. Legal papers show he promised to cover about $10 million in loans for Hart AgStrong.

Kemp is being sued by a Toccoa businessman who says he invested in the Bowersville-based canola processor at Kemp’s urging and was never paid back the $500,000 he’s owed. Kemp’s campaign has downplayed the significance of the suit, filed against him saying he was just one of several investors in the company.

“He’s a rock”

A fourth-generation University of Georgia graduate, Kemp would probably bleed red and black if you stuck him with a hatpin. Business and farming runs through his family tree more so than politics, with some notable exceptions.

His grandfather, the late Julian H. Cox Sr., and father-in-law, the late Bob Argo, were Georgia legislators. His forebears include Revolutionary War Major John Habersham, a member of the board of trustees that established UGA, and Joseph Habersham (for whom Habersham County is named), who was Savannah’s mayor in the 1790s and George Washington’s appointed postmaster general.

People who have known him the longest have two things in common. They pronounce his name with one syllable - Brine - and repeatedly use the word “solid.”

“There’s no other friend I’ve ever had who’s as solid as Brian,” said Daniel Dooley, son of University of Georgia coaching legend Vince Dooley and brother of Derek Dooley, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at the University of Missouri. “Brian would go on vacations with us. He was like the other brother.”

Dooley was famous for getting the boys up and out at the crack of dark for fishing trips, then monitoring their progress until he deemed their haul sufficient.

“When you fish with Dad, he can take anything that’s supposed to be fun and turn it into a job,” the younger Dooley mused.

Kemp didn’t mind the rigor. He and Daniel Dooley played football together for the acclaimed late Coach Billy Henderson at Clarke Central High School and lived together their final year at UGA, where Kemp majored in agriculture.

“I had to get out of the group I was living with. I needed more structure,” Dooley said. “He was like Mother Hubbard.”

After school, Kemp married Marty Argo and the two have been together for 24 years. Their other daughters are Lucy, 17, and Amy Porter, 16.

His own parents divorced when he was 13. Kemp’s sister, 11 at the time, remembers her older brother helping her weather the transition.

“We didn’t see our dad a lot,” Julie Kemp Rief said. Their mother and stepfather still live in Athens and their father, William L. Kemp II, who worked in real estate and finance, died in 2006. At the end, Rief said, “We weren’t that close but we were there. That was bittersweet.”

Once again, she leaned on her brother.

“Brian was always there. He’s a rock,” she said. “Family is first. When his three girls were all in high school they were all playing basketball. It didn’t matter if he was down in Tifton for the day. He would make sure he was going to be back home in Athens to make that basketball game.”

A Political Awakening

In Athens, Kemp quickly emerged as a civic leader. Doc Eldridge had just been elected a county commissioner when he learned that the Athens Rape Crisis Center’s building was a dilapidated wreck.

Eldridge turned to someone he thought could get things moving: Kemp.

“They showed up one Saturday with men and women, subs, trucks, materials,” said Eldridge of Kemp and his fellow Athens Area Home Builders members. “We brought that building up to code. It would not have happened so quickly had it not been for Brian Kemp and the home builders.”

“He was reasonable, he would listen,” said Eldridge, who was elected as a Democrat and later switched to the Republican party. “I found him to be very level-headed and he would always follow through on what he told me he was going to do.”

But as a home builder and developer, Kemp clashed repeatedly with county commission over zoning regulations, spurring an interest in politics. He launched a run for the state Senate seat, brashly challenging a Democratic incumbent at a time when that party ruled the state. The bet would pay off. Kemp was swept into office in 2002 as part of a GOP landslide in Georgia.

In 2006 he ran unsuccessfully for state agriculture commissioner. He’s been secretary of state since 2010.

Former Secretary of State Lewis Massey was Kemp’s Lambda Chi Alpha initiation advisor in college, and has a unique memento from their shared time there: a Bible signed by Kemp and his fellow pledges from the fall of 1982.

“In grateful appreciation of his guidance and instruction of our lives through one of the most reflective and meaningful quests of our lives,” reads the inscription.

“I distinctly remember Brian was a no-nonsense guy. He was serious and very committed,” said Massey, a Democrat who ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1998. “At one of the chapter meetings, I remember Brian saying, ‘As a fraternity we’re either advancing forward or going backward.’ I remember thinking, as a college student, that was pretty insightful.”

Related: Midterms: Who is Stacey Abrams, candidate for Georgia governor?

Like Kemp, Massey became Georgia’s secretary of state initially by appointment; the late Zell Miller tapped him for the position after Max Cleland left to run for retiring Sam Nunn’s seat in the U.S. Senate. Former Gov. Sonny Perdue, now serving as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, appointed Kemp when Karen Handel stepped down to run for governor. She is now a congresswoman representing Georgia’s Sixth District.

When Kemp was being considered for the post, he connected with his college-days advisor.

“He’s the exact opposite of a know-it-all,” Massey said. “He’s a smart guy but knows that he needs advice along the way.”

As secretary of state, Kemp is credited with implementing a new online voter registration system and mobile apps that helped hundreds of thousands of Georgians become new voters.

But critics say he also launched voter fraud investigations as a way to suppress minority voting, a claim he rejects. Kemp was at the helm when a massive data breach released the Social Security numbers and other private information of more than 6 million voters to 12 organizations, including state political parties and news media. He blamed a clerical error, fired an IT staffer and offered credit monitoring.

Additionally, The AJC has reported that he’s raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from the same people he regulates.

That gives someone like Sasha Benefield pause.

“I don’t think he’s representative of Georgia,” the 20-year-old political science major at Clayton State University said.

“I also feel that he’s very aggressive and doesn’t reflect the need for expansion of Medicaid and the need to just overall help Georgia. I think it’s more of like ‘Hey, let’s help Georgia’s industries’ rather than ‘Let’s help Georgia’s people.’”

Kemp and his supporters argue it is Abrams who is out of touch. While singer John Legend and rapper Yung Joc have lent their talents to Abrams’ campaign, Kemp has played up his rural roots. At the end of every campaign stop, he brings his daughter and bus driver in for comic relief.

“How we doin’ on fuel?” Kemp would shout, prompting the dire deadpan that the rig was running on fumes. Cue Lucy Kemp, who gamely carried a plastic diesel can turned donation bucket as a prop. Kemp reminded every audience that while he was spending time in places like Rhine (population about 400), Abrams was fundraising in New York or San Francisco.

“Let people know that we took the time to come to this community,” Kemp said. “We want Georgians to decide this election, not Nancy Pelosi. Not Elizabeth Warren. Not Maxine Waters.”

Vivian Childs of Warner Robins came to Kemp’s Houston County stop and says she’s voting for him to keep Georgia on the path it’s on.

“Georgia, to me, right now is winning. You never change the momentum when things are going in your favor,” she said.

2nd arrest made in shooting death of NC state trooper

Authorities have arrested a second person in connection to the shooting death last week of a North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper.

Trooper Kevin K. Conner was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop on U.S. 701 near Sellers Town Road in Columbus County, officials said. Authorities have arrested two men in connection with the shooting, 20-year-old Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis and Chauncy Askew, 18.

>> Read more trending news 

Update 12:40 p.m. EDT Oct. 23: At a news conference Tuesday, Columbus County District Attorney Jon David confirmed that officials in Loris, South Carolina, arrested 18-year-old Chauncy Askew earlier in the day in connection to Conner’s death.

“Our evidence today conclusively shows that there were two people in the truck at the time that Kevin Conner made that fateful stop, and both of them are now in custody,” David said. “So the public should rest assured that the folks responsible for this matter are in custody.”

Askew remained jailed in South Carolina on Tuesday. David said he would be extradited to North Carolina to face charges.

Authorities previously arrested Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis, 20, in connection to the case.

“Now, who will enjoy what level of responsibility and who will be charged with what remains to be seen,” David said.

Authorities continue to investigate.

Update 11:20 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: The Columbus County District Attorney's Office said in a statement Tuesday that a second suspect has been arrested in the shooting death of Conner. District Attorney Jon David planned a news conference on Tuesday to provide more information.

Additional details were not immediately available.

Update 10:50 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: Authorities arrested 20-year-old Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis in connection with the murder of North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper Kevin K. Conner.

Conner was shot and killed early Wednesday while conducting a traffic stop in the southeastern part of the state, according to the Department of Public Safety.

Update 12:25 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: Following the shooting, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper shared a statement on the loss of Trooper Conner:

"The tragic loss of Trooper Kevin Conner of the NC State Highway Patrol weighs heavily on our hearts. We are forever grateful for his devoted service and selfless commitment to protecting the people of North Carolina. Our prayers are with his family and friends and his colleagues in law enforcement."

WRAL-TV reported that Conner was credited with helping save lives after a 2011 fiery head-on crash in Columbus County. The station reported Conner used an extinguisher to put out flames and that he and another trooper provided first aid while waiting for paramedics.

Update 9:50 a.m. EDT Oct. 17: Baker said that at around 12:15 a.m., Conner stopped a white GMC pickup truck for a speeding violation on rural U.S. 701. The driver of the truck pulled over onto the shoulder and fired several shots as the trooper approached, Baker said.

The suspect fled and Conner was taken to a hospital, where he died.

Baker said the driver then headed about 20 miles west to Fair Bluff, near the South Carolina state line, where he was pursued by police. The suspect’s truck became disabled on railroad tracks and the suspect fled on foot. Authorities said the suspect was arrested around 4 a.m. after an extensive search.

The suspect's name has not been released and charges are pending, authorities said.

“The Highway Patrol family is mourning the loss of a hero and will forever be changed by the tragic events that have occurred,” said Col. Glenn McNeill Jr., commander of the state highway patrol. “We ask everyone to please keep Trooper Conner’s family and all who knew him in your thoughts and prayers.”

Conner was an 11-year veteran assigned to Troop B, District 5, in Columbus County.

“We extend our deepest sympathy to Trooper Conner’s family,” said Public Safety Secretary Erik A. Hooks. “Trooper Conner was killed while protecting and serving his community. We mourn our loss and will continue to support his family. We are grateful for his service and honor the men and women who serve in harm’s way, each and every day.”

Condolences for the trooper poured out from a number of law enforcement agencies on social media. Baker said the patrol was asking that people keep the trooper, his family and the entire organization in their prayers.

"We are definitely grieving as a result of our loss," he said.

Original report: Authorities said the trooper, whose name has not been released, was shot just after midnight while conducting a traffic stop on U.S. 701 near Sellers Town Road in Columbus County, just south of Whiteville.

The trooper was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

After an extensive search, authorities were able to find the suspect in nearby woods and take him into custody.

The suspect's name also has not been released.

The Associated Press and the Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

Investigators seek public’s help in couple’s deadly plunge from Grand Canyon overlook

Family members say that Garret Bonkowski and Jessica Bartz may have stopped at the Grand Canyon on a whim as they started a move from Arizona to Iowa.

Investigators are now trying to determine how the young couple ended up dead at the base of an overlook at the massive national park.  

The bodies of Bonkowski, 25, and Bartz, 22, were found Oct. 1, about two weeks after they were last seen or heard from. The Peoria couple is believed to have entered the park on or around Sept. 18, according to the National Park Service

Their bodies were found below the Trailview 2 Overlook, along West Rim Drive on the South Rim, a news release from the Park Service said. Their vehicle was found in a nearby parking area. 

“They were found just below the rim on a social trail Oct. 1,” National Park Service spokeswoman Kari Cobb told St. George News in St. George, Utah. “We know they came from the top of the rim, but how or why they fell off of the rim, we don’t know.”

>> Read more trending news

The couple had not been reported missing, but Bonkowski’s mother told Fox 10 in Phoenix that no one knew they were stopping at the Grand Canyon on their way out of town. Jennifer Follis told the news station her son was heading to Iowa with Bartz, who was from the Midwest. 

“I said, ‘I love you, Garret,’ and he said, ‘I love you, mom,’ we hugged and then they left,” Follis said, describing the last time she saw her son. 

Follis described her son as a ‘spur-of-the-moment’ type of person who loved nature. She said that may be what led him to the Grand Canyon with Bartz, who was described in a similar way by friend and coworker Sally Liddicoat.

“She was just a joy,” Liddicoat, who helped Bartz get a real estate license, told ABC 15 in Phoenix. “Just such a fun personality. Just a nice, nice person.” 

The couple may have fallen while hiking, but Cobb told the St. George News that the fact that both were found dead from a fall was unusual. Investigators with the Park Service’s Investigative Services Branch are seeking information from the public on the couple’s activities prior to their deaths.

Bonkowski would likely have been wearing a light blue baseball cap with a black brim and the Pokemon character Charmander on it, according to the Park Service. Anyone who was near the Trailview 2 Overlook on or around Sept. 18 and saw the couple is asked to call or text Park Service investigators at 888-653-0009. 

Tips can also be given online or by email. Anyone with information can leave a tip anonymously. 

Colorado middle school includes drag queen on career day

Career day at a Colorado middle school included the usual occupations -- a police officer and an architect -- but the inclusion of a noted drag queen has outraged several parents, KCNC reported.

>> Read more trending news 

A drag queen performer, who goes by the stage name of Jessica L’Whor, attended career day at Rocky Top Middle School, a spokesman for the Adams 12 Five Star School District told the television station.

The performer discussed the drag queen business -- she did not perform, and used the name Ms. Jessica instead of the stage name -- and read a book that addressed bullying, KCNC reported.

Rocky Top Principal Chelsea Behanna said including the drag queen reflected the community’s diversity, KDVR reported.

Behanna sent a letter to parents Monday, noting that “Jessica read a chapter from 'Horrible Harry' and she used the text to illustrate the damage bullies can do, the need to always put kindness and acceptance at the forefront, and the shortsightedness of judging a book by its cover.”

Some parents did not agree, saying having a drag queen at a middle school career day was inappropriate.

“I was pretty appalled. I was pretty surprised. It was a shock because no one was notified,” parent Jen Payer told KDVR.

“This person is an adult entertainer and is talking to 12-year-old students about something that’s adult nature,” parent Heather Rogers told the television station.

L’Whor told KCNC most students reacted positively.

“I went to four classes. In every class, one person asked me how to handle negativity and hate,” the performer told the television station. “There were a lot of kids interested in how I could have the confidence to go out looking the way I look.”

District spokesman Joe Ferdani did not apologize for including the drag queen, but did express regret that parents were not notified in advance.

“Parents should have known in advance who was going to be speaking, and that didn’t happen in this particular situation,” Ferdani told KCNC. “Parents just needed to have more info, and context about what was going to be talked about, and some background on this individual, and they weren’t given that information.”

“I would tell the parents, ‘I’m not telling your kid to go off and become a drag queen,” L’Whor told the television station. “I’m telling them to have the conversations. Because, it will come up in life.”

Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor says she has 'beginning stages of dementia'

Retired Supreme Court Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor said in a letter released Tuesday that doctors have diagnosed her "with the beginning stages of dementia, probably Alzheimer's disease." 

>> Read more trending news 

She said that the diagnosis was made “some time ago” and that, “as this condition has progressed, I am no longer able to participate in public life." 

The letter was released Tuesday morning by the Supreme Court’s public information office.

O’Connor, 88, was nominated by President Ronald Reagan and took her seat on the court in 1981.

“As a young cowgirl from the Arizona desert, I never could have imagined that one day I would become the first woman justice on the U.S. Supreme Court,” O’Connor wrote Tuesday.

She announced her retirement in 2005 to care for her husband, who had Alzheimer’s disease, according to The New York Times and The Washington Post.

“Not long after I retired from the Supreme Court twelve years ago, I made a commitment to myself, my family, and my country that I would use whatever years I had left to advance civic learning and engagement,” O’Connor wrote. She said she started the nonprofit group iCivics, which aims to educate young people about civics and to encourage them to become active citizens, with that goal in mind.

“I can no longer help lead this cause, due to my physical condition,” she wrote. “I hope that private citizens, counties, states, and the federal government will work together to create and fund a nationwide civics education initiative. Many wonderful people already are working towards this goal, but they need real help and public commitment.”

Related: 5 things you need to know about Alzheimer’s disease

In a statement, Chief Supreme Court Justice John Roberts said he was saddened to learn of O’Connor’s diagnosis and that he was not surprised to see she used the news to put out a call to action.

“She broke down barriers for women in the legal profession to the betterment of that profession and the country as a whole,” Roberts said. “She serves as a role model not only for girls and women, but for all those committed to equal justice under law. Although she has announced that she is withdrawing from public life, no illness or condition can take away the inspiration she provides for those who will follow the many paths she has blazed.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Police: Soldier, alleged girlfriend arrested after his wife's body found in car trunk

A soldier in Vernon Parish, Louisiana and his alleged girlfriend have been arrested after his wife’s body was found in the trunk of a car and two children were in the back seat.

KATC reported that Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuson said Logan Kyle, 22, was arrested by the U.S. Criminal Investigation Division, which will investigate his actions because he is an active-duty soldier. His alleged girlfriend, Sarah Parker, was arrested by the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office.

>> Read more trending news 

The Sheriff’s Office said in a Sunday news release that it received a call that a woman was driving around with a dead body in her trunk.

“While searching the car deputies located a deceased woman in the trunk of the car,” the Sheriff's Office said in the release. “Deputies made contact with the driver, Sarah M. Parker, 24, 2553 Brackenrige Road, Moss Bluff, and the passenger, Logan T. Kyle, 22, Fort Polk, LA, an active duty solider who was the husband of the deceased woman found in the trunk. 

“Further investigation by CPSO detectives revealed the woman had been killed by Kyle at Fort Polk. Detectives also learned Parker was aware Kyle killed the woman and attempted to aid him with the disposal and concealment of her body.”

Mancuson said the suspects allegedly confessed.

CPSO said Parker’s two children, ages 1 and 2, were also in the car. They were taken into custody by the Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services.

Parker may face more charges, such as cruelty to juveniles, Mancuson said.

The identity of the victim has not been released because Army regulations require a 24-hour wait after notifying next of kin, KATC reported.

5 things you need to know about Alzheimer’s disease

People across the world are living with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s is a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. Symptoms usually develop slowly and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.

>> Read more trending news 

Here are five things you need to know about the disease:

It’s incredibly costly.

Early and accurate diagnosis could save up to $7.9 trillion in medical and care costs, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. In 2018, Alzheimer’s and other dementia will cost the nation about $277 billion. By 2050, these costs could rise as high as $1.1 trillion.

Millions are living with it.

Approximately 5.7 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s. By 2050, this number is projected to rise to nearly 14 million. Every 65 seconds, someone in the U.S. develops the disease, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Millions die from it.

It is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., and about one in three senior citizens die with Alzheimer’s or another dementia, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Between 2000 and 2015, deaths from heart disease decreased by 11 percent, but deaths related to Alzheimer’s disease increased 123 percent.

There are many signs and symptoms.

Memory loss that disrupts daily life could be a symptom of something much more serious. Alzheimer’s symptoms include challenges in planning or solving problems; difficulty completing familiar tasks; confusion with time or place; trouble understanding visual images; new problems with words; misplacing things; poor judgment; changes in mood or personality; withdrawal from work or social activities.

People can help end Alzheimer’s.

Thousands of advocates help influence national policy and create widespread awareness of the disease with the Alzheimer’s Association. You can also make a donation to The Longest Day or Walk to End Alzheimer’s in cities across the U.S.

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