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Suspect in Washington state mall shooting arrested

The suspect in a shooting at a Washington state mall that left five dead is in custody, authorities said Saturday.

Washington State Patrol public information officer Sgt. Mark Francis tweeted an image of a suspect, Arcan Cetin, a 20-year-old Oak Harbor, Washington, resident.

FBI officials in Seattle tweeted that the manhunt was over.

A gunman opened fire at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington, on Friday night, killing four females and a male before fleeing. Law enforcement staged a massive search over more than 20 hours for the suspect, initially described by witnesses as a young Hispanic male wearing black.

Authorities had said that a rifle had been found at the scene.

The motive was unknown for the shooting about 60 miles north of Seattle. The FBI was assisting local authorities, but it said there was no evidence to point to terrorism

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

D.C. Comics, IDW to memorialize Pulse tragedy in graphic novel, ‘love letter to LGBTQ' community

D.C. Entertainment, IDW Publishing and more than 200 writers and artists have teamed up to pen “Love is Love,” a graphic novel being published in memory of the Pulse nightclub shooting.

The anthology graphic novel was curated by D.C. Comics writer Marc Andreyko and all proceeds will be donated to Equality Florida, IDW announced this week.

>> Read more trending stories 

The 144-page project will include iconic D.C. characters.

“When tragedy happens, art responds,” Andreyko said. “And after the Pulse massacre, the comics community responded quickly, decisively and with open hearts.

“The talent and emotion on every page is staggering. ‘Love is Love,’ mourns the 49 lost, honors the survivors and celebrates love in all forms.”

IDW Chief Creative Officer Chris Ryall said signing on to the project was a no-brainer.

“When Marc brought this project to me, there was no hesitation about us getting involved,” he said. “To echo Marc’s sentiments, we are proud of the hard work and talent that has gone into this project and to be involved in any way to support the survivors and their families in the face of tragedy.”

Group Editor James Rich, group editor of D.C.’s Vertigo imprint, was shocked by the emotion of the writers and artists who have contributed to the project.

“As an editor on the book, I continue to be moved every day by the expressions of hope and love the contributors have put forth, and can only image the profound impact the book will have on readers, as well,” he said.

“Love is Love,” will be released in December.

Exclusive pages from Love Is Love from James Asmus, Ming Doyle, Steve Orlando, & Iain Laurie. Check them out over at Los Angeles Times http://lat.ms/2cLa0xKPosted by IDW Publishing on Wednesday, September 21, 2016

First Presidential debate: What time, what channel, who is the special guest?

It’s expected  to be the most watched debate in U.S. history.

Upward of 100 million people could tune in Monday night to see the first presidential debate between Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump.

The two will meet in  New York for the first of three debates scheduled for the next few weeks.

Here’s a quick look at Monday’s debate.

What time is it on?

The debate begins at 9 p.m. It will be 90 minutes long, without commercial interruption.

Where can I see it?

The debate will be broadcast live on cable news networks, the three major networks and other media outlets including social media.

Where is it?

The debate is being held at Hofstra University on Long Island, N.Y.

What is the structure  for the debate?

The first debate will be divided into six 15-minute segments. The moderator will open each segment with a question, after which each candidate will have two minutes to respond. Candidates will then have an opportunity to respond to each other. The moderator will use the balance of the time in the segment for a deeper discussion of the topic.

Who will moderate the debate?

The moderator of the first debate will be NBC's Lester Holt.

What are the topics for the debate?

The topics will include "America’s Direction," "Achieving Prosperity" and "Securing America," in that order. 

Will anyone else be on the debate stage?

No, the Libertarian candidate, Gary Johnson, and the Green Party candidate, Jill Stein, failed to qualify for a spot on the debate stage.

Special guest?

Rumors are that Gennifer Flowers, who in the 1990s had an affair with Bill Clinton, will be in the front row of the debate audience. Apparently, Trump invited Flowers after he was told that Dallas Mavericks owner and Trump detractor  Mark Cuban would be attending the debate, sitting in the front row.  

Loretta Lynn postpones more concerts due to health concerns

Country music icon Loretta Lynn is still in recovery mode after injuring her chest in a terrible fall. As a result, she’s been forced to postpone all of her remaining concerts through the month of September.

Those canceled show dates were to take place on Sept 23-24 at Gruene Hall in New Braunsfels, Texas.

Venue officials first made the announcement via Facbook on Tuesday. Representatives from Gruene Hall stated in the message that they are, “currently working to find a replacement date” for the concert, and “in the meantime tickets will be refunded at [the buyers] point of purchase.”

In a previous report, Rare Country shared that the incident happened on Aug. 30. About a week later, a doctors note on Lynn’s official website revealed to fans that she had to undergo minor surgery and was advised to “stay off the road until she’s made a full recovery.”

Thus far, Lynn has had to cancel a string of gigs, which include her annual Labor Day show at her ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee and an appearance at the Grande Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennesse.

Despite her injury, Lynn has no intention of slowing down. Earlier this year, she dropped her first studio album of 12 years, titled “Full Circle.” And, on Oct. 7, she’ll release her first holiday album of 50 years called “White Christmas Blue.” Following that release she is scheduled to perform on Oct. 8 in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Washington state mall shooting: Timeline of events

Five people were killed when a gunman targeted people inside the Macy’s store at Cascade Mall in Burlington, about an hour and 20 minutes north of Seattle.

More than two dozen law enforcement agencies were looking for the shooter, who was not immediately identified.

>> Read more trending stories 

Below is a timeline of events:

Friday, Sept. 23

(ALL TIMES ARE PDT)

6:52 p.m.: According to a screengrab on mall surveillance footage, this is the time the shooting suspect was seen walking through Macy’s with a rifle. The State Patrol later said the shooting happened near the makeup counter.

6:58 p.m.: A 911 dispatcher receives the first call about the active shooter. He was described as wearing black clothing and carrying a rifle. More than 26 agencies respond and about 200 law enforcement personnel were there at the height of the incident. The State Patrol later said video showed the man entering the mall without a weapon and reappeared on Macy’s surveillance video carrying a rifle.

7:06 p.m. Breaking Skagit first tweets initial details from the scanner about a shooting at Macy’s, telling people to stay clear of the Cascade Mall, which is at 201 Cascade Mall Drive in Burlington, about an hour and 20 minutes from downtown Seattle.

7:33 p.m.: State Patrol Sgt. Mark Francis, the agency spokesman for Skagit County, confirms an active shooter, tweeting the description: “Hispanic male wearing gray. Last seen walking toward I-5 from Cascade Mall Burlington.”

7:43 p.m.: The Skagit County Department of Emergency Management tweets for people to avoid the Cascade Mall area in Burlington and follow all road closures. 

7:55 p.m.: Francis tweets that he is at the mall and tells media to look for updates on his Twitter account instead of by phone because of the volume of calls.

8:03 p.m.: Francis confirms four people are dead in the mall and the shooter or shooters left the scene before police arrived. Francis said there may be one shooter, but the total number is unknown. He also tweets that police are clearing the mall.

8:04 p.m.: Reporters and photographers begin staging in the southwest corner of the Cascade Mall parking lot.

8:21 p.m.: Family and friends of people in the mall are told by the State Patrol that survivors will be taken from the mall to His Place Community Church at 1480 S. Burlington Blvd. in Burlington.

8:24 p.m.: Medics enter the mall with a police escort after police initially checked the mall for the shooter. Francis tweets that they are holding out hope the number of deceased goes down. It does not.

9:01 p.m.: Police dogs were dispatched to the AMC Theatres at Cascade Mall for a secondary search.

9:02 p.m.: Skagit County scanner traffic discuss a possible suspect two blocks west of the Cascade Mall on Markwood Road. 

9:12 p.m.: The first picture of the shooting suspect is released on the Skagit County Department of Emergency Management’s Twitter account. It is a cropped image of the suspect holding a rifle.

9:15 p.m.: A full frame of the suspected shooter photo is obtained by KIRO-TV. The image, which was previously cropped by authorities, shows the suspect holding a rifle.

9:20 p.m.: The same cropped image of the wanted shooting suspect is distributed by the State Patrol, through Francis’ Twitter account.

9:26 p.m.: After talking with investigations, people who were inside the mall leave the scene for His Place Community Church.

9:29 p.m.: Gov. Jay Inslee tweets “Tragedy has struck in Washington tonight. Our hearts are in Burlington where a shooter has taken the lives of at least four people.” He said questions remain, but that troopers and law enforcement officers are working swiftly to locate the shooter. Inslee asks for people to follow the detour warnings and to stay close to friends and loved ones as we await more information. “Trudi and I send our condolences to the families of the victims and prayers for anyone injured.”

9:35 p.m.: Francis changed the number of dead, saying three women were killed at the Cascade Mall. He said one female with non-life-threatening injuries was at a local hospital, and a man was being flown to Harborview Medical Center, the regional trauma center, with life-threatening injuries. He did not have specific ages or immediately know if it was a targeted attack. Francis said the shooter hand a long gun, but did not give caliber. He asked people to stay inside their homes.

10:07 p.m.: The Seattle Mariners tweet that “Our thoughts are with those affected by the tragedy tonight at Cascade Mall. For those in Burlington, please stay safe.”

10:10 p.m.: Skagit County Department of Emergency Management’s Twitter account tells people to come back Saturday to get their vehicles at the Cascade Mall.

10:38 p.m.: The FBI said they’re assisting in the case, and that they have no information to suggest additional attacks were planned in Washington state.

10:50 p.m.: Francis said police were “about 2/3 of the way through doing the final clear” of the mall. There were “a lot of locked doors and room that had to be opened.” Francis later clarifies that the mall is 434,000 square feet with secure rooms and doors.

10:52 p.m.: A witness who said she was in a fitting room during the Cascade Mall shooting said the lone man shooter was yelling a female’s name as he shot people.

10:58 p.m.: Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said he is “deeply saddened by the tragedy in Burlington tonight. Thoughts and prayers go out to all affected by this horrific event.”

11:11 p.m.: Francis said 11 search teams were 90 percent complete on their building search. Two canine teams were on the perimeter “still actively searching for (the) suspect throughout the area.”

11:21 p.m.: The official count of deceased changed again. Francis said four women were killed in Macy’s. One man was flown to Harborview.  Francis said the mall search went from the south to the north. Still no word on a motive.

Saturday, Sept. 24

(ALL TIMES ARE PDT)

12:22 a.m. A law enforcement helicopter remains in the air searching for the suspect.

3:28 a.m.: The State Patrol confirms the fifth victim, the man flown to Harborview Medical Center, died.

4:30 a.m. The full search of the Cascade Mall is completed. Surrounding parking lots remain closed during the investigation.

8:04 a.m.: A multi-agency police briefing begins across from Burlington Police Department headquarters. Mount Vernon police Lt. Chris Cammock said the shooter entered the mall without a weapon, then reappeared 10 minutes later in Macy’s with a rifle. The victims ranged in age from a teenager to a senior.

8:13 a.m.: Burlington Mayor Steve Sexton said “the city of Burlington is probably changed forever, but I don’t think our way of life needs to change in our community.” He praises law enforcement who responded to the senseless act and said “now our support goes with them to help them extend the long arm of the law to bring the son of a bitch to justice who did this to our community.” 

8:15 a.m.: Cammock said the suspect appears to be a man in his late teens to mid-20s. He said police have been getting a number of tips, but nothing that’s led to an arrest. Asked specifically if investigators knew his name, Cammock said: “We do not have an identity on the individual yet, and we could certainly use the community’s help on that.”

8:17 a.m.: KIRO-TV asks Cammock why authorities think the shooting suspect is Hispanic. “I think that’s conclusions drawn by people who have looked at the photograph,” he said. “Dark hair. Photographs aren’t exact replicas because we’re taking it off of security footage, but (it) appears to be a little bit darker complected, so I suppose the race could be anything in there. But I think that’s why conclusions are being drawn.” He encourages reporters to look at the photo and see what conclusions they draw.

8:19 a.m.: There is no evidence that the Cascade Mall shooting was a terrorist attack, said Michael Knutsen, assistant special agent in charge of the Seattle FBI office. Knutsen said he can’t discount that, but can’t conclude the shooting was a terrorist act.

8:40 a.m.: The Skagit County Department of Emergency Management asks people with information to call police at (360) 428-3211 or scinv@co.skagit.wa.us. Additional photos of the shooting suspect are tweeted.

8:58 a.m.: A vigil forms at Maiben Park at 1011 E. Greenleaf Ave. in Burlington.

9:12 a.m.: Francis tweeted additional suspect photos using the hashtag #CascadeMallShooting

10:22 a.m.: State Patrol spokesman Kyle Moore said multiple agencies were reconstructing the entire mall scene, conducting forensic scanning and collecting evidence. Detectives continued to ask for tips and leads from the public.

2:19 p.m.: The Skagit County Medical Examiner’s office staff entered the Cascade Mall. Authorities said official family notifications had not been made.

2:23 p.m.: State Patrol spokesman Kyle Moore tells KIRO-TV it’s very possible we may not get any new information “until there’s a break in the case.” He said no news conferences are scheduled because they don’t know anything more than they knew at 8 a.m. this morning and that the suspect has not been identified. Investigators were going through all surveillance images/video to see if a clearer image is available to be shared.

3:22 p.m.: Am alert was sent to riders on nine Washington State Ferry routes saying law enforcement is looking to help identify the active shooter involved in the Cascade Mall shooting. “If you can help,” the message reads, “please contact 911.” Authorities did not elaborate if they think the shooter took a ferry. 

Police provide explanation of video footage in shooting of Keith Scott

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police released the dashcam and body camera footage Saturday of the encounter in which an officer fatally shot Keith Lamont Scott, and provided the following explanation of events from Tuesday’s shooting:

Two plain clothes officers were sitting inside of their unmarked police vehicle preparing to serve an arrest warrant in the parking lot of The Village at College Downs when a white SUV pulled in and parked beside them.

>>BODY CAM AND DASHCAM VIDEO CAN BE FOUND HERE

The officers saw the driver, later identified as Scott, rolling what they believed to be a marijuana “blunt.”

Officers did not consider Scott’s drug activity to be a priority at the time and they resumed the warrant operation. A short time later, Officer Brentley Vinson saw Scott hold up a gun.

Because of that, the officers had probable cause to arrest him for the drug violation and to further investigate Scott being in possession of the gun.

Due to the combination of illegal drugs and the gun Scott had in his possession, officers decided to take enforcement action for public safety concerns. Officers left the immediate area to outfit themselves with marked duty vests and equipment that would clearly identify them as police officers.

Upon returning, the officers again witnessed Scott in possession of a gun. The officers immediately identified themselves as police officers and gave clear, loud and repeated verbal commands to drop the gun. Scott refused to follow the officers' repeated verbal commands.

A uniformed officer in a marked patrol vehicle arrived to assist the officers. The uniformed officer used his baton to attempt to breach the front passenger window in an effort to arrest Scott.

Scott then exited the SUV with the gun and backed away from the vehicle while continuing to ignore officers’ repeated loud verbal commands to drop the gun. Vinson perceived Scott’s actions and movements as an imminent physical threat to himself and the other officers, and fired his issued service weapon, striking Scott.

Officers immediately rendered first aid and requested Medic to send personnel to the scene.

Homicide unit detectives interviewed multiple independent civilian witnesses at the scene and at police headquarters. Those witnesses confirmed that officers gave numerous loud verbal commands for Scott to drop the weapon and also confirmed that at no time did Scott comply with their commands.

A lab analysis conducted of the gun crime scene investigators recovered at the scene revealed the presence of Scott’s DNA and his fingerprints on the gun. It was also determined that the gun Scott possessed was loaded at the time of the encounter with the officers. The investigation also revealed that Scott was wearing an ankle holster at the time of the event.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Chief Kerr Putney released videos Saturday of the deadly encounter

Putney said he released one body-worn camera video, dashcam footage, photos of a gun, ankle holster and a marijuana “blunt” in Scott’s possession at the time. There are more videos, but the ones police released show the actual incident, officials said. 

Scott, a 43-year-old black man, was shot and killed Tuesday by Vinson, who is also black, officials said.  

Putney said Scott was "absolutely in possession of a handgun" based on evidence from the scene, but that the video does not definitively prove a gun was in his hand. He said that officials will have to look at the whole picture. 

CMPD Chief Kerr Putney speaks at police headquarters about off...WATCH LIVE: CMPD Chief Kerr Putney speaks at police headquarters about officer-involved shooting of Keith Scott.Posted by WSOC-TV on Saturday, September 24, 2016

Putney said the officers saw Scott with marijuana but were not interested in him until he brought out a gun. Putney said he will not charge the officers, but he added that the State Bureau of Investigation is still investigating.

"We do not shoot to kill. I wish I could control the outcome of the shootings," Putney added. 

Putney said he decided to release the videos Saturday because SBI officials told him it would not have any "adverse impact" to their independent investigation. Putney said his aim was to handle the situation correctly instead of quickly. 

He said if laws had been violated by the officers, he would likely be taking a different action. 

Hundreds of people chanted “Keith Scott” Saturday afternoon outside police headquarters. Protesters congregated earlier in the day at Marshall Park, chanting, "No tapes, no peace."

Reporter Tina Terry said she heard protesters say they "will occupy the streets of Charlotte until police release the full video." 

Gov. Pat McCrory released the following statement:

"As governor of North Carolina, I concur with the Charlotte police chief's decision to release the tapes. I have been assured by the State Bureau of Investigation that the release will have no material impact on the independent investigation since most of the known witnesses have been interviewed. We have appreciated the ongoing dialogue and team work between state and city officials to seek public transparency while protecting the integrity of the investigation and the rights of all parties involved in this case."

Congresswoman Alma Adams, D-N.C., released the following statement:

"I continue to believe that we need greater transparency, accountability, collaboration and cooperation. As I expressed earlier in my letter to Chief Putney, law enforcement should release the official video. I am relieved to learn they will this afternoon. We all deserve the truth, justice and a way forward so that we can heal and become an example of a city that emerges stronger and safer because we chose to address our problems-even after all the television cameras have gone." 

Dashcam and body camera footage released in shooting of Keith Scott

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has released the dashcam and the body camera video. A file sent to the media Saturday also includes pictures of a handgun and marijuana that police say Keith Scott possessed.

Body camera footage (WARNING GRAPHIC VIDEO) 

Dashcam footage (WARNING GRAPHIC VIDEO) 

The footage shows black man exiting SUV, walking backward as he's shot at 4 times by Charlotte police the Associated Press reported.

Snapchat introduces Spectacles video sunglasses

Snapchat is breaking into the fashion industry — kind of. The company just revealed Spectacles: sunglasses that record video.

The glasses allow wearers to record their daily activities in first person. Like with the traditional phone app, the glasses record videos in 10-second increments.

>> Read more trending stories  

Snapchat's CEO, Evan Spiegel, told The Wall Street Journal the camera has a 115-degree-angle lens, which is closer to the human eye's natural field of view.

It also records circular video. So, rather than be optimized for the rectangular shape of a smartphone, the video is shaped more like what a person is actually seeing.

But that technology and the freedom to use both hands comes at a price; the glasses cost about $130.

That is pretty cheap compared with Google's smart glasses. Those lenses can cost more than $1,400 for the latest versions. It's also worth noting that Google shut down commercial sales of Glass last year amid privacy and fashion concerns. Google Glass is now mostly sold for enterprise use, leaving Snapchat an opportunity to step in where Google failed.

Along with the glasses reveal, Spiegel announced a company rebrand. Now, Snapchat's website reads Snap Inc., and the homepage says it's a camera company.

This is the first piece of hardware from the company, and some say they believe this is just the beginning of a series of business ventures.

The glasses will be available in three colors. When asked about why he released the lenses now, Spiegel said the high-tech spectacles were just for fun.

Spike Lee pays tribute to Bill Nunn, best known as Radio Raheem

Spike Lee broke the news that actor Bill Nunn, best known for his role as Radio Raheem in Spike Lee's hit film, "Do the Right Thing," has died. He was 62.

A photo posted by Spike Lee (@officialspikelee) on Sep 24, 2016 at 10:56am PDT

The president of Morehouse College confirmed the report.

Nunn played Robbie Robertson in Sam Raimi's "Spider-Man" film trilogy.

Man arrested for encouraging 3-year-old to smoke joint, police say

A man was arrested after a video surfaced of him allegedly allowing a child to smoke marijuana.

Lamel Yancy, who lives in Little Rock, Arkansas, uploaded a Facebook Live of him encouraging his 3-year-old nephew to smoke a joint, police said.

>> Read more trending stories

According to CNN, Yancy has been arrested, charged with endangering the welfare of a minor, and remains in jail.

As for the child, he is in his grandmother’s custody.

Police told CNN an officer stumbled on the video. 

"The officer that made arrest was looking into possible burglary suspects when he came across the individual and the video," North Little Rock Sgt. Brain Dedrick told CNN.

VIDEO: A man was arrested for encouraging his 3-year-old nephew to smoke a joint. What we have learned: http://bit.ly/2dnQ9AlPosted by FOX13 Memphis on Friday, September 23, 2016

Father hurls infant over 8-foot fence, flees without pants, police say

A 31-year-old Florida man was behind bars Friday after police said he threw his 4-month-old child over an 8-foot fence, stripped naked and fled on foot.

The man, later identified as Richard Harris, was eating dinner with his family Thursday night when he said he was going to take a walk with the baby, his wife told investigators.

When she came looking for the two, she walked outside just in time to see police tackle her naked husband in a nearby apartment complex parking lot.

>> Read more trending stories

The baby was found face down in the dirt a few minutes later, police said.

Neighbor Kevin Reaves could not believe what happened.

“He just came over to the side where my trailer is and threw the baby over the fence into my other neighbor’s yard,” Reaves said.

After that, for some reason, Harris took off all his clothes, Reaves said.

“My neighbor said when he saw (Harris), he was in a pair of shorts, and then all of a sudden, he saw him sitting on the trashcan and by then had had no clothes on,” he said. “I’m just more bewildered about what was going through his mind to make him do something like that.”

The child received lacerations to its body and extremities, but was not seriously injured, investigators said.

Harris was arrested by Longwood police and charged with cruelty toward a child/aggravated child abuse, battery on an officer or firefighter and resisting an officer with violence.

He is being held without bail at the Seminole County Jail. 

'Jesus is Lord' billboard with Georgia mayor's name on it causes stir

A religious billboard in Brunswick is causing some to question the separation of church and state in the city.

It says, “Jesus is Lord! Welcome to Brunswick!” It then says, “Mayor Cornell Harvey and City Council.”

We found out that no public money was used for that religious message. The money came from a local business owner, who’s now taking the billboard down.

>> Read more trending stories

She said even though she had permission from the mayor to use his name, she felt pressure from the city manager.

“I got a call from the city manager that said he had some calls and there were some issues with some people. They didn’t want it up, and something called separation of church and state,” said business owner Victoria Hightower.

Harvey said he didn't know the city manager even had a conversation with the billboard owner.

He said he didn't mean to make a statement by giving Hightower permission to include his name in the message. He said he liked the idea of welcoming people to the city.

The owner will take down the message by Oct. 1.

Mariners suspend catcher Steve Clevenger for rest of season over BLM tweets

The controversial tweets of Mariners’ reserve catcher Steve Clevenger have led to his suspension.

Clevenger was suspended for the rest of the season without pay Friday for tweets made this week regarding a recent police shooting in Charlotte, North Carolina, and the Black Lives Matter movement which many found to be offensive.

>> Read more trending stories 

Clevenger’s Twitter account is currently private. Screen shots of the tweets showed Clevenger made disparaging comments about protesters, tweeting, “Keep kneeling for the Anthem” and “BLM is pathetic once again! Obama you are pathetic once again! Everyone involved should be locked behind bars like animals!”

Clevenger was informed of the suspension on Friday. He will lose 10 days' pay from his $516,500 salary in the major leagues, which comes to $28,224, according to The Associated Press.

The Major League Baseball Players Association could challenge the suspension, but has not yet commented on the case.

Mariners Executive Vice President and General Manager Jerry Dipoto released a statement Thursday afternoon:

“The Seattle Mariners are very disappointed at the tweets posted on Steve Clevenger’s account. While he is certainly free to express himself, his tweets do not in any way represent the opinions of the Seattle Mariners. We strongly disagree with the language and tone of his comments. We are currently examining all internal options that are available to us as we determine appropriate next steps. We will have no further comment at this time.”

On Thursday night, MLB on FOX reporter Ken Rosenthal shared a statement from Clevenger, who apologized for "the distraction my tweets on my personal Twitter page caused when they went public.”

"I am sickened by the idea that anyone would think of me in racist terms," continued Clevenger's statement. "My tweets were reactionary to the events I saw on the news and were worded beyond poorly at best and I can see how and why someone could read into my tweets far more deeply than how I actually feel."

Statement from Steve Clevenger    "First and foremost I would like to apologize to the Seattle Mariners, my teammates,...Posted by Ken Rosenthal on Thursday, September 22, 2016

Clevenger appeared in 22 games for the Mariners this season. He has been on disabled list with a fractured hand since June 30. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Woman stabbed by her dog, no one believes her

A Colorado woman had a difficult time convincing hospital staff and police that the gash on her arm was the result of her dog stabbing her.

Celinda Haynes told 7News Denver that the bizarre incident happened Wednesday. Her 1-and-a-half year old Chesapeake Bay retriever, Maya, has a habit of grabbing stuff off counters to play with. While in the kitchen, Maya grabbed a paring knife. Haynes tried to get the dog to let go of the knife, but Maya was stubborn, so Haynes placed treats on the ground to distract her. In the dog’s excitement, she reached over with the knife still in her mouth, slashing Haynes’ arm as she dove for the treats.

>> Read more trending stories

Haynes suffered a forearm wound approximately 4 to 5 inches long and a quarter of an inch wide, which required several stitches. She sought treatment at a nearby hospital, but when she explained how the stab wound occurred, she was met with disbelief. Authorities were called to the hospital and then dispatched to her home to investigate what they suspected was a case of domestic violence.

In the meantime, Haynes’ husband, who had been at the DMV when the incident occurred, arrived home to find a “bloodbath” in the kitchen. Authorities then realized that Haynes had been telling the truth all along, as hard as it was to believe.

[Editor’s note: 7News Denver spells the dog’s name as Mia, but according to the owner’s Facebook post, the dog’s name is spelled Maya.]

Posted by Celinda Haynes on Thursday, September 15, 2016

Truck driver gets caught with mannequin in carpool lane

A California man who claims he had gotten away with driving in the carpool lane with a mannequin passenger for some time was caught when he got a bit too close to a motorcycle cop.

The incident happened Wednesday on the congested 57 freeway, according to The Associated Press.

>> Read more trending stories

As the driver veered out of the carpool lane, his truck came close enough for the motorcycle cop to see that the truck’s passenger was not a living human being as required by law.

In California, drivers face a fine of almost $500 for carpool lane violations.

 

Police: Brinks employee stole at least $30K from ATMs on the job

A Brinks Security “money messenger” stole more than $31,000 while delivering cash to ATMs, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office said after arresting him this week.

La Que Jefferson, of Vero Beach, told investigators he spent the money on medical bills, credit card payments and items for his family — like a new TV and an Xbox game system, according to a police report made public Friday.

Jefferson was booked Thursday on a charge of grand theft greater than $20,000. He was released from the Palm Beach County Jail after posting $7,500 bond.

>> Read more trending stories

The sheriff’s office said Jefferson, 26, took the money from two SunTrust bank ATMS. As a “money messenger,” he delivered money bags from the Brinks Security office in Mangonia Park to ATMs and banks to replenish their cash.

Audits found money shortages to ATMs assigned to Jefferson of $1,900 on July 20, $11,800 on Aug. 3 and and $18,000 on Aug. 18. The amount of money missing totaled to $31,220, the report said. It did not specify the locations of the ATMs.

When confronted about the shortage by Brinks supervisors, Jefferson admitted that he “was sorry for his actions” and said he “used the money to pay for medical bills, to purchase things for family, and to pay credit cards,” the police report states.

A Brinks Security official offered not to report the incident to police if he was able to return the money in full. Jefferson said he could only give back some of it, because he spent most of it “and cannot get it back,” authorities said.

Jefferson was able to return around $10,560 in cash. Police then contacted Jefferson on Wednesday, and he agreed to surrender himself.

“He wishes he never took the money because of the situation that he has placed himself in at this time, and now (he has) lost a great job because of his mistake,” the report said.

Stephen Hawking: Be wary of answering if space aliens come calling

Physicist Stephen Hawking said he is convinced that humans are not the only intelligent life form in the universe.

In a newly released 25-minute film from Curiosity Stream — an online video on demand site — Hawking discusses his quest to find alien life.

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In “Stephen Hawking’s Favorite Places,” Hawking told USA Today that scientists have found thousands of planets outside our solar system in recent years. 

“Some are burning hells, gates of fire and lava, others are solid diamond made in deadly X-rays from a dying star, but some are more like home,” he said. 

Hawking takes viewers to Gliese 832c, which could be one of the closest habitable planets discovered so far.

He said one day we might receive a signal back from a planet like Gliese 832c.

“We should be wary of answering back,” he said.  “Meeting an advanced civilization could be like Native Americans encountering Columbus — that didn’t turn out so well.”

Hawking said the discovery of intelligent life would be the greatest scientific discovery in history.

“It would force us to change,” he said. “We would have to give up the idea that we are unique and start acting with more compassion and humility."

Dodgers pay tribute to longtime broadcaster Vin Scully

The Dodgers paid tribute to Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully on Friday, and a crowd of 52,320 roared its approval during an hourlong ceremony on his appreciation night before Los Angeles’ 5-2 victory against Colorado.

Scully, holding hands with his wife, Sandi, walked from the dugout to home plate for a ceremony honoring his 67 years in the Dodgers’ broadcast booth. The 88-year-old Scully is retiring next weekend after Los Angeles concludes its regular season in San Francisco.

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"Hi everybody and a very pleasant good evening to you," Scully said in his signature greeting. "I thought I'd get that out of the way right away."

Scully thanked Dodger fans for making him feel like a child again.

"When you roar, when you cheer, when you are thrilled for a brief moment I'm 8 years old again," he said. "You have allowed me to be young at heart. I owe you everything."

The first 50,000 fans in attendance received a typed letter signed by Scully containing recollections from his career, which began in Brooklyn with the Dodgers and continued when the team moved west to California for the 1958 season.

"You were simply always there for me," Scully wrote. "I have always felt that I needed you more than you needed me and that holds true to this very day. I have been privileged to share in your passion and love for this great game."

Actor Kevin Costner, baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax and Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw were among the speakers paying tribute to Scully.

Scully joked that he is often asked about his future. He turns 89 in November.

"I'm going to try to live," he said. "I'm looking for a much smaller house and a much larger medicine cabinet."

Dodgers chairman Mark Walter, former owner Peter O'Malley and former managers Tom Lasorda and Joe Torre, now an MLB executive, were among those on hand. O'Malley's father, Walter, first owned the team and was instrumental in bringing the Bronx-born Scully west when the Dodgers relocated to the vast Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Walter said the team would add Scully’s name to the stadium “ring of honor,” next to the retired numbers. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti gave Scully a key to the city. Manfred said the league would donate $50,000 to the Jackie Robinson Foundation in honor of Scully.

Costner starred in the 1999 baseball movie "For Love of the Game," in which Scully narrated the play-by-play of his character's perfect game.

"We're all taking deep breaths, Vin," Costner said. "We're all struggling with our own emotions as we admit we're down to our last three outs with you. You're our George Bailey and it has been a wonderful life. You can't blame us for trying to hold on to you for as long as we can. And shame on us if you ever have to pay for another meal in public."

At the end of the tributes, Scully returned to the microphone.

"It's time for Dodger baseball," he said.

Triple suicide bombing kills 11 in Iraq

A provincial spokesman in Iraq said a triple suicide bombing killed at least 11 members of the security forces, The Associated Press reported Saturday.

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Col. Mohammed al-Jabouri, the spokesman for the Salahuddin province police force, said three militants rammed explosives-laden vehicles into a checkpoint. Al-Jabouri confirmed that 34 other security officers were wounded.

The attack occurred as the local police chief and head of the provincial security committee were visiting the site, al-Jabouri said. Both officials escaped unharmed.

No group has claimed responsibility.

Study: Smoking permanently damages DNA

Smoking scars DNA in clear patterns, researchers reported this week. And while most of the damage fades after five years if people quit smoking, researchers found that not all of it does.

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NBC News reported that information based on a study of 16,000 people. The patterns are made in a process called methylation, which is an alteration of DNA that can inactivate a gene or change how it functions — often causing cancer and other diseases, researchers said.

Heart disease and cancer are caused by genetic damage — some of it inherited, but most of it caused by day-to-day living. Smoking is one of the biggest causes, researchers said.

The research team examined blood samples given by 16,000 people taking part in various studies since 1971. In all of the studies, people have given blood samples and filled out questionnaires about smoking, diet, lifestyle and their health histories.

They found smokers had a pattern of methylation changes affecting more than 7,000 genes, or one-third of known human genes. Many of the genes had known links to heart disease and cancers known to be caused by smoking.

Smoking is the biggest cause of preventable illness, killing more than 480,000 Americans every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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