Search

Monday
Sep262016

Iowa Mayor to Residents in Flood Evacuation Area: 'Please, Please Leave'

iStock/Thinkstock(VINTON, Iowa) -- Iowa residents are waiting nervously as the swollen Cedar River rises steadily to its highest levels since a devastating flood in 2008 that caused some $10 billion in damages and took one life.

The river in Cedar Rapids is now 19.4 feet, a level at which major flooding can occur, officials said Monday.

The city's mayor, Ron Corbett, said only an estimated 50 percent of residents in lower-lying areas designated for voluntary evacuation had complied. Altogether, about 5,000 people live in the evacuation area, The Des Moines Register reported.

Corbett said he "won't drag people out but please, please leave."

“It’s crunch time in Cedar Rapids," the mayor said at a news conference Monday morning. "The next 48 hours are the most critical, are the most dangerous.”

“The next 48 hours we need 100 percent cooperation from the citizens in both the evacuation area and outside the evacuation area,” he said. "I want to make sure the confidence we have doesn’t let our guard down."

Authorities had asked residents living in designated evacuation areas to leave by 8 p.m. Sunday evening in anticipation of flooding. The mayor also issued a nightly curfew within the evacuation area from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m., starting Sunday evening and lasting until further notice.

The National Weather Service predicts that the river will crest Tuesday morning.

“This will likely go on record on the second-largest flood in the city's area." Jen Winter, public works director of Cedar Rapids, said at the press conference. For safety, she said, “no one should be walking, biking, or driving, within this evacuation area.”

The city is preparing for the worst, making preparations for “water rescues and water-based operations,” by staging boats on both sides of the river.

“Waters are rising, so please remember to be safe and stay out of flooded areas,” Fire Chief Mark English said. “Six inches of water can knock you down, two feet of water can sweep your car away.”

The river crested in the town of Vinton at just under 22 feet at 3 a.m. Monday, less than three feet shy of the record in 2008.

Floodwaters invaded streets, inundating homes, businesses, parks, yards and stopped traffic in parts of the town.

"I think it could have been a lot worse," resident Becci Sloan told KCRG-TV, a local ABC affiliate, hours before the river crested. "There's going to be a lot of trash left over and a lot of wood and debris."

Emergency crews stood vigil, preparing for the worst.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

How Open Carry Laws Played into Charlotte Shooting 

Photodisc/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- Keith Lamont Scott's alleged possession of a firearm at the time of his shooting death would not on its own be a reason to forcibly disarm him, according to two legal experts.

Police announced on Saturday that lab analysis had revealed the presence of Scott's DNA and fingerprints on a loaded handgun recovered from the scene by investigators.

Charlotte Police Chief Kerr Putney also released body and dashboard camera videos of the fatal police shooting of Scott, answering to demands made by community leaders, protesters and politicians, but it is not entirely clear from those videos, or from the one taken by Scott's wife, Rakeiya Scott, that the victim had a gun, or that he brandished it in a way that would pose a threat to the officers who approached him.

Police also released evidence of an ankle holster and a marijuana cigarette. Police have alleged that Scott was rolling a marijuana "blunt" in his car.

ABC News spoke to E. Gregory Wallace, a professor at Campbell University School of Law in North Carolina, and Joseph E. Kennedy, a law professor at the University of North Carolina, about the state's open carry gun laws, and they agreed that short of "brandishing" a gun, the presence of a handgun on Scott would not on its own justify an attempt by officers to disarm him.

States like California and New York ban the practice of carrying handguns in public, and some states allow open carry under a license, but North Carolina is among the 31 states that do not require a license.

There are limitations to the law, however; one's criminal history, drug use or immigration status can forfeit the right to carry a gun.

Wallace noted that if the police saw the marijuana cigarette in combination with the gun, it might be enough to justify forcibly disarming Scott because of the implication of illegal activity, but police would have needed to have seen both at the same time.

"The mere display of a firearm in the city of Charlotte doesn't give police cause to detain or disarm a citizen," Wallace said.

Wallace said that the videos fail to show the encounter that lead to his shooting, leaving many questions about the incident unanswered. He separates the Scott incident into two parts: the decision to disarm Scott, followed by the decision to shoot.

"The video doesn't cover any time prior to having guns drawn," he said. "My question is: What was the cause of the initial approach?"

The video released by police shows Scott exiting a white SUV. He backs away from it with his hands at his sides, and doesn't appear to be acting in a threatening manner.

Officers can be heard shouting, “Drop the gun!” in the video.

Scott was shot multiple times. He can be heard in the video moaning in pain as officers apply handcuffs to him.

Kennedy told ABC News that in North Carolina, someone can legally challenge a police officer's request to put a gun down.

"Having a gun makes you armed, but it doesn't necessarily make you dangerous," he said.

He spoke critically of open carry laws, and said that the laws put both citizens and police officers in an "impossible situation" due to the legal justification for citizens to be armed in public.

He added that without a gun in Scott's hand, the shooting of him should be considered "grossly negligent" on the part of police.

Wallace added that if it could be determined that Scott had his weapon in his holster at the time of the shooting, it would be a "game changer," noting that it would not have put the police in enough danger to warrant shooting him.

Ray Dotch, Scott's brother-in-law, called Monday for the release of the full police video, saying that he hopes Americans will take "an absolute unflinching look" at prejudice and police-involved shootings and that "we as a nation tell the truth about who we are."

It is unclear whether or not the full video will provide clear evidence of what happened during the initial approach to Scott's vehicle, or whether or not he had a gun in his hand at the time he was shot by police.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

Suspect Confesses in Washington Mall Shooting that Killed Five

Skagit County DEM(BURLINGTON, Wash.) -- The suspect in Friday's deadly mall shooting in Washington state confessed to police in the shooting that left five people dead, according to charging documents.

He faces charges on five counts of first-degree murder and is being held on $2 million bond, charging documents show.

Authorities identified the alleged shooter as Arcan Cetin, 20, of Oak Harbor, Washington. He was arrested Saturday in Oak Harbor after authorities received a tip that linked him to the shooting "as a person of interest," the Skagit County Department of Emergency Management said.

Cetin apparently had a falling out with his father prior to the shooting, the arrest warrant declaration in the case shows. His mother helped to identify him from surveillance camera images released by police.

Cetin was spotted walking on a sidewalk and then taken into custody. He was unarmed, did not resist arrest and was in a "zombie-like" state, Lt. Mike Hawley with the Island County Sheriff's Office said during a news conference Saturday.

Friday's shooting occurred in the evening at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington, about 65 miles north of Seattle. At Saturday's news conference, police said that the gunman first entered the mall unarmed and then re-entered with a firearm. He opened fire in the makeup department of Macy's.

Four women were killed and a man later died from his injuries Saturday at a Seattle hospital, said Sgt. Mark Francis, a public information officer with the Washington State Patrol.

Although police initially said Cetin was Hispanic, authorities later said that he had immigrated from Turkey and is a legal permanent resident of the United States.

Police have said they believe Cetin acted alone and the FBI said it had no indication that the shooting was linked to terrorism.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

Violent Crime in US Up as City Homicides Spur 11 Percent Hike in Overall Murders

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Cities across the country suffered an uptick in violent crime last year, including a nearly 11 percent jump in murders from the year before, according to new statistics compiled by the FBI.

There were 1,197,704 violent crimes committed around the nation last year -- a 3.9 percent increase from 2014, according to the FBI's Uniform Crime Report. However, last year's statistics were still slightly lower than in 2011, and more than 16 percent below the 2006 level, the FBI said Monday.

It's important to note that big jumps in violent crime in only a handful of U.S. cities can drive the national average up. Some cities, like Chicago and Los Angeles, saw more than 24,000 violent crimes each last year, while so many other cities and towns across the country experienced single-digit or no violent crimes at all.

Overall, murders accounted for nearly 15,700 of last year's violent crimes, and nearly three-quarters of them were committed with firearms, according to the FBI report.

"The report shows that there was an overall increase in violent crime last year, making clear what each of us already knows: that we still have so much work to do," Attorney General Loretta Lynch said at a violent-reduction summit in Little Rock, Arkansas. "But the report also reminds us of the progress that we are making. It shows that in many communities, crime has remained stable or even decreased from the historic lows reported in 2014. And it is important to remember that while crime did increase overall last year, 2015 still represented the third-lowest year for violent crime in the past two decades."

Lynch said the nation must not become "complacent" about violent crime.

"The residents of communities where violence remains a fact of daily life care little whether overall crime rates are up and down," she said. "And in the raft of data and analysis that can so often define our work, we must never forget that all of our numbers reflect the lives of real people."

She emphasized that "there is no single cause of violence, and solutions will vary from one community to another."

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

Son Found After Eight Days Lost at Sea, Mother's Fate a Mystery

iStock/Thinkstock(POINT JUDITH, R.I.) -- The U.S. Coast Guard announced Monday afternoon that it has decided not to re-open a search for a 54-year-old Connecticut woman who disappeared after she and her son went on a fishing trip last week.

Though her son, 22-year-old Nathan Carman, was found alive after eight days at sea, Linda Carman remains missing, according to the Coast Guard.

But, the Coast Guard has decided not to re-open the ocean search for Linda Carman since she likely has had no food, water or a life raft -- and thus, a zero to minimal chance of survival, Coast Guard Petty Officer Nicole Groll said.

Linda Carman and her 22-year-old son, Nathan Carman were first reported missing Sunday, Sept. 18, after failing to return from a fishing trip they began from Point Judith, Rhode Island the previous day, according to Coast Guard Petty Officer Nicole Groll.

The Coast Guard performed an exhaustive search for the Carmans for six days, covering an area larger than Georgia, Groll said. The search was suspended on Friday, Sept. 23, after the Guard failed to locate them.

But two days later, a Chinese freighter called the Orient Lucky found Nathan Carman more than 100 nautical miles from Martha's Vineyard, Groll said, adding that he was in a life raft with food and water. Linda Carman, however, was not in the life raft and was nowhere to be found.

Nathan Carman is currently on the freighter and scheduled to arrive in Boston sometime Tuesday evening, Groll said at a news conference Monday afternoon. She added that he was in good condition.

The 22-year-old told Coast Guard officials that their 32-foot aluminum center console boat had taken in water sometime on Sunday, Sept. 18, Groll said.

Nathan Carman said that when he went to escape in the vessel's life raft, he could not find his mother.

Groll said the boat sank near Block Canyon off the coast of New York. She added that no mayday call had been made from the boat, though it was unclear if the vessel had a radio.

Coast Guard officials hope to get a "clearer understanding" of what happened once Nathan Carman gets to Boston, according to Groll.

Meanwhile, yellow ribbons and signs expressing hope have been hung on the Carmans' home by family and friends, ABC affiliate WTNH-TV reported.

Family friend Sharon Hartstein told WTNH that Linda Carman was a "momma bird" who would protect her son "at all costs."

"I was thrilled that they found [Nathan], and then I was devastated that Linda wasn’t with him," Hartstein said, adding that she and the family still hope Linda Carman will be found.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

Seven Wounded After Shooting in Houston Shopping Center

iStock/Thinkstock(HOUSTON) — The Houston Police Department has responded to an active shooter situation in a shopping center that has left multiple people wounded, according to an alert published by the city.

The suspect was shot and killed, according to police.

The Houston Fire Department confirmed to ABC News that the shooting began at 6:29 a.m. at a Petco store.

Local ABC affiliate KTRK reported that seven people were injured in the attack. Police said the individuals have been transported to area hospitals.

"At this time, the shooting scene is believed to be contained, but residents are asked to please avoid the area of Wesleyan St, between Westpark Drive and Bissonnet Street as it is still an active response and investigation scene," the alert read.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

Brother-in-Law of Keith Lamont Scott Calls for Release of Full Police Video

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Ray Dotch, brother-in-law of Keith Lamont Scott, who was killed by police in Charlotte last week, Monday called for the full police video of the incident to be released and said that he hopes Americans will take "an absolute unflinching look" at prejudice and police-involved shootings and that "we as a nation tell the truth about who we are."

Dotch told Good Morning America Monday that the partial video of the encounter Tuesday between Scott and Charlotte police which the police department released Saturday "left us with more questions than with answers" about the shooting.

"We're, first, happy they released" the partial video, Dotch told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos. "Our absolute first goal is to get to the absolute truth ... We're still trying to understand how it came to be that this particular moment led to the loss of life."

Charlotte-Mecklenburg, North Carolina, released some of the police department's tapes of the fatal shooting of Scott on Saturday, and Police Chief Kerr Putney said more footage will come later.


ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

Dotch said that in the wake of the tragedy, "My family is trying to expand the conversation beyond just us."

"My hope on all of this is that the only way that Keith and all of the others' lives will not be in vain is if we as a nation tell the truth about who we are, about the inherent prejudices that we carry as a nation, that we've always carried," Dotch said.

"When you see my sister as your sister, when you see Keith Lamont Scott as your brother and not just my brother, when we stand together as a United States and say enough of this then we're making forward progress," he said.

Dotch acknowledged that he and his family are grieving Scott's death.

"We're holding it together," he said.


ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Sep262016

Charlotte Lifts Curfew Imposed in Response to Protests

Peter Zay/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) — The city of Charlotte, North Carolina, announced Sunday evening that the curfew that had been imposed in response to protests after the shooting death of Keith Lamont Scott had been lifted, effective immediately.

Protests were peaceful Saturday night, although some clergy and demonstrators ignored the midnight curfew to stop and pray outside the Charrlotte-Mecklenburg police headquarters, just hours after the department released body cam and dash cam video footage of the fatal shooting of Scott on Tuesday.

Demonstrators filled the streets of downtown Charlotte carrying signs that read "Hands Up, They Still Shoot," "Why Us?" "Define 'Bad Due,'" and "Black Lives Matter," but the protests were orderly.

The curfew was imposed Thursday after demonstrations over the past week have become violent, with protesters looting and vandalizing businesses, and the National Guard was called out to help maintain order.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Sunday
Sep252016

Washington Mall Shooting Suspect in Custody, Motive Unclear

Skagit County DEM(BURLINGTON, Wash.) -- The suspect in the shooting at a mall in Washington state that left five people dead Friday was arrested and taken into custody Saturday evening, according to the Washington State Patrol.

The suspect was identified by police as Arcan Cetin, 20, a resident of Oak Harbor, Washington, located about 28 miles southwest of the mall where the shooting happened. He was taken into custody in Oak Harbor.

"Investigators began pursuing the different leads, and one particular tip identified Cetin as a person of interest," explained a news release from the Skagit County Department of Emergency Management. "Investigators began interviewing family and associates who are familiar with the man, and it became apparent he was likely connected to the shootings."

At a press conference Saturday night, Lt. Mike Hawley with the Island County Sheriff's Office said Cetin was taken into custody around 6:30 p.m. after his car was spotted by Oak Harbor Police Department officers. Cetin was spotted walking on the sidewalk and was then taken into custody. He was unarmed, did not resist arrest and was in a "zombie-like" state, Lt. Hawley said.

Mount Vernon Police Lt. Chris Cammock said at the press conference that Cetin's capture came after police received several tips from the public. After reviewing security footage from outside the mall, police were able to identify his car.

When asked what Cetin's motive was, Lt. Cammock said, "I have no idea," although he added officials are not ruling out terrorism.

Cetin has not been formally charged yet. He is currently being held at Skagit County Jail.

Lt. Cammock said Cetin "had been arrested in our county for a simple assault" in the past, without elaborating on the case.

Although police initially said Cetin was Hispanic, Lt. Cammock said, "He immigrated from Turkey but he is a a legal permanent resident of the United States...we will be asking [federal authorities] to look deeper into immigration issues."

Some social media users captured Cetin's capture by police in Oak Harbor.

The shooting occurred Friday evening at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington, about 65 miles north of Seattle. At Saturday's press conference, Lt. Cammock said Cetin first entered the mall unarmed, and the re-entered the mall with a firearm and opened fire in the makeup department of Macy's.

Surveillance video images released by authorities showed that Cetin, whom police originally described as Hispanic and in his late teens or early 20s, went into the mall without the rifle that he shortly after brandished in the department store.

Four women, ranging in age from teens to seniors, were killed, and a man who had sustained life-threatening injuries died at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle early Saturday morning, several hours after he was taken there, said Sgt. Mark Francis, a public information officer with the Washington State Patrol.

Police have said they believe Cetin acted alone, and the FBI said it had no indication that the shooting was linked to terrorism.

The Skagit County Coroner is expected to release more information about the the victims on Monday.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Sunday
Sep252016

Airplane Collision over Upstate New York; Three Reportedly Dead

iStock/Thinkstock(BUFFALO, N.Y.) -- Two planes collided over upstate New York Sunday morning, reportedly causing three deaths.

The incident occurred a little before 9:30 a.m., according to the Erie County Sheriff's office, when two planes that were en route to a small airport in Hamburg, New York, struck one another.

One plane came down near a barn, according to the sheriff's office, and both planes have subsequently been recovered.

The sheriff's office said three people died in the collision -- two on one plane and one on the other, according to ABC affiliate WKBW-TV in Buffalo, New York.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said that the collision occurred "in flight."

"A Cessna 120 and a Piper PA 28 made contact in flight and crashed in North Collins, NY today," the FAA said.

The agency said it would investigate the circumstances surrounding the collision.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.







ABC News Radio