Review Category : National News

NYPD Cop Brian Moore Dies After Saturday Shooting in Queens

iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The New York Police Department said on Monday that Officer Brian Moore has died at Jamaica Hospital after he was shot Saturday in Queens.

Moore, 25, was hospitalized in critical condition Saturday.

Moore, a five-year veteran, was on duty with his partner Eric Jansen, 30, as part of an anti-crime unit in Queens Village when he was shot at 6:15 p.m., police said.

Moore and Jansen were in an unmarked patrol car when they saw a man on the street adjusting something in the waistband of his pants that appeared to be a gun, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said Saturday night.

When the officers told the man to stop, he turned, pulled out a gun and began shooting into the car, Bratton said.

Moore was shot in the face and was taken to Jamaica Hospital where he underwent surgery.

The suspect, identified as Demetrius Blackwell, fled on foot and was later arrested.

Bratton said Blackwell has a long arrest record.

Moore is the third NYPD officer killed in the line of duty in the past six months.

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Texas Shooting Suspect’s Father: ‘My Son Made a Bad Choice’

Obtained by ABC News(GARLAND, Texas) — The father of one of the suspected gunman in the Garland, Texas shooting told ABC News Monday that his son “made a bad choice.”

“We are Americans and we believe in America,” Dunston Simpson said. “What my son did reflects very badly on my family.”

Simpson’s son, Elton, was identified earlier Monday to ABC News by a senior FBI official as one of the suspects in Sunday’s failed attack on a Texas community center that was hosting an event displaying cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad. Elton Simpson and another man were killed by a police officer after they opened fire on the officer and a security guard, local police said.

On Monday, FBI agents and a bomb squad were at Simpson’s home in an apartment complex in north Phoenix conducting searches of the apartment.

Officials believe Simpson is the person who sent out several Twitter messages prior to the attack on Sunday, in the last one using the hashtag #TexasAttack about half an hour before the shooting. Prior to that, the Twitter account holder had published messages sympathetic to Islamic terror groups such as ISIS.

Dunston Simpson said his son worked at a dentist’s office but was “on vacation” for the last few weeks and that the two last spoke three weeks ago. But they “had not much to talk about, because we had some very serious differences.”

Still, the elder Simpson said that while he was a strict father, Elton was “always a good kid.”

John Iannarelli, Assistant Special Agent in Charge FBI’s Phoenix office, said authorities in Texas traced both suspects to the Phoenix apartment and that the two appear to have been roommates. The second suspect has not been publicly identified.

Followers of ISIS had been sending messages about the event in Texas for more than a week, calling for attacks. One referenced January’s Charlie Hebdo massacre in France and said it was time for “brothers” in the United States to do their part.

Simpson was well known to the FBI. Five years ago, he was convicted for lying to federal agents about his plans to travel to Africa where investigators alleged he planned to join a terror group.

The investigation into Simpson reached back to July 2007, when he was recorded saying of fighting with Islamists, “I know we can do it, man. But you got to find the right people that… Gotta have connects.”

Despite that and other recordings, a judge ruled the government did not adequately prove Simpson was going to join a terror group and Simpson was sentenced to three years’ probation for lying to investigators.

Kristina Sitton, who represented Simpson in the 2010 trial, said her former client had been on a no-fly list and that the FBI had attempted to get Simpson to cooperate with them, even after his conviction. She saw him, she said, as “harmless.”

“He grew up the most normal guy. Just a normal high school guy… Converting to Islam seemed like a good thing for him. He had been going down a bad path and then he found Islam,” Sitton told ABC News. “He never struck me as someone who would do this sort of thing. I’m not a bleeding heart, I’m a Republican. I’ve seen some pretty bad guys and he seemed pretty normal.”

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Search Begins for California Lottery Winner Given Wrong Payout

Ingram Publishing(PALMDALE, Calif.) — The hunt is on for a mystery man who hit the jackpot.

Surveillance video captured an unidentified man cashing in after scratching off a straight flush on a Wild West lottery ticket. His prize? $75,000.

But the clerk behind the counter in the Palmdale, California, gas station initially read the prize incorrectly, giving the man just $75.

Now, the clerk, realizing his mistake, wants to find the customer to make sure he gets the right prize.

The man was last seen leaving the gas station driving a large truck and wearing a backwards baseball cap.

California lottery officials said they don’t actually know for sure if this mystery man is the big winner.

“It could be human error, it could be the wrong video, the wrong photo, it could be a lot of things,” California lottery official Russ Lopez said Monday on ABC News’ Good Morning America. “In our business we have seen it all.”

But if the man is the winner, he has at least six months to claim the $74,925 he’s still owed before the ticket expires.

When it comes to winning, there are simple steps you can take to protect your lucky cards, according to Lopez.

“We strongly encourage all players to turn that ticket around, sign the ticket in ink,” he advised on GMA. “That way it’s yours.”

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Man Allegedly Steals Plane at Vegas Airport; Controller Talks Him Down

iStock/Thinkstock(LAS VEGAS) — An air traffic controller’s calm words helped talk down a former flight student from the air after he allegedly stole a plane from a Las Vegas airport.

Evan Grant, 27, allegedly stole the plane from the North Las Vegas Airport late Saturday night, and after about an hour in the air, with authorities watching anxiously, the air traffic controller was able to convince him to land.

According to air traffic control audio obtained from liveatc.net, the official at the tower spoke calmly, saying he just wanted to get Grant down safely.

“I kind of screwed up your night, didn’t I?” Grant said, according to the audio.

“I just want to get you down on the ground safely,” the flight controller said. “We’ll grab some coffee, go to my house, whatever. We’ll have a — we’ll just talk, OK? Just come on down.”

Grant said he hadn’t eaten in almost 18 hours, citing “the emotional aspect of everything.”

After about an hour in the air, Grant was finally convinced to land, thanks to that stranger on the radio.

“Since you’ve kept me company I’ll just make it easier for you,” the pilot’s voice on the audio says. “I’ll just come down.”

As he turned back to the airport, the pilot’s voice tells the controller that he knows he’s in big trouble.

“I’ve already committed enough felonies,” he says. “I can’t believe I’m never going to get to do this again.”

But the controller tries to reassure him: “You will, you will.”

After the landing, Grant was arrested by North Las Vegas police on a charge of grand larceny auto. He booked into the Las Vegas city jail and has not entered a plea.

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Four Killed in Shooting on Wisconsin Pedestrian Bridge

Ablestock.com/Thinkstock(MENASHA, Wis.) — Four people, including a gunman, were killed in a shooting Sunday evening on a pedestrian bridge in Menasha, Wisconsin, about 40 miles south of Green Bay.

One other person was wounded and remains in critical condition, according to local police who said the incident was a random act and that the public was not in danger.

Police first received a report about a shooting at the Fox Cities Trestle Trail bridge around 7:30 p.m. local time. Witnesses said they heard between ten and 12 shots and saw people trying to escape the shooting by either running off or lying down on the bridge, which will stay closed until further notice.

More details about the shooting and the identities of the victims and gunman will be announced at a news conference later Monday.

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FBI Looking for Florida Bank Robber in Dress, Wig

A man in a dress and a wig robbed a south Florida bank on May 1, 2015. FBI Miami(MIAMI) — Authorities in south Florida are searching for a man who wore a bright dress and a long wig while robbing a bank.

According to the FBI, at about 9:15 a.m. Saturday, a man demanded money from a bank employee at a BB&T bank in Cutler Bay, Florida, about 20 miles south of Miami.

Customers were in the bank at the time, the FBI said, but no one was injured.

Photos released by the FBI capture the robber disguised in a long, black wig, a colorful striped dress, and sunglasses.

The robber had an accomplice who was also wearing a dress and wig, the FBI said, but no photos of the accomplice were available.

The FBI said the amount of money, if any was stolen, has not been disclosed.

Anyone with information about the bank robber’s identity can call the FBI at 754-703-2000.

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Jury Deliberating in Third Trial of Millionaire Accused of Killing Wife

Obtained by ABC News(NEW YORK) — An upstate New York millionaire father of four who has been tried twice before for the 2001 killing of his wife is facing a jury for the third time, and a verdict could come Monday as deliberations resume.

Cal Harris, 53, of Spencer has been convicted twice before for the murder of his estranged wife Michele, who disappeared September 11, 2001, but both convictions were thrown out.

After her disappearance, no body or murder weapon was discovered, even after extensive searches of Harris’s 252-acre property in Tioga County. But police said forensics teams found blood in the house, which suggested Michele had been attacked by her husband, and a witness said he heard Harris threaten her that he would kill her.

The trial in Schoharie County Courthouse lasted 11 weeks, and the jury has already deliberated two days without reaching a verdict.

Harris was originally arrested in 2005 and was found guilty in July 2007 of second degree murder. Before sentencing, however, a witness came forward with new information, forcing the judge to throw out the conviction.

Harris was re-tried in 2009 and again convicted. But that conviction was also thrown out — three years later, this time by an appeals court that ruled a juror had been seated who expressed preconceived opinions about the case and certain testimony was admitted without the jury being warned it was hearsay.

In an interview with ABC News’ Matt Gutman in January, on the eve of his third trial, Cal Harris said he and his wife were ending their marriage, but he denied any involvement in his wife’s disappearance or death.

“Did you kill Michele?” Gutman asked.

“Absolutely not,” Harris said. “Absolutely not.”

His four children also said they believe their father is innocent.

“We didn’t have any doubt he wasn’t involved,” his son Tanner told ABC News.

“We feel like we need to tell people that he’s actually a really great guy and there’s no way he could have done something like this,” his daughter Cayla said.

The Harris children told ABC News that they have never even asked their father about that September night almost 15 years ago.

“[We] didn’t have to,” Taylor Harris said.

“From an indictment, to the first trial, to the second trial, and here I sit, here we sit having to face another trial.” Cal Harris said. “No one should have to go through this. No one.”

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Baltimore Mayor Lifts Citywide Curfew

Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images(BALTIMORE) — Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake today lifted the citywide curfew that was instituted after riots erupted Monday following the funeral of Freddie Gray.

In a pair of posts to her verified Twitter account, Rawlings-Blake said that the curfew would be ended immediately. She thanked the citizens of Baltimore for their patience and reiterated that her goal was “to not have the curfew in place a single day longer than was necessary.”

Effective immediately, I have rescinded my order instituting a city-wide curfew.
I want to thank the people of Baltimore for their patience.

— Mayor Rawlings-Blake (@MayorSRB) May 3, 2015

My goal has always been to not have the curfew in place a single day longer than was necessary. I believe we have reached that point today.

— Mayor Rawlings-Blake (@MayorSRB) May 3, 2015

Sunday, she said, the city of Baltimore has finally reached that point.

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After ‘Victory Rally,’ Violators of Baltimore Curfew Arrested

Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images(BALTIMORE) — About 20 people were arrested Saturday night as dozens of people violated the 10 p.m. curfew still being enforced in Baltimore, after a day of large, peaceful demonstrations where many called for the order to be lifted.

Over 1,000 marchers gathered near North Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue, the site of looting and rioting earlier in the week in response to the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who suffered a spinal injury and later died while in police custody last month.

There were no clashes with police, unlike Friday night, when police enforced the curfew and arrested nearly 40 people.

The defiance of the curfew, which was put in place Tuesday, came after prosecutors announced charges against six police officers in Gray’s death, which was ruled a homicide. The six officers connected to the case faced a range of charges including several counts of manslaughter, second-degree assault, misconduct in office and false imprisonment, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced.

The most serious charge is second-degree depraved heart murder, which only Officer Caesar R. Goodson, Jr., the driver of the police van, faces.

During demonstrations Saturday, many people called for the curfew to be lifted, but Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts said more time was needed to make sure that calm has been restored in the city.

“We all want to get back to normal and have the city running in the right direction,” Batts said. “We recognize the concerns over the curfew. For tonight, for everyone’s safety, we’re going to keep the curfew in place.”

State Police Colonel William Palozzi said that the decision to keep the curfew in place was made out of safety concerns.

“We just ask for patience as we move forward and continue to move in a safer direction for a safer city,” he said.

People in the crowd at the large, peaceful protest in Baltimore said the demonstration was about bigger change, beyond the issue of the six police officers charged in the Freddie Gray case. They talked about employment opportunities and about the problems that kids are finding with alternatives to crime out in the street.

People circulated through the crowds and others set up a table with voter registration cards in an effort to get people to sign up to vote. Those encouraging voter registration told people that if they registered, not only would they have the opportunity to choose future leadership but they also would have the opportunity to serve on criminal juries.

The Baltimore Police Department also used the rally Saturday as a way to do community outreach. Officers said they found that as they circulate through the crowd they can have personal contact with people who in some cases have been mistrusting in the past. In that way, some officers said, they hope to build a new relationship with this community.

Although many people called the demonstration a “victory rally,” at least one Baltimore resident said that may be premature.

“I feel like it ain’t over yet,” Baltimore resident Brian Watts said. “We’ve still got a lot — a lot to go.”

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NYPD Cop in Critical Condition After Shooting; Suspect in Custody

tom hall/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A plainclothes New York Police Department officer was in critical condition Saturday night after he was shot by a man who opened fire on his unmarked car, city officials said.

Officer Brian Moore, a five-year veteran, was on duty with his partner Eric Jansen, 30, as part of an anti-crime unit in the Queens Village section of the city when he was shot at around 6:15 p.m., police said.

Moore and his partner were in their unmarked patrol car when they saw a man walking in the street adjust something in the waistband of his pants that appeared to be a gun, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said Saturday night.

When the officers told the man to stop, he turned, pulled out a gun and began shooting into the car, Bratton said.

Moore, 25, was shot in the face, and was rushed by police cruiser to Jamaica Hospital Center, where he was visited by Mayor Bill de Blasio.

Mayor @BilldeBlasio is at Jamaica Hospital Center, where an NYPD Officer was taken after sustaining a gunshot wound this evening.

— NYC Mayor’s Office (@NYCMayorsOffice) May 3, 2015

Please keep the injured police officer, his family, and the entire New York City Police Department in your thoughts tonight.

— NYC Mayor’s Office (@NYCMayorsOffice) May 3, 2015

“It is a painful day for all of us,” said de Blasio.

Moore listed in critical but stable condition after undergoing surgery.

The suspect fled on foot, sparking a massive manhunt through the neighborhood, with officers searching houses, on roofs, in backyards, and checking under cars.

Witnesses told police that a man matching the suspect’s description had gone into a house, and the suspect, identified as Demetrius Blackwell, was arrested there, Bratton said.

Bratton said Blackwell has a long arrest record.

NYPD Commissioner William Bratton tweeted on Saturday night that the officer’s family was at the hospital.

Our injured officer who was shot tonight while keeping NYC safe is in our prayers. At Jamaica Hospital now with family.

— Commissioner Bratton (@CommissBratton) May 3, 2015

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