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Search for Missing DC Girl Gets Renewed Attention

Search for Missing DC Girl Gets Renewed Attention

FBI(WASHINGTON) — The search continues for an 8-year-old girl who vanished from the Washington, D.C., area in March, months after her suspected kidnapper was found dead — with her case getting renewed attention due to the case of a missing University of Virginia student.

Relisha Rudd was last seen with Kahlil Malik Tatum, 51, a janitor at the family homeless shelter where Rudd and her mother lived. Police believe Tatum, also facing charges for his wife’s murder, kidnapped Rudd before he committed suicide. He was found dead with a self-inflicted gunshot wound on April 1 in Kenilworth Park in northeastern Washington, the FBI said.

The search for missing UVA student Hannah Graham has sparked renewed interest in Rudd’s case, as supporters turn to social media to urge the public not to forget about the young girl.

“We continue to look for her,” FBI spokesman Andrew Ames told ABC News Wednesday. “There were a lot of tips that came in when she was initially reported missing, and we continue to receive tips and follow up on them.”

The Metropolitan Police Department is also involved in the ongoing investigation. The FBI is offering a reward of up to $25,000 for information leading to Rudd’s return.

The city has also looked into whether more could have been done to keep Rudd safe.

An internal report presented at a District of Columbia Council hearing earlier this month revealed her school delayed reporting unexcused absences to Child and Family Services to give Rudd’s mother, Shamika Young, additional time to collect medical documentation to justify the absences. She later told the school her daughter was sick and “under the care of a Dr. Tatum,” referring to the janitor at the shelter, who is not a doctor, according to the report.

The review also points out that Tatum had a criminal history and violated the shelter’s policy, which prohibited relationships between staff and residents. The report recommends the school and shelter review their policies.

But the city says it did “not find evidence that these tragic events were preventable.”

Tatum’s wife, Andrea Tatum, was found shot to death in a hotel in Maryland on March 20, 2014, the day after Rudd was reported missing.

Rudd and Kahlil Malik Tatum were seen on surveillance footage at a Holiday Inn Express in late February.

Young, who has three other children, has defended herself against critics who suggested she didn’t keep a close eye on her daughter.

“Can’t nobody put their feet in my shoes. Don’t nobody know what’s going through my mind and what’s running through my head,” Young said when she called into an Internet radio show discussing her daughter’s disappearance in April, ABC News affiliate WJLA reported.

ABC News could not reach Young for comment.

The Facebook group “Help Find Relisha Rudd” is hosting a prayer event on Oct. 1, urging supporters to light a candle at home and say a prayer for Rudd’s safe return.

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NYPD Reviews Video of Pregnant Woman’s Fall While in Custody

NYPD Reviews Video of Pregnant Woman’s Fall While in Custody

iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — New York City police are reviewing a video of an altercation between a visibly pregnant mother and an officer in which the woman falls belly-down on the ground as the officer holds her arms behind her back.

Cellphone video footage of the incident shows a police officer struggling with Sandra Amezquita from behind by holding her arms behind her back as she falls and lands face down on the ground. At one point, the officer appears to have his knee on her back.

The NYPD told ABC News Wednesday that the incident is being reviewed by the Internal Affairs Bureau.

The police handling of the confrontation, which began with the frisking of Amezquita’s teenage son, is being criticized.

“What we saw in that gruesome video is a woman who’s trying to protect her son, who is being stopped and frisked by police, and she herself became a victim, slammed onto the floor,” local activist Dennis Flores told ABC News affiliate WABC-TV.

“Her belly is now with black-and-blue bruises,” Flores said.

The altercation took place at 2:15 a.m. on Saturday in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Police said that they observed that Amezquita’s 17-year-old son Jhohan Lemos had a gravity knife clipped to his pants.

It is unclear how the incident turned violent, but the video shows Amezquita, 43, and the teen’s father, Ronel Lemos, 50, confronting police in the middle of the street.

Police gave Amezquita a summons for disorderly conduct, but both her husband and her son now face criminal charges. Ronel Lemos has been charged with assault of a police officer, resisting arrest, obstruction of governmental administration and harassment. Jhohen Lemos was charged with criminal possession, resisting arrest, and harassment.

“After watching the video, the question which has to be asked is how can a pregnant woman and innocent bystanders be assaulted like this by police in New York City?” Amezquita’s attorney, Sanford Rubenstein, said in a press release. “It is incidents like this that are the reason for police community relations to be at an all time low in this city.”

Rubenstein and Amezquita are expected to tell her side of the story at a press conference Wednesday afternoon.

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Police Release Utah Teens’ Panicked 911 Call After Alleged Kidnapping

Police Release Utah Teens’ Panicked 911 Call After Alleged Kidnapping

ABC News(BOUNTIFUL, Utah) — Utah police this week released the emotional audio of a 911 call that two teenage girls made minutes after they escaped a terrifying kidnapping.

The two teens, ages 16 and 17, were kidnapped Sept. 9 after sneaking out of a sleep over at 2 a.m. in Bountiful, Utah. The teens told police they were approached by a red SUV, carrying two men and a woman, who offered the teens a ride. When the teens declined, they were forced into the SUV at knifepoint.

The mother of one of the victims, who did not want to be identified, spoke to ABC News and described her daughter’s experience as horrific.

“I could tell immediately that she had been traumatized,” the teen’s mother said, adding that her daughter was physically assaulted by the alleged kidnappers.

“When they would move or whimper they would punch them and my daughter was cut in multiple places,” she said.

Police say the teens were held for 19 hours with their hands duct taped until the SUV stopped. The teens broke free and escaped.

“Ultimately one girl was able to escape the restraints, free the other girl while two men exited the vehicle for a short period of time,” Bountiful police Lt. Dave Edwards told ABC News affiliate KTVX-TV.

Tammy Morrison was sitting in her car at a stoplight at around 9:20 p.m. when the girls ran up to her window.

“They were hysterical,” Morrison told ABC News. “One had duct tape around her neck and mouth. It was crazy.”

The teens used Morrison’s phone to dial 911.

“They took us…Somebody took us,” one of the teens cried to a 911 dispatcher.

The two girls were so hysterical, the 911 operator couldn’t understand.

“They took us in their car,” the distraught girl wails.

Edwards told ABC News that police believe the teens’ story and are investigating this as a legitimate kidnapping.

The victims had some minor injuries but did not requiring medical treatment, according to police .

One of the suspects, according to police, was in his early to mid-20’s, with light brown hair, slender build and a tattoo on his left arm. The second male was described as taller than the first suspect, in his mid-30’s and had dark brown hair. The woman was heavy set, between 25 to 35 years old and had long blond hair, police said.

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Protesters Loot Store in Ferguson After Fire Destroyed Michael Brown Memorial

Protesters Loot Store in Ferguson After Fire Destroyed Michael Brown Memorial

iStock/Thinkstock(FERGUSON, Mo.) — Protesters took to the streets in Ferguson, Missouri, late Tuesday night and looted a store, according to police, after a fire destroyed one of the memorials dedicated to 18-year-old Michael Brown, who was gunned down by a police officer this summer.

An unruly crowd gathered around 9 p.m. local time Tuesday on Canfield Drive in Ferguson, close to where the memorial site burned down earlier in the day, police said.

The crowd then made its way towards Beauty Town on West Florissant Avenue and began to loot the store. Police arrived at the beauty store quickly and were able to calm down the situation. It was the third time Beauty Town was looted since Brown was killed, police said.

The crowd, according to police, eventually thinned out and moved down West Florissant Avenue towards a McDonald’s.

Around 11 p.m. local time, a car ran over a water bottle, making a popping sound, police said. The sound seemed to spook people, but it was determined that the popping was not a gunshot.

At least three people were arrested, the St. Louis Dispatch reported.

Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot to death by a white Ferguson police officer Aug. 9. Residents and others remain upset about the way his body lay in the street for more than four hours while police investigated the shooting. Many insisted Brown was trying to surrender, with his hands up.

Residents were also angry that the officer who shot Brown, Darren Wilson, remained free on paid administrative leave. A state grand jury is considering whether Wilson should face criminal charges and the Department of Justice was also investigating.

The roadside memorial where Brown was killed was destroyed by fire early Tuesday. The cause of the fire wasn’t immediately clear. Later in the day, the memorial was rebuilt with new teddy bears, a blanket and new signs.

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Jesse Matthew, Suspect in Missing UVA Student, Charged with Abduction

Jesse Matthew, Suspect in Missing UVA Student, Charged with Abduction

Charlottesville Police Department(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) — The man who was the last person seen with missing University of Virginia student Hannah Graham was charged Tuesday with abduction with intent to defile.

Jesse Matthew, already sought on an unrelated dangerous driving warrant, has not been seen since he sped away from a Charlottesville police station on Saturday.

Graham, an 18-year-old sophomore, was last seen more than two weeks ago.

“We’ve reached that point that the commonwealth thought we had sufficient probable cause for an arrest warrant….We obtained an arrest warrant for Jesse Matthew Jr. charging him with the class 2 felony of abduction with intent to defile,” Charlottesville Police chief Timothy Longo said.

Longo said they were still searching for Graham.

Earlier on Tuesday, police revealed that they had taken bags of clothing from Matthew’s apartment during a second search on Monday, although police would not elaborate on who the clothing belonged to or how they are connected to the case.

A wanted poster was issued for him Monday and police stated that they believe he may be in possession of his sister’s car, and has known associates along the East Coast, from his home state of Virginia all the way up to New York.

Matthew, 32, came under scrutiny in the Graham disappearance because he was seen at a restaurant with the 18-year-old student shortly before she disappeared in the early hours of Sept. 13.

Police chief Timothy Longo has repeated calls asking Matthew to come forward to discuss any information he may have about Graham and what happened to her. Longo has said that police believe Matthew is the last person to have seen Graham since she disappeared.

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Shooting at UPS Warehouse Leaves Three Dead

Shooting at UPS Warehouse Leaves Three Dead

Jessica McGowan/Getty Images(BIRMINGHAM, Ala.) — A recently fired UPS employee shot two people dead Tuesday before turning the gun on himself at the Birmingham, Alabama, shipping center where he had worked.

Witnesses said that Joe Tesney, 45, walked inside the warehouse wearing his uniform and gunned down two UPS supervisors.

Police believe Tesney purposely picked his targets and then took his own life around 9:20 a.m. 

No one else was hurt in the incident

According to The Birmingham News, Tesney received final notification about losing his job Monday, although he was actually told about being fired earlier in September.

Tesney was married and had two daughters.

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Accused Cop Killer Eric Frein Stars in War Reenactor Documentary

Accused Cop Killer Eric Frein Stars in War Reenactor Documentary

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The filmmaker of a new documentary about a Vietnam War reenactment said he was shocked to learn that one of his actors was Eric Frein, the subject of a massive Pennsylvania manhunt, and said he had sensed that some reenactors were on the “edge of violence.”

The dragnet for Frein, wanted for allegedly shooting two state troopers at the Blooming Grove barracks on Sept. 12, has plagued eastern Pennsylvania for the past 12 days. Schools in the Pocono Mountain School District reopened on Tuesday, but students were kept indoors and some bus routes were canceled. Frein is believed to be hiding out in the woods near his home in Canadensis, Pa.

“I think we always had a fear that one of the people we were following — because they had so much weaponry — could do something very dangerous,” filmmaker Patrick Bresnan of Austin, Texas, told ABC News Tuesday.

Bresnan, 38, said he and his wife, also a filmmaker, have been busy all summer getting their documentary Vietnam Appreciation Day ready for film festival submissions. The documentary follows a group of war reenactors in rural Pennsylvania, including Frein, preparing for a public show.

Frein and his friends were “very serious about the job,” said Bresnan, who grew up in Pennsylvania and spent time there while filming.

“They were at another level,” he said. “Their collections were almost fetishistic, obsessing over details on uniforms and weaponries.”

But he sensed how the hobby could lead to violence.

“Many people use reenacting as a way to justify owning weapons,” Bresnan said, adding that many of the reenactors he met were people who failed to get into the military.

“A lot of these guys try to act in History Channel episodes as extras, and they get paid $150 so they justify hoarding and collecting weaponry through their reenacting. That’s like the crown jewel for a lot of these guys — getting to portray a Nazi or a soldier on the History Channel.”

Frein is not a main character in Vietnam Appreciation Day, but the film “is a window into Eric’s world,” said Bresnan, who described the suspected murderer as “goofy but dark.”

Filming wrapped in 2011, and Bresnan hopes the film will appear on the next festival circuit. The application deadline for the Sundance Film Festival is next week, he added.

Frein is accused of killing Cpl. Bryon Dickson and critically wounding another trooper when police say he opened fire at the barracks, and then fled into the woods. He’s a survivalist with experience living off the land and a skilled shooter, police said.

His father, a retired Army major, said two weapons were missing from his home: a .308 with a scope and an AK-47 assault rifle. Police scouring the woods have found an AK-47 and ammunition that they believe Frein either abandoned or had stashed.

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Three Afghan Soldiers Stopped by Strip Club Before Seeking Asylum: Police

Three Afghan Soldiers Stopped by Strip Club Before Seeking Asylum: Police

iStock/Thinkstock(BUFFALO, N.Y.) — Prior to their encounter with Canadian and American border agents near Buffalo, New York, the three Afghan soldiers who went missing from Joint Base Cape Cod over the weekend stopped at a strip club, a local police chief confirmed to ABC News Tuesday.

“They were in Mashpee, Massachusetts, at Zachary’s Friday evening,” said Mashpee Police Chief Rodney Collins.

By Saturday they were at Cape Cod Mall, where law enforcement sources said they wanted to buy civilian clothing.

Zachary’s Pub touts itself as “Cape Cod’s only Gentleman’s Club.” The website says “We feature all-nude exotic entertainment, pool tables, Keno, full menu and $4 draft beer. We are open every day, with continuous entertainment from noon – 1 a.m. Couples are welcome!”

“Having military people in here is pretty standard and having people using passports is pretty standard,” said club owner Richard Halpern.

Halpern told ABC News his employees notified him after the story of the soldiers’ disappearance hit the local news.

“Cashiers, dancers and disc jockeys all called to tell me they were in here,” he said.

Halpern said the three Afghan soldiers were part of a larger group of seven or eight that included a translator who told the hostess to notify him if there were any problems. There were no problems and the group left later that night without incident.

The officers were part of a 14-officer contingent from Afghanistan, officials said.

The three Afghan soldiers were found Monday near the U.S.-Canada border, a U.S. Defense Department official told ABC News. Law enforcement officials said the men did not try to hide, but instead walked up to border patrol agents and presented themselves for asylum.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Tuesday that the three Afghan men are now in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Batavia, New York.

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New Jersey Wedding Crashers Wanted for Robbery

New Jersey Wedding Crashers Wanted for Robbery

iStock/Thinkstock(OCEAN TOWNSHIP, N.J.) —  Three uninvited guests who allegedly crashed a wedding in New Jersey are now wanted by police because of the stunt.

Ocean Township police said they have identified the three minors, who took the time to pose in a photo booth that the newlyweds had rented for their guests at the reception. They remain at large but police said they expect to apprehend the suspects soon.

“The three unknown subjects were dressed in suits and mingled with the wedding guests,” Ocean Township police said in a statement about the incident on Sept. 20.

The reception was being held at the English Manor, a wedding venue in Wanamassa, New Jersey. A representative from the venue had no comment about the incident when contacted by ABC News.

The three reportedly drank while crashing the party, which constituted a form of theft, according to ABC affiliate WPVI.

The jig was up when legitimately invited wedding guests alerted a manager about the crashers, and one of the young men threw the manager, a woman, to the ground and fled, police said. The suspects are accused of a strong-arm robbery.

“If you use force during the course of a theft, that is technically a robbery under New Jersey law,” Police Captain Earl Giffords told ABC News.

He went on to say that there is a “broad range” of prospective punishment for such a crime but because no one was injured in the incident, they will likely get a sentence on the low end of the spectrum.

“I can’t imagine we’re going to see any jail time,” Giffords said.

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Teen Who Climbed Freedom Tower Arrested Again

Teen Who Climbed Freedom Tower Arrested Again

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) —  The teenager who caused a security scare at New York’s Freedom Tower earlier this year has been arrested for a new stunt, police said.

Justin Casquejo, 16, has been charged with defiant trespass and resisting arrest after being caught climbing a water tower in Weehawken, New Jersey.

State officials said that the Sept. 17 incident in Weehawken could violate his probation that was handed down after he was caught at the top of the Freedom Tower.

Casquejo was arrested in March after climbing to the tower’s spire. He later explained that he scaled the fence surrounding the site, took the stairs to the 20th floor, jumped on an elevator to the 99th floor and then walked the rest of the way up to the top of the Western Hemisphere’s tallest building.

He pleaded guilty in that case. He has not yet had to enter a plea in the Weehawken case.

Police sources confirmed that Casquejo was the individual arrested in connection to the Weehawken case because the suspect’s name was not originally released publicly due to his age.

There may have been other people present when he allegedly scaled the water tower last week, but Casquejo was the only person arrested.

Casquejo posted an apology on Twitter after he was caught in March, but he has not posted any remorseful message since his most recent arrest.

His most recent message — saying “It’s just a ride” — came on the day of the Weehawken arrest, though it is unclear if it happened before or after the alleged stunt.

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Federal Prison Incarcerations Drop, DOJ Reports

Federal Prison Incarcerations Drop, DOJ Reports

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The Department of Justice says the federal prison population has dwindled to about 4,800 inmates since September 2013.

While speaking at the Brennan Center for Justice Tuesday, Attorney General Eric Holder said this is the first time the figure has dropped in a fiscal year since 1980 and the numbers are expected to decrease over the next two fiscal years.

“Our new projections anticipate that the number of federal inmates will fall by just over 2,000 in the next 12 months — and by almost 10,000 in the year after,” said Holder.

Since President Obama took office, incarceration rates at the state level have also decreased by around 10 percent.

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Protesters Play Dead Outside White House

Protesters Play Dead Outside White House

John Parkinson/ABC News(WASHINGTON) — Five demonstrators shut down a checkpoint at the White House Tuesday, days after an intruder scaled a fence.

One man held up a sign that read: “THERE IS NO MILITARY SOLUTION.” Four others played dead on the sidewalk in front of the northwest checkpoint along Pennsylvania Avenue.

An organizer told ABC News that the man holding the sign is Father John Dear of the group Campaign Nonviolence.

More than a dozen Secret Service officers arrived to remove the protestors, who did not resist arrest.

“When will we realize war is the worst thing we can possibly do?” one protester yelled. Others sang in honor of the victims of drone attacks.

“We’re standing for the victims, we shall not be moved,” they chanted.

The protest organizer, Campaign Nonviolence, describes itself as a group “committed to nonviolent social change…representatives of organizations that normally do not have a voice and have little influence in the places of power in Washington DC,” and outlined a series of “demands” in a letter apparently sent to President Obama and posted on Twitter:

  1. ”[E]nd all drone warfare,”
  2. “establish a living wage” and
  3. “initiate and work for an international treaty for swift verifiable action to reverse climate change.”

“We have the audacity to hope that you or a senior representatives will meet with us on Tuesday September 23, 2014,” the group said in the letter.

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LISTEN: 911 Call of Florida Man Who Shot Entire Family

LISTEN: 911 Call of Florida Man Who Shot Entire Family

AbleStock.com/Thinkstock(BELL, Fla.) — A chilling 911 call reveals the moments after a Florida man shot his entire family in cold blood before committing suicide.

Don Spirit of Bell, Florida, turned the gun on himself after police arrived at the scene of the crime at his mobile home last week where they found seven other bodies, including that of Spirit’s infant granddaughter.

“Yes, ma’am, I just shot my daughter and shot all my grandkids and I’ll be sitting on my step, and when you get here I’m going to shoot myself,” Spirit, 51, said during the call, obtained Tuesday by ABC News.

Spirit was eerily calm as he gave the dispatcher his address, but refused to answer some of her questions.

“It doesn’t matter what kind of gun I got,” he said. “They’re all dead. When you get here, I’ll shoot myself and then you figure out what kind of gun I have.”

He refused to stay on the line until help arrived and committed suicide shortly after officers got there.

The victims include Bell’s 28-year-old daughter, Sarah Lorraine Spirit, and her six children, including a baby girl born in June.

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Secretly Recorded Phone Calls Played in Doctor’s Poisoning Trial

Secretly Recorded Phone Calls Played in Doctor’s Poisoning Trial

iStock/Thinkstock(HOUSTON) — Prosecutors played intimate phone calls secretly taped between two Texas doctors in a trial accusing one jealous lover of poisoning the other.

The assault trial for Dr. Ana Gonzalez-Angulo, 43, began Monday in Houston where she is accused of poisoning Dr. George Blumenschein, an oncologist at the prestigious cancer hospital MD Anderson.

The world-renowned cancer researcher’s intimate phone calls were secretly taped by Blumenschein. In one of the phone calls played for the jury Monday, Gonzalez-Angulo tries to convince Blumenschein his longtime girlfriend, Evette Toney, was the one who poisoned him.

“Why in Christ would I ever hurt you? Why?” Gonzalez-Angulo says in one of the calls.

“Why would Evette hurt me?” Blumenschein responds.

“I don’t know, I don’t know you two,” Gonzalez-Angulo replies. “I would’ve run away a long time ago. …You seem to know things better. You seem to know her better. You trust her.”

Gonzalez-Angulo, a fellow oncologist at MD Anderson, allegedly spiked the coffee with a sweet-tasting chemical used in antifreeze in January 2013, prosecutors say. The chemical is also commonly found in medical labs, including those at MD Anderson.

The jury also heard from Toney Monday, who tearfully recounted how she miscarried while Blumenschein was carrying on an affair with Gonzalez-Angulo.

“He said he was not attracted to her,” Toney testified. “He was adamant. He said it was just work.”

Prosecutors allege that Gonzalez-Angulo poisoned the coffee after Blumenschein picked Toney over her.

The poisoning left Blumenschein with permanent kidney damage, according to testimony from doctors who treated him. Blumenschein took the stand Friday and described the day Gonzalez-Angulo allegedly poisoned him.

“She said she had a special Colombian coffee for me to try,” Blumenschein testified.

Blumenschein said he asked Gonzalez-Angulo why the coffee tasted so sweet and that she responded that she had put Splenda in it.

Gonzalez-Angulo has pleaded not guilty, but if convicted on the felony charge of aggravated assault, she could spend the rest of her life in prison.

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Ravens Owner Denies Charges in ESPN Report

Ravens Owner Denies Charges in ESPN Report

Rob Carr/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti Monday refuted accusations made by ESPN’s Outside the Lines that the team knew former running back Ray Rice had struck his then-fiancee inside a hotel elevators hours after it happened last Feb. 15.

Among the other points raised in the ESPN story was that Bisciotti and the Ravens front office pressured NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to only penalize Rice with a two-game suspension, which the owner denied.

After the video of Rice punching Janay Palmer surfaced two weeks ago, the Ravens cut Rice from the team and Goodell boosted the penalty from two games to an indefinite suspension, which the former Raven is now appealing.

Meanwhile, Bisciotti said he made a huge mistake by not attempting to see the fateful surveillance video earlier, admitting to reporters, “I lacked a whole lot of interest. Zero desire to see that tape.”

As for why he didn’t kick Rice off the team when the first video showed her collapsed on the floor after the elevators doors had opened, Bisciotti also conceded, “I’m not that good. I’m not that honorable I guess. I was not prepared to take the worst-case punishment against somebody I have loving feelings for.”

Meanwhile, the owner speculated about why he felt the ESPN story was filled with inaccuracies, saying, “It’s Ray’s attorney, it’s Ray’s agent, and it’s Ray’s friends, and you know, they are building a case for reinstatement and the best way to build a case for reinstatement, is to make everyone else look like they’re lying.”

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Miss America 2015 Kira Kazantsev Denies Hazing Allegations

Miss America 2015 Kira Kazantsev Denies Hazing Allegations

ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(NEW YORK) — Miss America winner Kira Kazantsev, who spoke during the pageant about protecting women from domestic violence, is this morning denying allegations that she harshly hazed members of her college sorority.
“They are…

Fox Attacks Second-Grader on Connecticut Playground

Fox Attacks Second-Grader on Connecticut Playground

ABC News(EAST WINDSOR, Conn.) — A Connecticut community is on high alert after a fox attacked people on an elementary school playground, biting at least four people, including a second-grade boy.

The fox on the run outside Broad Brook Elementary School in East Windsor Monday attacked 7-year-old Evan Witzke during an outdoor gym class.

Physical education teacher Elissa Daniele was teaching class around 11:30 a.m. when she noticed the fox sneak out of the woods and latch on to her student.  She risked her own safety for the students and ripped the animal off him. Once Daniele was able to corral the fox, she wrapped a neck brace around its mouth to prevent it from biting. She then trapped it under a recycling bin.

“It was trying to gnaw at his wrists and ankles,” Daniele told ABC News. “I knew I had to pin the fox down to get it away from my student to keep my student safe.”

Daniele and a staffer were also bitten. It’s unclear whether the fox is rabid.

Authorities believe the same fox also attacked nearby resident Danielle Bopko earlier that day while she was on her way to breakfast to celebrate getting engaged less than 24 hours before coming face-to-face with the animal.

“I have never experienced an animal that when you scare it, it keeps coming back and coming back, it almost came in the house and I kicked it,” Bopko told ABC News affiliate WTNH-TV in New Haven.

All four victims have been treated for rabies as a precaution and are expected to make full recoveries.

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College Student Killed in Rare Bear Attack While Hiking in NJ

College Student Killed in Rare Bear Attack While Hiking in NJ

iStock/Thinkstock(WEST MILFORD, N.J.) — A 299-pound male black bear is suspected of killing a hiker in northern New Jersey on Sunday.

Searchers found the body of 22-year-old Darsh Patel a few hours after he and his friends encountered a bear and ran away, realizing later that Patel was missing.

Sheriff’s officers and wildlife officials killed the bear, located about 30 or 40 yards from the body.

Black bear attacks are rare, and Kelsey Burgess with New Jersey Fish & Wildlife guesses the attack may have been sparked by hunger.

“It could be a function of food,” Burgess said. “The animal is just hungry…we’re dealing with a mass shortage this year – typically when you see predatory behavior by black bears, it’s a result of a lack of food.”

Larry Rangonese with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection advises hikers confronted by a bear to not run away.

“You don’t want to run from a bear, you don’t want to look it in the eye to challenge it, so that the bear thinks it’s being challenged,” Rangonese said.

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Smoke on Plane Sparks Evacuation at Detroit Airport

Smoke on Plane Sparks Evacuation at Detroit Airport

iStock/Thinkstock(DETROIT) —  Passengers on a Delta Airlines flight ready to leave the Detroit airport were evacuated on the taxiway on Monday.

The plane was about to take off for Cincinnati when the pilots told the tower there was smoke onboard. The passengers evacuated on the plane’s stairs.

The fire department found no evidence of fire and no injuries were reported.

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How Other Survivalists Eluded Police Capture

How Other Survivalists Eluded Police Capture

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) —  The Pennsylvania man accused of shooting two state troopers and slipping away into the woods is the latest fugitive survivalist to dodge capture by fleeing into the wilderness and surviving on the land.

It sometimes takes years to find fugitives who are accomplished outdoorsmen.

Convicted murderer Eric Rudolph famously evaded authorities for five years while hiding out in North Carolina mountains before he was captured in 2003. Cherokee County Sheriff Keith Lovin remembers the day Rudolph, charged with the 1996 Olympic park bombing in Atlanta and another blast at an Alabama abortion clinic, was cornered outside a grocery store in Murphy.

“He could have been foraging for supplies,” Lovin said. “That’s part of being a survivalist — taking advantage of what resources you have and knowing where to look for them.”

Rudolph, who is serving a life sentence, survived by sleeping in abandoned houses and summer homes.

“We have a lot of summer homes that are vacant for a good amount of time, and a lot of homes that are for sale,” Lovin said. “You can go in and get out of the weather for a day or two — particularly if that home is out of the way.”

Lovin suspects the situation is similar in the Pocono Mountains of eastern Pennsylvania, where a massive manhunt is under way for suspect Eric Frein, accused of ambushing two state troopers at the Blooming Grove police barracks on Sept. 12, killing one officer and critically injuring another.

But he points out that Rudolph’s situation was unique because he believes the criminal got help while he was on the lam.

“While it is one thing to be able to go into the wild and live off land and camp, it’s entirely different when you have associates or friends who are willing to assist you,” Lovin said.

Other residents of the southern mountain town might have offered food or help unknowingly, thinking Rudolph was “a homeless person, or someone down on his luck,” Lovin added.

Last year, police arrested Troy James Knapp, known as the “Mountain Man,” in the woods in Utah, where he had lived on the run for six years, sleeping in a tent and killing wild animals for food.

Knapp was wanted for a string of cabin burglaries around Sevier County. He survived the cold winters by breaking into snowbound homes and sleeping in the owners’ beds while they were away, authorities said, sometimes leaving behind threatening notes, like “Get off my mountain,” and one time a message to police: “Gonna put you in the ground.”

He drank their whiskey and stole their guns before retreating to the woods with high-end camping gear. Knapp, 46, pleaded guilty in June under an agreement that will likely put him in prison until 2024.

Yet another fugitive who lived off the land while running from police is Jason McVean, accused with two other men of killing a Colorado police officer in 1998. His remains were found in 2007 in southeastern Utah, along with a bulletproof vest, camouflage backpack, pipe bombs, an AK-47 and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.

The bodies of his alleged accomplices, Alan Pilon and Robert Mason, were found years earlier.

And Robert Fisher, an Arizona man accused of murdering his family before setting their home on fire, has been missing ever since his alleged crime in 2001. The FBI for a while considered that sightings of a man who turned out to be Knapp might be Fisher, described by authorities as a survivalist and skilled hunter and outdoorsman.

There have been many reported sightings of Fisher, but he hasn’t been found.

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