Driver, aide hailed as heroes after bus carrying special needs students hit by tractor-trailer

first_imgABCNews.com(NEW YORK) — A South Carolina school bus driver and aide are being hailed as heroes following a crash involving a tractor-trailer and a school bus carrying children with special needs.Dramatic dashcam video of the incident was released by the Greenville County School District.The two vehicles were traveling in opposite directions when the tractor-trailer hit a pole and crossed over into oncoming traffic on the opposite side of the road, South Carolina Highway Patrol Trooper Joe Hovis told ABC News.Four children from Sara Collins Elementary School and Washington Center in Greenville were on board the bus along with the driver and an aide. Miraculously, there was only one minor injury in the crash.“A 10-year-old was transported for non-life-threatening injuries,” Hovis said.In the video, aide Carletta Cyrus is seen checking on the children soon after the crash, as is the driver, Tammy Cummings.Cummings advised the children to stay on board the vehicle and consoled them, joking with one of the students about a video game he had on his phone, according to Adam James, the director of transportation for the Greenville County School District.Cummings is no stranger to crisis, James said. She is also the school bus safety trainer for Greenville County Schools.“What we see is training going into action. They did exactly what they’re trained to do. For us, it validated the training,” James told ABC News. “The driver saw what had happened ahead of her and had she not stopped the bus when she did, I believe it could’ve been a lot worse.”James said the school district transports 27,000 children daily, covering 41,000 miles a day. He called Cummings and Cyrus’ actions heroic.“I would call both of them heroes,” James said. “We’ve heard from each parent on that bus. One mother in particular, she just couldn’t thank the driver enough calling her a hero and thanking us for the training.”The driver behind the wheel of the tractor-trailer has been charged with driving left of center, Hovis said.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Mom dials 911 screaming her daughter’s trapped in tree, surrounded by alligators

first_imgiStock/Thinkstock(ORLANDO) — A Florida mom made a frantic cry for help while on a call with a 911 dispatcher because her teen daughter was trapped in a tree for a half an hour with hissing alligators below.“My daughter’s stuck in a frickin’ tree and there’s gators surrounding her,” the mom said on the phone call to 911. “We can’t get her out.”The close encounter with the alligators occurred at around 3 p.m. on Friday along Forest Service Road near Alexander Springs in Altoona, according to a Lake County Sheriff’s Office report.The teen’s mom told the dispatcher that her daughter “got into the tree to get out of the water” and had been clinging to its branches for dear life for several minutes.“Oh my god, please hurry. Hurry, hurry,” the mom told the dispatcher. “Oh, my god, my daughter is going to be [sic] dead.”When Deputy Mitch Blackmon arrived at the tree with a rope swing in a popular swimming area, he wrote in the report that the teen appeared physically tired from keeping herself in the tree, adding that “the alligator was approximately 4 feet from me, 3 feet from the base of the tree.”Blackmon reported that at least one of the alligators, measuring about “10 to 11 feet” was unfazed by his arrival.“My presence failed to scare the alligator away and it began encroaching on my area,” Blackmon wrote in the report.He then stated he aimed his Bushmaster AR-15 rifle, fired one deadly .223 round “killing the alligator,” according to the report.A local marine biologist was summoned to evaluate the cause of death, the report stated.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Major storm to bring heavy rain to South, snow to North Carolina

first_imgABC News(NEW YORK) — Heavy rain was already falling in the South on Saturday morning as western North Carolina prepares for the potential for as much as a foot of snow this weekend. A major storm in the southern U.S. dumped significant amounts of rain in Texas on Friday night into early Saturday morning. Areas near Houston reported rainfall rates overnight of up to 2 inches per hour as bands of thunderstorms moved through. Bunker Hill Village in Harris County received 7.88 inches of rain over past 24 hours, while Lake Jackson saw 7.72 inches and College Station received 3.98 inches.The radar on Saturday morning shows the storm is primarily a rain-producing system, with the heaviest bands producing downpours east of Houston. When all is said and done in Texas and the Gulf Coast, widespread rainfall totals are expected to amount to 3 to 6 inches.As a result, the risk of flooding is extremely significant. Flash flood watches and flood watches are in effect from eastern Texas to Georgia on Saturday. On the northern edge of the system, there is snow and ice occurring with this storm. Already 3.25 inches of snow has been reported in Lubbock, Texas. Snow and a wintry mix are beginning to spread from the Texas Panhandle to northern Arkansas Saturday morning. Winter weather advisories and winter storm warnings are in effect from New Mexico to Virginia.The storm system will track to the east-northeast Saturday afternoon into evening. During this time, cold air from the north will be wrapped into the system, which will set the stage for moderate to heavy snowfall in the Piedmont region and North Carolina. Very heavy snow is expected to fall in southwest Virginia and North Carolina on Sunday. Further south, torrential rain will dominate, setting the stage for flooding in Georgia. Upwards of 6 inches of rain is expected in the Southeast once the storm has moved through by Monday. The National Weather Service has already issued flood watches for much of northern Georgia.Winter storm watches and warnings are in effect in the Southeast as well.The system will be offshore by noon on Monday, but it still will be producing rain and snow from Virginia to Tennessee and Alabama. Snowfall totals of 6 to 12 inches will be widespread in Virginia and North Carolina. Localized amounts of greater than 1 foot are highly likely for the mountainous western areas of these states.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Jussie Smollett case: Detectives say they have ‘probable cause’ that 2 men on surveillance video may have been involved in alleged crime

first_imgABC News(CHICAGO) — Two “persons of interest” in the alleged racial attack on Empire actor Jussie Smollett will continue to be interrogated Friday, Chicago police said.“While we haven’t found any video documenting the alleged attack, there is also no evidence to say that this is a hoax,” police added. “The alleged victim is being cooperative at this time and continues to be treated as a victim, not a suspect.”The two “persons of interests” are being classified as potential suspects, police added.“Detectives have probable cause that they may have been involved in an alleged crime and we are working to corroborate the allegations and investigative timeline as our investigation continues,” police said.This news comes after Chicago PD had confirmed Thursday that they identified and were questioning the two “persons of interest” in the alleged racial attack. One of those persons of interest has previously appeared on “Empire,” according to a law enforcement official briefed on the investigation.Police say they were tracking the two people and were aware of who they were “for a while,” and that investigators learned that the two individuals were returning to Chicago on Wednesday from Nigeria.They are both cooperating and were questioned Thursday, police said.The two persons of interest are U.S. citizens of Nigerian descent, they added.Detectives also questioned Smollett Thursday, the official said.Neither of the “persons of interest” have been charged with any crime related to the alleged attack, police said Thursday.Attorney Gloria Schmidt, who is representing the two persons of interest, told Chicago CBS station WBBM that her clients were detained at O’Hare Airport Wednesday evening and were unaware of the attack on Smollett.“When they first learned what happened to him, they were horrified,” Schmidt said. “This is someone that they know, this is someone that they work with, so they don’t want to see somebody go through that … They really don’t understand how [police] even got information that linked them to this horrific crime, but they’re not guilty of it.”Late last month, Smollett, who portrays a gay musician on Fox’s Empire, told police he was brutally attacked in what authorities are calling a suspected hate crime.He said the attackers put a noose around his neck, poured an unknown substance, likely bleach, on him and used their hands, feet and teeth as weapons in the assault, according to police. Smollett said the attackers also yelled “This is MAGA country” during the attack.He was subsequently hospitalized and released, local authorities said.In his first interview since police say he was attacked last month, the singer and actor said on Good Morning America that he was heartbroken when he found out that people questioned the details of his story.“I have to acknowledge the lies, and the hate. And it feels like if I had said it was a Muslim, or a Mexican, or someone black, I feel like the doubters would have supported me much more. A lot more,” Smollett, 36, told ABC News’ Robin Roberts. “And that says a lot about the place that we are in our country right now.”Prior to the police identifying and interviewing the two persons of interest, Smollett said he believes the two men in the photo released by police in the days after the attack are the perpetrators.“I don’t have any doubt in my mind that that’s them,” Smollett said. “Never did.”Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Teen walking dog hears cries for help from kidnapped man locked in car trunk

first_imgWABC(IRVINGTON, N.J.) — On Thursday morning, 17-year-old Kayla Rose was walking her dog around her neighborhood in Irvington, New Jersey, on Thursday morning when she heard someone crying for help.The muffled sounds were coming from the trunk of a car parked on the street.“I heard knocking and scratching on the trunk of the car, and I just backed up because I was scared,” Rose told WABC in a recent interview. “And then I heard it again. And then I said, ‘Hello.’ And he was like, ‘Hello, can anybody help me?’”Rose ran inside her house to tell her mother what she heard. She also alerted neighbors who came out to help and called 911.“I got a crowbar and tried to pop the trunk, but it just bent the metal,” neighbor Joe Bollaro told WABC. “The cops were coming, so I didn’t want to, I said, ‘They’re coming. Hold on.’ I said, ‘Can you breath?’ He said, ‘Yeah.’”Police arrived on scene and opened the locked trunk. The man inside was then transported to the hospital for non-life-threatening injuries, according to the Union County Prosecutor’s Office.“He was shaken up, he was beat up,” Rose’s mother, Marie Banks, told WABC. “I guess he was very happy, thankful for my daughter that she found him.”After a preliminary investigation, police learned the man had been carjacked, kidnapped and robbed the previous night in Hillside, about 3 miles south of Irvington.Two gun-wielding suspects took the victim to local banks in the area and ordered him to withdraw sums of cash, then drove to Irvington, where they left him locked in the trunk of the car, according to the prosecutor’s office.The suspects remain at large, and the investigation into the alleged incident is ongoing. The Union County Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to an arrest and indictment in the case.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Dozens of passengers hurt after a Turkish Airlines plane made emergency landing at JFK: FAA

first_imgWABC(NEW YORK) — A Turkish Airlines flight made an emergency landing at John F. Kennedy International Airport on Saturday evening after 29 passengers, including a flight attendant, were injured when the plane encountered turbulence, officials said.According to a statement from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the city’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM), the Boeing 777 was en route to New York from Istanbul when the aircraft encountered mid-air turbulence.There were 329 people on board, including 21 crew members, according to Steve Coleman, a spokesman with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. “It kind of jolted pretty quickly,” passenger Amir Mehrbakhsh told ABC News. “There was like one or two seconds when it was subtle, but then it really started to pick up. … Just because the drop was so sudden, a lot of people got lifted up and hit their head either on the ceiling or on the side of the plane, and so there were a lot of injuries pretty quickly.” The turbulence occurred over Maine about 45 minutes prior to landing, authorities said.Most of the passengers were treated inside an airport terminal. Ten of the 28 passengers were taken to a hospital after the plane landed on Saturday at 5:35 p.m. Two crew members were also injured.Coleman said a flight attendant had a possible broken leg and others suffered bumps, bruises and cuts.“Nobody announced it or anything like that so we figured out something was wrong,” passenger Sead Nikaj told ABC News. “Then I see people start flying on the plane. Then seeing blood all over. I had one of the ladies next to me, she really fell down from her seat on the floor and all her back was completely bloody, while someone that was working in the airplane, she cracked her leg I think completely.”“There was this one guy … and he was frantically screaming,” Mehrbakhsh said. “I think he was like doing a religious chant. I kept hearing him say ‘Jesus,’ like he was visibly distraught.”Emergency first responders worked with Port Authority officials on scene to treat the injured, according to the FDNY.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Federal agents uncovered the college admissions scandal by accident while working on unrelated case

first_imgPaul Archuleta/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — The FBI uncovered the $25 million nationwide college admissions cheating scandal by accident while agents were working an unrelated securities fraud case, two law enforcement sources told ABC News.The Boston-based agents received a tip from someone connected to the securities fraud investigation about the alleged $400,000 bribe paid to the then-head women’s soccer coach at Yale to fabricate athletic credentials, the sources said.The coach then cooperated with the investigation, according to the sources, which spiraled into what prosecutors called the largest college admissions cheating scam ever prosecuted in the United States, as 50 people were indicted, including actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin.FBI-Boston declined to comment about the origin of the case, which was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.Universities could remove studentsTwo elite universities embroiled in the college admissions scam took steps Wednesday that could prompt the removal of any of the students connected to the scandal from the schools.The University of Southern California and UCLA are both reviewing the admissions applications of students whose parents allegedly paid tens of thousands of dollars in bribes to guarantee their children got into the colleges and scored high on college entrance exams.Loughlin’s two daughters are currently enrolled at USC and the eldest daughter of Huffman and her husband, actor William H. Macy, attends an undisclosed elite college ensnared in the scandal.“We are going to conduct a case-by-case review for current students and graduates that may be connected to the scheme alleged by the government,” USC said in a statement. “We will make informed, appropriate decisions once those reviews have been completed. Some of these individuals may have been minors at the time of their application process.”The school’s statement added, “Applicants in the current admissions cycle who are connected to the scheme alleged by the government will be denied admission to USC.”UCLA officials are conducting a similar review.“If UCLA discovers that any prospective, admitted or enrolled student has misrepresented any aspect of his/her application, or that information about the applicant has been withheld, UCLA may take a number of disciplinary actions, up to and including cancellation of admission,” a statement from the school reads.At a news conference Tuesday, Andrew Lelling, U.S. attorney for the District of Massachusetts, said “the vast majority” of students who benefited from the scams are still enrolled in colleges and in many instances were unaware of the bribery. But prosecutors say some students eventually may be charged.Several elite Los Angeles-area prep schools have been subpoenaed in connection with the college admissions cheating scam, a source familiar with the investigation told ABC News.The Los Angeles Times first reported subpoenas were issued to unnamed schools said to be among the most prominent private schools in the area.The prep schools are not accused of wrongdoing. Rather, the source confirmed, the subpoenas seek records related to some of the families allegedly involved in the scheme.‘Full House’ actress arrestedLoughlin was taken into custody by the FBI Wednesday in Los Angeles after she, Huffman and 48 others were charged in the alleged wrongdoing that has prompted repercussions from Hollywood to the boardrooms of major companies.Loughlin, 54, flew to Los Angeles overnight from Canada, where she was filming a Hallmark movie, sources told ABC News.She appeared in federal court in Los Angeles Wednesday afternoon where a judge read the fraud charges against her and she acknowledged she understood them. She was released on a $1 million bond.A judge granted Loughlin permission to travel within the United States and to Vancouver to complete shooting her movie, which isn’t scheduled to wrap up until November. Once she completes filming, she must surrender her passport in December unless she submits proof of another project in British Colombia or elsewhere, the judge told her.Loughlin was ordered to appear in Boston Federal Court on March 29 with the other defendants.A former cast member on the ABC sitcom “Full House,” Loughlin and Oscar-nominated actress Huffman, 56, are among 33 parents charged with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud in the coast-to-cost scam to get their children into elite colleges, including Yale, Stanford, Georgetown, Wake Forest and the University of Texas.The feds dubbed the investigation “Operation Varsity Blues” and said it was triggered by an unrelated investigation by FBI agents in Boston.Loughlin’s husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, 55, was arrested Tuesday on charges of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and appeared in Los Angeles federal court.Widespread briberyLoughlin and Giannulli “agreed to pay bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC,” according to the indictment.U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos made her first comments about the scandal Wednesday in a interview with Fox News.“Every student deserves to be considered on their individual merits when applying to college, and it’s disgraceful to see anyone breaking the law to give their children an advantage over others,” DeVos said. “The department is looking closely at this issue and working to determine if any of our regulations have been violated.”Lelling announced the stunning indictment Tuesday and said the parents charged in the scam represent “a catalog of wealth and privilege.”Coaches fired, CEO steps downAs shockwaves from the arrests spread across the country, the fallout for some of the defendants was swift.Hercules Capital, Inc., one of the largest venture capital companies in the country, announced Wednesday that its chairman and chief executive officer, Manuel Henriquez, had stepped down.Henriquez, 55, of Atherton, California, and his wife, Elizabeth, 56, were among those charged in the case.Gordon Caplan, 52, a partner in the international law firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher, based in New York, was placed on a leave of absence and stripped of all management responsibilities, the firm said in a statement.Caplan allegedly paid a purported charitable contribution of $75,000 to a sham charity established by William “Rick” Singer, who prosecutors said masterminded the scam, according to the indictment. The money was used to pay a proctor of an ACT test to correct answers Caplan’s daughter gave on the exam, the document alleges.USC officials fired its famed water polo coach, Jovan Vanvic, who allegedly accepted bribes in exchange for scholarships for children of the rich. USC also terminated Donna Heinel, the school’s senior associate athletic director, who was also charged.Vanvic, 57, who led the USC Trojans to 16 NCAA national championships, was arrested Tuesday in Hawaii at a Waikiki hotel. He made his first appearance in federal court Tuesday afternoon wearing a gold and cardinal red USC athletic jacket.Stanford University fired its longtime sailing coach, John Vandemoer, 41, who has already pleaded guilty to federal charges of racketeering conspiracy.Vandemoer’s attorney, Rob Fisher, told ABC News his client “made a mistake that happened to be part of a giant conspiracy” and is “very remorseful.”“He’s taking full responsibility for his actions. He admits that what he did was wrong and if he had a do over he certainly would not do it again. He was a well-respected coach, he’s never been in trouble with the law before, and he made a mistake that happened to be part of a giant conspiracy. John is very remorseful for the damage caused to Stanford, the students, staff, and the alumni which will be evidenced at his sentencing hearing,” the statement read. “One important distinction to make is that John did not pocket any of the money. The US attorney stated that one coach did not profit and John did not profit personally. They acknowledged that the money went to Stanford sailing and was used to buy new equipment and pay for the salary of an assistant coach.”Wake Forest officials placed its head volleyball coach, William Ferguson, 48, on administrative leave after he was indicted. Ferguson, according to the indictment, allegedly accepted a $100,000 bribe from Singer to designate the daughter of one of Singer’s clients as a recruit for the women’s volleyball team, facilitating her admission to the university.In an email to students and faculty Wednesday, Wake Forest President Nathan Hatch said the student that Ferguson allegedly help get admitted to the school is currently enrolled.“We have no reason to believe the student was aware of the alleged financial transaction,” Nathan wrote.The University of Texas also fired Michael Center, 54, the head coach of the school’s men’s tennis team, who is also charged in the cheating scheme.“After working with campus leaders to review the recent situation with Michael Center, we have decided to relieve him of his duties as our Men’s Tennis coach,” Chis Del Conte, the university’s vice president and athletic director, said in a statement. “It’s a very difficult decision, and we are grateful for the years of service that he has provided, but winning with integrity will always be paramount at The University of Texas, and it was a decision that had to be made.”NCAA launches probeThe NCAA announced it will launch an investigation into the widespread cheating scandal that implicated nine coaches at elite schools.“The charges brought forth … are troubling and should be a concern for all of higher education,” the NCAA wrote in a statement on Twitter. “We are looking into these allegations to determine the extent to which NCAA rules may have been violated.” Singer, owner of a college counseling service called Key Worldwide Foundation and a company called Edge College & Career Network, pleaded guilty in Boston federal court on Tuesday to charges of racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, conspiracy to defraud the United States and obstruction of justice.Singer allegedly accepted bribes totaling $25 million from parents between 2011 and 2018 “to guarantee their children’s admission to elite schools,” Lelling said.Federal officials said Singer was a corroborating witness in the investigation and wore a wire to capture some of the conversations with parents and cohorts implicated in the scam.Singer’s inner circle included Steven Masera, 69, the accountant and financial officer for the Edge College & Career Network and the Key Worldwide Foundation and Mark Riddell, a private school counselor in Bradenton, Florida, who were both indicted in the scam, according to the indictment.Mikaela Sanford, 32, of Folsom, California, another employee of the Edge College & Career Network and the Key Worldwide Foundation, was also charged.How the scam workedSinger would instruct parents to seek extended time for the children to take SAT and ACT entrance exams by obtaining medical documentation that their child had a learning disability, according to the indictment. The parents were then told to get the location of the test changed to one of two testing centers, one in Houston and another in West Hollywood, California, where test administrators Niki Williams, 44, of Houston and Igor Dvorskiy, 52, of Sherman Oaks, California, and an exam proctor helped carry out the scam, the indictment alleges.Riddell would allegedly either take the tests for students or would correct their answers after they took the tests, according to the indictment.To bolster students’ college entrance applications, Singer worked with parents to allegedly concoct glowing profiles of their children, including staged or Photoshopped pictures of them participating in sports, the indictment alleges.In one case highlighted by federal prosecutors, the former head women’s soccer coach at Yale University, Rudolph “Rudy” Meredith, 51, was paid $400,000 to accept a student even though the applicant did not play soccer. The parents of that student had paid Singer $1.2 million.According to the charging papers, Huffman “made a purported charitable contribution of $15,000” to a sham charity set up by Singer to participate in the college entrance exam cheating scheme on behalf of her eldest daughter.The actress allegedly made arrangements to pursue the scheme a second time for her younger daughter, before deciding not to do so, the documents allege.Huffman’s husband, actor William H. Macy, was not charged, but according to the court document he and Huffman were caught on a recorded conversation with a corroborating witness in the case allegedly discussing a $15,000 payment to ensure their younger daughter scored high on a college entrance exam.Roster of CEOsFederal officials mentioned the roster of CEOs charged in the scam. One of them is David Sidoo, 59, a prominent businessman and philanthropist from Vancouver, Canada, who was indicted on charges of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud. He was arrested on Friday in San Jose, California, federal officials said.“David Sidoo has been repeatedly recognized for his philanthropic endeavors, which is the true testament to his character. The charge that has been lodged against David is an allegation that carries with it the presumption that he is innocent,” Sidoo’s attorney, Richard Schonfeld, said in a statement Wednesday.“We look forward to presenting our case in court and ask that people don’t rush to judgment in the meantime,” he said.Other prominent business leaders indicted included Robert Zangrillo, 52, of Miami, founder and CEO of the private investment firm Dragon Global; Bill McGlashan, 55, of Mill Valley, California, a businessman and international private equity investor; and Gregory Abbott, 68, founder and chairman of International Dispensing Corp., a New York food and beverage packaging company.“For every student admitted through fraud an honest, genuinely talented student was rejected,” Lelling said. Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

5-year-old boy rescued after falling down storm drain in Indiana

first_imgEvansville Fire Dept.(EVANSVILLE, Ind.) — A 5-year-old boy was rescued without injury after he fell 30 feet down a narrow storm drain in Indiana, according to the fire department.Evansville firefighters responded to find the boy in a 16-inch diameter pipe at about 9 p.m. Thursday, according to the Evansville Fire Department.The pipe was too narrow for firefighters to rescue the boy themselves, so after several tries with different ideas, the creative first responders decided “to lower a swing set seat down to him,” the fire department said in a statement Friday.“The boy was instructed to sit in the seat like he was riding a horse so they could pull him up while the sides of the pipe kept him from falling off,” the fire department said.The 5-year-old was rescued at about 10:30 p.m., fire officials said.He had no apparent injuries besides possible scrapes and bruises, officials said.The boy was conscious and alert the whole time, fire officials said, adding that air was pumped into the hole throughout the ordeal.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Jeffrey Epstein’s death ruled suicide by hanging, medical examiner says

first_imgMivPiv/iStock(NEW YORK) — New York City’s medical examiner has ruled Jeffrey Epstein’s death in a Manhattan jail cell suicide by hanging.The disgraced financier, who was facing federal sex trafficking charges, was found unresponsive in his cell at Metropolitan Correctional Center in Lower Manhattan on the morning of Aug. 10. Epstein, 66, was set to stand trial next year for allegedly sexually abusing dozens of girls in New York and Florida.In a statement released Friday, Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson said her conclusion was based on a “careful review of all investigative information, including complete autopsy findings.”Epstein hanged himself with a bedsheet in his cell, and a city official with knowledge of the autopsy told ABC News that Epstein sustained a broken hyoid bone, which is near the Adam’s apple.Experts say the injury can be associated with suicide or strangulation.The autopsy was completed on Sunday.Epstein’s death came less than three weeks after he was found unresponsive in his cell at the same Manhattan facility with marks on his neck that appeared to be self-inflicted, sources told ABC News.He was placed on suicide watch following the July 23 incident but then removed on July 29 after jail officials determined he was no longer a threat to himself, sources said.He was not on suicide watch at the time of his death, and staff at the jail failed to follow protocol that requires welfare checks every 30 minutes, sources told ABC News.In the wake of Epstein’s death, staff members at the MCC jail are suspected of falsifying log entries to show they made the proper checks on Epstein and other inmates in the Special Housing Unit at the federal lockup in Manhattan, but those log entries have been contradicted by surveillance footage, the sources said. The staff members have been placed on temporary leave.Epstein was arrested in July on charges of sex trafficking girls at his Upper East Side mansion and his home in Palm Beach, Florida. Some of the charges date back to the early 2000s.Epstein pleaded not guilty to the charges. He faced up to 45 years in prison if convicted.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

California realtor violently attacked, allegedly sexually assaulted at open house

first_imgKABC-TV(LOS ANGELES) — A real estate agent was attacked and allegedly sexually assaulted by a man during an open house in Encino, California, over the weekend and the entire ordeal was caught on camera.Surveillance footage from the front door obtained by ABC’s Los Angeles station KABC-TV shows a man leaning against a wall and speaking with the unnamed real estate agent as she stands on the front step of the house with her arms crossed.She then steps away to look at her phone and turns her back on the man. He looks up directly into the home security camera, takes a few steps toward her before taking a last glance at the camera and extending his arm to shake the woman’s hand.Footage then shows the man suddenly lunging at the realtor and violently pushing her over into a bush as she rolls onto the sidewalk screaming.He runs over to her while she is still on the ground and allegedly groped her chest, according to an interview she did with Fox 11 Los Angeles. He then fled the scene of the crime.The victim, who asked the station not to identify her, said that she remembered seeing the same man at another open house a week before.She became visibly nervous on the front step of the house when the man continued to ask her to take him back inside and grew increasingly frustrated with her refusals before the assault.Frank Bernardo, identified as team leader at Keller Williams Porter Ranch real estate agency on his Facebook page, released a statement on social media regarding the incident.“The agent is doing fine. She is really shook up. She is really upset … she has every right to be. So we take this extremely seriously in our office,” Bernardo said. “It was a female that was attacked but this is a serious situation for everybody.”The victim suffered an injured back and severe abrasions in the attack, according to KABC.ABC News can confirm that a person of interest was detained at 11 p.m. on Tuesday in relation to the violent attack of the unnamed real estate agent. The person is a potential suspect but has not been booked on any charges at this time.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more