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Search On for Missing Ohio State Football Player

Search On for Missing Ohio State Football Player

Kirk Irwin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- An Ohio State football player hasn't been seen since going out for a walk late Tuesday night and his family and friends are concerned that something may be wrong.

Ohio State University football player Kosta Karageorge left his apartment about 2 a.m. Wednesday morning, according to his family. His sister Sophia told the Columbus Dispatch that his roommate said that he left to take a walk.

As of 6 p.m. ET Thursday, a family member told ABC News that the search so far has yielded no clues to the college senior's whereabouts.

Karageorge, a defensive tackle who is also on the Ohio State wrestling team, had no vehicle, wallet or ID when he left, the sister told the newspaper.

"He had some extenuating circumstances that night that lead us to believe he was upset," she said.

 

Kosta was last seen around 2 am November 26. His family is asking for prayers & any info regarding his whereabouts.Please call: 614-747-1729

— KostadinosKarageorge (@kostadinos81) November 27, 2014

 

The reserve defensive lineman didn't show up for football practice Thursday morning, ABC affiliate WSYX-TV in Columbus reported. The Buckeyes are set to play Michigan on Saturday.

Karageorge, 22, is a white male, 6 feet, 3 inches tall, and weighs about 270 pounds. He was last seen wearing black sweatpants over jeans, black Timberland boots, and a black hoodie with FOC on it.

"He never misses practice," Sophia told the Dispatch. "I've seen him go to wrestling practice with a broken foot. I've seen him sick as a dog go to practice. He's always on schedule. He always has somewhere where he checks in."

She said that Karageorge has a history of sports-related concussions and the family is worried that might be disoriented because of one he suffered a month ago.

Anyone with information about Karageorge's whereabouts can call 614-747-1729.

A call to the Columbus police about the case wasn't immediately returned.

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Texas Homeowner Uses Facebook to Find Thief

Texas Homeowner Uses Facebook to Find Thief

iStock/Thinkstock(HARRIS COUNTY, Texas) -- A Texas homeowner turned to social media after a teen allegedly snatched a package off his front doorstep.

Jeff Turner, who lives in Harris County, said he witnessed the incident on his home video surveillance. The FedEx package had just been delivered when someone swooped in, with a sweatshirt covering his face. The person can be seen looking back and forth before grabbing the package and running off.

“It was bold,” Turner said. “The more I thought about it, the kind of madder I got, and I thought, ‘You know what, I’m going to post this to a social media site.’”

Turner turned to his Facebook friends, posting screen-grabs of the surveillance footage on his neighborhood watch Facebook page to see whether anyone recognized the person.

It didn’t take long for neighbors to identify a local teen who was allegedly responsible.

But Turner took mercy and didn’t go to police, and the stolen item – a Houston Rockets sweater – was returned to Turner’s son, Jared.

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Florida Mom Goes Viral With ‘Handmade Ugly Tacky Christmas Sweaters’

Florida Mom Goes Viral With ‘Handmade Ugly Tacky Christmas Sweaters’

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Christmas sweaters are the "ugly" trend that everyone loves to hate, but no one may really love the sweaters more than Deb Rottum.

The 45-year-old mother of three from Tampa has become a viral star thanks to the Christmas sweater creations she hand crafts and then posts to her eBay store,"Deb's Handmade Ugly Tacky Christmas Sweaters."

“It takes me about two hours to make a sweater,” Rottum told ABC News.

It’s not just the detailed design that is gaining Rottum Internet fame. It is the way in which she displays the sweaters online, by posing in them herself in an arms-wide-open stance.

“I put my arms out so people can see what I’ve done to the sleeves of the sweater,” Rottum said.

As for the seemingly crazed expression that Rottum has on her face in each picture, Rottum says that is a strategic move as well.

“My goofy face was just [to say], ‘Hey, have fun. Come buy my sweater,” Rottum said, laughing.

Commenters on Rottum’s eBay page are sometimes horrified and sometimes not amused.

“She scares me,” one commenter wrote.

“My kid seen that face and will not sleep alone,” wrote another.

Even with detractors, Rottum is watching sales of her sweaters skyrocket. Her sales have quadrupled and her designs are gaining worldwide attention.

“I had a girl from the U.K. want a sweater with skunks because she has pet skunks,” Rottum said. “I did one with a shark, a Hello Kitty and a duck just this week.”

“I love it,” she said. “I think it’s so much fun when people comment and tell me how much fun they had with a sweater I made.”

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Here’s Proof Pigs Actually Do Fly (Almost)

Here’s Proof Pigs Actually Do Fly (Almost)

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- They say pigs don't fly, but this one came close.A pig landed on a US Airways flight out of Connecticut on Wednesday, but was taken off the plane after it became disruptive, a spokesperson told ABC News.Jonathan Skolnik, a professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a passenger on the flight, told ABC News he thought the woman with the pig was carrying a duffel bag when she got on the plane and headed straight for the empty seat next to him.

"But it turns out it wasn't a duffel bag. We could smell it and it was a pig on a leash," he said. "She tethered it to the arm rest next to me and started to deal with her stuff, but the pig was walking back and forth.""I was terrified, because I was thinking I'm gonna be on the plane with the pig," Snolnik added, saying he guesses the pig weighed between 50 and 70 pounds.But the flight didn't take off with the pig. The woman and the animal eventually deplaned.American Airlines, the parent company of US Airways, confirmed to ABC News that a passenger brought the pig aboard as an emotional support animal. After the pig became disruptive, she was asked to leave, a spokesperson said.

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Suspected Gunman Dead After Officer-Involved Shooting in Austin, Texas

Suspected Gunman Dead After Officer-Involved Shooting in Austin, Texas

Twitter/hanskpaap(AUSTIN, Texas) -- A suspected gunman is dead after an officer-involved shooting in Austin, Texas, Friday morning, with the man alleged to have opened fire at city buildings, the Austin Police Department said.

Police worked to secure the scene after the man's death.

Austin Police Department Assistant Chief Raul Munguia, speaking at a news conference, said residents reported hearing shots at 2:22 a.m. local time.After an officer fired at the suspect, police noticed the man wearing a vest, and a bomb squad was called to the scene, Munguia said.No police officers were injured, but Austin’s Police Department headquarters was evacuated, authorities said. A major area highway, Interstate 35, was also shut down during the incident, police said.

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More than 250,000 Still Without Power on Thanksgiving Afternoon

More than 250,000 Still Without Power on Thanksgiving Afternoon

Andrejs Jegorovs/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- More than 250,000 are without power this Thanksgiving after Wednesday's storms knocked out power lines along the East Coast.The storm system grounded hundreds of flights and clogged up highways on Wednesday. Over 350,000 electric customers lost power.Thursday afternoon, when most families would prefer to be cooking turkeys or watching football, at least 251,175 power customers are in the dark. That total includes homes in 10 states, from Maine to Virginia.

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Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson Confident Federal Probe Will Clear Him Too

Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson Confident Federal Probe Will Clear Him Too

ABC News(FERGUSON, Mo.) -- The Ferguson police officer cleared of charges by a Missouri grand jury in the killing an unarmed black teenager says he’s confident a federal criminal probe into his actions will find “nothing” and clear him too.In an exclusive interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, Officer Darren Wilson insisted he carried no racial bias when he fatally shot 18-year-old Michael Brown, and Wilson said he’s never been accused of acting in a racist manner during his entire law enforcement career.“I did my job and followed my training,” Wilson said. “The training took over.”The U.S. Justice Department is now conducting two probes sparked by Wilson's fatal confrontation with Brown on Aug. 9.A criminal investigation will try to determine whether Wilson used unreasonable force and intentionally violated Brown’s civil rights when he shot the teenager. The second probe - though not criminal in nature – will look more broadly into whether the Ferguson police department has routinely engaged in a "pattern or practice" of unlawful and discriminatory policing.Training will be one of several “priority areas" scrutinized by the federal probes, Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday.In his interview this week with Stephanopoulos, Wilson said he’s worried about being caught in the crosshairs of a federal criminal investigation, but is confident investigators will find “nothing” to suggest he broke the law.“I stand by what I did,” he said. “I stand by my training, and just have to wait and see what they determine.”Stephanopoulos asked Wilson: “You're confident that no charges will be brought?”Wilson responded simply, “Yeah.”During its criminal investigation into Wilson, the Justice Department will be analyzing his past record, but “racial animus” is not something federal prosecutors have to prove to bring charges, according to William Yeomans, a former top civil rights prosecutor who spent 26 years at the Justice Department.Investigators would have to show Wilson shot Brown with the specific intent to violate Brown’s civil rights and “use more force than was reasonably necessary under the circumstances,” Yeomans said. Reaching that threshold “can be very difficult” when there are conflicting eyewitness accounts and few pieces of physical evidence, according to Yeomans.“It's difficult to prove what was going on in his head,” Yeomans said.In his interview this week, Wilson acknowledged that – while the Ferguson community is predominantly black – the police force there is overwhelmingly white. But he said that didn’t create any inherent mistrust or tension between him and those he encountered while on patrol.Testifying before a St. Louis County grand jury two months ago, however, he described his beat in Ferguson as “an antipolice area for sure.”“That community doesn’t like the police,” he testified.Holder echoed that sentiment Tuesday, saying, “Michael Brown's tragic death has revealed a deep distrust between some in the Ferguson community and its police force.”Holder said the Justice Department will conduct an “intensive review” of the “priority areas" identified by the broader probe into the entire Ferguson police department, including a look at how officers handled searches and traffic stops of black drivers.According to data released by the Missouri state government, about 67 percent of the Ferguson population is black, but last year 86 percent of those stopped by police were black, and 92 percent of those searched were black.In addition, according to the same data, Ferguson police were twice as likely to search a black individual than a white individual, but they were significantly less likely to actually find contraband on black individuals compared with when they searched white individuals.“There are obvious ways the police department needs to be reformed,” Yeomans said. “And I am confident that once this process is concluded, it will be a significantly different police department.”Holder vowed that the two federal probes will be “conducted rigorously and in a timely manner” so that federal authorities can begin “to restore trust, to rebuild understanding and to foster cooperation between law enforcement and community members.”

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Several Arrests Made Near Thanksgiving Day Parade

Several Arrests Made Near Thanksgiving Day Parade

Reptile8488/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Seven protesters were arrested near the route of the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City on Thursday. The arrests came amid rumblings on social media about disrupting the parade and Black Friday to protest a Missouri grand jury’s decisions not to indict the police officer who shot Michael Brown to death.An estimated 50 protesters gathered a block away from the parade route at the New York Public Library. Several people were arrested when they started trying to interrupt the parade, including vandalizing, breaking windows and knocking over barricades, police said.The parade was not interrupted, and the rest of the protesters returned to the library where they are now "peacefully" protesting, according to police.“We will not tolerate, under any circumstances, any effort to disrupt this parade,” Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said before the arrests. “This is a national event, a historic event. Anybody who would seek to interrupt it would be callous, indeed, on this very special day.”Hashtags such as #stoptheparade were trending Thursday morning. The NYPD was aware of the Internet conversations calling for demonstrations on Thanksgiving, Bratton said.On a larger scale, a movement to boycott Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday has been gaining steam on social media, asking people to sit out Thanksgiving and Black Friday events to protest the grand jury's decision to not charge Officer Darren Wilson for killing the unarmed teen.

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Several Arrests Made Near Thanksgiving Day Parade

Several Arrests Made Near Thanksgiving Day Parade

Reptile8488/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Seven protesters were arrested near the route of the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City on Thursday. The arrests came amid rumblings on social media about disrupting the parade and Black Friday to protest a Missouri grand jury’s decisions not to indict the police officer who shot Michael Brown to death.An estimated 50 protesters gathered a block away from the parade route at the New York Public Library. Several people were arrested when they started trying to interrupt the parade, including vandalizing, breaking windows and knocking over barricades, police said.The parade was not interrupted, and the rest of the protesters returned to the library where they are now "peacefully" protesting, according to police.“We will not tolerate, under any circumstances, any effort to disrupt this parade,” Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said before the arrests. “This is a national event, a historic event. Anybody who would seek to interrupt it would be callous, indeed, on this very special day.”Hashtags such as #stoptheparade were trending Thursday morning. The NYPD was aware of the Internet conversations calling for demonstrations on Thanksgiving, Bratton said.On a larger scale, a movement to boycott Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday has been gaining steam on social media, asking people to sit out Thanksgiving and Black Friday events to protest the grand jury's decision to not charge Officer Darren Wilson for killing the unarmed teen.

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Cash Pours In to Fix Bakery Damaged in Ferguson Riots

Cash Pours In to Fix Bakery Damaged in Ferguson Riots

ABC NEWS(FERGUSON, Mo.) -- A Missouri woman whose business was vandalized in Ferguson riots is busy pushing out pies and cakes at her bakery on Thanksgiving, despite broken windows and damage to the store.Supporters raised more than $200,000 in two days to help Natalie DuBose, the owner of Natalie's Cakes & More. DuBose said her bakery, which she opened this summer, was damaged when protesters rioted following news that police officer Darren Wilson had not been indicted in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown."My main windows were smashed and bakery damaged," she wrote on a GoFundMe page launched on Tuesday. "I'm beside myself, but with the holidays, can't stop working."I'm truly mixing batter right now.”Rioters smashed windows, burned down businesses and set police cars on fire late Monday in Ferguson after the grand jury's decision to not indict Wilson was announced.DuBose was in tears Tuesday after learning the violence had reached her shop.An employee who answered the phone at the bakery Thursday told ABC News the staff is busy delivering orders, despite the damage.Kristine Froeba, a supporter who's helping run the bakery's social media pages, said DuBose is hard at work."She's backed up with her Thanksgiving orders, she's baking around the clock, the phone is ringing off the hook," Froeba said. "She's so busy."DuBose says she's grateful for the financial support."I am truly and humbly blessed," she wrote on the GoFundMe page early Thursday.

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Cash Pours In to Fix Bakery Damaged in Ferguson Riots

Cash Pours In to Fix Bakery Damaged in Ferguson Riots

ABC NEWS(FERGUSON, Mo.) -- A Missouri woman whose business was vandalized in Ferguson riots is busy pushing out pies and cakes at her bakery on Thanksgiving, despite broken windows and damage to the store.Supporters raised more than $200,000 in two days to help Natalie DuBose, the owner of Natalie's Cakes & More. DuBose said her bakery, which she opened this summer, was damaged when protesters rioted following news that police officer Darren Wilson had not been indicted in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown."My main windows were smashed and bakery damaged," she wrote on a GoFundMe page launched on Tuesday. "I'm beside myself, but with the holidays, can't stop working."I'm truly mixing batter right now.”Rioters smashed windows, burned down businesses and set police cars on fire late Monday in Ferguson after the grand jury's decision to not indict Wilson was announced.DuBose was in tears Tuesday after learning the violence had reached her shop.An employee who answered the phone at the bakery Thursday told ABC News the staff is busy delivering orders, despite the damage.Kristine Froeba, a supporter who's helping run the bakery's social media pages, said DuBose is hard at work."She's backed up with her Thanksgiving orders, she's baking around the clock, the phone is ringing off the hook," Froeba said. "She's so busy."DuBose says she's grateful for the financial support."I am truly and humbly blessed," she wrote on the GoFundMe page early Thursday.

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Snowmobiler Killed in Montana Avalanche

Snowmobiler Killed in Montana Avalanche

boggy22/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(COOKE CITY, Mont.) -- A Montana man was killed in an avalanche on Wednesday while snowmobiling on Henderson Peak.According to a press release from the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center, the man was partially buried in an avalanche at about 1:30 p.m. Wednesday. His snowmobiling partner had rescue gear, but despite effort to dig the victim out of the snow, CPR was unsuccessful.The GNFAC is asking skiers and snowmobilers to be cautious due to recent heavy snowfall. A Backcountry Avalanche Warning remains in place  for the area through at least Friday morning due to strong winds and heavy snow.

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FAA Releases Report Detailing Nearly 200 Drone Sightings Since February

FAA Releases Report Detailing Nearly 200 Drone Sightings Since February

estt/iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Federal Aviation Administration released a report on Wednesday detailing 194 drone sightings between February and November.The FAA said in a statement that it receives approximately 25 reports per month of drone sightings by pilots. Most sightings had little to no impact on pilots, though in some cases, the FAA notes, pilots were forced to alter course to avoid an unmanned craft. At least six of the entries reflect "near misses," including at least one with a commercial aircraft and at least one other with a medevac helicopter.Approximately 109 of the reports included drones operating more than 500 feet in the air. About 30 instances involved drones within five miles of airports."The FAA is in the process of executing a plan for safe and staged integration of unmanned aircraft into the National Airspace System," the agency's statement said. It pointed to increased awareness by pilots and improved reporting and record keeping for the increased number of reports.

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Winter Storm Causes Power Outages Throughout Northeast

Winter Storm Causes Power Outages Throughout Northeast

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Wednesday's winter storm has left almost 400,000 customers without power in the northeast.

Public Service Company of New Hampshire spokesman Martin Murray says, "The reason that this has occurred is we really had wet, heavy snow, that's fallen on evergreen trees and there hasn't been a lot of wind to push that snow off so instead they've been weighed down and they've interfered with power lines and equipment."In New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, 293,000 customers are without power.In New York, New Jersey, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, and Pennsylvania, nearly 100,000 customers are without power.

It's expected to take days to restore power in some areas.

The storm is also impacting Thanksgiving travel. As of Wednesday night, 4,624 flights were delayed and 735 were cancelled, according to the flight-tracking company FlightAware.

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Boy Scout Tops Dad’s Total, Earns Most Merit Badges

Boy Scout Tops Dad’s Total, Earns Most Merit Badges

iStock/Thinkstock(ALEXANDRIA, Va.) -- Josh McCoy has earned a whopping number of Boy Scout merit badges.

It took him three years but in November, the 14-year-old from Alexandria, Virginia, collected his 135th merit badge, the most a scout can currently get.

McCoy, a member of Troop 1145, said his motivation was a bit personal — his father, Tim McCoy, had earned 82 as a scout and he wanted to beat his total.

“I’m a very competitive person,” he told ABC News. “After that, there was so many left to do so I wanted to keep going and then [I] wanted to just finish them. … Not many people do it.”

His mother, Darlene, sewed a special sash so all the badges would fit.

“It’s actually two sashes sewn together,” McCoy said. “The Boy Scouts don’t actually have one sash that holds them all.”

From tying knots and programming a robot to scuba diving and playing the bugle, the badges represent activities that McCoy has mastered or at least seriously dabbled in. McCoy said some of his merit badges had involved three to four hours of learning and work — and others, a bit longer.

“It took me two years to learn how to play 15 songs,” he said about bugling.

He said his favorite merit badge was geocaching, in which the scout uses GPS to find a location.

“I did that with my dad and it was a lot of fun,” he said. “Now it’s a hobby of mine.”

His least favorite: backpacking 70 miles over the course of four trips. He completed it in a month and covered an additional 20 miles.

McCoy said that before becoming a Boy Scout, he had no clue about what he wanted to do for a career.

“I think it’s worth it,” he said of earning merit badges. “You learn a lot of skills. … I have a good sense of what I want to do. Engineering.”

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Boy Scout Tops Dad’s Total, Earns Most Merit Badges

Boy Scout Tops Dad’s Total, Earns Most Merit Badges

iStock/Thinkstock(ALEXANDRIA, Va.) -- Josh McCoy has earned a whopping number of Boy Scout merit badges.

It took him three years but in November, the 14-year-old from Alexandria, Virginia, collected his 135th merit badge, the most a scout can currently get.

McCoy, a member of Troop 1145, said his motivation was a bit personal — his father, Tim McCoy, had earned 82 as a scout and he wanted to beat his total.

“I’m a very competitive person,” he told ABC News. “After that, there was so many left to do so I wanted to keep going and then [I] wanted to just finish them. … Not many people do it.”

His mother, Darlene, sewed a special sash so all the badges would fit.

“It’s actually two sashes sewn together,” McCoy said. “The Boy Scouts don’t actually have one sash that holds them all.”

From tying knots and programming a robot to scuba diving and playing the bugle, the badges represent activities that McCoy has mastered or at least seriously dabbled in. McCoy said some of his merit badges had involved three to four hours of learning and work — and others, a bit longer.

“It took me two years to learn how to play 15 songs,” he said about bugling.

He said his favorite merit badge was geocaching, in which the scout uses GPS to find a location.

“I did that with my dad and it was a lot of fun,” he said. “Now it’s a hobby of mine.”

His least favorite: backpacking 70 miles over the course of four trips. He completed it in a month and covered an additional 20 miles.

McCoy said that before becoming a Boy Scout, he had no clue about what he wanted to do for a career.

“I think it’s worth it,” he said of earning merit badges. “You learn a lot of skills. … I have a good sense of what I want to do. Engineering.”

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Couple Who Has Fostered 92 Children Fights to Adopt Child in Africa

Couple Who Has Fostered 92 Children Fights to Adopt Child in Africa

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Jessica and Jason Neal are like any loving parents figuring out how to care for their large family, but what sets them apart is they believe they always have room for one more.

“We have two biological children, we have adopted six, we’ve done foster care for 92 kids and we are waiting to adopt one from Africa,” Jason Neal told ABC’s Robin Roberts.

The Neals describe their life as “unperfectly perfect organized chaos,” but they wouldn’t have it any other way, Jessica Neal said.Jessica and Jason, both 41, met in 1993. After getting married, they moved to a small town in Ohio. Jessica desperately wanted a large family, so she was devastated when her doctor told her she could not conceive.Despite the doctor’s prognosis, the Neals had two biological children, Kira, 17, and Dayton, 16. Jessica was told to stop trying after her doctors found a large tumor in her hand that grew during each pregnancy. She was diagnosed with an arteriovenous malformation in her right hand and arm, and eventually had to have half her palm amputated.Not letting this sidetrack their ambitions for a large family, Jessica and Jason decided to become involved in foster care. At the same time, Jason had gone into ministry as a youth pastor, and the couple quickly realized they could have a big impact in kids’ lives through foster care.In 2001, Jessica and Jason relocated to St. Cloud, Minnesota, where Jason had been hired as a pastor at a local church in the community. Jessica later got a job with the city’s reserve police force.The couple continued fostering for the next decade. Whenever the Neals would get a call that a foster child was in need of placement, they wouldn’t hesitate to bring the child home.“Somebody’s got to step in to the gap,” Jason said. “Somebody’s got to be willing to put their heart on the line for these kids.”The Neals said they treated all of their foster children as their own, providing new pillows and new clothes to each to help them feel at home.“You get to take the tag off something, that’s really special,” Jessica said.Jessica and Jason said they also held family meetings to check-in with their biological children, Kira and Dayton, who both were vital parts of their fostering.“It’s all contributed to who I am as a person and who I want to be,” Kira said.“It’s constant chaos, and constant fun,” Dayton echoed. “Because no matter what happens, you have someone to be with.”In 2006, the Neals decided to adopt twins Miriam and Malachi, as well as their older brother, Titus, and little sister, Ruthie, all from Minnesota.“We went from two kids to six kids overnight,” Jason said.The twins, now 10, have medical challenges. Miriam suffers from an autoimmune disorder and needs infusions twice a month. Malachi suffers from a vascular disorder that often leaves him in chronic pain.Despite the medical hardships and the family’s mounting financial difficulties, the Neals adopted again. In 2010, Josie, then 4, came into their lives through private adoption in Minnesota.“I think we make a mistake in America where we try to shelter our kids from all the pain in the world,” Jason said. “I want to teach my children how to make a difference.”Now, the couple faces a new challenge. On a recent mission to Liberia, West Africa, with Teamwork Africa, a non-profit organization dedicated to establishing churches in Liberia, Jessica met an 8-year-old boy named Emmanuel. The boy has cerebral palsy and does not talk, but the Neals decided they would try to adopt him.

“I met his eyes and I just knew at that moment that’s my guy,” Jessica explained. “I just fell in love.”However, dealing with an international adoption includes many unexpected difficulties, most notably the $15,000 in adoption fees they still need to bring him home.In the meantime, the Neals have stayed involved with Teamwork Africa and remain in touch with Emmanuel through a local pastor and his community.

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Michael Brown’s Parents ‘Taken Aback’ by Darren Wilson’s ‘Clean Conscience’

Michael Brown’s Parents ‘Taken Aback’ by Darren Wilson’s ‘Clean Conscience’

Michael Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, standing outside the Ferguson Police Department Monday night. (JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)(FERGUSON, Mo.) -- The family of slain Ferguson teenager Michael Brown is hurt and "taken aback" by Officer Darren Wilson's statement that he has a "clean conscience" and couldn't have done it any differently.Brown's parents appeared in New York with the Rev. Al Sharpton and the families of other African Americans who were killed by police. Sharpton said it would be the first Thanksgiving for these families "with an empty seat at the table."They spoke a day after Wilson emerged publicly for the first time in months and told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos his version of what happened on Aug. 9 when he shot and killed Brown following a confrontation.

Earlier this week Wilson was cleared by a St. Louis County grand jury of any criminal activity in Brown's death.At one point during the interview with Stephanopoulos, Wilson said he doesn’t believe he could have done anything differently that day and that he had a clean conscience. "The reason I have a clean conscience is because I know I did my job right,” he said.Benjamin Crump, a lawyer for the Brown family, said on Wednesday the parents have been doing media interviews in New York and he said it is hard "listening to them break down over and over again" as they discuss Wilson's comments about their son."It was very hurtful to the parents when he said he had a clear conscience... They were taken back... They thought he had no regard for their child," Crump said.The lawyer said that Wilson "tried to villify" Brown, who was 18, by saying the teenager had a fierce look and that Brown had stared at the officer "like he was trying to intimidate me.""I expected him to say my heart is heavy, my conscience is troubled. He didn’t say that," Crump said.Sharpton said that in Wilson's grand jury testimony, which has been released, the officer said the area where the shooting occurred was a high crime area. "That shows prejudgment... It goes to his state of mind," Sharpton said.In the interview with ABC News, Wilson said, "I’m sorry that their son lost his life. It wasn’t the intention of that day. It’s what occurred that day. And there’s no … nothing you could say that’s going to make a parent feel better.”

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Why This NFL Player’s Post on Ferguson Has Gone Viral

Why This NFL Player’s Post on Ferguson Has Gone Viral

Joel Auerbach/Getty Images(FERGUSON, Mo.) -- NFL player Benjamin Watson is one of countless Americans still struggling to understand Michael Brown's shooting death at the hands of a Ferguson, Missouri police officer.Watson, a tight end for the New Orleans Saints, poured his heart out in a viral Facebook post late Tuesday. He described himself as confused, embarrassed, offended, angry and sad for a variety of reasons."I'm angry because the stories of injustice that have been passed down for generations seem to be continuing before our very eyes," he wrote.

The post has been shared more than 150,000 times on Facebook, and it appears Watson's honesty is what made the update go viral. Fans commented that they are "proud" of the athlete and "in awe." "Tears running down my face," one woman wrote.

 

Post by Benjamin Watson.

 

Watson also addressed the racial tension that's sparked demonstrations across the country, saying the problem is "sin," not "skin."

"Sin is the reason we rebel against authority," he wrote. "Sin is the reason we are racist, prejudiced and lie to cover for our own. Sin is the reason we riot, loot and burn."

Watson said he will never really know what happened between Brown and Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot the unarmed teenager this summer.

"I'm sympathetic, because I wasn't there so I don't know exactly what happened. Maybe Darren Wilson acted within his rights and duty as an officer of the law and killed Michael Brown in self defense like any of us would in the circumstance ... Or maybe he provoked Michael and ignited the series of events that led him to eventually murdering the young man to prove a point."

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Video of Police Shooting Cleveland Boy with Toy Gun Is Released

Video of Police Shooting Cleveland Boy with Toy Gun Is Released

File photo. (iStock/Thinkstock)(CLEVELAND) -- The video of a Cleveland police officer shooting a 12-year-old boy who had a toy gun was released on Wednesday after the department consulted with the boy's family.Police initially withheld the video from the public while discussing handling of the disturbing footage with the family of Tamir Rice, the boy who was shot in a playground on Saturday.

"The family did not initially want the video to be released, but after reviewing it... expressed their wish to us" to make it public, Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said on Wednesday.Williams urged the public and the media to be cautious in the handling of the video. "I want people to bear in mind this is a 12-year-old boy... The family will have to view it over and over," he said.Rice was killed after a 911 caller reported a boy waving a gun around. The orange dot that is put in the barrel of toy guns had been removed and police said it was indistinguishable from a real weapon.“We are honoring the wishes of the family in releasing this and also in the spirit of being open and fair with our community,” Deputy Chief Ed Tomba said.The grainy video shows Rice walking around the playground and the sidewalk, occasionally pointing the toy at passersby or at objects. Police played a recording of a 911 call a man made after spotting the boy brandishing the toy gun and narrated the video because at times it is hard to see details of the video."He's sitting on the swing right now, but he keeps pulling it in and out of his pants and pointing it at people," the caller said."I don't know if it's real or not," the caller added.The video shows the caller sitting in a gazebo near the boy and walking away before police arrive.A police car pulled up and two officers, Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback, exited the car, drawing their weapons.An officer gave the boy an order three times to "show your hands" before shooting him. ABC News affiliate WEWS TV identified the officer who fired as Loehmann, 26, a rookie who joined the force in March. Garmback, 46, had been an officer since 2008.Police also played the 911 dispatcher's message to police, relaying the 911 caller's report."He keeps pulling the gun out of his pants and pointing it at people," the dispatcher says.It's not clear if police knew the caller had mentioned the gun could be fake."Shots fired. Male down. Black male. Maybe 20," an officer said in the 911 recording reporting Rice had been shot.

Rice's family issued a statement after the video was released, saying that the "situation could have been avoided and that Tamir should still be here with us.""The video shows one thing distinctly: the police officers reacted quickly," read the family's statement in part. "We understand that some of you are hurt, angry and sad about our loss. But let’s use those emotions in a way that will contribute to positive efforts and solutions that bring change to Cleveland, Northeast Ohio and cities across the nation as it relates to how law enforcement officials interact with citizens of color."

Both officers are on administrative leave during the investigation, Tomba said.Police tried to revive the boy after the shooting, Tomba said."Tamir was given first aid in under four minutes and approximately three minutes after that, our emergency service showed up and they provided medical service to the young man," he said.

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