<![CDATA[NBC4 Washington - Top Stories]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/WASH+NBC4+BLUE.png NBC4 Washington http://www.nbcwashington.comen-usSun, 11 Dec 2016 03:15:33 -0500Sun, 11 Dec 2016 03:15:33 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Arlington Board Approves Airbnb Regulations]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 17:31:16 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Airbnb7.jpg

Arlington County residents who rent their home through services like Airbnb will soon have to apply for a permit.

Up until now, short-term rentals through Airbnb, Craigslist and other services haven't been fully legal.

"We're going to adopt this. We're going to make it legal to do," Chair of the Arlington County Board Libby Garvey told News4 on Friday.

The board voted Saturday to approve regulations requiring homeowners to apply for a newly created "accessory homestay" permit.

Under the permit, hosts must limit the maximum number of overnight guests to six people. It also requires that owners live in their homes at least half of the year.

Other regulations include:

 

  • Guests will not be allowed in detached accessory buildings
  • All building code requirements must be met
  • Smoke detectors and fire extinguishers, and where applicable, carbon monoxide detectors, must be provided and accessible to all overnight lodgers
  • The permit does not authorize the home to be used for any other commercial use such as parties, banquets, weddings, meetings, charitable fund raising, commercial or advertising activities or any other gatherings for direct or indirect compensation

 

Initially, the board discussed prohibiting hosts from serving food or drinks, but those stipulations are not part of the approved regulations.

"We're not prohibiting it, we're just not saying anything about it and I think people are going to have to use their own judgement," Garvey said.

The new regulations take effect on Dec. 31.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[People Brave Cold for MGM National Harbor Opening Weekend]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 18:49:47 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017024569_1200x675_830029891704.jpg People visiting National Harbor in the hopes of going to the new MGM casino or doing their holiday shopping bundled up against the cold Saturday. News4's Darcy Spencer reports.]]> <![CDATA[Santa Makes Special Visit to Arlington]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 21:15:32 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017024731_1200x675_830094403878.jpg Santa and Rudolph danced along with some other characters in Arlington, Virginia, on Saturday. The special performance was part of a toy drive held by the Arlington County Police Department.]]> <![CDATA[1 in Critical Condition After Fire in Hyattsville]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 20:59:20 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Firetruck9.jpg

One person is in critical condition after they were rescued from an apartment fire in Hyattsville, Maryland.

The fire happened Saturday night in the 3400 block of Dean Drive, according to Prince George's County Fire Department spokesperson Mark Brady.

Firefighters rescued two people from the apartment building, including one person who has been taken to a burn unit, Brady said. The second person rescued appears to be fine.

Fire officials are investigating the cause of the fire.

Stay with News4 and NBCWashington.com for more information.



Photo Credit: FILE - Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Fire Displaces Dozens of Alexandria Apartment Residents]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 20:17:15 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/160*120/Alexandria+Fire2.jpg

More than 40 residents of an apartment complex in Alexandria, Virginia, are displaced amid Saturday night's chilly temperatures after a two-alarm fire.

Firefighters were called to 8496 Richmond Highway about 6:10 p.m. and found flames tearing through the roof of a three-story apartment building at Woodlawn Garden Apartments, the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department said.

Residents in about eight to 12 apartments will not be able to go back home tonight, fire officials said.

Buses were brought to the scene to keep the 43 displaced residents out of the cold. The Red Cross is working to find shelter for the residents. It's not known at this time how long they will be displaced.

One woman was taken to a hospital for smoke inhalation and she is expected to be OK, officials said. No others were injured, according to the fire department.

It is not clear at this time what caused the fire.



Photo Credit: Darcy Spencer/NBCWashington]]>
<![CDATA[Man Charged with Murder in Death of 16-Year-Old Girl]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:23:53 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Breyona+McMillian+Saeve+Evans+2.jpg

A man who police say fired into the housing complex courtyard, where a 16-year-old girl was shot and killed the day after Thanksgiving, has been charged with second-degree murder, police say.

Saeve Evans, 30, turned himself in to police last week after he was wanted in connection to the death of Breyona McMillian. McMillian was killed Friday, Nov. 25 after she was shot multiple times in the 1200 block of I Street SE, near her mother's home in the Potomac Gardens housing complex.

Evans was caught on surveillance video firing a gun multiple times near the time McMillian was shot, police said.

He has been in jail since Nov. 30 when he was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm in connection to the shooting.

McMillian grew up in D.C. and was home from out of town for Thanksgiving. She had been attending a boarding school in Iowa.

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<![CDATA[Oakland Warehouse Manager Refuses to Answer Safety Questions]]> Tue, 06 Dec 2016 13:37:17 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/1205-2016-DerickAlmena.jpg

The man who founded and ran the artists' collective at the Ghost Ship warehouse in Oakland said he is grief stricken and "incredibly sorry" after the tragic fire that took his home and many of his friends. 

But in speaking out about the tragedy he refused to answer questions about safety concerns, telling NBC's "Today" show that he would rather "get on the floor and get trampled by the parents" or "let them tear at my flesh than answer these ridiculous questions." 

Derick Almena is the lease holder of the converted warehouse in Oakland that caught fire Friday night, killing at least 36 people who had gathered there for a dance party. 

"I'd gladly would give my entire life of fortune, of wealth and experence again and again," Almena said first in an interview with NBC Bay Area. "There's nothing more important than the lives lost there." 

Almena, 46, said he did not organize or attend the event, which he described as a fusion of art and culture. Instead, he decided to rent a hotel for the night for his wife and three children. 

City officials said the space was not permitted as a residential building, but Almena said about 20 people lived there. Almena said the group was a collective of young artists called Satya Yuga, and that he was like the group's grandfather.

"The center we all lived there, and was one of creativity, and beauty, and optimism," Almena told NBC Bay Area.

Almena, who was convicted in January of receiving stolen property and is now on probation, said police had been in and out of the East Oakland building through the past few years to respond to break-ins and other concerns of the people who lived there. 

"They'd come in and walk through our space, and they'd always say, 'Wow, what an amazing space,'" Almena said. 

In a follow-up interview on NBC's "Today" show, Almena said he was "only there to say one thing -- that I am incredibly sorry and that everything that I did was to make this a stronger, more beautiful community and to bring people together." 

The interview grew contentious when Almena was asked about allegations that he was more concerned about making profits than safety. Almena said he didn't want to "talk about me." 

"Profit? This is not profit, this is loss," he said on "Today." "This is a mass grave." 

“People didn’t walk through those doors because it was a horrible place," he said. "People didn’t seek us out to perform and express themselves because it was a horrible place.” 

Almena and his wife, Micah Allison, are cooperating with investigators and want to offer their hearts to the victims and their families, he said. 

"We haven't been in any way hiding from this," Allison told NBC Bay Area. 

"We're sorry to the families and all the friends that have lost loved ones," Almena said. 



Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Silver Spring Facility Offers Relief for Area Homeless]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 18:51:46 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017024602_1200x675_830038083716.jpg A new facility opened Saturday in Silver Spring, Maryland. It will offer shelter, food and resources to many of Montgomery County's homeless. News4's Derrick Ward spoke with residents and county leaders about the change.]]> <![CDATA[Arctic Blast: Cold, Wind Arrive; Snow in Forecast?]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 20:02:31 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/cold+weather+dc.jpg

COLD MOST OF THE WEEK
FORECAST DISCUSSION:

Winter is here.  Saturday's high of only 39° made it the coldest day in DC since last February 15th - when we had 2-4" of snow!  Speaking of snow, there are several chances for snow, even in the DC Metro, over the coming week.  First, there could be some snow flurries/showers along the I-81 corridor late tonight.  No accumulation is expected and this snow chance will not reach the DC Metro.  The best time to see snow tonight will be from 1am through 9am Sunday West of the Blue Ridge into the mountains of West Virginia.
Sunday will be cloudy and cold with afternoon highs only around 40.  Clouds will thicken again Sunday evening and rain is likely before you get up on Monday morning.  There could be a little snow in the pre-dawn hours of Monday morning but temperatures are likely to be just above freezing so, even if a little snow does fall, the snow is not likely to stick.  The rain will taper off Monday afternoon leaving us dry from Monday night into Wednesday morning.

The mid-week polar plunge will have a big impact on the weather.  Cold air will blast in on Wednesday afternoon.  There could be a period of rain changing to snow Wednesday evening. Again, the amounts of snow (if any) will be on the lighter side but the timing could be problematic so we will keep updating this forecast frequently.  The bitter cold will be in place for Thursday and Friday with dry conditions.  As warmer air tries to return on Saturday, we could see our best chance for accumulating snow Saturday morning before things change to mostly rain.  Lots of uncertainty about timing and amounts so, again, stay tuned.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

SATURDAY NIGHT:
Clouds Increase After Midnight
Cold
Chance of Rain: 0%
Wind: North 5 mph
LOWS: 22° - 29°

SUNDAY:
Mostly Cloudy
Cold
Chance of Rain: 0%
Wind: South 5-10 mph
HIGHS: 37° - 42°

SUNDAY NIGHT:
Cloudy - Rain Likely After Midnight
Some Light Snow Possible To Start
Chance of Rain: 70%
Wind: Southwest 6-12 mph
LOWS: 32° - 36°

MONDAY:
Rain, Moderate At Times
Rain Tapering Off Late Day
Chance of Rain: 80%
Wind: Southwest 5-15 mph
HIGHS: 45°- 50°

TUESDAY:
Mostly Cloudy
Chilly
Chance of Rain: 0%
Wind: Variable 5 mph
HIGHS: 40° - 46°

Sunrise: 7:16 AM  Sunset: 4:46 PM



Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[News4's Angie Goff Explores DC-Area Businesses Open 24/7]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 16:00:20 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Angie+Goff+Business.jpg From a tire repair shop to a spa, News4's Angie Goff explores an array of D.C. area businesses that are open while most of us are sleeping.]]> <![CDATA[Man Arrested, Breaks Handcuffs, Flees, Re-Arrested]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 07:40:10 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/2016-12-10_0738.png

A man in the custody of Prince George’s County, Maryland, police was able to break his handcuffs and flee before being recaptured Friday night, police said.

Officer Tyler Hunter said the man was arrested after a traffic stop for an open warrant on possession charges around 9:45 p.m. Friday. He was taken into custody to be transported to the county jail.

On the way to the jail, Hunter said the man was able to break the handcuffs and get out of the cruiser. A police perimeter was set up, and the man was taken back into custody around 10:15 p.m.

Police are not releasing the man’s name and are investigating how he was able to break the handcuffs. He will face an additional escape charge in addition to his prior charges.

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<![CDATA[Obama Gives Federal Workers Larger-Than-Expected Raise]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 17:38:41 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/120916+cash+money+generic.jpg

Many federal employees will get a small Christmas gift from President Barack Obama.

Obama authorized a 2.1 percent pay raise for civilian agency employees so their raise will match that of Defense Department employees. Obama said in August that these workers would get a 1.6 percent raise but opted on Thursday to boost the amount by 0.5 percent.

The president said he reconsidered the raise — which follows a three-year pay freeze — in part due to "current and projected economic conditions."

"In light of the decision of Congress to provide a 2.1 percent pay increase for military personnel in 2017 and reconsideration of current and projected economic conditions, I have concluded it would be appropriate to revise my original alternative plan," he wrote in a letter submitted to the House and Senate and published by Federal News Radio.

An employee making $75,000 will see a $1,575 boost before taxes.

The nation's largest federal employee union, the American Federation of Government Employees, applauded Obama's decision.

“Federal employees certainly deserve this modest boost in their pay, following years of pay freezes and miniscule increases that have left them worse off today than they were at the start of the decade,” union president J. David Cox Sr. said in a statement. “This pay adjustment will help employees pay their bills, reduce their debts, and cover the everyday costs facing working-class Americans.”

The raise will take effect in January.



Photo Credit: Getty Images (File)]]>
<![CDATA[DC's Carnegie Library Could Become Apple Store]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 20:12:23 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/20161209+Carnegie+Library.jpg

It's been home to proms and weddings, and it's a repository of D.C. history. But now the Carnegie Library, built in 1902 on K Street in D.C., is expected to become an Apple Store.

Events DC, which manages the building, has approved a proposal to lease the majority of it to Apple.

That means a big investment in the building. "Updating it, renovating it, number one," said Max Brown, of Events DC. "Number two, we are going to create jobs."

This won't be the first time Apple has transformed a historic building into a modern store. Apple has hired the same firm to design the Carnegie store that designed its stores in San Francisco and London.

Apple said in a statement: "We are working with Events DC on an exciting opportunity for Apple in the Carnegie Library. The Carnegie Library's location, history and incredible architecture make it the ideal destination for visitors to experience all of the entertainment and educational services Apple offers for the local community."

The building opened in 1903, but it hasn't been used as a library since the 1970s. It's now used for private parties, and the Historical Society of Washington is in its basement. 

The area around the Carnegie Library is busy, with the Washington Convention Center across the street and packed streets converging on every side of the building. 

But Events DC reassured neighborhood residents that precious green space outside the building would be protected. It won't become parking.

"Categorically not," Brown said. "The green space will remain green space. It's important." 

The new store isn't imminent; it will take about two years for all the details to be worked out, for the store to be developed and for it to open. One issue that will need to be addressed: Mold that led the library to be briefly closed in September.

The Historical Society, meanwhile, has a lease that lasts another 80 years. The group's executive director said he thinks the deal is a great opportunity for the society and the library.

Still, some said they will miss the historic feel of the building that housed so many precious memories. Kolbie Stewart had her prom in the Carnegie Library.

"I don't think it should be a store for Apple," she said. "It's a national landmark. There's history in this building. It shouldn't be an Apple Store. They can get go another store anywhere else around here."

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<![CDATA[Muslim Teen Harassed on NYC Subway Found After Going Missing]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 19:50:40 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/FOR+ALIYU+MISSING+MUSLIM+TEENS+WITH+PUSH++-+01000926_WNBC_00000.jpg

A New York teenager who went missing after she said she was harassed on a train last week has been found. 

Yasmin Seweid, 18, was found in the early hours of Saturday morning, officials from the Nassau County Police Department's Missing Persons Squad said. The teen was seen being taken from her Long Island home on a stretcher Saturday afternoon.

The Nassau County Police Department put out an alert on Friday saying Seweid had been missing since Wednesday. 

Last Thursday, Seweid spoke out after she said she was harassed and intimidated by three men who tried to rip her hijab - a religious head scarf - off.

Police said they were searching for those men, who allegedly targeted Seweid on the 23rd Street subway station serving the 6 line at about 10 p.m. on Dec. 1.

Seweid posted on Facebook saying the men called her a terrorist, grabbed her bag and broke the strap of it and told her to "take that rag off your head". She said Trump's name was repeated during the alleged attack. 

She called the incident "traumatizing" and spoke with multiple news organizations about it.



Photo Credit: Photo courtesy of the NYPD]]>
<![CDATA[Arctic Blast Brings Coldest Air of the Season]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 11:19:39 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Wind+Chills.jpg

Bundle up! The first arctic blast of the season will leave D.C. shivering for the next few days.

Arctic air moved into the region Thursday night, bringing the coldest air since February.

On Saturday, temperatures reached 39 degrees -- the coldest high temperature since Feb. 15, when the area was blanketed in 2 to 4 inches of snow, according to Storm Team4's Chuck Bell. Temperatures will dip into the 20s overnight Saturday.

Friday felt about 30 degrees colder than Thursday, with wind chills across the D.C. area in the teens and 20s. Storm Team4 declared Friday a Weather Alert Day because of the blustery weather.

The cold weather will continue into the weekend, but you won't have to worry about rain or snow. Lake effect snow is staying closer to Pennsylvania than here.

The arctic air is expected to start to loosen its grip Sunday. Storm Team4’s Doug Kammerer said he expects Sunday will be a touch warmer than Saturday, so pick your tree and get holiday decorating done then.

By Monday, highs in the region will be around 50 degrees with a chance of rain.

But the slight relief from the cold won't last.

Storm Team4 says a second, perhaps even colder, freeze could arrive late next week. A shift in a weather system known as the Polar Vortex may be partially to blame, according to The Weather Channel.

Storm Team4 says there are several chances for snow next week, mainly on Wednesday and again next Saturday.

The temperature will reach the low 30s by the end of next week.

"It's going to be a shock," said Kevin Roth, senior meteorologist at The Weather Channel.

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<![CDATA[Trump Says Blacks Who Didn't Vote 'Felt Good About Me']]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 01:21:02 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/AP16345080011808_opt.jpg

Donald Trump at a rally on Friday said African-American voters who didn't show up to the polls "felt good about me."

"The African-American community was great to us," Trump said. "They came through big league."

"If they had any doubt, they didn't vote," Trump added. "And that was almost as good. Because a lot of people didn't show up, because they felt good about me."

Trump made the comments at the fourth stop on his "Thank You" tour, meant ostensibly to thank the millions of voters that delivered him a resounding White House win last month.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Maryland Rape Victim Speaks After Attacker Sentenced]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 23:55:18 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017022518_1200x675_829655619754.jpg A man who attacked and raped a student six years ago at Montgomery College will spend the rest of his life behind bars. News4's Jackie Bensen spoke with the victim who explains how she has found the will to survive.]]> <![CDATA[MGM National Harbor Tells Visitors to Come Another Time]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 17:45:28 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/MGM+Casino+Crowd.jpg

Thinking of going to MGM National Harbor this weekend? You may want to make new plans.

MGM is marking Thursday's grand opening as a success after thousands poured into its doors and it reached full capacity after only 45 minutes.

However, there was a fight reported inside the casino. Video of the fight posted on social media shows at least two men punching and kicking another man who is on the ground.

No one involved was arrested because the man who was beaten did not press charges, officials said. Security quickly broke up the fight and the evening continued.

"We're not new at this. We operate large facilities in Las Vegas and elsewhere. We have very experienced professionals watching over both our guests and employees at all times," said Gordon Absher, a spokesperson for the casino.

The casino had to turn people away from the casino floor after reaching full capacity again on Friday afternoon.

"Guests with hotel and dinner reservations are encouraged to arrive early and allow time for heavy, potentially crowded roadway conditions," MGM National Harbor Resort and Casino said in a statement. "Others without reservations for tonight or this weekend are encouraged to consider making plans to visit the new resort another time, after grand opening weekend."

Prince George's County police and The National Harbor Traffic Command Center are continuing to monitor and direct traffic.

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<![CDATA[Loudoun CEO Gets Life in Prison for Murder of Wife]]> Sat, 10 Dec 2016 09:52:43 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/214*120/Castillo.png

A Loudoun County CEO was sentenced Friday to life in prison plus 16 years for killing his estranged wife. He staged the mother of five's death to look like a suicide, prosecutors have said.

A judge imposed the jury's recommendation for Braulio Castillo. Prosecutors had asked for life plus 21 years. 

Castillo, of Ashburn, was convicted in June of killing his wife, Michelle Castillo, in 2014. He was found guilty of breaking into her home, suffocating her and then hanging her body in a shower to make it look like she killed herself. 

The two were in the middle of a bitter divorce and custody battle.

The judge's sentencing decision followed the testimony of two of the Castillos' children and an emotional letter from another. The children testified about how the loss of their mother had changed their lives. 

"I miss my mom. I love my mom, and a big portion of my life is gone," Nicholas Castillo, 23, said in court earlier this year. 

The four youngest children now are being cared for by foster parents, two of Michelle Castillo's closest friends. 

Braulio Castillo's sister spoke on his behalf, asking for leniency and citing his charitable work.

Castillo is planning to appeal the sentence.

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<![CDATA[Pr. George's Liquor Board Chair Charged With DUI Near MGM]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 18:46:17 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/120916+charles+caldwell.jpg

The chair of the Prince George's County liquor board was arrested and charged with DUI Thursday night after a three-car crash outside the MGM National Harbor Casino.

Charles Caldwell was charged with DUI and other traffic offenses about 11:40 p.m. on the casino and resort's opening night, Prince George's County Police said.

He was arrested at the scene after he failed a field sobriety test, police said.

The crash occurred at Monument Avenue and National Avenue at National Harbor. No one was hurt.

Caldwell confirmed his arrest to News4, saying he had a minor accident. He said he was unsteady because of his age and said he should have taken an Uber car.



Photo Credit: Prince George's County]]>
<![CDATA[Dog Says Goodbye to Dying Owner in Heartbreaking Video]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 20:11:16 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Hospital-Generic-Stock.jpg

The family of a California man who lay dying in a hospital wanted to make sure his beloved dog had one last chance to say goodbye.

Ryan Jessen, 33, had suffered a ventricular brain hemorrhage and was on a ventilator at Rideout Memorial Hospital in Marysville when his family brought his dog of six years, Mollie, to see him shortly before his death on Nov. 30, the "Today" show reported.

Michelle Jessen caught the heartbreaking moment on video and posted it on Facebook for friends and family. It has been viewed over 13 million times.

"The hospital did the sweetest thing for us and allowed us to bring my brother's dog in to "say goodbye" so she'd know why her human never came home. If you knew my brother, he really loved his sweet dog," Jessen's sister, Michelle, wrote on Facebook.



Photo Credit: Getty Images
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Federal Report Highlights Power Safety Concerns for Metrorail]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 20:00:29 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Metro+Stop1.jpg The Federal Transit Administration has released a new report recommending upgrades and improvements to the system that powers Metro trains. News4's Meagan Fitzgerald reports.]]> <![CDATA[Driver Sentenced to 12 Years in Crash That Killed 3 in Md.]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 18:45:19 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/River+Road+Fatal+Crash+022716.jpg

A 21-year-old man has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for a crash that killed a teenager and his parents in Bethesda, Maryland.

Olgucan Atakoglu, of Potomac, was driving his father's turbo-charged BMW like a bullet when he slammed into a family's car along River Road on Feb. 27, prosecutors said.

"This young man was traveling at 115 miles an hour only seconds before this crash," said Montgomery County State's Attorney John McCarthy.

Michael Buarque de Macedo, 52, his wife Alessandra M. Buarque de Macedo, 53, and their son, Thomas, 17, all died in the crash. Helena Buarque de Macedo, now 16, survived the crash.

The family was heading to a play at Walt Whitman High School at the time of the crash.

Before his sentencing in court, Atakoglu sobbed and shook while saying, "Every day I pray God will shine down endless love on Helena and her family. I pray to God to forgive me for my negligence and recklessness."

Atakoglu's defense attorney, David Felsen, said the deadly crash was the reckless and careless act of a young man who thought he was invincible.

"We had hoped the court would take into consideration... Ogulcan's remorse, his acceptance of responsibility and the fact that this was not an intentional act," Felsen said. "I think the last thing I heard was his mother scream as he was being taken away that she loved him," Felsen said.

However, Judge Mary Beth McCormick referenced Atakoglu's driving record, including numerous arrests for speeding, when she sentenced him to 30 years in prison, with all but 12 years suspended.

"When are you going to wake up? You took a selfish risk that resulted in the death of three people. Frankly, there is no excuse for your recklessness," McCormick said.



Photo Credit: NBCWashington]]>
<![CDATA[Arlington Board to Weigh Proposed Airbnb Permit]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 18:49:17 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017021741_1200x675_829465667912.jpg Airbnb hosts in Arlington, Virginia, may soon have to apply for a permit in order to rent out rooms. News4's David Culver takes a look at the new proposed regulations and meets a couple that rents out a portion of their house. About 10,000 Airbnb guests are expected to come to the D.C. area for President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration.]]> <![CDATA[Trauma Survivors Reunite With Doctors, Nurses]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 18:26:15 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/120916+andrew+rossiello.jpg

People who survived life-threatening trauma got a chance Friday to thank the medical professionals who treated them when they needed help most.

George Washington University Hospital held its fifth annual Trauma Survivors' Day.

Sam Rossiello, 23, survived being hit by a Metro train in February. Dr. Libby Schroeder was on call that night.

"He arrived in the trauma bay after having suffered some pretty impressive injuries," the surgeon said.

Schroeder helped keep Rossiello's spirits up, even when doctors told him they would need to partially amputate both of his legs.

"The first thing I said when they said they were gonna have to amputate my legs was I asked if I was gonna be taller," he recalled.

Rossiello was one of seven trauma patients who returned to GW hospital to thank the people who saved them.

"It’s rewarding for me because these are the people who took care of me when I had no ability to take care of myself," he said.

Therapist Mary Chappell said she was moved to see how Rossiello has progressed.

"I was so uplifted to kind of see, recognize, witness what has happened -- brought a tear to my eye," she said.

Rossiello, who works in New York as a technology consultant, said he is looking ahead to how he can help others.

"I'll maybe create a mobile application for mental health and wellness," he said.



Photo Credit: NBC Washington]]>
<![CDATA[Military Families Say Stress of Deployment is Unsustainable]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 19:02:33 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017021731_1200x675_829472835626.jpg Researchers Blue Star Families recently surveyed more than 8,300 active duty service members, family members and veterans. And 72 percent of those surveyed said the current rate of military actions is "unsustainable" for their families. The study said key issues included the impact of deployments on children, as well as the stability of their homes and and "operational tempo." Blue Star Families – which works to support the military families – says the Department of Defense must do a better job of incorporating families into its current thinking.]]> <![CDATA[Santa Hospitalized After Fat-Shaming Scandal Goes Viral]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 15:17:29 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/santa-hat.jpg

A former Santa Claus who made headlines after being accused of body-shaming a young boy during his shift has been hospitalized for a blood clot in his lung. In the midst of controvery and illness, the old Saint Nick has been bolstered by support from those locally who don't believe he's a bad Santa. 

Earl Crowder, from Forest City, North Carolina, had played Mr. Claus for nearly a decade at his local Santa House until this week. He was hospitalized days after leaving his post as the holiday legend. Crowder resigned when 9-year-old Anthony Mayse accused the former Nicholas of fat-shaming him. Mayse told news station WLOS that Crowder said to “lay off the hamburgers and French fries” on his way out of the photo-op at the Santa House.

After a day filled with ice skating and other wintertime treats, Santa was supposed to be the grand finale for Mayse and his family’s fun weekend. Instead, the boy told WLOS that he cried himself to sleep because he was teased about his size.

“I think that’s just mean. Like honestly to make fun of that, that can really hurt a person's feelings,” Covey Fitzgerald told NBC affiliate WCNC

On Wednesday morning, Crowder experienced shortness of breath and was taken to the hospital, his niece told WLOS.

The longtime Mr. Claus is reportedly beloved within his community, and a local businesswoman, SunShine McCurry, has set up a Facebook page in support of his recovery. Members are posting their favorite memories with the man from the North Pole. Some have added sweet, sentimental photos of their children sitting on his lap, writing that “Forest City Santa is NOT a BAD SANTA.”

"I just got word that Santa is improving. ..he is seeing these posts on this page and it has made him happy to know that so many people love him," McCurry wrote. 

Though Crowder’s township has expressed its solidarity after his hospitalization, some Facebook comments still recognize that the fat-shaming incident was wrong.

“Any overweight child, or a child who is ‘different’ in any other way, knows it,” a Facebook user wrote. “He probably gets bullied and harassed plenty at school. He doesn’t need Santa Claus joining in to make him feel any more unhappy.”

In a statement, the town manager told WCNC that "the individual who played Santa Claus at the Santa House in Forest City made a remark that he regretted," and that Crowder "apologized to the parent, the child and the town." 



Photo Credit: Getty Images/Tetra images RF]]>
<![CDATA[You Can See These John Glenn Artifacts in DC Museums]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 14:36:03 -0500 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/180*120/AP_610111057.jpg

The death of astronaut John Glenn, an American hero, has saddened people around the world.

Known for being the first American to orbit the Earth -- as well as a decorated veteran and a U.S. senator -- Glenn lived a life full of accomplishments. To celebrate it, you can visit one of these D.C. museums that share his story through art and history. 

Air and Space Museum

Travel back in time as you browse artifacts from Glenn's journey to space. In addition to the Mercury Friendship 7 space capsule, the museum displays his pressure suit, helmet, notepad and more. These artifacts are on display in the Space Race and Apollo to the Moon exhibitions at the museum on the National Mall.

The museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, also has several of Glenn's artifacts in their collection, including commemorative medals and his training couch.

The National Portrait Gallery

A watercolor and graphite portrait of John Glenn went on display Friday in the museum's In Memoriam space on the first floor. The 1998 portrait by Henry C. Caselli depicts a reflective Glenn moments before the Discovery space shuttle launch. 

The National Portrait Gallery also has eight other portraits of Glenn in its collection.



Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>