<![CDATA[NBC4 Washington - National & International News]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/national-international http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/WASH+NBC4+BLUE.png NBC4 Washington http://www.nbcwashington.comen-usFri, 27 May 2016 10:19:16 -0400Fri, 27 May 2016 10:19:16 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA['Death Fell From the Sky': Obama at Hiroshima]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 07:22:41 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/AP_16148362560935.jpg

Barack Obama became the first sitting U.S. president to visit the site of the Hiroshima atomic bombing on Friday, using the moment to call for a world without nuclear weapons, NBC News reported.

Some 140,000 people were killed when the U.S. dropped an atomic bomb on the city on Aug. 6, 1945.

Obama spent a short time at the Hiroshima Peace Park Memorial Museum and then placed a wreath at the arched monument at the memorial park.

Obama reflected on the day "death fell from the sky and the world was changed," telling a gathering of survivors and officials that a "wall of fire destroyed a city and demonstrated that mankind possessed the means to destroy itself."

Obama did not apologize for the U.S. actions and instead paid tribute to "all the innocents killed across the arc of that terrible war," saying that "their souls speak to us" and "mere words cannot give voice to such suffering."

Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Israel Transgender Pageant Unites Christians, Muslims & Jews]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 07:07:26 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/ISRAEL_TRANS_AP_16147433122006.jpg

"Miss Trans Israel 2016" beauty pageant begins Friday and it will be the first of its kind in the Middle East country.

The competition in Tel Aviv brings together Jews, Christians and Muslims in a region known more for its deep divisions, NBC News reported.

"Here I don't feel Muslim, Jewish, Christian," Caroline Khouri, an Arab, said. "All of the people are together and the transsexual [people], they love together."

Pageant judge Efrat Tilma agrees that the event is "bonding people."

"We can show the world that we are really for peace, this competition is for peace," the 70-year-old added.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Mayborn USA Recalls 3.1M Sippy Cups Over Risk of Mold]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 10:01:41 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/214*120/sippy-cup-edited.jpg

Mayborn USA is recalling 3.1 million Tommee Tippee Sippee spill-proof cups after nearly 70 children became ill drinking from moldy valves, the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) said Friday.

Mold can develop on the removable, one-piece, white valve inside the cups when it remains wet or moist and is infrequently cleaned, according to the recall alert.

Mold ingestion can cause gastrointestinal symptoms and infections in people with compromised immune systems, according to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The Massachusetts-based Mayborn USA has received 3,066 reports of mold in the removable valve, including 68 reports of children experiencing diarrhea, vomiting or other symptoms associated with drinking from a cup with mold in the valve.

Five types of spill-proof Tommee Tippee Sippee cups all with a removable, one-piece white valve are involved in the recall: First Sips Transition cup, Trainer Sippee cup, Sippee cup (including Cute Quips), Sportee bottle and Insulated Swiggle/Sippee tumblers.

The plastic drinking cups have spill-proof tops, easy-grip sides with detachable handles and were sold in clear with colored lids and a variety of colors and character prints. Some of the cups include short phrases on the front of the cups including: “You Pour I’ll Fling,” or “Drink Drop Repeat.” The cups have a 7 to 10 oz. capacity and were sold for children ages 4 to 12 months.

The cup were made in China and sold at BuyBuy Baby, CVS, Giant, Kohl’s, Marco Baby, Marshalls, Meijer, Sam’s Club, Ross Stores, Target, Bealls Outlet, Walgreens and Wal-Mart and other stores nationwide and online at Amazon.com, Babyhaven.com, and Diapers.com from December 2014 through May 2016.  

Consumers who bought the cups should stop using them and contact the company to receive a free replacement cup at www.tommeetippee.us or 877-248-6922. 

Photo Credit: CSPC]]>
<![CDATA[American Girl in Legal Bid to Return Death-Row Dad]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 08:41:21 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/160525-tsege-mn-1340.jpg

Menabe Andargachew, a 9-year-old American girl, is suing the British government for not pushing Ethiopia to release her father, a British citizen and an outspoken critic of Ethiopia's regime, NBC News reported.

Andargachew "Andy" Tsege disappeared while catching a connecting flight through Yemen in June 2014. The political activist was snatched and forcibly taken to Ethiopia, where he had been sentenced to death for opposition work.

So far, the U.K. government hasn't demanded his release. Now Menabe and her family are trying to force their hand. They filed a legal challenge alleging that approach is "unlawful."

Both the U.N. Human Rights Council and the European Parliament have called for Tsege's release. The British government has expressed "deep concern" over his case. But thus far, it hasn't followed suit in demanding Tsege be freed — instead focusing on getting him "due process."

Tsege's Maryland-born partner Yemi Hailemariam, family and lawyers say he was kidnapped — a victim of rendition carried out by Ethiopia, which has labeled him a terrorist and enemy of the state. Ethiopia says he was "extradited."

Photo Credit: Cassandra Vinograd / NBC News]]>
<![CDATA[6 BBQ Tips for a Safe Memorial Day Weekend]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 07:25:28 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/180*120/BBQ-Template-6.jpg BBQ and picnic season is just beginning. Here are a few tips to make sure you kick off the season with a safe Memorial Day weekend.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Top News Photos of the Week]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 06:36:32 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WREATH_HIROSHIMA_GettyImages-534642402-%281%29.jpg View weekly updates on the best photos in domestic and foreign news.

Photo Credit: Getty Images ]]>
<![CDATA['Dancing Grandma' Shows Off Moves at Nats Park]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 09:37:28 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/2016-05-27_0905.png Virginia McLaurin, the 107-year-old grandmother who charmed President Barack Obama with her dance moves earlier this year, showed off her dance moves on the mound at National Park Thursday night. It was McLaurin's first MLB game. She got a chance to meet with Nats manager Dusty Baker and even got her own jersey: No. 107, of course.

Photo Credit: NBC Washington]]>
<![CDATA[Heir B&B: Princess Diana's Estate to Give Orphans a Boost]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 08:40:46 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Althorp+Estate+2+copy1.jpg

Princess Diana's brother Earl Spencer and his wife Karen Spencer are opening the Althorp family home for guests to stay a couple of nights in order to raise money for orphanages around the world, NBC News reported.

Diana grew up in the 500-year-old mansion with a priceless art collection, 88 fireplaces and bedrooms named for the royalty who slept there, and Althorp also serves as her final resting place.

Wannabe aristocrats willing to pay between $25,000 and $40,000 to stay in the 100,000-square-foot home about 75 miles north of London. For $250,000, a group of up to 18 people can take over the stately spread.

Proceeds will benefit the Whole Child organization, which worked with or advised 85 orphanages in Nicaragua and is undertaking a new project in El Salvador that will involve 365 children's centers.

Photo Credit: Jake Whitman/Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Teen's Glasses Used for Art Prank]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 07:10:08 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/0526-2016-SFMOMAGlasses.jpg

A prank by a San Jose, California, teen has gone viral and made news around the world.

TJ Cruda and his friends put a pair of glasses on the floor at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art earlier this week. The reaction from museum attendees was something Cruda and his friends could not believe.

Visitors pondered the glasses as if they were part of the exhibit and some even took photos.

Cruda, who graduated from Evergreen Valley High last week, posted pictures of the stunt on Twitter, quickly getting tens of thousands of retweets. Some observed that Cruda himself is now a "post modern artist."

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Photo Credit: TJ Cruda
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<![CDATA[Trump Looks to RNC for Ground Game]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 19:27:19 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/DonaldTrump-AP_16147730321347.jpg

Donald Trump said he believes the Republican National Committee will help him in his ground game and his plans to turn 15 blue states red, NBC News reported. 

"As far as building the infrastructure for campaign, the RNC has been doing it for many years, Reince [Priebus, the RNC chairman] has really upped it, all over the country, and part of the benefit is that we get to use those people," Trump said Thursday, noting they were staffing themselves but suggesting that the RNC could build a ground game better than he could in just a few months. 

The RNC has historically helped in the campaigns of presidential candidates, but they’re also helping Senate and House elections as well. So could the RNC do the majority of planning for Trump’s ground game? 

"No," former RNC Chairman Michael Steele said. "Those duties and responsibilities have to be split." 

Trump’s staff told The Associated Press that teams are being sent into 15 states by the end of May. While a Trump campaign source who spoke to NBC News on the condition of anonymity said that plan is “non-existent,” Trump’s spokesperson declined to discuss staffing or offer any information about new hires.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Abduction Suspect Dies in Shootout]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 09:36:12 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/0525-2016-SolanoMissing.jpg

The 19-year-old man suspected of abducting a teenage girl Wednesday in Northern California has died following a shootout, authorities said Thursday afternoon, but the girl remains missing.

The California Highway Patrol had issued an Amber Alert for 15-year-old Pearl Pinson, whom investigators believe was kidnapped at gunpoint about 7 a.m.Wednesday as she walked to a school bus stop on Taylor Avenue in Vallejo. Officials said the teen never arrived at school that day.

Authorities said the suspect, identified as Fernando Castro of Vallejo, was involved Thursday afternoon in a pursuit and shootout in Santa Barbara County, about 300 miles from the scene of the suspected abduction.

Castro was first spotted in San Luis Obispo County, where CHP officers pursued him into Santa Barbara County.

The Solano County Sheriff's Office late Thursday said investigators are searching area of Sir Frances Drake Boulevard near the San Rafael Bridge in Marin County after officials said Castro was seen on surveillance cameras in the area at about 9:30 a.m. Thursday.

A vigil for the missing teen was held Thursday night at 1001 Taylor Ave., in Vallejo. Family and friends prayed for Pearl's safe return.

"Pearl, you need to come home," said her sister, Rose Pinson. "Find a way. I know you can."

Sheriff's officials said they believe Pinson and Castro are acquaintances and the incident is not a stranger abduction, but that Pinson did not willingly go with Castro.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department said the suspect was first spotted Thursday heading southbound on Highway 101, just north of Los Alamos.

The suspect exited in Bulleton and was pursued by deputies through Solvang, where the pursuit ended after the suspect crashed in front of a mobile home park. The pursuit was followed by a shootout, which left the suspect dead, sheriff's officials said.

Video from the Santa Maria Times appears to show the shootout involving police and the suspect in Solvang.

Thursday's Amber Alert said Castro may be driving a gold 1997 Saturn with a California license plate of 5XZD385, the same car that was seen in Santa Barbara County Fire pictures of the pursuit.

The information on the shootout came after a search prompted by the sound of a gunshot and cries for help Wednesday morning.

The sheriff's office said they received reports Wednesday morning of shots fired near the Interstate Highway 780 pedestrian over-crossing in the area of Home Acres and Taylor avenues in Vallejo.

A witness reported seeing a man with a gun pulling a female, who was bleeding and yelling for help, on the over-crossing. The witness heard a gunshot while running for help, and responding deputies found blood on the ground, sheriff's officials said.

"I heard screaming, panicking screaming, and then after that, I heard two gunshots and the car went off really fast," said witness Leslie Caro.

The sheriff's office has not confirmed Pinson was shot or the extent of her injuries.

Pinson has green hair and was last seen wearing a gray sweater, black leggings and had a black and turquoise backpack.

The sheriff's office set up a tip line at 707-784-1963 but anyone with urgent information is asked to call 707-421-7090.

Bay City News contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: Solano County Sheriff's Office
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<![CDATA[Flintstones Car Parked Illegally]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 21:06:21 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/052616+key+west+flintstones+car.jpg

Authorities in Key West spent Thursday trying to meet the Flintstones, or at least the owner of an illegally parked car that looks like the modern Stone Age family's.

City officials said they found the vintage car in the right of way in the 800 block of Emma Street Thursday.

The city posted a photo of the car on its Facebook page, and the owner was found a short time later.

"Thanks to everyone who helped on this! And thanks for all the funny remarks. This island is awesome!" the city's post read.

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Photo Credit: City of Key West
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<![CDATA[Severe Storms, Tornadoes Hit Plains States]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 22:02:55 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/KansasTornadoStorm.jpg

Tornadoes were reported in Kansas and Texas Thursday evening, as wild weather continued to hit the middle of the United States, NBC News reported.

Heavy thunderstorms hit the Plains states again, with tornado watches in effect in several states, according to the Weather Channel.

Parts of Jefferson County, Kansas, saw baseball-sized hail Thursday from two storms, according to Greg Forbes, severe weather expert at the Weather Channel.

Storms forced the brief evacuation of Kansas City International Airport. Preliminary reports also indicated there was a tornado in Bryan, Texas, that damaged multiples homes, according to the Weather Channel.

Photo Credit: Eric A Ryser]]>
<![CDATA[Antibiotic-Resistant 'Superbug' Found in US for 1st Time]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 20:32:39 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/superbugmcr%281%29.jpg

A drug resistant “superbug” feared by doctors has shown up in the U.S. for the first time, researchers reported Thursday.

The germ, E. coli bacteria with the mcr-1 gene mutation, was found in a Pennsylvania woman with symptoms of a urinary tract infection, NBC News reported.

The little stretch of DNA, which bacteria can easily swap among themselves, gives the ability to fight off the effects of a last-ditch antibiotic called colistin. 

Health experts are interviewing the woman and her family to determine how she may have contracted the bug, since it had only been seen in Europe and China. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the patient had not traveled, which means the bacteria may have already been in the U.S. 

Photo Credit: Walter Reed Army Institute for Research]]>
<![CDATA[SpaceX Postpones Rocket Launch, Attempted Landing]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 20:48:36 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/AP_40364550147.jpg

SpaceX postponed the satellite launch of a rocket that would attempt to land on a ship at sea for a third time Thursday, NBC News reported.

The launch was postponed until Friday, because of a “tiny glitch in the upper stage engine actuator," SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted

The Thaicom-8 commercial communications satellite will lift off atop SpaceX’s two-stage Falcon 9 rocket. After the rocket’s two stages separate, the second one will carry Thaicom-8 to orbit. The first one will come back and try to land on one of SpaceX’s two drone ships stationed off the Florida coast.

"As with other missions going to geostationary orbits, the first-stage will be subject to extreme velocities and re-entry heating, making a successful landing," SpaceX wrote in a statement. 

The landings are part of SpaceX’s effort to develop usable rockets.

Photo Credit: SpaceX via AP, File]]>
<![CDATA[Signal From EgyptAir Flight Could Pinpoint Location of Wreckage]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 20:29:40 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/EgyptAirSearch-AP_16143763604500.jpg

Investigators said signals have been picked up from an emergency transmitter on EgyptAir Flight MS804, NBC News reported. 

The Egyptian investigative team said at a news conference in Cairo that signals from one of the three pieces of locator equipment on the plane allowed them to narrow the primary search to about a three-mile area. 

The head of the investigation team said a French ship was moved to that location to search for the plane’s black box data recorders. He said search teams are racing to find the black boxes, whose batteries last for only 30 days.

Officials still don’t know what caused the flight to disappear. It was flying from Paris to Cairo when it fell off the radar on the night of May 19.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[USSS Employees Disciplined for Violating Congressman's Privacy]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 19:51:05 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/AP_784902619993.jpg

More than 40 Secret Service employees were disciplined for improperly accessing information about Rep. Jason Chaffetz last year, NBC News reported. 

One employee resigned, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Thursday. Other punishments ranged from letters placed in personnel files to 45-day suspensions without pay. None of the disciplined employees were identified due to federal privacy laws.

The Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security apologized to Chaffetz, R-Utah, who led numerous inquiries into alleged misconduct by the agency. 

Chaffetz tried, unsuccessfully, to join the Secret Service in 2003. A report found that the 41 Secret Service employees accessed his job application more than 60 times, even though there was no need for inquiries.

Johnson said he was "appalled by the episode," which he said "brought real discredit to the Secret Service."

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Utah Man Attacked for Taking Daughter to Wal-Mart Men's Room ]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 19:54:32 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/ChristoperAdamsWalMartFight.jpg

A Utah man said he was assaulted by another customer for taking his young daughter with him to the men’s room at a Wal-Mart, NBC News reported.

Christopher Adams told NBC affiliate KSL a confrontation ensued at a Clinton, Utah, Wal-Mart over the weekend when he took his 7-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter, Emery, to the restroom. 

Adams said the other man said he objected to Emery being in the men’s room. The man then allegedly punched Adams in the face and kicked him in the knee multiple times. 

Police said the “aggressor” was cited at the scene for disorderly conduct. The city attorney was screening a potential assault charge, according to KSL.

Photo Credit: KSL]]>
<![CDATA[Trump Reaches the Magic Number to Clinch Nomination]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 20:22:44 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Trump-GettyImages-533099798.jpg

Donald Trump on Thursday secured the number of GOP delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, NBC News has confirmed.  

Trump passed the 1,237 mark after unbound delegates from North Dakota pledged their support for him. NBC News declared Trump to be the presumptive Republican nominee after his GOP rivals dropped out of the race in early May.

There are still 303 delegates at stake in five state primaries on June 7. Trump will not officially become the nominee until he accepts the nomination at the Republican convention in Cleveland in July.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[US Women's Soccer Contract Hearing]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 17:45:03 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Womens-Soccer-GettyImages-506466114.jpg

With the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio just months away, the World Cup-winning U.S. Women’s Soccer team is looking into the possibility of a strike as they fight for equal pay.

The players’ union, which says the women’s team isn’t being paid as much as the U.S. men’s team, took the Chicago-based U.S. Soccer Federation to federal court Thursday to determine whether or not a strike is legal.

“This case is about a very narrow issue,” said anti-trust attorney Jeffery Kessler. “Whether the women have the right to strike or not. And we will find out.”

There’s concern, however, that the potential strike could mean the women’s team may not play in the Summer Games.

“If this case continues, if the dispute continues, then there is a probability that the greatest women’s soccer team in the world will not be participating in the Olympics in Brazil,” said Lester Munson, a legal affairs writer for ESPN.

U.S. Soccer maintains that the players union is still covered by a “no-strike” clause under its current memorandum of understanding. The union says that clause expired with its old contract.

On their way out of court today, the federation declined to comment on pending litigation, but in the past has said: ”We remain committed to negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement with the [Players Association], to take effect when the current one expires at the end of this year." 

In a separate lawsuit, five of the team’s top players claim they are the victims of wage discrimination.

“We have proven our worth over the years, you know, just coming off a World Cup win,” star midfielder Carli Lloyd said. “The pay disparity between the men and the women is just too large.”

Still, the union says it, too, is open to negotiation.

“We have to reserve our rights to do whatever we have to do to achieve equal pay, but it would be great if the Soccer Federation today came to the negotiating table,” said Richard Nichols with the U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association. “We would really like to be able to get a deal done before the Olympics so that we don’t have to contemplate any other action.”

But the real threat remains that without an agreement, soccer’s top women’s team may not take to the pitch in Rio.

“This all is on the soccer side of the pitch,” said Kessler, the anti-trust attorney. “They should negotiate a fair agreement with these proud women before the Olympics. And no one even had to talk about the issue. That is what we hope to achieve.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images, File]]>
<![CDATA[Judge Blocks Release of Video, Audio of Mills in Clinton Deposition]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 19:50:13 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/CherylMills-AP_16141516465226.jpg

A federal judge granted a request Thursday to block the release of video from an upcoming deposition of Hillary Clinton’s former chief of staff at the State Department, NBC News reported. 

Cheryl Mills is scheduled to be deposed Friday by lawyers for conservative group Judicial Watch. The group is inquiring into Clinton’s use of a private email server during her time as Secretary of State. 

Mills’ lawyer said Wednesday that the former staffer had no objection to transcripts, but she was concerned that parts of video could be taken out of context by political groups. They asked that video or audio be withheld.

"The public has a right to know details related to the creation, purpose and use of the clintonemail.com system. Thus, the transcripts of all depositions taken in this case will be publicly available," U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan wrote in an order. 

Federal rules authorize a court to protect a people involved in a case "from annoyance, embarrassment, oppression or undue burden or expense," the judge said.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[NC School District Proposes Ban on Skinny Jeans]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 17:06:21 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-103058864.jpg

A North Carolina school district is proposing to ban skinny jeans and tight leggings after a student was bullied for wearing them, according to NBC's "Today" show. 

New Hanover County Schools tweeted the policy document last week: "No leggings, "skinny jeans" or other excessively tight fitting pants unless covered by a top or dress to the appropriate length. (The length of the top or dress shall cover the posterior area in its entirety.)"

Chris Furner, who has a daughter in the district, told "Today": "It doesn't make sense that we're gonna try, you know, to use this as a tool to solve the bullying problem."

Outside of the school, many took to Twitter to voice their disapproval of the plan. One user said, "Dear @NewHanoverCoSch, if "bigger" girls are getting bullied because of their tight pants, ban the bullies, not the pants. #policy8520."

Photo Credit: Getty Images/PhotoAlto
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<![CDATA[4-Year-Old Dies After Elevator Fall]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 16:06:04 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/BOY+FALLS+ELEVATOR.jpg

A 4-year-old boy died Thursday after he fell down an elevator shaft at a private parking garage in Brooklyn, authorities say.

FDNY responded to 841 Union St. in Park Slope at about 8 p.m. Wednesday and found the boy at the bottom of the shaft, officials said.

Police said the boy was on the third floor of the garage with a parking attendant and his parents before he fell. 

The parking garage is for private condos and residents own individual spots. Although residents normally don't go up to their cars, the parents wanted to grab something quickly, so an attendant made an exception and went up with them. 

The parents lost sight of the boy for just a moment and he somehow fell through a 10-inch gap between the elevator and the third floor. 

First responders rushed the boy to New York Methodist Hospital, where he died Thursday. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York]]>
<![CDATA[School Bus Driver Seen Texting]]> Wed, 25 May 2016 16:42:10 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/216*120/texting+bus+driver.png

A far southwest suburban school is investigating after a student recorded a bus driver apparently texting while driving.

Noah LaBarge, a sophomore at Ottawa Township High School, between Chicago and Peoria, captured the video that was posted to Facebook Tuesday, claiming he caught the driver texting while taking students home from school.

"So we had a sub today and i caught her texting 4 times when she was taking us home," LaBarge wrote in the caption.

The video — viewed more than 72,000 times — has prompted concerns from parents and students at the school.

"I started taking video because she was like starting to swerve and stuff and we knew you're not supposed to text and drive in Illinois," LaBarge told NBC Chicago. 

Other students on the bus reported feeling the bus swerve periodically during the drive.

"She was on her phone and then I caught her swerving like 5 feet out and then come back in," said student Derek Rieuf.

In a statement, superintendent Michael Cushing said the school is investigating the incident. 

"Ottawa Elementary and Ottawa Township High School are aware of the alleged incident, are actively investigating the alleged incident, and can confirm the driver is not on active duty while the investigation is ongoing," Cushing said in the statement.

Photo Credit: Noah LaBarge]]>
<![CDATA['We Just Need a Little More': Update on Reporter's Murder]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 19:00:59 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/charnice-milton-dc.jpg

A day before the first anniversary of the shooting death of local news reporter Charnice Milton, the D.C. police chief said investigators "just need a little more" to catch her killer.

Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier and Milton's stepfather, Ken McClenton, spoke Thursday afternoon near the bus stop in Southeast D.C. where Milton was shot the night of May 27, 2015, as she headed home.

Lanier said the investigation is ongoing and police have received a steady stream of tips.

"We've got a lot of momentum going in this case," she said. "We're all very passionate about bringing those responsible in her murder to justice."

The police chief encouraged anyone with information on the killing to contact police.

"We know there are people out there that can give us the last piece of information we need," Lanier said.

McClenton thanked police and urged District residents to not become numb to crime.

"We have to end the tolerance we have in D.C. not just for violence but for murder," he said, fighting tears.

"When we're so concerned that our child might go to prison for an effort that they did in the middle of the night ... that has to come to an end," McClenton continued.

Milton was waiting for a bus on Good Hope Road at Naylor Road about 9:40 p.m. when a gunman riding in a group of dirt bike and all-terrain vehicle riders opened fire.

The shooter's apparent target pulled Milton in front of him and used her body as a human shield, McClenton says police told him.

The following week, police released surveillance video of 14 persons of interest shown riding seven dirt bikes and ATVs.

Lanier said police are working to appeal to those dirt bike and ATV riders. She said they should contact police despite any concerns about their "culpability for not coming foward sooner."

"If you have the information and you help us bring this killer to justice, you're helping us solve a problem and we will work with you," she said.

Lanier declined to say on Thursday whether police had spoken with the shooter's intended target.

MPD polices high-crime areas through the use of uniformed officers, undercover officers and cameras, Lanier said.

"Officers exit a block for a matter of seconds, and we'll hear gunshots as they turn the corner," the police chief said. "Police presence is not the only solution here."

Milton's family will hold a vigil for the young woman Friday at 7:40 p.m. on the corner where she was shot. Police will hand out fliers related to the crime at 9:30 p.m.

MPD never gives up on unsolved homicides, Lanier said.

"As painful as it is, we don't want to give up hope," she said. "There are always circumstances that will give us information somewhere down the road."

Milton's mother, Francine Milton, told News4 she believes one of the 14 persons of interest will step forward.

"I feel in my heart there's one who's really dying inside, who's not going to let this rest,” she previously said.

Anyone with information on Milton's killing is asked to call police at 202-727-9099. Tips can be submitted anonymously by sending a text message to 50411. A reward of as much as $25,000 is offered.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of family; AP]]>
<![CDATA[Haiti-Born Cadet Weeps at His West Point Graduation]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 16:56:39 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/idrache-edit.jpg

A powerful image of a West Point cadet standing at attention, tears streaking his face, has come to symbolize the raw emotion surrounding graduation from the prestigious military academy.

"At this moment, I was overwhelmed with emotions," 2nd Lt. Alix Schoelcher Idrache, who came to the U.S from Haiti in 2009, wrote in a comment on West Point's Instagram post.

Idrache was one of nearly 1,000 cadets honored at West Point commencement on May 21. The academy's top-ranking physics graduate, Idrache will attend the Army Aviation Center for Excellence in July to pursue his dream of becoming a pilot. 

That dream was born years ago in Haiti, where Idrache watched in awe as Chinooks on humanitarian missions descended on his native Port-au-Prince, according to the Army. 

"People where I'm from don't grow up to be pilots right? Like they don't dream of flying a helicopter, that's not something you do," Idrache said in an interview posted on the Army's website. 

Inspired and motivated by his father, who dropped out of school at 14 to provide for his family, Idrache devoted himself to his studies. In 2009, he joined his dad in the U.S. and enlisted in the Maryland Army National Guard, where he served until 2012.

While in the National Guard, Idrache was drawn to West Point, but applying there, he thought, was a shot in the dark. Four years later, he graduated with honors.

He paid homage on Instagram to the cadets who have gone before him.

"Men and women who have preserved the very essence of the human condition stood in that position and took the same oath. Men who preserved the Union is a dark period of this country's history. Men who scaled the face of adversity and liberated Europe from fascism and nazism," he wrote. "Women like CPT Griest, LT Haver, MAJ Jaster who rewrote the narrative and challenged the status quo to prove themselves worthy of being called Rangers."

The image — posted on Facebook and Instagram — has garnered thousands of likes, shares and comments. Idrache thanked those who shared kind words and said he would never forget that moment.

"Knowing that one day I will be a pilot is humbling beyond words. I could not help but be flooded with emotions knowing that I will be leading these men and women who are willing to give their all to preserve what we value as the American way of life. To me, that is the greatest honor."

Photo Credit: U.S. Army/Staff Sgt. Vito Bryant]]>
<![CDATA[Transgender Veteran Sues Barber for Refusing to Cut Hair]]> Fri, 27 May 2016 04:57:55 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Controversy_Over_Barbershop_Refusal_to_Serve_Transgender_Patron_1200x675_641098307722.jpg

Two months after a Southern California barber cited scripture as a reason for denying a haircut to a transgender Army veteran, Kendall Oliver has filed suit, alleging a violation of civil rights.

Oliver, an Army reserve sergeant who served in Afghanistan, filed a lawsuit against The Barbershop in Rancho Cucamonga, citing an incident last March when the shop refused to cut Oliver's hair.

"What I'm looking for today is to make sure this never happens again to someone else," said Oliver, who was born female but identifies "more as male."

Owner Richard Hernandez said in March that his Christian religious beliefs forbid him from cutting a woman's hair.

"It is a shame for a man to have long hair. But if a woman has long hair, it is her glory," Hernandez told NBC4's Mekahlo Medina in March, paraphrasing scripture, the Apostle Paul's first letter to the Corinthians, 11:15.

"I don't want to be one who's taking away from her glory," Hernandez said.

Oliver's attorney contends the central issue is equal rights.

"Freedom of religion is important and it's protected," said attorney Peter Renn of Lambda Legal, which works on behalf of LBGT rights. "What it doesn't do is give anyone the right to cause harm to someone else, or for one person to inflict their religious beliefs on someone else." 

The Barbershop declined comment on the lawsuit Wednesday. An employee said the owner was out of town.

"The odds of the barber being able to implement this policy are extremely low," said Michael Helfand, a legal scholar not involved in the case. An associate professor at Pepperdine University School of Law, Helfand is an expert on religious law and religious liberty.

Unless the owner operated The Barbershop as a private club, it would be considered a public accommodation, and as such cannot discriminate on the basis of sex under California law, Helfand said.

The calculus likely would be different in other states that have enacted what are known as religious freedom laws, modeled after the 1993 federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, according to Helfand.

"In those states, he might have a fighting chance. In those states, a law that prohibited him from implementing his religious beliefs in his commercial enterprise -- such a law might be deemed to actually substantially burden his religion, and therefore he'd be protected," Helfand said. "But California doesn't have such a law. California only prohibits laws from discriminating against religion. As a result, anti-discrimination laws don't discriminate against religion, they just implement neutral laws against everybody. As a result, he's unlikely to be successful in defending this suit." 

Helfand personally favors state laws that enable courts to consider religious burden in complying with a law.

"In a case like this, though -- again -- to be clear, it's very likely that the public policy is extremely strong," he said. "But cases like this do raise the question as to whether or not California law should reconsider the fact that it does not have any kind of law in place that allows you to balance religion against other public policy interests."

Oliver spoke of feeling humiliated at being denied the same treatment provided to other customers that day at The Barbershop.  In the view of Oliver's attorney, this case is about more than a haircut denied.

"No business has the right to inflict moral judgment," said Renn.

<![CDATA[Shipwreck From 1800s Uncovered in Boston]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 17:20:31 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/vlcsnap-2016-05-26-07h07m11s25-cp.jpg

A construction project in Boston has led to the discovery of a nearly 200-year-old shipwreck.

The remains of a wooden vessel from the mid- to late-19th century were discovered Wednesday by construction crews on Seaport Boulevard. They are at least 50 feet long.

"It's in pretty good shape considering it's been somehow avoiding construction for the past couple of weeks," said Joe Bagley, a city archaeologist. 

"This is actually highly unusual for Boston," said Vic Mastrone, an underwater archaeologist. "We know a lot of vessels were wrecked and abandoned and this is an abandoned vessel. But typically you don't find them in the fill tidelands. They're usually gone or they're not even noticed." 

Archeologists said the ship is in good condition because it has been buried in clay, which helped preserve it. They believe the ship may have been carrying lime and that it burned before it sank.

An archaeology team will be on the site for a few days studying the location, excavating, and taking samples and pictures. They might even take a 3D scan, but the wreck won't be removed. 

New York-based construction company Skanska USA is meeting with city officials to discuss the discovery.

Photo Credit: necn]]>
<![CDATA[Miss. to Join States Suing Over Transgender Bathroom Policy]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 17:34:41 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/208*120/AP_16138695426221.jpg

Mississippi plans to join 11 other states that filed a lawsuit Wednesday to block the Obama administration's transgender bathroom policy at public schools, Gov. Phil Bryant said Thursday, NBC News reported.

"Our office has talked to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's office and I intend, as soon as possible, to join the lawsuit against this latest example of federal overreach," Bryant, a Republican, said in a Facebook post.

Texas is leading the lawsuit. Governors from Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Maine, Oklahoma, Tennessee, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Utah have jumped on board.

The Department of Education ordered all of the nation's public schools to honor transgender students' bathroom of choice.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Man Rescued From Subway Tracks]]> Thu, 26 May 2016 14:36:27 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/subway+heroes+nicholas+buxton+luis+figueroa.jpg

A 19-year-old leaped into action when a man fell onto the subway tracks as a train was approaching in lower Manhattan, jumping down to move him out of the way before barely escaping the oncoming train. 

Police said a man in his 30s was waiting for the 6 train at Canal and Lafayette streets at around 8 p.m. Wednesday when he apparently became ill and began staggering, then fell.

"All of a sudden, before I knew it, he fell down on the track. He was sort of splayed across the track in the middle and wasn't moving," 19-year-old Nicholas Buxton told NBC 4 partner station Telemundo-47.

Buxton said he saw a train approaching and jumped onto the tracks to move the man who had fallen.

"I went down immediately. He was too heavy to move, and I yelled for help because by that point, I could see the train," he said.

Another man on the platform, Luis Figueroa, rushed over and told Buxton, "You gotta get him up, the train's coming." 

"I tried to lift him up again, I couldn't. So I instinctively pushed him under the track, under the platform, I saw there was a space there," said Buxton.

By then, the train was heading into the station and Figueroa began to grab at Buxton to hoist him back up.

"Luis said, 'Dude, you gotta get up, the train's about to arrive,' and he pulled me up. I was still pushing [the man] under, and Luis was like, 'You gotta go now,' and the train was already at the beginning of the platform," said Buxton. 

Figueroa said Buxton made it back onto the platform with moments to spare.

"He didn't know the train was there, so I was pulling him up. If I didn't pull him, the train hit him," he recalled.

The man on the tracks was taken to Bellevue Hospital with a broken arm, according to the FDNY. It's not clear why he fell.

Photo Credit: Telemundo-47/NBC 4 NY]]>