Mo. highway buckles after rail cars hit overpass
A highway overpass in southeast Missouri collapsed early Saturday when rail cars slammed into one of the bridge’s pillars after a cargo train collision, authorities said. Seven people were injured, though none seriously.
The bridge collapsed after a Union Pacific train hit the side of a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train at a rail intersection. Derailed rail cars then hit columns supporting the Highway M overpass, causing it to buckle and partially collapse.
The National Transportation Safety Board launched an investigation into the cause of the cargo train collision, which happened about 2:30 a.m. near Chaffee, a town of about 3,000 southwest of Cape Girardeau.
Only two vehicles were on the overpass at the time. Five people in the vehicles were taken to Saint Francis Medical Center in Cape Girardeau, as were a Union Pacific train conductor and an engineer. All seven had been released by Saturday afternoon, hospital spokeswoman Felecia Blanton said.
”You’re driving down the road and the next thing you know the bridge is not there. … It could have been really bad,” Scott County Sheriff Rick Walter said.
The crash derailed about two dozen rail cars hauling scrap metal, automobiles and auto parts, tossing them into the overpass’ support columns. The highway was shut down for about 8 miles from Scott City to Chaffee.
The overpass was about 15 years old and in good condition but just couldn’t withstand the impact from the rail cars, Walter said.
Two 40-foot sections of the overpass buckled while two cars were on the roadway, sending the cars into the edges of the collapsed sections. A diesel fire also broke out in one of the locomotives after the collision, but was quickly extinguished, Walter said.
When Blanton heard about the crash, she immediately went online and saw video footage of the scene and was bracing for the worst, Blanton said. She said it was ”a real blessing” that the injuries were relatively minor, the most serious being a fracture.
”If you look at the pictures, they’re very dramatic, and there are no serious injuries,” she said. ”So it’s amazing.”
Walter said Deputy Justin Wooten was among the first at the scene and pulled the two Union Pacific employees out of the wrecked engine, which became lodged next to the train’s second engine. That engine began burning after the crash.
”We’re very fortunate he was there,” Walter said. He said all seven people injured were already out of the wreckage when he arrived about 15 minutes after the crash was reported.
”People were talking; they were coherent. They understood what was happening,” Walter said.
The cars on the overpass ”took a really bad hit” when they collided with the bridge sections, but ”they stayed on all four tires and they just hit and landed and that was it,” he said.
The accident came more than a week after a commuter train derailment in Connecticut that injured 70 people and disrupted service for days. That accident involved a railroad used by tens of thousands of commuters north of New York City.
In Washington state this past week, a bridge collapsed when a truck driver’s load bumped against the steel framework.
NTSB board member Robert Sumwalt said while the investigations into both collapses are in the early stages ”there is no similarity” between the Missouri accident and the bridge collapse in Washington, which sent two vehicles and three people falling into the chilly water.
He noted that the Missouri bridge was rated ”good” after it was last inspected in February.
”This was not because of any lack of integrity of the bridge in southeast Missouri, but because of a train that derailed and had a bunch of rail cars slamming around, which knocked down a pier, which allowed the bridge to collapse,” he said.
”If you just look at the facts, there is no relationship other than some external object caused each of these bridges” to collapse, he added.
The Union Pacific train involved in the collision was carrying primarily automobiles or auto parts from Illinois to Texas, said UP spokeswoman Calli Hite. She said about a dozen UP railcars derailed.
Hite said there was no estimate yet on the amount of damage to the roadway or the rail cars.
BNSF spokesman Andy Williams said about 12 cars on the 75-car BNSF train derailed. The BNSF crew was not hurt.
Sumwalt said NTSB investigation will include routine testing of railroad employees for drugs and alcohol, testing the track and nearby rail signals and reviewing video footage from the front of the train in an effort to determine the likely cause. The NTSB will also review the bridge’s design.
Mo. highway buckles after rail cars hit overpass http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4747524
French soldier stabbed in throat outside Paris
A French soldier was stabbed in the throat in a busy commercial district outside Paris on Saturday, and the government said it was trying to determine if there were any links to the brutal killing of a British soldier by suspected Islamic extremists.
French President Francois Hollande said the identity of the attacker, who escaped, was unknown and cautioned against jumping to conclusions about the assault on the uniformed soldier in the La Defense shopping area. The life of the 23-year-old soldier was not in danger, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.
On Wednesday, British soldier Lee Rigby, 25, was viciously stabbed on a London street in broad daylight in a suspected terrorist attack that has raised fears of potential copycat strikes.
The French soldier was on a group patrol as part of a national protection program when he was attacked from behind, prosecutor Robert Gelli told Europe 1 radio. The assailant did not say a word, Gelli said.
”There are elements — the sudden violence of the attack — that could lead one to believe there might be a comparison with what happened in London,” Interior Minister Manuel Valls told France 2 television. ”But at this point, honestly, let us be prudent.”
Rigby was attacked while walking outside the Royal Artillery Barracks in the Woolwich area of south London.
The gruesome scene was recorded on witnesses’ cellphones, and a video emerged in which one of the two suspects — his hands bloodied — boasted of their exploits and warned of more violence as the soldier lay on the ground. Holding bloody knives and a meat cleaver, the suspects waited for police, who shot them in the legs, witnesses said.
In the video, one of the suspects declared, ”We swear by almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you … We must fight them as they fight us.”
Two Muslim hard-liners have identified that suspect as Michael Adebolajo, a Christian who converted to Islam and attended several London demonstrations organized by banned British radical group al-Muhajiroun.
French security forces have been on heightened alert since their country launched a military intervention in the African nation of Mali in January to regain territory seized by Islamic radicals. British Prime Minister David Cameron was himself in Paris meeting with Hollande when he first received word of the London attack.
Last year, three French paratroopers were killed by a man police described as a French-born Islamic extremist who then went on to strike a Jewish school in the south of France, killing four more people.
By LORI HINNANT
Thousands walk, run final mile of Boston Marathon
Rosy Spraker was only a half-mile from the finish line of her seventh Boston Marathon when the bombs went off. She received her medal later in the mail at her Lorton, Va., home. But she couldn’t bring herself to wear it until Saturday, when she and thousands of other athletes joined victims of the blast to run and walk the last mile of the race.
”Now I feel like I’ve earned my medal,” Spraker said, beaming, after she crossed the Boylston Street finish line, encouraged by a cheering crowd. ”I wanted to run for the victims, for freedom, to show the world that nothing is going to stop us.”
”Somebody that thinks that they’re going to stop a marathoner from running doesn’t understand the mentality of a marathoner,” said her husband, Lesley, after he placed the medal around Spraker’s neck.
On April 15, explosions near the finish line killed three people and wounded more than 260.
On Saturday morning, about 3,000 runners and bombing victims gathered in light rain to run the final mile of the world’s oldest annual marathon, said Kathleen McGonagle, spokeswoman for those organizing the event known as OneRun.
OneRun honors victims and emergency workers and allows runners to reclaim the final mile, McGonagle said.
”For the runner that didn’t get the chance to finish the marathon, this is the chance for them to experience the final mile that was taken away from them,” McGonagle said.
For many runners, it was also a chance to heal from the events of that harrowing day.
”It was very emotional to run down this street and see all the people cheering,” said OneRun organizer J. Alain Ferry, who was prevented from completing his ninth consecutive Boston Marathon on April 15 and ran the final mile Saturday.
”There were a lot of tears,” Ferry said, clutching his 2013 marathon bib, with the number 22084. ”And I can feel in my throat that there are going to be more. This was a scab for everyone that just was not healing.”
While the event was not a fundraiser, donations from some corporate sponsors covered OneRun operating costs, McGonagle said, and any leftover funds will be sent to a charity set up to benefit bombing victims.
Before the race, the National Anthem was sung by the choir from St. Ann Parish, where 8-year-old victim Martin Richard’s family worshipped.
”It was a beautiful thing,” said an emotional Steve Poirier, of Chelmsford, who had been running his sixth Boston Marathon when he was turned back last month. ”As a runner, you want the chance to finish. Better late than never.”
By AMY CRAWFORD
Grid 2 special edition comes with a car, costs $190,000
Think $60 is too much for a video game? Then you probably can’t afford the ‘BAC Mono Edition’ of Codemasters’ upcoming racer, Grid 2.
The special edition rings in at a tidy £125,000 ($188,700), making it officially the most expensive commercially available video game ever produced. In fact, they only made one of them, presumably because making more than one would be ostentatious.
So what can a couple hundred grand buy you these days? How about a racecar?
Indeed, the Mono edition’s crown jewel is a 170 mph BAC Mono supercar decked out in full Grid 2 livery. From the press release:
The BAC Mono is a British manufactured, road-legal, ultra-high performance supercar which stars in the game. Created from high-strength carbon fibre, the BAC Mono is an unrivalled example of light-weight performance engineering and its 2.3 litre, 280 bhp four cylinder power plant will propel its driver from 0-60 m.p.h. in just 2.8 seconds.
You’ll also get a full set of driver race wear — helmet, gloves, race suit and boots — because hopping behind the wheel of a vehicular beast of this magnitude wearing jean shorts and a tanktop is NOT okay.
If a dangerously powerful automobile isn’t quite enough, you’ll also be able to tweak the thing with a full day visit to the BAC factory, where you’ll chat with technicians and customize the car to your liking. Oh, and they threw in a PS3 and a copy of the game, in case you actually slow down long enough to play a video game.
It’s far and away the most elaborate video game special edition ever created, trouncing the likes of last year’s Black Ops II Care Package, which comes packed with a remote-controlled quadcopter. And it’s pricier than the most expensive video game ever, an exceedingly rare prototype copy of The Legend of Zelda, which went for $55,000 last August.
Of course, this is really just a fancy car that happens to come with a video game. Your move, Gran Turismo 6.
By Ben Silverman
Grid 2 special edition comes with a car, costs $190,000 http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4747242
McDonald’s CEO Responds to 9-Year-Old Girl Who Claims Kids Are Being Tricked
Don Thompson, CEO of McDonald’s Corp., found himself on the grill after a 9-year-old girl accused the fast food giant of trying to ”trick kids into eating food that isn’t good for them.”
Hannah Robertson, 9, flew in with her mom from Kelowna, British Columbia, to attend McDonald’s annual shareholder meeting Thursday in Oak Brook, Ill., the company’s headquarters.
”Something that I don’t think is fair is when big companies try to trick kids into eating food that isn’t good for them by using toys and cartoon characters,” Robertson read during the question and answer part of the meeting. ”If parents haven’t taught their kids about healthy eating then the kids probably believe that junk food is good for them because it might taste good.”
Her mother, Kia, attended the meeting as a member of advocacy group Corporate Accountability International, headquartered in Boston and with offices around the world. Kia Robertson, 36, started ”Today I Ate a Rainbow” in 2009, described as an ”interactive nutritional game,” and is a nutrition blogger.
”It would be nice if you stopped trying to trick kids into wanting to eat your food all the time,” Robertson, who is in the fourth grade, went on to say. ”I make cooking videos with my mom that show kids that eating healthy can be fun and yummy. We teach them that eating a rainbow of fruits and veggies makes kids healthier, smarter and happier because that is the truth.”
Thompson thanked her for her question but also refuted Hannah’s accusations after her closing question, ”Mr. Thompson, don’t you want kids to be healthy so they can live a long and happy life?”
”First off, we don’t sell junk food, Hannah,” Thompson said. ”My kids also eat McDonald’s. When they were about your size, to my son who is with us today, who was a little bit bigger, he was a football player, and also they cook with me at home. I love to cook. We cook a lot of fruits and veggies at home.”
Thompson pointed out that McDonald’s serves fruits and vegetables, including apples in its Happy Meals and salads for $1, and is hoping to ”sell even more”.
A spokeswoman for McDonald’s declined to elaborate to ABC News on Thompson’s response to the girl.
Juliana Shulman, senior organizer at Corporate Accountability International, which started about 35 years ago, said Kia Robertson started working with the organization earlier this month for its campaign, ”Moms Are Not Lovin’ It” just before Mothers’ Day. The campaign aimed to stop what it called McDonald’s ”predatory marketing to kids.”
”They were really excited to partner with us and come with us to the shareholders’ meeting yesterday,” Shulman said of the Robertsons, adding that they returned home to Canada early on Friday.
Hannah’s mom broached the issue of childhood obesity in her question to Thompson.
”As a corporation you might not ”have to” think about the effects of your marketing…but as parents and grandparents there must be a part of you that knows it’s just not right,” Kia Robertson said to Thompson at the meeting. ”You are a leader in your industry, so you know very well that the fast food industry is changing – in order to keep up maybe it’s time for some genuine change at McDonald’s.
”CEO Thompson, don’t you think a good place to start would be to leave our children alone and let us parents decide what’s best for them?” she asked.
Shulman said her organization has 100,000 members and works with tens of thousands of health professionals as part of its campaign to help families eat healthier. The organization also brought mothers representing communities of color to the shareholder meeting, hoping to stop McDonald’s from targeting them.
”Yesterday was a unique chance to bring together these key constituencies who have concerns,” Shulman said.
Shulman said Corporate Accountability International is not a shareholder of McDonald’s. Some members of the organization own one share of the company and lent out their proxies.
”Our main goal is to protect people from irresponsible and dangerous actions around the world,” Shulman said, advocating for actions against Nestle, General Electric, and Philip Morris.
Shulman said the organization’s longest-running campaign is challenging big tobacco.
By SUSANNA KIM
McDonald’s CEO Responds to 9-Year-Old Girl Who Claims Kids Are Being Tricked http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4746493
The menu isn’t the issue. The price of what’s healthy compared to what’s not is. The cheap shit is the least healthy. The most expensive thing on the menu is. If snack wraps were on the dollar menu they wouldn’t have any issues with health freaks. But the mcdouble is disgusting but affordable so everybody buys it.
^^^^^^^^ what he said
I-5 bridge collapse survivor: ’You hold on’
Dan Sligh and his wife were in their pickup truck on Interstate 5 heading to a camping trip when a bridge before them disappeared in a ”big puff of dust.”
”I hit the brakes and we went off,” Sligh told reporters from a hospital, adding he ”saw the water approaching … you hold on as tight as you can.”
Sligh, his wife and another man in a different vehicle were dumped into the chilly waters of the Skagit River when the span collapsed Thursday evening. They were injured, but miraculously, authorities said it appeared nobody was killed in the bridge failure that raised the question about the safety of aging spans and cut off the main route between Seattle and Canada.
”We don’t think anyone else went into the water,” said Marcus Deyerin, a spokesman for the Northwest Washington Incident Management Team. ”At this point we’re optimistic.”
Sligh and his wife were taken to Skagit Valley Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The other man was reported in stable condition at United General Hospital in Sedro-Woolley, hospital CEO Greg Reed said.
Authorities are trying to determine what caused the bridge to collapse about 60 miles north of Seattle in Skagit County.
State Patrol detectives and the patrol’s commercial vehicle enforcement bureau troopers spoke to a commercial truck driver whose rig struck the structure.
”We do have the truck driver who remained at the scene. We’ve had initial conversations with him to get an indication as to what occurred,” said State Patrol Chief John Batiste.
Sligh said his shoulder was dislocated in the drop into the water, and he found himself ”belly deep in water in the truck.” He said he popped his shoulder back in and called out to his wife, who he described as being in shock initially as they waited for rescuers to arrive in boats.
Traffic along the heavily travelled route could be affected for some time.
”The I-5 corridor is totally disrupted,” said Gov. Jay Inslee, who went to the scene Thursday night.
He said work has already started to design detours, but state Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson asked people to avoid I-5 in the area for the next several days.
The National Transportation Safety Board was sending an investigative team.
Trooper Francis said a portion of the four-lane bridge over the Skagit River collapsed about 7 p.m.
Jeremiah Thomas, a volunteer firefighter, said he was driving nearby when he glimpsed something out of the corner of his eye and turned to look.
”The bridge just went down, it crashed through the water,” he said. ”It was really surreal.”
The bridge was about 50 feet above the water. Deyerin said it appeared that two vehicles – a car and the pickup with the travel trailer attached – fell into the river. He said the water depth was about 15 feet, and the vehicles half-visible in the water likely were resting on portions of the collapsed bridge.
Crowds of people lined the river to watch the scene unfold.
”It’s not something you see every day,” said Jimmy O’Connor, the owner of two local pizza restaurants who was driving on another bridge parallel to the one that collapsed. ”People were starting to crawl out of their cars.”
He said he and his girlfriend were about 400 yards away on the Burlington Bridge when they heard ”just a loud bang.”
”Then we looked over and saw the bridge was down in the water,” he said.
He pulled over and saw three vehicles in the water, including the camping trailer that landed upside-down, he said.
The bridge was not classified as structurally deficient, but a Federal Highway Administration database listed it as being ”functionally obsolete” — a category meaning that the design is outdated, such as having narrow shoulders and low clearance underneath.
The bridge was built in 1955 and has a sufficiency rating of 57.4 out of 100, according to federal records. That is well below the statewide average rating of 80, according to an Associated Press analysis of federal data, but 759 bridges in the state have a lower sufficiency score.
According to a 2012 Skagit County Public Works Department report, 42 of the county’s 108 bridges are 50 years or older. The document says eight of the bridges are more than 70 years old and two are over 80.
Washington state was given a C in the American Society of Civil Engineers’ 2013 infrastructure report card and a C- when it came to the state’s bridges. The group said more than a quarter of Washington’s 7,840 bridges are considered structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.
Democratic Rep. Judy Clibborn, who leads the transportation committee in the state House, said the bridge wasn’t one that has been a focus for lawmakers.
”It is shocking that I-5 would have something happen like this,” she said.
Clibborn said the collapse will call attention to the issues facing bridges — especially the old bridge over the Columbia River that connects Vancouver and Portland, Ore.
Sligh said his wife was ”doing OK” and that he had ”lots of cuts.”
”You’re kind of pinching yourself and realize you’re lucky to be alive.”
By MANUEL VALDES and MIKE BAKER
Fighters escort Pakistan plane to airport, two arrests
British fighter jets escorted a Pakistan International Airlines passenger plane to Stansted Airport near London on Friday, where police went on board and arrested two men on suspicion of endangering an aircraft.
Passengers were leaving the plane and no one was hurt in the incident, a spokesman for the airport said.
Flight PK709 from Lahore in Pakistan had been due to land at Manchester in northern England with 297 passengers on board, but was diverted shortly before arrival.
Britain is on high alert after a soldier was hacked to death on a London street on Wednesday in what the government are treating as a terrorist incident.
A security source said early indications were that the plane was not the target of a terrorist attack.
A passenger who had just got off the plane told the BBC the pilot had informed passengers after landing that he had diverted to Stansted because of threats. The passenger, named by the BBC as Mr Munsif, said two men had been handcuffed on board and removed.
”We landed safely and then he announced that they had some kind of threat from someone and that’s why he landed the plane,” the passenger said, speaking by telephone.
”Essex Police have boarded a passenger plane diverted to Stansted Airport and two men have been arrested on suspicion of endangerment of an aircraft. They have been removed from the plane,” the police said in a statement. The force is responsible for the area where Stansted is located.
”The two men arrested on suspicion of endangerment of an aircraft are aged 30 and 41. They are being taken to a police station for interview by detectives,” the police added.
Stansted is one of London’s less busy airports, preferred as a location for handling airplane security incidents. A spokesman for the airport said the plane was being held in an isolated area and that the rest of the airport was operating as normal.
Essex County Fire and Rescue Service said 10 fire engines had been sent to the airport.
The Pakistani plane was a Boeing 777, according to the flight tracking website http://www.flightradar.com.
According to two tracking websites, the aircraft broke off from its descent about 60 miles east of Manchester.
It turned and followed a wide arc over northeast England and out to the North Sea before heading towards London.
Britain launches military planes to intercept unidentified aircraft when they cannot be identified by other means, for example when the aircraft is not talking to air traffic controllers.
By Rhys Jones and Peter Griffiths
Fighters escort Pakistan plane to airport, two arrests http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4746291
Pieces of 747 fall on woman’s house and Walmart lot
Pieces of a 747 cargo plane fell onto a woman’s house and a Walmart parking lot in Georgia on Sunday afternoon. Federal authorities are investigating why.
Homeowner Pamela Ware spoke with WSBTV.com about the experience.
”And boom! I was like, ’Huh?’ Actually, I hit the floor,” Ware told WSBTV.com. ”If it had landed in here, because that is just Sheetrock, it would have … oh boy, I wouldn’t be no good.”
The piece of debris fell through Ware’s roof, leaving two holes. It later bounced onto the yard, according to WSBTV.com. A few miles away, a 20-foot-long portion of the plane’s wing fell onto the Walmart store’s parking lot. Fortunately, nobody was hurt in either case.
According to WSBTV.com, investigators said the cargo plane had been flying from Anchorage. It was roughly five miles east of Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport when pieces of the right wing broke off. The pilot declared an emergency and was able to land safely.
WSBTV.com reports that it is unclear who will pay for the repairs to Ware’s damaged roof.
By Mike Krumboltz
Pieces of 747 fall on woman’s house and Walmart lot http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4745868
New York man held captive for month rescued by police
Police rescued a businessman from a New York City warehouse where he had been held captive for a month by kidnappers who demanded a $3 million ransom from his family in Ecuador, authorities said.
Police posing as building inspectors found Pedro Portugal, 52, in the warehouse with his hands bound in cloth and duct tape and with a woolen cap pulled down over his eyes as one of his captors tried to escape through a window.
”He basically came up to us and said: ’I’ve been kidnapped! I’ve been kidnapped!’” Deputy Inspector Gregory Antonsen told Reuters.
Portugal was abducted in the New York City borough of Queens on April 18 by a man who flashed what looked like a police badge, prosecutors said.
The man and an accomplice forced Portugal into a vehicle, said prosecutors, who charged three men with the kidnapping late on Wednesday. The men pulled a mask over Portugal’s face, punched him, held a knife to his belly and warned him to stay quiet, prosecutors said.
Portugal was taken to a warehouse where, over the course of a month, he was hooded, tied up and beaten, authorities said. The men burned his hands with acid, punched out some of his teeth, threatened to chop off his fingers and kill him, a pattern of abuse that was interrupted on Portugal’s birthday, when his captors presented him with a cake, police said.
”This is a terrifying story,” Richard Brown, the Queens district attorney, said in a statement.
Police said they were still investigating why Portugal, who runs a modest insurance and accounting business out of a Queens storefront, was targeted. Portugal’s family owned businesses and property in Ecuador, Antonsen said.
”I would say by Ecuadorean standards they’re fairly well off,” Antonsen said in an interview. ”But I wouldn’t call them wealthy.”
Portugal lives with his partner and four children in Queens, and has two children from a previous marriage, Antonsen said.
Christian Acuna, 35, Dennis Alves, 32, and Eduardo Moncayo, 38, were arraigned on charges of kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment on Wednesday and were being held without bail.
A lawyer who represented Alves at his arraignment said he planned to plead not guilty. Lawyers for the other two defendants could not be reached on Thursday.
Police said they were seeking at least two other men, including a man they believe is the ringleader, who left for Ecuador a day after the kidnapping.
Alves told police he had been promised $5,000 to kidnap and guard Portugal during the day, along with Acuna, who told police he was getting $800 per week for the job, according to the criminal complaint.
All three defendants were in the room, along with the suspected ringleader, when Portugal first rang his family in Ecuador to ask for the $3 million ransom, the complaint said. Portugal’s mother then contacted her son’s family in Queens before his kidnap was reported to police in both countries.
Police tracked Portugal’s location to a warehouse in Long Island City in Queens by looking into addresses associated with people with criminal records who had recently traveled to Ecuador. Overnight surveillance teams saw food deliveries to the warehouse and a single light burning in a window through the night, Antonsen said.
On Monday, a team of officers posing as building inspectors went inside and found Portugal on the third floor in a room furnished with little more than a mattress.
By Jonathan Allen
New York man held captive for month rescued by police http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4745865
Ohio kidnap case hero gets burgers for life
The man who famously put down his Big Mac to help rescue three women held captive for a decade in an Ohio house will never have to pay for another burger in his hometown.
Charles Ramsey has been promised free burgers for life at more than a dozen Cleveland-area restaurants.
The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer (http://bit.ly/10SPuf4 ) reports that the restaurant where Ramsey worked as a dishwasher initially created a special burger in his honor, but eateries in the city decided a larger tribute was due.
Ramsey was called a hero after helping Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight break out of the house May 6. Ariel Castro is now facing charges.
The newspaper says Ramsey was traveling and would get his ”Chuck Card” when he returns.
Ohio kidnap case hero gets burgers for life http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4745463
that’s what’s up
Give some $$ or dentures not a heart attack
London attackers known to British security services
Two British men of Nigerian descent accused of hacking a soldier to death on a London street in revenge for wars in Muslim countries were known to security services, a source close to the investigation said Thursday.
One man, filmed calmly justifying the killing as he stood by the body holding a knife and meat cleaver in bloodied hands, was named by acquaintances as 28-year-old Londoner Michael Adebolajo – a British-born convert to radical Islam.
So frenzied was the attack, some witnesses thought they were trying to behead and disembowel the victim.
The attack, just a month after the Boston Marathon bombing and the first Islamist killing in Britain since local suicide bombers killed 52 people in London in 2005, revived fears of ”lone wolves” who may have had no direct contact with al Qaeda.
British media said police raided homes of relatives in the city and near the town of Lincoln. Adebolajo and the other man, who may have been born abroad and later naturalized as British, are both in custody in hospitals after being shot by police.
Prime Minister David Cameron held an emergency meeting of his intelligence chiefs to assess the response to what he called a ”terrorist” attack; it was the first deadly strike in mainland Britain since local Islamists killed dozens in London in 2005.
”We will never give in to terror or terrorism in any of its forms,” Cameron said outside his Downing Street office.
”This was not just an attack on Britain and on the British way of life, it was also a betrayal of Islam and of the Muslim communities who give so much to our country. There is nothing in Islam that justifies this truly dreadful act.”
He said there would be a review of how intelligence had been handled – Adebolajo had been known to authorities for handing out radical Islamist pamphlets in Woolwich.
The two men had been considered to pose no serious danger to the public until the attack, according to a government source.
Another source close to the inquiry said the local backgrounds of the suspects in a multicultural metropolis – nearly 40 percent of Londoners were born abroad – and the simplicity of the attack made prevention difficult:
”Apart from being horribly barbaric, this was relatively straightforward to carry out,” the source said. ”This was quite low-tech and that is frankly pretty challenging.”
Anjem Choudary, one of Britain’s most recognized Islamist clerics, told Reuters Adebolajo, was known to fellow Muslims as Mujahid – a name meaning ”warrior”: ”He used to attend a few demonstrations and activities that we used to have in the past.”
He added that he had not seen him for about two years: ”When I knew him he was very pleasant man,” Choudary said. ”He was peaceful, unassuming and I don’t think there’s any reason to think he would do anything violent.”
A man called Paul Leech said on Twitter he had been at school in the east London suburb of Romford with the man seen claiming the attack: ”Michael Adebolajo u make me sick,” he wrote. ”How could someone who was a laugh and nice bloke at school turn out like that. I’m ashamed to have known u.”
The two men used a car to run down 25-year-old Afghan war veteran Drummer Lee Rigby outside Woolwich Barracks in southeast London and then attacked him with a meat cleaver and knives, witnesses said. The pair then told shocked bystanders they acted in revenge for British wars in Muslim countries.
Rigby, who had a two-year-old son, was not in uniform. The bandsman had been working as an army recruiter in London
A dramatic clip filmed by an onlooker showed one of the men, identified as Adebolajo, his hands covered in blood and speaking in a local accent apologizing for taking his action in front of women but justifying it on religious grounds:
”We swear by almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you. The only reason we have done this is because Muslims are dying every day,” he said. ”This British soldier is an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.”
The attack revived fears of ”lone wolves”. These may have had no direct contact with al Qaeda but are inspired by radical preachers and by Islamist militant Web sites, some of which urge people to attack Western targets with whatever means they have.
Images of the blood-soaked suspect – who urged Britons to overthrow their government or risk having their children face the fate of the dead soldier lying just yards away – were splashed across the front pages of newspapers; so too were links to his clearly spoken, matter-of-fact video statement, made as the pair chatted calmly to bystanders before police arrived.
”We have all seen images that are deeply shocking,” Cameron told reporters before visiting the barracks in Woolwich. ”The people who did this were trying to divide us.”
In Nigeria, with a mixed Christian-Muslim population and where the authorities are battling an Islamist insurgency, a government source said there was no evidence the Woolwich suspects were linked to groups in west Africa.
British investigators are looking at information that at least one of the suspects may have had an interest in joining Somalia-based Islamist al Shabaab rebel group which is allied to al Qaeda, a source with knowledge of the matter said.
Al Shabaab said on Thursday that such attacks were inevitable and linked the attack to the Boston bombing and last year’s gun attacks in the southern French city of Toulouse.
”Toulouse, Boston, Woolwich … Where next? You just have to grin and bear it, it’s inevitable. A case of the chickens coming home to roost!” the rebels said on Twitter.
The grisly attack took place next to the sprawling Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich, a south London working class district which has long-standing historic links to the military and is home to many immigrant communities, including Nigerians.
Rigby, who served in Afghanistan in 2009, was wearing a T-shirt reading ”Help for Heroes”, the name of a charity formed to help wounded British veterans. Britain has had troops deployed in Afghanistan since 2001 and had troops in Iraq from 2003-2009.
Witnesses said they shouted ”Allahu akbar” – Arabic for God is greatest – while stabbing the victim and trying to behead him. A handgun was found at the scene.
Some onlookers rushed to help the soldier an one woman to engaged the attackers in conversation to calm them down.
”He had what looked like butcher’s tools — a little axe, to cut the bones, and two large knives. He said: ’Move off the body,’” said French-born former teacher Ingrid Loyau-Kennett.
”He said: ’I killed him because he killed Muslims and I am fed up with people killing Muslims in Afghanistan.’”
A trained first aider and Cub Scout leader, Loyau-Kennett was on a bus which was held up by the incident and she got off to try to help the victim. She found he was already dead.
Her attitude and that of other passers-by who remonstrated with the attackers was held up by Cameron as an example of resistance to attempts to terrorize the population:
”When told by the attacker that he wanted to start a war in London,” Cameron said, ”She replied, ’You’re going to lose. It’s only you versus many.’ She spoke for us all.”
’HELP FOR HEROES’
London was last hit by a serious militant attack on July 7, 2005, when four young British Islamists set off suicide bombs on underground trains and a bus, killing 52 people and wounding hundreds. A similar attack two weeks later was thwarted.
In 2007, two days after police defused two car bombs outside London nightclubs, two men suspected of involvement, a British-born doctor of Iraqi descent and an Indian-born engineer, rammed a car laden with gas into the Glasgow Airport terminal, setting it ablaze. One of the attackers died and the other was jailed.
Britain has long known political violence on the streets. In 2009, two British soldiers were shot dead outside a barracks in Northern Ireland in an attack claimed by Irish republicans.
Woolwich, too, has seen attacks before. A soldier and a civilian were killed by an IRA bomb at a local pub in 1974. The barracks itself was bombed in 1983, wounding five people.
Since the 2005 bombings, known as 7/7, security chiefs say they have faced at least one plan to carry out an attack on the level of those attacks and have warned that radicalized individuals posed a grave risk to national security.
Peter Clarke, who led the investigation into the 7/7 bombings, said that if the Woolwich attackers did turn out to be acting alone, it showed the difficulty the security services faced in trying to stop them.
”An attack like this doesn’t need sophisticated fund raising and sophisticated communications or planning,” he told Reuters. ”It can be organized and then actually delivered in a moment.”
The bombing attacks on the Boston Marathon last month, which U.S. authorities blame on two brothers, have raised the profile of the ”lone wolf” threat in the West. A Frenchman with Algerian origins killed three off-duty French soldiers and four Jewish civilians on a rampage in southern France last year.
Britain’s involvement in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in the past decade has often stirred anger among British Muslims and occasionally made soldiers a target at home. British police have foiled at least two plots in which Islamist suspects were accused of planning to kill soldiers, including by beheading.
Cameron’s office officials had welcomed the condemnation from most mainstream British Muslim groups and that the national security committee had discussed community cohesion.
In signs of a backlash after the attack, more than 100 angry supporters of the English Defense League, a far-right street protest group, took to the streets late on Wednesday.
Separately, two men were arrested in connection with separate attacks on mosques outside London. No one was hurt.
By Guy Faulconbridge and Michael Holden
London attackers known to British security services http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4745467
Tesla pays off $465 million U.S. loan nine years early
Elon Musk may not be Tony Stark, but he’s doing a credible impersonation of Lee Iacocca.
The co-founder of Tesla Motors set another milestone for his electric car company today by making a final $451.8 million payment on the $465 million loan from the U.S. government — nine years earlier than scheduled. The massive payment came courtesy of a stock offering last week that raised $1 billion for the California automaker, made possible after it revealed its first quarterly profit. The move makes Tesla the only automaker to have paid back its Department of Energy loan in full — yet another talking point for Musk’s EV drive.
Now comes the hard part.
It’s fair to point out that other automakers received far larger loans from the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing program; Ford borrowed $5.9 billion, while Nissan took $1.4 billion, both for modernizing plants and vehicles to build hybrid and electric vehicles. It’s equally fair to note both have far more resources than Tesla to pay back those loans and attempt to reap a similar victory lap to the one Iacocca made after paying off Chrysler’s bailout early in 1983.
Tesla’s pay-off marks a rare bit of good news for the Department of Energy program, which has seen its loans to Fisker and an Indiana start-up end in shuttered companies. When it was made in 2010, the loan gave Tesla credibility among private investors, something rival EV startups which couldn’t get such backing were never able to generate.
“I would like to thank the Department of Energy and the members of Congress and their staffs that worked hard to create the ATVM program, and particularly the American taxpayer from whom these funds originate,” Musk said in a statement. “I hope we did you proud.”
Whatever goodwill Musk can generate from paying the loan early will be needed on the hard road ahead; fighting to sell Teslas without dealers, raising revenues to make up for EV credits that added more than $60 million in the first quarter and developing the Model X SUV due late in 2014 and other models. Musk has already warned that Tesla won’t make a profit this quarter, and other luxury automakers have begun to take note of his success. Running an automaker is like managing a nuclear reactor; it’s a powerful machine at full strength, but a few small mistakes can lead to a meltdown. Just ask Lee Iacocca.
By Justin Hyde
Tesla @TeslaMotors pays off $465 million U.S. loan nine years early http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4745465
Mo. Cashier Sells Herself $1M Powerball Ticket
If Maryjane Hart considered herself the luckiest woman in Doniphan, Mo., for having her health, three grown kids and two steady jobs before last Saturday, she’s really lucky now.
The 57-year-old divorced convenience store clerk and pharmacy technician won $1 million in last Saturday’s $590 million Powerball jackpot on a ticket she sold herself, one week after winning another $500 on a Pick 4 ticket.
”We’re just little common people here in a very poor community so this has been a very big deal to everybody here,” Hart said of her hometown, population 2,000. ”It’s the buzz of the town.”
It took a while for Hart to believe the buzz herself after she got a call from her ex-husband Saturday afternoon telling her that a winning Powerball ticket had been purchased at the Hartland Pit Stop convenience store she owned for 25 years before selling it seven years ago. She’s now working there as a weekend cashier.
”I said, ’Well I had bought some tickets that morning,’ and he said, ’Well, maybe you ought to check them,’” Hart recalled.
Hart drove to the closest store to check her tickets and walked away thinking she was a $10,000 winner.
”I slung that ticket in my purse and got out of there before anybody saw it,” she said.
She stopped at the next convenience store to check her ticket again. This time both she and the convenience store clerk saw all six zeros and confirmed Hart was a $1 million winner.
One 30 minute phone call later-it took that long to convince her oldest daughter, Nicki, in Atlanta, that she had really won and was not joking-Hart decided to drive to the state lottery office in St. Louis Sunday night to claim her prize first thing Monday morning.
”I still didn’t believe it until we got to the lottery office and the guy started shaking his head and said congratulations,” Hart said. ”Then I knew it was real.”
Hart says she plays the lottery regularly but had never won more than the $500 she won the previous Friday on her Quick Pick ticket. A devoted NASCAR fan, she usually chooses drivers’ numbers but this Saturday, in a haste to buy a ticket while she worked, she just did quick pick numbers.
Even without her NASCAR good luck numbers, Hart is now expecting a $710,000 direct deposit in her bank account, the amount she will receive after taxes.
Hart says she plans to use the money to take a Hawaiian vacation, ”just as quick as my boss will let me take a week.”
Her boss would be her supervisor at Hometown Pharmacy, where she works Monday to Friday. She only took one day – Monday, when she traveled to St. Louis to claim her prize – off from the pharmacy and says she plans to keep working.
”I’m bored if I don’t work,” she said of her two jobs. ”Anybody that knows me knows I’ll never quit working.”
In addition to going to ”a lot more” NASCAR races, Hart also plans to reward her children with her newly won riches, specifically her son, David, who has severe disabilities stemming from a car accident when he was 17.
”Last week his Jeep wouldn’t run so I had to take him to get groceries and run errands,” Hart said. ”I told him I plan on buying him a vehicle that will start every morning.”
”He started crying,” she said.
By Katie Kindelan
Mo. Cashier Sells Herself $1M Powerball Ticket http://global14.com/members/global14/activity/4744766
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