About the author  ⁄ 

Mark Wilson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Bernie Sanders held what he said was the largest grassroots campaign event of the 2016 president race so far Wednesday night, broadcasting a video message over his website to tens of thousands of people at gatherings around the country.

“Tonight really is an historic night,” said Sanders. “To the best of our knowledge, there has never been a political online organizing event this early in the campaign which involved 100,000 people in 3,500 locations in every state in the United States of America. And that’s pretty impressive.”

While those numbers could not be independently verified, there was a good deal of online chatter leading up to the live broadcast.

The number of people who RSVP’d to the events ranged from four to hundreds of people.

Michelle Tiegs in Souix Falls, South Dakota, said she was not sure what to expect, but then received RSVPs every hour after posting her event. She ended up moving her event to a new location after over 200 people signed up to attend. “We are just completely overwhelmed, mystified by how many people have signed up,” she said.

People signed up to host through the Sanders campaign website and volunteers helped answer questions. “What we gave seen across this campaign is RSVPs actually under-sell the Senator’s events, and we’re expecting the same thing tonight,” said the campaign’s digital director Kenneth Pennington.
After the senator delivered his message, one of his campaign organizers spoke to viewers about need to turn their enthusiasm into a “coordinated grassroots movement.”

“To win this election and build a real political revolution we need to be everywhere. We need you to bring this movement to your community by doing un-glamorous but essential work like knocking on doors, calling voters,” digital organizing director for the campaign, Claire Sandberg, told those watching online.

Manisha Sharma, who hosted the house party in southeast Washington, D.C. where Sanders delivered his message, said that was why she volunteered to have a party.

“He doesn’t have name recognition,” Sharma said. “He has conscious recognition. I feel he’s doing God’s work,” she said. She has a tech start up and said she believed in his message about regulating banks and supporting community banking.

Sharma signed up online like thousands of others about a week ago to host an event, and a few days ago was asked by the campaign if they would let the Senator deliver his message from her party.

Besides the network cameras and intensive internet setup, it looked like a regular house party with homemade signs, guacamole and Bernie cocktails.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Stewart F. House/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry challenged Donald Trump to a pullup contest Wednesday in response to the billionaire’s charge that Perry wasn’t smart enough to join the presidential debate — or as a reporter put it to Perry, not tough enough.

“Let’s get a pullup bar out there and see who can do the most pullups,” Perry told a reporter, who told him that Trump “questioned your energy, toughness and quote-unquote, ‘brain power’ that it might require to run a successful campaign.”

In a story in the Daily Mail, Trump said that Perry was “trying so hard.”

“But it’s not about trying,” he said, according to the story. “It’s about energy, it’s about brainpower, it’s about toughness.”

Trump, who is competing for the Republican nomination and is polling well ahead of Perry nationally, tweeted earlier this month that Perry “should be forced to take an IQ test before being allowed to enter the GOP debate.”

Trump’s camp did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Stewart F. House/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry challenged Donald Trump to a pullup contest Wednesday in response to the billionaire’s charge that Perry wasn’t smart enough to join the presidential debate — or as a reporter put it to Perry, not tough enough.

“Let’s get a pullup bar out there and see who can do the most pullups,” Perry told a reporter, who told him that Trump “questioned your energy, toughness and quote-unquote, ‘brain power’ that it might require to run a successful campaign.”

In a story in the Daily Mail, Trump said that Perry was “trying so hard.”

“But it’s not about trying,” he said, according to the story. “It’s about energy, it’s about brainpower, it’s about toughness.”

Trump, who is competing for the Republican nomination and is polling well ahead of Perry nationally, tweeted earlier this month that Perry “should be forced to take an IQ test before being allowed to enter the GOP debate.”

Trump’s camp did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Ivan Kmit/iStock/ThinkStock(ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.) — A 911 call dispatcher at the Albuquerque Fire Department has resigned after audio was released from a recent emergency call in which he told a teen, who called to report her friend had been shot, to “deal with it yourself” before abruptly hanging up.

This past June 26, Esperanza Quintero, 17, made a 911 call after her friend Jaydon Chavez-Silver, also 17, was shot in a drive-by shooting at a house party, the Albuquerque Police Department told ABC News Wednesday.

Matthew Sanchez, the dispatcher who answered the call, can be heard repeatedly asking if the victim is breathing in audio obtained by ABC News.

Quintero, who can be heard in the audio soothing her friend and telling him to “stay with me” in the call, said she got “frustrated” after Sanchez kept asking the same questions “over and over and over again,” ABC News affiliate KOAT-TV reported.

After asking if her friend was breathing again, Quintero replies, “He’s barely breathing. How many times do I have to f****** tell you?”

“OK, you know what ma’am? You could deal with it yourself,” Sanchez responds. “I’m not going to deal with this, OK?

“No, my friend is dying,” Quintero responds before the dispatcher seems to hang up and the audio cuts off.

Melissa Romero, a spokeswoman for the fire department told ABC News today that “the dispatcher did dispatch units prior to disconnect” and that the “response time was four minutes and 26 seconds, which exceeds national standards.”

Chavez-Silver was taken to a hospital, where he later succumbed to his wounds and died, police public information officer Tanner Tixier told ABC News today. A homicide investigation is ongoing, and though no suspects have been arrested in connection with the drive-by shooting, police are following up on numerous leads, he added.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Jacob Ammentorp Lund/iStock/ThinkStock(WASHINGTON) — State Department official Daniel Rosen, 45, on Wednesday plead guilty to six counts of voyeurism and five counts of stalking for peering into women’s homes and secretly recording videos.
Rosen struck a plea agreement after police found videos of dozens of women in “various states of undress” on his iPhone.

Over a three year period, he recorded at least 20 victims, mostly women, in northwest Washington D.C., by recording through windows, cracked blinds and metal gates into the bathrooms and bedrooms of basement level apartments.

In one instance he recorded a woman from her private backyard as she posed for her boyfriend on Facetime. On another occasion he recorded a different women as she lay naked in the bathtub reading a book.

All of the video recordings took place in the late evening under the cover of darkness, usually while he walked his dog. He went back and filmed some of the women multiple times. His victims were unaware at the time that he was making videos of them.

Rosen was arrested in February in Fairfax County, Virginia for soliciting a minor for sex. Virginia police notified the Metropolitan Police Department once geolocation revealed that videos found on his phone were taken in Washington, D.C. He is still facing charges in the Fairfax case.

Rosen’s wife sat in the courtroom as all 11 counts were read aloud. Rosen stood and listened as the prosecuting attorney read through the salacious details of his actions. He and his wife walked side-by-side out of D.C. Superior Court.

“He pled guilty and he wants to get a grip on his life,” said his attorney Bernard Grimm after the hearing.
Rosen was put on unpaid administrative leave from the State Department, according to Grimm.
Grimm said that his client’s security clearance had been revoked and he was not expected to be allowed back to his job.

The State Department refused to comment, citing privacy concerns.

Rosen was released until sentencing under strict home confinement and electronic monitoring. He faces up to 11 years in prison and a possible fine of $11,000.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Jacob Ammentorp Lund/iStock/ThinkStock(WASHINGTON) — State Department official Daniel Rosen, 45, on Wednesday plead guilty to six counts of voyeurism and five counts of stalking for peering into women’s homes and secretly recording videos.
Rosen struck a plea agreement after police found videos of dozens of women in “various states of undress” on his iPhone.

Over a three year period, he recorded at least 20 victims, mostly women, in northwest Washington D.C., by recording through windows, cracked blinds and metal gates into the bathrooms and bedrooms of basement level apartments.

In one instance he recorded a woman from her private backyard as she posed for her boyfriend on Facetime. On another occasion he recorded a different women as she lay naked in the bathtub reading a book.

All of the video recordings took place in the late evening under the cover of darkness, usually while he walked his dog. He went back and filmed some of the women multiple times. His victims were unaware at the time that he was making videos of them.

Rosen was arrested in February in Fairfax County, Virginia for soliciting a minor for sex. Virginia police notified the Metropolitan Police Department once geolocation revealed that videos found on his phone were taken in Washington, D.C. He is still facing charges in the Fairfax case.

Rosen’s wife sat in the courtroom as all 11 counts were read aloud. Rosen stood and listened as the prosecuting attorney read through the salacious details of his actions. He and his wife walked side-by-side out of D.C. Superior Court.

“He pled guilty and he wants to get a grip on his life,” said his attorney Bernard Grimm after the hearing.
Rosen was put on unpaid administrative leave from the State Department, according to Grimm.
Grimm said that his client’s security clearance had been revoked and he was not expected to be allowed back to his job.

The State Department refused to comment, citing privacy concerns.

Rosen was released until sentencing under strict home confinement and electronic monitoring. He faces up to 11 years in prison and a possible fine of $11,000.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Jacob Ammentorp Lund/iStock/ThinkStock(WASHINGTON) — State Department official Daniel Rosen, 45, on Wednesday plead guilty to six counts of voyeurism and five counts of stalking for peering into women’s homes and secretly recording videos.
Rosen struck a plea agreement after police found videos of dozens of women in “various states of undress” on his iPhone.

Over a three year period, he recorded at least 20 victims, mostly women, in northwest Washington D.C., by recording through windows, cracked blinds and metal gates into the bathrooms and bedrooms of basement level apartments.

In one instance he recorded a woman from her private backyard as she posed for her boyfriend on Facetime. On another occasion he recorded a different women as she lay naked in the bathtub reading a book.

All of the video recordings took place in the late evening under the cover of darkness, usually while he walked his dog. He went back and filmed some of the women multiple times. His victims were unaware at the time that he was making videos of them.

Rosen was arrested in February in Fairfax County, Virginia for soliciting a minor for sex. Virginia police notified the Metropolitan Police Department once geolocation revealed that videos found on his phone were taken in Washington, D.C. He is still facing charges in the Fairfax case.

Rosen’s wife sat in the courtroom as all 11 counts were read aloud. Rosen stood and listened as the prosecuting attorney read through the salacious details of his actions. He and his wife walked side-by-side out of D.C. Superior Court.

“He pled guilty and he wants to get a grip on his life,” said his attorney Bernard Grimm after the hearing.
Rosen was put on unpaid administrative leave from the State Department, according to Grimm.
Grimm said that his client’s security clearance had been revoked and he was not expected to be allowed back to his job.

The State Department refused to comment, citing privacy concerns.

Rosen was released until sentencing under strict home confinement and electronic monitoring. He faces up to 11 years in prison and a possible fine of $11,000.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

jakubzak/iStock/ThinkStock(NEW YORK) — Pictures of two Oklahoma boys with second- and third-degree burns have started to make national headlines after they spent hours at a water park without sun protection, according to their mother.

Shaunna Broadway was horrified to find out her fair-skinned sons, ages 5 and 7, were left without sun protection during a day care trip to a nearby water park.

Broadway said that daycare workers said that they didn’t have sunscreen for the boys and the young boys did not keep their shirts on at the park. The boys ended up in the hospital with second- and third-degree burns and were eventually airlifted to a Texas hospital for further treatment.

A video released by Broadway shows the boys screaming in pain as they receive treatment. She told ABC News she was heartbroken to see her sons injured after they spent hours in triple-digit temperatures.

“It’s been really hard to see them go through this,” she said.

The Oklahoma Department of Human Services confirmed to ABC News that the daycare center has ceased operations.

Experts say this case clearly shows how dangerous a simple trip outdoors can be for those without sun protection.

Dr. Barney Kenet, a New York-based dermatologist, said the boys were likely susceptible to severe sun damage because they appear to have very fair skin.

“Those boys are very fair and [one has] red hair, they are as fair as they can be,” said Kenet. “In high-sun community and so you can get a burn … in 15 minutes when you’re this fair.”

He guessed spending an hour or more in the sun with no protection could lead to the severe burns seen on the boys in the pictures released by Broadway.

He said while the burns look severe in the pictures, the boys will likely not suffer permanent damage.
“The future however is good,” said Kenet. “Both boys will heal up quite well … it’s highly unlikely they will have scarring.”

He did warn that the boys could be at high risk for health complications in the future as a result of the severe burn.

“Unfortunately severe burns in childhood in this natures are an independent risk factor for skin cancer later in life,” explained Kenet.

Kenet said it’s key to apply broad spectrum sun block every two to three hours when in the sun and to try and avoid being outdoors during peak hours. He said if rambunctious kids refuse to stay indoors parents can double up on sun block and long sleeve rash guards to give protection to vulnerable children.

“They have pristine, very fair and unclimatized skin,” Kenet said of the two boys. “Baby skin, it’s very fair. They have no tan and no protection.“

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Dept of Justice(SPRINGFIELD, Mass.) — Boston Police commander Robert Ciccolo knew something was going terribly wrong with his son Alexander at least a decade before 23-year-old was arrested by the FBI this month on charges connected to an ISIS-inspired plan to “emulate the Boston Marathon bombers” and “set off a bomb at a college campus” — allegations linked to charges to which he pleaded not guilty Wednesday.

In the spring of 2005, at age 13, Alexander Ciccolo was suspended and nearly expelled from a public school in Wareham after he was accused of striking another student and a teacher with drumsticks, according to probate records pertaining to his parents’ divorce. Months later he was arrested by Wareham Police after he told a classmate “he was going to kill him,” and lunged at the student with a butterfly knife.

By then, Ciccolo had missed so many days of school the Wareham School Department filed what is known in Massachusetts as a CHINS — or Child In Need of Services — complaint to the Department of Social Services which opened an investigation into his mother, who had full custody.

The entire time his father, who was rising in the ranks of the Boston Police Department, desperately petitioned the court to let Alexander live with him, his new wife, and his stepchildren in Needham, an upscale Boston suburb, rather than with his ex-wife, Shelley Reardon, who refused, he claimed in court records, to have Alexander evaluated by mental health professionals.

“He [Robert] seeks this change because the child’s mother…who presently has primary physical custody of the child has in the past verbally agreed to allow the child to be evaluated but without exception has subsequently refused to allow such evaluations to proceed,” Ciccolo’s lawyer wrote in an emergency motion that petitioned a court to give him full custody of Alexander. “At present mother… has threatened legal action against father if initiates” psychological treatment.

The contentious divorce between Robert Ciccolo and Reardon, who split after 10 years of marriage when Alexander was five, are a glimpse into their only son’s long history of behavioral problems and mental illness that culminated with him coming “under the sway of ISIS,” as a young adult, prosecutors said at his first court appearance on July 14. He changed his name to Abu Ali al Amriki 18 months ago and opened a Facebook account where he posted a picture of a dead American soldier along with “Thank you Islamic State! Now we don’t have to deal with these kafir [non believer] back in America.”

Assistant United States Attorney Kevin O’Regan told a judge this month that Alexander Ciccolo adopted “in his young life an extremist form of Islam in which it called for acts of terror against people who didn’t believe as he did in this extremist form of Islam and, as a result of that, he developed a hatred for America.”

Ciccolo was arraigned Wednesday federal charges on assault and battery with a deadly weapon and felon in possession of a firearm charges connected to his July 4 arrest by the Joint Terrorism Task Force, one of nearly a dozen potential plots that FBI Director James Comey said were thwarted around Independence Day festivities and the Muslim Ramadan holiday.

The slightly-built defendant was escorted into court Wednesday wearing a tan prison jumpsuit, his hands cuffed to a chain around his waist and his ankles shackled. He wore black framed eyeglasses and a long beard on his chin. He smiled at his mother and stepfather, who sat behind the defendant’s table.

Ciccolo told the court he pleads not guilty to the charges contained in the indictment.

Also at the hearing, a federal judge ordered the government to hand over discovery to his attorney, which is not expected to be voluminous, prosecutors said. “It’s a pretty straightforward case,” O’Regan said Wednesday. Prosecutors have said Ciccolo planned to build a pressure cooker bomb filled with “nails and with ball bearings and broken glass” similar to the two that detonated at the finish line of the Boston Marathon in April 2013, killing three people — including an 8-year-old boy — and injuring 260 others.

Ironically, Ciccolo’s father was working in Kenmore Square commanding officers providing security for the Red Sox crowd when the first blast was detonated just over a mile away and saw the plumes of smoke rise from the marathon finish line, according to an alumni publication run by Curry College.

And like the marathon bombers, Alexander Ciccolo allegedly did not plan to pull off a single attack. Investigators said he was building 10 firebombs using Styrofoam soaked in motor oil because the concoction “would stick to the victims’ skin and make it harder to put out.” He also allegedly made plans to bomb a university cafeteria and bragged to a cooperating witness that he would execute students live on the Internet in ISIS-inspired barbarism.

“He dedicated himself to killing as many innocent people in the United States as he could,” O’Regan said at Ciccolo’s detention hearing, which came more a week after he purchased two powerful rifles and two handguns from a FBI cooperating witness on the Fourth of July. He slung the duffle bags full of guns over his shoulder and was arrested as he walked into his Adams apartment in the Berkshires.

That arrest spawned the execution of a search warrant, which led to the discovery of the firebombs, authorities said. The FBI cooperating witness wore a wire for the FBI, federal officials told ABC News, and many of his plans were captured in audio recordings.

Still, officials said, Ciccolo was unlikely to be able to pull off any attack.

He had been under constant surveillance since Sept. 11, 2014 when, several law enforcement officials said, he sent “alarming text messages” to his father, who had become a police captain in the Operations Division of the Boston Police. In one text message he told his father that America is “Satan.” Others stated that his Islamic faith “is under attack” and that he was “not afraid to die for the cause!”

The police captain contacted the FBI saying that his son had become “obsessed with Islam” 18 months earlier. Capt. Ciccolo has cooperated with investigators assigned to the Joint Terrorism Task Force since, senior BPD commanders told ABC News.

Reardon’s home in Ware, a rural part of the Berkshires, was also searched by the FBI after Alexander was arrested, her son’s attorney confirmed Wednesday.

The department has quietly lauded Ciccolo’s painful decision to turn in his own son and BPD spokesman Lt. Mike McCarthy told ABC News, “We continue to support Captain Ciccolo during this difficult time.”

That difficult time, according to court records, was an extensive one when it came to Alexander. Court records detail bitterness between his parents that went as far as to ask the family court to issue rulings over their son’s toys. When Alexander was 6, the court issued a restraining order to dictate the times each parent could pick him up at school “as to avoid a mother/father confrontation over custody.”

In 1998 the court granted Alexander’s mother custody and he spent a large swath of his childhood in Wareham, part of Cape Cod. That is until his childhood behavioral problems escalated into alleged violent attacks and arrests, the court record states.

In May 2006, after the knife incident, the court granted Robert Ciccolo emergency custody of Alexander and the teen moved to Needham with his father and stepmother Dale. A month later, on his 14th birthday, Alexander was hospitalized after “an outburst of violent property damage,” that led to a 911 call. During that hospitalization, a doctor suggested that Alexander visit his mother, who had limited contact with after moving in with his father seven months earlier.

According to court records, his father claimed that visit was a turning point for Alexander’s mental health. The elder Ciccolo filed an affidavit to limit his ex-wife’s role in Alexander’s life, pointing out that his mother returned BB guns that had been taken away from their son because of the weapons charges.

“She also bought him a new one with a laser pointer, telescopic sights and a flashlight attachment,” according to a court statement the Boston police commander gave to the court.

Reardon responded by saying her ex-husband “ruled with an iron fist” and his tactics led their son to threaten to run away. As far as the BB guns, she told the court, many of the boys in their town used them, writing in her own affidavit, “perhaps my former husband has lived near the city too long and has forgotten what many boys do for fun.”

She also accused her ex-husband of using his role as a police officer to manipulate the courts saying she was not notified about the emergency court hearing held on May 31, 2006 where she lost custody of her son. After she lost custody, she accused Alexander’s father of threatening to not allow her to see him if he “did not have good behavior.”

“This is hardly good parenting and would seem more draconian than needed in the circumstances,” Reardon’s attorney wrote.

Capt. Ciccolo was not in court Wednesday and his son’s attorney David J. Hoose refused comment when asked if Alexander had spoken with his father. Ciccolo did not attend the July 14th detention hearing for son but has been in contact with Hoose, the attorney said.

At that detention hearing prosecutors played a nine-minute video was played where the younger Ciccolo defended his beliefs to two FBI agents, telling them ISIS “will only kill people who fight them.”

His mother attended the detention that hearing and Wednesday’s arraignment. Wednesday she smiled and nodded at her son who turned to her as he was led out of the courtroom and said, “I love you mom. Thank you for supporting me.”

Hoose said that his client “has always been very close to his mother,” and remains so Wednesday. He declined to comment on his client’s mental health and whether that would play a role in his defense.

Prosecutors argued earlier this month that Ciccolo was unrepentant and should be held without bail. A federal judge agreed and Ciccolo was held again Wednesday without arguing for bail.

“So we have a defendant who came under the sway of ISIS, adopted a hatred for America, adopted the most vile beliefs, began to act on them, was arrested and continued,” O’Regan said at the detention hearing. “It wasn’t as if he said ‘oh, they got me, gee, maybe I made a mistake.’ It was ‘No, I’m here and this is what I believe.'”

After that interview Ciccolo was taken to a holding facility where a female nurse medically evaluated him. Prosecutors said that during the exam, Ciccolo picked up a pen and slammed it into the nurse’s head so hard “the pen actually broke in half.”

After his son’s arrest Cap. Ciccolo’s issued a release on behalf of his family saying, “While we were saddened and disappointed to learn of our son’s intentions, we are grateful that authorities were able to prevent any loss of life or harm to others.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Greenhills Police Department(CINCINNATI) — A police officer who killed a man in Cincinnati during a traffic stop will be charged with murder, the Hamilton County prosecutor said Wednesday, noting, “This was the purposeful killing of another person.”

“I’m treating him like a murderer,” prosecutor Joseph Deters said during a news conference when describing the warrant out for a police officer who killed Samuel DuBose, 43, earlier this month.

Footage released Wednesday from a police officer’s body cam lasts about 10 minutes and shows the shooting.

“I have been doing this for 30 years,” Deters said. “This is the most asinine act I have ever seen a police officer make.”

Deters said he was “shocked” when he saw the video and his heart broke for what the video would mean to the community.

“It’s just bad. It’s just bad what he did and it shouldn’t have happened,” Deters said.

The University of Cincinnati canceled classes Wednesday as the city braced for the release of video footage showing the shooting of DuBose.

Footage from university police officer Ray Tensing’s body cam was released along with the result of the grand jury’s investigation. If convicted, Tensing could receive life in prison, Deters said. Deters said there’s no evidence race was an issue in the killing, when asked by reporters.

“This guy didn’t deserve to be tased and he certainly didn’t deserve to be shot in the head,” Deters said of DuBose.

DuBose was killed during a traffic stop on July 19 near the University of Cincinnati’s campus, authorities said, noting that DuBose was stopped because his car did not have a license plate in the front.

The officer “wasn’t dealing with someone who was wanted for murder,” Deters said. “He was dealing with someone without a front license plate.”

DuBose apparently refused to provide a driver’s license, produced an open alcohol bottle and a struggle ensued, during which Tensing was knocked to the ground, UC Police Department chief Jason Goodrich said during a news conference last week.

Goodrich said the officer fired one shot into DuBose’s head.

Deters called what sparked the shooting a “chicken-crap stop.”

“I could have used harsher words,” he said.

Tensing is on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure, Goodrich said last week.

ABC US News | World News

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →