Review Category : National News

NASA Photos Show Scope of Blizzard From Space

NASA/NOAA GOES Project(NEW YORK) — As the Northeast digs out from a wild winter storm, NASA has released images showing what the snow and strong winds looked like from space.

An image from a satellite operated by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association showed the winter storm system near its peak as it covered the Northeast around 1:45 a.m. ET on Tuesday.

Nighttime & daytime views of the #blizzardof2015 from @NOAASatellites & @NASANPP: http://t.co/KLkxf2wo4o pic.twitter.com/sVJLzkQO7E

— NASA (@NASA) January 27, 2015

The winter storm was so intense that it managed to obscure the bright lights of the big cities as the high cloud tops moved through the area.

New England was hit the hardest by the winter storm, which blanketed the area with more than 30 inches of snow in some areas.

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Blizzard 2015: Amazing Time-Lapse Video Shows Snow Accumulation in MA

iStock/Thinkstock(BOSTON) — The snow rises, and rises, and rises.

A time-lapse video shows snow piling up over the course of 24 hours on a backyard deck in Massachusetts.

The recording starts the night of Monday, Jan. 26, and continues into Tuesday, Jan. 27. The video shows the snow accumulating, almost reaching the deck’s railing — nearly three feet of snow.

Coastal New England was walloped by the storm, which led to travel bans and mass transit shutdowns across the northeast.

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Blizzard 2015: Amazing Time-Lapse Video Shows Snow Accumulation in MA

iStock/Thinkstock(BOSTON) — The snow rises, and rises, and rises.

A time-lapse video shows snow piling up over the course of 24 hours on a backyard deck in Massachusetts.

The recording starts the night of Monday, Jan. 26, and continues into Tuesday, Jan. 27. The video shows the snow accumulating, almost reaching the deck’s railing — nearly three feet of snow.

Coastal New England was walloped by the storm, which led to travel bans and mass transit shutdowns across the northeast.

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WVU Student Who Died in Fraternity Pledging Had Blood Alcohol Six Times Legal Limit

pixelpup/iStock/Thinkstock(MORGANTOWN, W.Va.) — A West Virginia University student who died during a fraternity pledge event had a blood-alcohol level of more than six times the legal limit, well above what health officials consider lethal, police said Tuesday.

Nolan Burch, 18, of Williamsville, N.Y., died Nov. 14, after suffering a “catastrophic medical emergency” during a pledging ceremony at Kappa Sigma fraternity, police said.

Burch and 19 other fraternity pledges were taking part in an initiation function known as “Big-Little,” Morgantown Police Chief Ed Preston said in a statement released Tuesday.

Burch and the others were taken to a room in the fraternity where they were blindfolded and then taken to another house where they were presented to the “Big,” a senior member or alumnus of Kappa Sigma, and given a bottle of liquor, Preston said.

After he drank a large quantity of alcohol, Burch was taken back to the fraternity house, where he was so intoxicated he was laid on a table, the police chief said.

Later that night, a fraternity member noticed that Burch’s face was blue and tried to wake him, but it was found that he had no pulse, Preston said.

While some fraternity members performed CPR, a call was placed to 911. He later died at a Morgantown hospital. A report from the medical examiner is still pending, the police chief said.

Subsequent tests revealed that his blood-alcohol level was 0.493, Preston said.

The day after Burch’s death, the school put a moratorium on Greek activity on the campus.

“And while some events such as chapter meetings, philanthropic activities and educational programming are allowed, the ban remains in place for social activities with the exception of alcohol free/dry events, pending approval of plans,” WVU officials, the WVU InterFraternity Council, the WVU Pan-Hellenic Council and the WVU National Pan-Hellenic Council said in a joint statement released Tuesday evening.

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Surveillance Video Shows Moment Man Allegedly Hit Pregnant Girlfriend With Car

welcomia/iStock/Thinkstock(PASCO COUNTY, Fla.) — Surveillance footage released by Florida police shows the terrifying moment a pregnant woman was struck by a car driven by her boyfriend, according to police.

Justin Colby, 33, was arrested on charges of attempted homicide after he allegedly hit his pregnant girlfriend, Crystal Noordhuizen, with his car on Monday.

Noordhuizen, about seven months pregnant, suffered minor injuries and was recovering at an area hospital, according to a police spokesman.

She told police she had been fighting with Colby, her live-in boyfriend, when she decided to leave their home, according to the arrest report from the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office in Pasco County, Florida.

Officials from the Pasco Sheriff’s Department said video of the incident shows Noordhuizen being hit by a car they said was driven by Colby.

Noordhuizen told police she was waiting across the street for a ride when Colby reportedly called to her and said, “Are you ready for your abortion date?” according to the police report.

Colby then allegedly drove his car onto the sidewalk where Noordhuizen was standing, striking her before he hit a nearby pole.

He was arrested a short time after the crash and was being held at the Pasco County Jail on charges of attempted murder and attempted murder of an unborn child.

Public defenders for Colby did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

World News Videos | ABC World News

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Massachusetts Nuclear Plant Shut Down During Winter Storm

Photo by David L Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images(PLYMOUTH, Mass.) — The Pilgrim Nuclear Power Plant in Plymouth was shut down early Tuesday morning as a result of the strong winter storm that swept through the Northeast.

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Committee said on its website Tuesday that the plant experienced an automatic shutdown after one of the site’s offsite power lines was deenergized due to weather concerns and a second was tripped early Tuesday morning. At that point, at about 4 a.m., the reactor was shut down.

A third, less powerful, offsite power line remains available, but the primary source of power — for safety systems — are the plant’s emergency diesel generators.

The exact cause of the loss of the second offsite power line is still under investigation.

Messages posted to the plant’s Twitter account explained that it is in “safe, stable shutdown” and “has enough fuel onsite to operate our emergency generators for 10 days.” More fuel can also be delivered as needed. The plant says it is in stable condition and there is no threat to the safety of workers or the public.

Status Update (1/2): Pilgrim remains in safe, stable shutdown and using emergency onsite diesel generators to run our safety systems

— Pilgrim Nuclear (@PilgrimNuclear) January 27, 2015

Status Update (2/2): Pilgrim has enough fuel onsite to operate our emergency generators for 10 days.More fuel can be delivered as needed.

— Pilgrim Nuclear (@PilgrimNuclear) January 27, 2015

NOTE: As backup, the plant has additional standby power available from an offsitte power line and another onsite emergency generator

— Pilgrim Nuclear (@PilgrimNuclear) January 27, 2015

Plant conditions are stable and there is no threat to the safety of plant workers or the public. All systems worked as designed.

— Pilgrim Nuclear (@PilgrimNuclear) January 27, 2015

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Mormon Church Announces Conditional Support for LGBT Rights

Stock Photo of the Spires of the Salt Lake Temple. Photo Credit: Andriy Kravchenko/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said Tuesday that it would support legislation that would provide protections for LGBT people in areas including housing and employment.

In the announcement, the church said it would support that legislation “while ensuring that religious freedom was not compromised.” The announcement was made at a news conference featuring three members of the governing Twelve Apostles and one female leader of the church. The call was made for a “fairness for all” approach — one “that balances religious freedom protections with reasonable safeguards for LGBT people.”

In 2009, the church supported Salt Lake City ordinances protecting housing and employment rights for LGBT people. Tuesday’s announcement broadened that position, saying that the church would now support similar ordinances across the state of Utah and the country, “as long as there was a balanced approach to protect constitutional religious exercise and conscience.”

“We are at our best as fellow citizens when the push-pull of different viewpoints, freely and thoroughly aired in national debate, leads ultimately to compromise and resolution and we move on as a nation, stronger than before,” said Sister Neill Marriott.

According to a release from the church, the appeal is not a change in doctrine, but represents “a desire to bring people together, to encourage mutually respectful dialogue in what has become a highly polarized national debate.”

“In this approach,” the church said, “neither side may get all that they want. We must all learn to live with others who do not share the same beliefs or values.”

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Suspect Charged With Murder in Craigslist Car Case After Missing Couple Found

The Runion Family | Telfair County Sheriff’s Office(McRAE, Ga.) — A suspect was charged with murder Tuesday after authorities positively identified the bodies of a Georgia couple who vanished last week while going to meet someone to buy a vintage car they found on Craigslist.

Bud Runion, 69, and his wife, June, 66, disappeared Thursday, authorities said. The pair had posted an ad seeking to buy a vintage 1966 Ford Mustang convertible. Relatives said the Mustang was the couple’s dream car, one they’d wanted to buy since they were married decades ago.

The suspect, Ronnie “Jay” Towns, 28, the owner of the phone that last communicated with the Runions’ phone, turned himself in Monday and was charged with murder and robbery one day later, the Telfair County Sheriff’s office said. Towns was initially charged with giving false statements and criminal attempt to commit theft by deception.

The couple’s 2003 GMC Envoy was found submerged in a lake, the Sheriff’s Office said on its Facebook page without revealing the lake’s location. The bodies were found at another location not far away, officials said. The Runions were both shot in the head, ABC affiliate WSB-TV reported.

Steverson said Towns had little or no criminal history.

The couple, after finding what they believed was a seller, reportedly set out on a 180-mile road trip from Marietta, Georgia, to McRae, Georgia. The Runions never showed up to babysit their grandchildren Friday.

The Runion family set up a Facebook page — “Find Bud and June Runion” — and it has about 100,000 supporters.

But Monday, the page acknowledged the sheriff’s discoveries of the vehicle and bodies, and supporters began leaving messages of shock and condolence.

“During this heartbreaking time I ask that you keep the family and friends in your thoughts and prayers,” the couple’s relatives wrote.

Officials with Craigslist referred to the safety page on the company’s website, which notes, “Be especially careful when buying/selling high value items.”

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Florida Burglar Steals $4,000 Worth of Wings, Ribs and Fries

Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) — Police in Florida say they are looking for a thief who could be throwing the ultimate tailgate party with $4,000 worth of stolen chicken, ribs, fries and wings.

Police were dispatched to a burglary last Wednesday at Jerome Brown BBQ restaurant in Jacksonville, Florida.

An investigation revealed that an unknown suspect, caught on surveillance camera, had gained entry into the business by prying open the side door, Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office stated on its website. The meat and an empty cash register worth $5,000 were taken, according to the police report obtained by ABC News, while the damage to the door frame is valued at $200.

“This guy may be getting ready to throw a Super Bowl Party! – Suspect Sought – Please Share!” the sheriff’s Facebook post about the burglary stated.

The image released by the police shows a man wearing a skip cap and a sweatshirt.

Stole $4,000 worth of chicken, ribs, wings – Super Bowl Party? Suspect sought by #JSO #JAX https://t.co/AlkxYGa7tF pic.twitter.com/BaHtA69m5A

— Jax Sheriff’s Office (@JSOPIO) January 27, 2015

“The incident that happened hurts everybody,” Ericka Morris, Jerome Brown BBQ’s manager of 10 years, told ABC News. “It hurts employees, managers and the business owners. We wish whoever knows something about it, just turn them in. A close friend might know him. Just turn him in, because it’s hurting everybody.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office at 904-630-0500 or email JSOCrimeTips@jaxsheriff.org. To remain anonymous and receive a possible reward up to $3,000, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.

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Maryland Sinkhole Nearly Swallows Two Cars

ABC News(BLADENSBURG, Md.) — Two cars partially fell into a sinkhole in a Washington, D.C., suburb early Tuesday morning after a water main break.

A Bladensburg, Maryland, family was forced to leave around 4 a.m. after discovering water in their home, a Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission spokeswoman told ABC News.

When the family, which included a father and his 8-year-old son and 4-year-old and 6-month-old daughters, backed their car out of the driveway, they hit a sinkhole that had been hidden by overflowing water.

The father said the family escaped the car and watched as the sinkhole grew.

Other families in the neighborhood were rushed out of their homes after the break in the 12-inch main caused water to spill everywhere.

“The cars have been pulled out of the sinkhole and we are in the process of repairing the broken pipe,” Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission spokeswoman Lyn Riggins told ABC News.

Nearly 80 homes and businesses in the area were without water but should have water restored by Tuesday night, according to Riggins.

“The only family that is displaced is the family that lost their car and we are working with them to stay in a hotel,” Riggins said.

The commission has responded to 400 water main breaks in the area this month alone, according to Riggins. There are normally around 1,700 water main breaks in the area annually.

“This break was likely caused by a combination of the pipe’s age and the cold weather,” Riggins said. “The pipe was 90 years old and fluctuation in temperature plays a big role in causing water main breaks.”

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