Stockbyte/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) — The head of the Los Angeles Police Department on Tuesday warned of a “strong correlation” between dramatic drops in violent crimes being reported by Hispanics in Los Angeles and fears of being deported, suggesting that the community may be avoiding contact with local law enforcement in the wake of immigration polices favored by the Trump administration.

Newly-released LAPD crime statistics for 2017 show that among Hispanics, reports of rape have dropped 25 percent while those of spousal abuse have decreased by 9.8 percent. Similar reductions from the start of this year were not found in any other ethnic group, according to the LAPD numbers.

“Imagine your sister, your mother, not reporting a sexual assault for fear that their family will be torn apart,” Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck told reporters on Tuesday.

With a large Hispanic population, Los Angeles has been one of several large U.S. municipalities to have resisted new federal immigration policies under President Trump, who has promised to toughen laws against the estimated 11 million immigrants living illegally in the U.S.

Police in California’s largest cities have long warned of the difficulties of local officials enforcing federal immigration laws, partly because such enforcement could drive large immigrant populations into hiding and be fearful of reporting crimes, which could result in higher crime rates overall.

Speaking Tuesday, Beck said that immigrant populations should not have to fear the police.

“In L.A. we don’t care what color your skin is, where your parents come from or what language you speak,” he said. “We are your police department.”

In February, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and other city leaders sent Immigration and Customs Enforcement a letter asking that federal immigration agents stop identifying themselves as “police” while going after undocumented immigrants. They argued the practice makes the immigrant population fearful of police and potentially afraid to report crimes due to deportation fears if exposed as illegal immigrants. The authorities said in some cases a victim might be legal but be worried that calling the police could lead to a loved one being deported.

For its part, ICE has argued it uses “police” because it’s an internationally recognized term for law enforcement understood in any language.

The LAPD has long had a policy of not asking about the immigration status of individuals who come into contact with its officers.

On Tuesday, Garcetti signed an executive directive expanding that policy to Los Angeles Airport Police, Harbor Police and the Los Angeles Fire Department.

“We believe that many local families are keeping their kids home or backing off of engaging with our law enforcement officials and our public safety officials because they’re afraid of what they believe could happen,” said Garcetti.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(ASPEN, Colo.) — The Trump clan — sans its patriarch, President Donald Trump — ditched the East Coast this week and headed west to the ritzy Colorado ski town of Aspen.

Lara Trump, who announced on Monday that she and President Trump’s son Eric are expecting a boy in September, posted a photo on Instagram Tuesday with Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, as well as Donald Trump Jr.’s son, Donald III — all of whom are decked out in chic skiwear atop a snow-covered mountain.

Donald Jr. and his wife Vanessa are also in Aspen with their children, and Ivanka and Jared’s children are also there.

Eric also posted a photo of the couple’s two dogs, writing, “These two love Aspen!”

These two love Aspen! pic.twitter.com/iNMtBg5FNd

— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) March 22, 2017

Eric announced the upcoming arrival of their child on Monday, tweeting, “.@LaraLeaTrump & I are excited to announce that we are adding a boy to #TeamTrump in September. It’s been an amazing year. We are blessed!”

.@LaraLeaTrump & I are excited to announce that we are adding a boy to #TeamTrump in September. It’s been an amazing year. We are blessed! pic.twitter.com/ENrhdxdziA

— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) March 20, 2017

Congratulations Eric & Lara. Very proud and happy for the two of you! https://t.co/s0T3cTQc40

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 20, 2017

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(OVERLAND PARK, Kan.) — An eight-alarm fire that injured three firefighters and destroyed multiple homes in Kansas this week was ruled an accident on Tuesday, according to emergency officials said.

Investigators believe the fire, which began at an unoccupied apartment complex in Overland Park, Kansas on Monday, was accidentally ignited by a welder working onsite, the Overland Park Fire Department said in a statement Tuesday evening.

The fire was the biggest in the city’s history, according to the statement on Tuesday.

The fire broke out at a luxury apartment complex under construction at around 3:30 p.m. Monday before quickly spreading to several nearby homes in Overland Park, which is the state’s second most populated city, fire officials said.

At least 22 homes were affected by heat exposure and flying embers, according to Overland Park fire officials.

Three firefighters were transported to a local hospital with minor injuries but appear to be doing well officials said early Tuesday.

Overland Park Fire Department spokesman Jason Rhodes described their conditions as a “mixed bag” of damaged and destroyed on Monday evening.

He described the initial scene as “a bit of a war zone” and said the fire was intensified by winds, which pushed fire embers south, and dry air conditions.

Fire officials said they worked into early Tuesday morning to fully extinguish the fires.

FF’s working into the night. Neighbors be vigilant embers still a danger. Those needing assistance go to Christ Lutheran Church 117th Nieman pic.twitter.com/UFCpynKQur

— Overland Park Fire (@OPFDMedia) March 21, 2017

City building inspectors were in the area on Tuesday to assess the safety and “livability” of the damaged homes, according to Overland Park fire officials.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) —Here are the latest scores and winners:

INTERLEAGUE
Philadelphia 9, Minnesota 5
Pittsburgh 5, Tampa Bay 4
Houston 2, Miami 1
L.-A. Angels 9, Cincinnati 1
Arizona 4, Kansas City 2

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Texas 4, Chi. White Sox 3
Oakland 8, Seattle 5
Toronto 5, Baltimore 2
Boston 4, N.-Y. Yankees 2

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Washington 3, Atlanta 1
Milwaukee 5, L.-A. Dodgers 4
San Francisco 5, San Diego 3


NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

San Antonio 100, Minnesota 93
Milwaukee 93, Portland 90
L.-A. Clippers 133, L.-A. Lakers 109
OT/Toronto 122, Chicago 120
Brooklyn 98, Detroit 96
Miami 112, Phoenix 97
New Orleans 95, Memphis 82
Golden State 112, Dallas 87


NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Ottawa 3, Boston 2
Pittsburgh 3, Buffalo 1
OT/New Jersey 3, N.-Y. Rangers 2
Washington 4, Calgary 2
OT/Detroit 2, Montreal 1
Arizona 5, Tampa Bay 3
Carolina 4, Florida 3
Winnipeg 3, Philadelphia 2
Minnesota 2, San Jose 2
OT/Vancouver 5, Chicago 4
St. Louis 4, Colorado 2

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Gabriel Christus/ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — ESPN reports the agent for retired running back Marshawn Lynch spoke out amid rumors of his client’s potential return, saying Lynch does miss football, but they have not discussed whether or not the Oakland Raiders want him to play for them.

His agent Doug Hendrickson says “it was the media who ran with” reports of a potential match between Lynch and his hometown Oakland Raiders.

Last week, ESPN reported the Raiders were heavily interested in acquiring Lynch, whether via a trade with the Seattle Seahawks, who own his rights, or by signing him should the Seahawks grant Lynch his release.

Lynch retired after the 2015 Super Bowl, which the Seahawks lost to the New England Patriots. He played nine seasons, making five Pro Bowls and leading the league in touchdowns twice.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Phil Ellsworth/ESPN Images(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) — Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will undergo surgery to repair a partially torn rotator cuff in his right throwing shoulder according to ESPN. The team announced Tuesday that the operation will be performed on March 30.

Newton is expected to miss organized team activities (OTAs) earlier in the summer, but is expected to be ready for training camp in late July.

ESPN reports the tear occurred in Week 14 of last season in a game against the Los Angeles, then San Diego, Chargers. An MRI revealed afterwards Newton had suffered a partial tear, but the team did not report it. Newton did not miss a game due to the injury.

Newton has missed just three games over his six year career, and this will be his second offseason surgery.

The team’s head athletic trainer Ryan Vermillion talked about the plan for Newton post-surgery on the team’s website.

Newton can start throwing again 12 weeks after surgery, and then a month later he can join the team according to Vermillion. ESPN reports that will give him enough time to be ready for the start of training camp.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation(CULLEOKA, Tenn.) — A photo released today by police shows former teacher Tad Cummins and the 15-year-old student he is suspected of kidnapping, Elizabeth Thomas, together at their school earlier this year.

The photo — released today by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation — was taken at the teen’s Culleoka, Tennessee, school in January. Cummins, accused of kidnapping Thomas on March 13, was her teacher at the time and the photo was taken “days before his alleged inappropriate contact with her,” the TBI said.

Cummins and Thomas have denied the claim, but one of Thomas’s schoolmates had reported seeing the pair kiss in his classroom on Jan. 23, according to a school district investigative report.

The TBI said that Cummins “may have been abusing his role as a teacher to groom [the teen] … in an effort to lure and potentially sexually exploit her.”

Cummins was fired March 14, one day after he and Thomas disappeared.

An Amber Alert has been issued for Thomas, and Cummins is wanted on allegations of aggravated kidnapping and sexual contact with a minor.

Cummins is believed to be armed and authorities say the teen is “in imminent danger.”

TBI spokesman Josh DeVine told ABC News about 600 tips have come in as of today, which he called “substantially low.” And there are still no credible sightings of the duo, which DeVine says is very rare.

Join us in holding out hope. It only takes one solid lead. pic.twitter.com/VShoOaUksX

— TBI (@TBInvestigation) March 21, 2017

Authorities said neither Thomas nor Cummins has been in touch with family members.

In an interview with ABC News Monday, the teen’s father, Anthony Thomas, pleaded with his daughter to “please let us know you are all right and please come home to us.”

It’s been a week, but we’re not giving up hope. Stay vigilant, stay alert, and let us know if you spot these individuals or this vehicle. pic.twitter.com/jDACuW1iUg

— TBI (@TBInvestigation) March 20, 2017

Thomas family attorney Jason Whatley told ABC News that Cummins was “taking advantage” of his student and “manipulating her into leaving with him.”

“We are very concerned about the control that he has over her,” Whatley said. “We believe that is 100 percent the reason why she is missing at this point. He is the problem, she is not. She’s a child, she’s a victim.”

Cummins is described as 6 feet tall and weighs about 200 pounds. He may be driving a 2015 silver Nissan Rogue with a Tennessee license plate number 976-ZPT.

Thomas is described as 5-foot-5 and weighs 120 pounds. She was last seen wearing leggings and a flannel shirt.

Authorities are asking that anyone with information call 1-800-TBI-FIND and that anyone who sees a car with a Tennessee license plate 976-ZPT call 911. A $1,000 reward is available for information leading to Cummins’ arrest.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Jerry Krause, the executive credited with forming the Chicago Bulls roster that won six championships through the 1990s, died at 77 according to ESPN.

A Chicago native, Krause was named general manager of the Bulls in 1985, going on to draft future all-time greats Michael Jordan and Socttie Pippen. In 1987, he added Bill Cartwright to the mix via a trade with the New York Knicks, forming the core of the team’s first three championships.

He also hired Phil Jackson to be an assistant with the team. Later, he named Jackson head coach, and he led Bulls on a stretch where they would win six NBA titles.

However, all of the success Krause built as general manager disintegrated after their sixth championship in 1998. Jordan retired, Pippen was traded, and Jackson left the team.

ESPN reports the Bulls won 808 games, more than any other Eastern Conference team during Krause’s 18-year reign as general manager. He was named NBA Executive of the Year twice during that span.

Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf talked about Krause in a statement:

“The entire Bulls organization is deeply saddened by the passing of Jerry Krause. Jerry was one of the hardest working guys I have ever been around, and he was one of the best talent evaluators ever. Jerry played an integral role in our run of six championships in eight years. He truly was the architect of all our great teams in the ’90s. I would not have been elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame if it were not for Jerry. We will miss him tremendously, and we send our thoughts and prayers to his wife Thelma and the Krause family.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Sarah Walton(NEW YORK) — When Sarah Walton needed to transport her deceased 4-year-old daughter’s ashes from the funeral home, she put them in the only logical place she could think of: the little girl’s car seat.

Ellie Walton died in January from a rare brain tumor. She endured 17 surgeries, 14 of them brain surgeries, in her short life.

Sarah Walton “wasn’t sure” why she photographed the temporary urn in the car seat, but she’s received such an outpouring of support since she posted it on the Facebook page Prayers for Ellie Walton that she hopes it’s raising awareness about pediatric cancer.

Currently, 4 percent of cancer research funding goes to pediatric cancer.

“It’s been two months of pure torture, agony, and despair,” Walton wrote. “All I want back is our daily life, whatever they entailed, I want it back. I want hospital visits back, and chemo back, I want your laughter, and your joyous heart back. The things that brought my heart so much pain, only a few months ago, I so desperately want back today.”

Walton told ABC News that she never wants another mother to go through this.

But posting about Ellie, Walton told ABC News, also helps her cope with her daughter’s loss. “I love to talk about her and have people remember her. I love to hear about her and I love to talk about her.”

Ellie wore sunglasses everywhere she went, her mother said. “But she always wore them upside down. Even when I put them on her the right way she turned them around.” She also loved animals, especially dinosaurs, and pickles.

“She was the kind of kid who would have brain surgery on a Monday and by Tuesday she wanted to leave the hospital so she could get a Slurpee,” her mother told ABC News. “She lit up a room. She was very outgoing and spoke to every person.”

The outpouring of love on the family’s Facebook page has been tremendous. “Awareness is about funding, of course,” Walton said. “But for families going through this, just having people support them is important, too.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Michele Whitlow(NEW YORK) — Little Oliver and fluffy Leo are the best of friends. But 11-month-old Oliver also loves trying to nap on Leo, over … and over … and over again.

“Oliver is constantly using Leo as a pillow,” Oliver’s mom, Michele Whitlow, told ABC News.

Leo was the couple’s “first baby” and has been very patient since Oliver came along.

“Leo has always loved attention. Originally when Oliver was born, Leo was sort of getting shafted because all the attention was going to Oliver,” she explained. “So he was feeling left out. But over time he realized Oliver can actually play with him and now they’re constantly together.”

Whenever Oliver touches Leo “he becomes a statue,” said Whitlow.

“He just stands still. He just stands still and lets Oliver climb all over him,” she added. “He’s super patient. He doesn’t seem to care ever.”

The dynamic duo are inseparable.

“Anything Oliver is doing, Leo is following,” said the proud mom. “He loves to lay his head on him and honestly nail on his head. We’re trying to teach Oliver to be gentle with Leo but he’s your typical boy: rambunctious. But Leo is so patient and it’s been good for us that Oliver is learning with him.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →