<![CDATA[NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth - National & International News]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/national-international http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/NBC+5-KXAS+Logo+for+Google+News.png NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth http://www.nbcdfw.comen-usFri, 26 Aug 2016 07:01:25 -0500Fri, 26 Aug 2016 07:01:25 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Dramatic Images: Deadly Quake Rocks Central Italy]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 22:04:24 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/AP_16238629738584.jpg Searchers scrambled to rescue people in central Italy where a 6.2-magnitude earthquake struck early Wednesday, collapsing homes as residents slept and killing dozens.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Why Back-to-School Is Becoming a Summer Thing]]> Fri, 26 Aug 2016 05:51:20 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/denver-back-to-school.jpg

Though the weather is still hot enough to go swimming, many public school students across the country are staring at the summer sun through a classroom window.

Many schools have done away with the tradition of beginning classes after the Labor Day weekend. While many classes are already in full swing, some schools are already looking ahead to next year and debating whether to begin fall classes even earlier. 

There are more than 13,000 school districts across the country, all of which have their own rules for determining the academic calendar. But pushing fall start dates forward is usually driven by an effort to improve academic performance, by giving teachers and students more time to prepare before end of the year exams in the spring.

Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland is currently considering a proposal to shift its scheduled summer up and end the break earlier in August. If approved in November, the 2017-2018 school year will begin on Aug. 21, two weeks before Labor Day and a week sooner than its 2016 start date.

Derek Turner, the Montgomery County spokesperson, said the proposal has received mixed reaction from the community and that more than 1,000 people have submitted feedback online, with some parents concerned about an earlier fall start date conflicting with summer camp end dates.

The county proposes that moving up the calendar will give teachers an additional week of instruction before end of the year assessments like national Advanced Placement exams.

Turner said the beginning of the school year can lend itself to increased productivity in the classroom.

"As we get further in the year students get more and more distracted," Turner said. "So the earlier we start…the better off we are."

Rebecca Kaye, the policy and governance adviser for Atlanta Public Schools, said having an early August start date allows the Atlanta school system to include breaks more frequently throughout the 180 class days.

“The longer you go in school with no breaks we have more student discipline incidents,” Kaye said. “I think that’s a combination of kids having more conflict and emotional stuff built up as well as teachers having more anxiety.”

Atlanta Public Schools has one of the earliest fall start dates in the country, starting their 2016-2017 school year on Aug. 3. Kaye said classes will begin next year on Aug. 1.

"What we saw when we mapped it out was that [incidents of student discipline] would increase, increase, increase, increase, and then we would have a break and it would drop," she said. "That's why we try not to go too long without people having a break to let off some steam and come back refreshed."

Kaye said Atlanta’s early August start date allows the first instructional semester to end by winter break at the end of December, so high school students don't have to spend the holiday break studying for exams.

Pedro Noguera, a professor of education at New York University, said an earlier fall start date does not have any direct effect on student learning.

"The research shows that 180 school days across the year in different ways doesn't necessarily make a difference for kids," Kaye said. "It's about how you use the time and quality instruction."



Photo Credit: Denver Post via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Italian Girl, 10, Rescued From Earthquake Rubble]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 09:45:07 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Italy-Pescara-Rescue-2-147208278230500001.jpg A 10-year-old girl was pulled alive from the rubble in Pescara del Tronto on Wednesday 17 hours after the quake struck central Italy.]]> <![CDATA[Glimpsing the Colonel's KFC REcipe]]> Fri, 26 Aug 2016 05:20:31 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/kfc+GettyImages-72301196.jpg

The Kentucky Fried Chicken recipe is famous for two things: being "finger lickin' good," and being incredibly secret. 

It's so secret, in fact, that KFC sued the last person who claimed to have found it. But now, the cat may be out of the bag, thanks to a reporter at the Chicago Tribune who traveled to Corbin, Kentucky, to interview the nephew of Colonel Sanders himself.

Joe Ledington flipped through a family photo album with the reporter, stopping to pull out the last will and testament of his aunt Claudia, Sanders' second wife. 

On the back of the document, the Tribune reports, was the top secret 11 herbs and spices that were notoriously transported via armed guard to a secure location in 2008. 

The full recipe as shown is: 

11 spices — mix with 2 cups white flour

 

  • 2/3 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon thyme
  • 1/2 tablespoon basil
  • 1/3 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon celery salt
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried mustard
  • 4 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons garlic salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 3 tablespoons white pepper
After revealing the possible recipe, however, Ledington walked back the claim in a phone interview, saying he did not "know for sure" if it was authentic. 
A KFC spokesperson later told the Tribune via email, "We go to great lengths to protect such a sacred blend of herbs and spices. In fact, the recipe ranks among America's most valuable trade secrets."

 

"Lots of people through the years have claimed to discover or figure out the secret recipe, but no one's ever been right," the spokesperson added.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Top News Photos of the Week]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 07:45:55 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-594886094-news.jpg View weekly updates on the best photos in domestic and foreign news.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Meth Dog Works at Rehab Center]]> Fri, 26 Aug 2016 05:57:33 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/meth-dog--rehab-082516.PNG

A Chihuahua named Jack Sparrow, who was once hospitalized and put through rehab after vets found meth in his system, now serves as a comforting pup to patients recovering from alcohol and drug abuse, his owner said Thursday.

Jack Sparrow made headlines in July after his owner brought him into the Inland Valley Emergency Pet Clinic in Upland. Veterinarians said the dog was acting erratically, suffering from seizures and convulsions.

They tested him, and found methamphetamine in his system.

Jack's owner, 21-year-old Isaiah Nathaniel Sais, told the veterinarians the dog may have eaten meth, according to Fontana police.

When the test results came back positive, Sais took off with Jack.

Police arrested Jack Sparrow's owner, and he was taken to doggie rehab.

After Jack Sparrow's detox, a woman who works at an alcohol and drug treatment center adopted Jack.

The patients benefiting from his company renamed him Micah, which means "new beginnings."

"I think they had an instant bond with him. When he first came in and they heard his story, many of them could relate to him. They seemed to have that instant connection with him, wanted to bond with him and wanted to show him love," said Erin Hill, the pup's new owner.

NBC4's Tony Shin contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA['They Know She Cares': Michelle Obama's School Nutrition Legacy]]> Fri, 26 Aug 2016 06:07:49 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-491569906.jpg

Fried chicken nuggets, chicken fingers, and patties are the thing of the past at Fairfax County Public Schools in Virginia. Healthier options have been on the menu thanks to Michelle Obama's healthy school lunch initiative. 

When Rodney K. Taylor, director of food and nutrition services at the schools, received a directive to make lunch food healthier, by adding fruits, veggies and whole grains, he decided to take it a step further and eliminate the fried options. 

He begun serving grilled spice-rubbed chicken to students instead.  

“No-one made a peep,” Taylor said of the reaction among students.

The new nutritional standards in schools were spurred by the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, one of the central policies at the heart of Obama’s effort to address childhood obesity. It was signed in 2010 and took effect in 2014. The legislation required schools to increase the servings of fruits and vegetables, increase the amount of whole grains, and reduce the amount of sodium and sugar in meals provided to students.

As Obama prepares to leave the White House at the end of 2016, it's not clear yet whether the changes are helping reduce childhood obesity. But supporters say the program is already a win because kids are eating whole grains and lower-sodium options.

“It was revolutionary, it took away the focus from the bottom line and moved it to nutrition,” said Taylor, who has over a decade of experience as food director. “When I first started no-one was talking about nutrition so we really contributed to the obesity epidemic. It’s a good thing the legislators stepped in.”

The act encountered heavy pushback from conservatives who viewed it as executive overreach. Obama, however, has never relented, exerting pressure on the GOP, including in a 2014 New York Times op-ed piece.

“Remember a few years ago when Congress declared that the sauce on a slice of pizza should count as a vegetable in school lunches? You don’t have to be a nutritionist to know that this doesn’t make much sense,” she wrote.

Later that year, at a White House event, she said, “I’m going to fight until the bitter end to make sure that every kid in this country continues to have the best nutrition that they can have in our schools.”

The first lady’s strategy paid off because in late January the Senate Agriculture Committee released a statement in favor of reauthorizing the program.

“Folks said we couldn’t come to an agreement on child nutrition reauthorization – let alone a bipartisan agreement – but we did,” chairman Pat Roberts said. “This bipartisan legislation is a true compromise. Not everyone got everything they wanted, but a lot of folks have a lot to be happy about.”

The School Nutrition Association, a nonprofit professional organization that advocates for healthful school meals, is one such party. The group previously criticized the new standards as financially prohibitive, too strict, and unfeasible for schools to adopt so quickly. HHFKA originally required 100 percent of all grains served at schools be whole grain rich and that sodium levels be cut in half by 2017. Those standards have been loosened—the whole grain requirement to 80 percent of all grains served and the sodium deadline extended to 2019.

“The SNA was pleased to work with the USDA and the White House to reach an agreement,” said Diane Pratt-Heavner, director of media relations at the SNA.
Kevin Concannon, USDA undersecretary for Food Nutrition and Consumer Services, said “we didn’t want to punish schools who were struggling to meet the standards.” Concannon went on to say, though, that more than 98 percent of schools are meeting the guidelines.

Sept. 30, 2015, marked the deadline for Congress to reauthorize the HHFKA but lawmakers blew past it. While the lack of reauthorization didn't impact existing programs, advocates pushing for reauthorization look at it as an opportunity to increase funding for school lunches. 

HHFKA is relatively new and measurable public health outcomes will take years if not decades.

Margot Wootan, director of of nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, though, expects a positive effect. Wootan called the act “enormously important” and explained that her expectations are not unreasonable because children get a third to half their daily calories from school meals. With the calories now coming from more nutritionally dense foods, positive outcomes are likely. Jessica Donze Black, director of Kids’ Safe and Healthful Foods at The Pew Charitable Trusts, said with all the sound science behind the policy she expects that HHFKA will "significantly impact the health outcomes of children."     

Schools across the country have been reporting other positive outcomes. Since the widespread acceptance of the standards independent studies have shown that plate waste, where uneaten food ends up in the trash, is actually down while fruit and vegetable consumption has gone up.

Lynette Dodson, director of school nutrition of Carrolton City schools in Carrolton, Georgia, said that the children are eating the fruits and vegetables, going through three times as many bananas alone compared to before the act. Schools in Carrolton track the amount of fruit and vegetable consumption using production records. She also said that teachers in her district saw almost immediate positive impacts on student attentiveness and behavior.

Because of this Dodson said the district has adopted a new mantra. “Whole food is good food.”

Undersecretary Concannon, said he hears similar stories during his visits to schools all over the country. He called a lot of the early criticisms of the first lady’s initiative “more noise than anything else.” Concannon said families are on board, given that the school lunch program now serves close to 31 million children and the school breakfast program serves almost 15 million children, about 5 million more than before HHFKA was enacted. Statistics from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation support Concannon’s claim, with the number of parents who support the new standards outnumbering parents who do not 3 to 1.

“For kids, Michelle Obama has become a symbol," Concannon said. "They know she cares.” 

The first lady has vowed to continue to work on issues of childhood obesity even after her time in the White House is up.

“It's not like I have a one-year or two-year time frame on this issue. For me, this issue is the rest-of-my-life kind of time frame," she said at the White House earlier this year. "Because I know that's what it's going to take to truly solve this problem."



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Family Wins Suit Over Lost Ashes]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 20:14:45 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/082516+annie+hughes.jpg

A jury awarded a South Florida family $3.5 million Thursday, blaming a funeral home for mixing up their mother's ashes with someone else.

The state revoked the license for the funeral home permanently, but there's another one operating in the same location with the same owner and the same woman working inside, who the family blames for causing them so much pain.

Ronda Mitchell was in court hoping for answers as to what happened to their mother, 54-year-old Annie Hughes, who died two years ago.

"Right now I still cry for her," said Mitchell.

Hughes' body was turned over to the Taylor Smith West Funeral Home. Her family from Homestead and Belle Glade, where the funeral home was located, were in court Thursday in West Palm Beach.

The family's attorney, Vincent Paravato, says the ashes given back to the family in the box were not their mothers.

"They did not give her back her mom's remains," said Pavarato. "They strung her along, lied to her, fabricated documents, committed crimes, and five to six months later they gave her somebody else's remains. Basically a monster of a funeral home."

Two years ago the family started a search to find what happened to Hughes.

"Where is my sister, where is she?" asked Mayley Michel, Hughes' sister.

The place where the funeral home said, in their documents, the body was cremated never had Hughes' body.

"It's devastating. I don't have any closure, (but) I still have more questions," said Ronda Taylor, daughter of Hughes. "My mom's body is still out there. I don't know where she's at and it's heartbreaking."

The state revoked the funeral home's license calling it a danger to the public and said it delivered a body in a body bag wrapped in a blanket to a consumer. They added that on multiple occasions the funeral home provided consumers with incorrect remains.

"I can't imagine how many people are out there. The state closed them down and now they are back operating under a different name," says the family's attorney. "Stevens Funeral Home, I believe. Same actors, same location, same story."

NBC 6 went looking for the owners of the funeral home at an official address listed and ended up at the pack and ship store in Pompano Beach.

At at the funeral home itself, no one answered the door. A new name is outside, but when we called the woman we spoke with was Sonya Rumph, the same woman the family says handed them the wrong ashes.

"Justice, I want them to go to jail," said Taylor. "I want them to be closed down and I want everyone that was involved to be locked up, it's like they are still free to do it to other families."

NBC 6 asked the state how this could happen and it told us the license for the current funeral home was transferred there from another funeral home owned by the same company that didn’t have issues.

The jury awarded damages to punish the funeral home and prevent others from doing this and now attorney Paravato is on a mission to collect this money from the owners. Rumph had no comment and the lawyers for the funeral home did not show up Thursday.

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<![CDATA[Visualizing the Olympics: Medal Counts & More]]> Tue, 31 May 2016 07:53:12 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-149332217-edited.jpg Which countries have the most gold medals? And how much does it cost to host an Olympic Games? Get ready for the Rio Olympics – and the answers to those and many other Olympic-related questions – with this series of graphics. Click here for the visualization.
View Full Story

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Retired Bus Driver's $2M Windfall]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 13:15:11 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/roy+pittman.jpg

The wheels on the bus go round and round – all the way to $2 million.

Retired bus driver Roy Pittman happened to be riding a bus when he scratched a winning Illinois Lottery $2,000,000 Jumbo Bucks ticket.

“I was on the bus going home from the store when I scratched my ticket,” he told the Illinois Lottery. “When I realized I won $2 million, I started shaking.”

Pittman, 71, has lived in Chicago his entire life. He plans to share the windfall with family and donate to his favorite charities, he told the lottery. 

When asked by the lottery if he had any advice for other players, he said, “Try a ticket because you just never know.”

The ticket was purchased at Vincennes Food Mart, located at 400 W. 79th Street in Chicago. The retailer received a bonus of $20,000, or one percent of the prize, for selling the winning ticket.

The $2,000,000 Jumbo Bucks is a $10 instant ticket. Of the three top prizes available, one has not yet been claimed, lottery officials said. 



Photo Credit: Illinois Lottery]]>
<![CDATA[University in Kabul Will Reopen After Attack]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 19:41:40 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/KabulAmericanUniversity-AP_16238095788048.jpg

The nonprofit that supports the American University of Afghanistan in Kabul said the school would reopen following the attack that killed 14 people on Wednesday, NBC News reported. 

"AUAF is dedicated to its educational mission in service to Afghanistan and has no intention of giving into terror," the Friends of the American University in Afghanistan said in a statement, using an acronym for the learning institution. 

Militants detonated a car bomb outside the university's gate and stormed the complex with guns in a 10-hour attack that ended Thursday morning. 

Fourteen people — seven students, one professor, three police and two security officers — were killed. One attacker died in the car bomb blast and two militants were killed by police, authorities and a hospital official said. Forty-eight people were injured and taken to hospitals, according to a medical official.

The university in Afghanistan is not affiliated with American University in Washington, D.C. 



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[US Navy Ship Fires Shots at Iranian 'Fast Boat']]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 22:03:04 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/IranShip-AP_16238734274681.jpg

A U.S. Navy ship fired several warning shots near an Iranian “fast boat” on Wednesday, according to a senior Department of Defense official, NBC News reported. 

The USS Squall and the USS Tempest were operating in close formation with a Kuwaiti Navy ship when the Iranian boat came dangerously close. The Iranian vessel passed between the two American ships at one point, coming within a couple hundred yards of the two ships. 

The U.S. fired flares and attempted radio communication, but both were unsuccessful. The Squall fired a few shots into the water as a deterrent. The U.S. rarely fires warning shots, according to the defense official. 

On Thursday, Iran's defense minister said those Iranian vessels were just doing their job and that the American ships crossed into Iran’s maritime region. The U.S. asserts that the ships were in international waters at the time.



Photo Credit: AP, File,]]>
<![CDATA[Co-Pilot Arrested After Captain Suspects Him of Flying Drunk]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 18:32:46 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/handcuffs-generic-on-black.jpg

A charter plane pilot was abruptly grounded Thursday at a Michigan airport after police discovered he was allegedly too drunk to fly, NBC News reported. 

The captain of the plane notified the Cherry Capital Airport tower in Traverse City that there was something wrong with his co-pilot as he prepared to land. 

When police arrived, the co-pilot was at the controls and preparing to take off for Bedford, Massachusetts, with a dozen passengers on board. 

The co-pilot, who was not named, was fired from Talon Air. Police said he was arrested after registering a blood alcohol content of .30 — four times the legal limit for driving a car.

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<![CDATA[UChicago on Trigger Warnings]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 17:34:26 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/214*120/GettyImages-486561923.jpg

A Chicago university’s dean wants the class of 2020 to know they should be prepared to get comfortable with the uncomfortable.

Incoming freshman at the University of Chicago were sent a letter from Dean of Students John Ellison informing them the university “does not support so-called ‘trigger warnings.’”

Ellison said in the letter that “freedom of inquiry and expression” is one of the university’s “defining characteristics,” before reaffirming that freedom of expression does not mean “freedom to harass or threaten others.”

The letter comes in the wake of DePaul University’s rejection of hosting conservative writer and speaker Ben Shapiro, which itself came on the heels of controversial speaker and blogger Milo Yiannopoulos’s event being interrupted and shut down by protesters on DePaul’s campus.

“Our commitment to academic freedom means that we do not support so-called ‘trigger-warnings,’ we do not cancel invited speakers because their topics might prove controversial,” Ellison wrote in the letter. “And we do not condone the creation of intellectual ‘safe spaces’ where individuals can retreat from ideas and perspectives at odds with their own.”

At the University of Chicago — a private research university with more than 5,800 undergrads and nearly 10,000 graduate students — several high-profile speakers were interrupted or shut down by calls for space spaces earlier in 2016, according to The Chicago Maroon, the campus newspaper.

Three speakers at the University of Chicago were forced to leave or were interrupted by protesters between February and April of this year, according to The Chicago Maroon: Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez, Palestinian human rights activist Bassem Eid and University of Louisville professor Justin McCarthy, who students said denies the Armenian genocide.

Ellison also included in the letter a copy of “Academic Freedom and the Modern University: The Experience of the University of Chicago” which he says will articulate the university’s stance on “academic freedom.”

“Fostering the exchange of ideas reinforces a related university priority—building a campus that welcomes people of all background,” the letter reads. “Diversity of opinion and background is a fundamental strength of our community. The members of our community must have the freedom to espouse and explore a wide range of ideas.”

Constitutional law experts praised the University of Chicago's move.

"It's about time that a university administration stood up to the bullies who are trying to repress free speech on campus," renowned civil liberties lawyer and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz told NBC News. "I'm ashamed that Harvard was not the first to do it."



Photo Credit: Getty Images/Flickr RM, File
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<![CDATA[Rebels, Locals Reach Deal to Evacuate Damascus Suburb]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 15:53:53 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/DarayaSyria-GettyImages-512324298.jpg

A deal between rebels and Syria’s army was reached Thursday to evacuate all residents and insurgents from the Damascus suburb of Daraya, according to a rebel leader, NBC News reported. 

The country’s army has surrounded rebels and civilians, blocking food deliveries since 2012, and regularly bombing the area. 

It was one of the first places to see peaceful protests against President Bashar Assad’s rule, and fought off attempts to retake it by government fires as the conflict escalated into civil war. 

The evacuation would start Friday and last for two or three days, according to the head of the biggest rebel groups in Daraya. The deal would end one of the longest stand-offs in the five-year history.



Photo Credit: Xinhua News Agency/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Fake Black Radio Caller Sparks Controversy]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 10:19:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Dwayne-from-Swedesboro1.jpg

A white producer at the Philadelphia sports talk station 97.5 The Fanatic has sparked controversy after he created a black persona based on stereotypes to call into the station.

"Dwayne from Swedesboro" was a regular caller for the Mike Missanelli Show. The character, who claimed to be an African American man, often talked about his love for white women as well as his fear of having illegitimate children. He even had a Twitter account with a black man in the profile picture.

A recent report from Crossing Broad however reveals that "Dwayne from Swedesboro," was actually Pat Egan, a white producer at 97.5.

“I think the fact that it was a young white kid doing sort of like the stereotype of a black guy made it a lot worse and sort of just like piled on whatever that initial shock was,” said Kyle Scott, a blogger for Crossing Broad who wrote the story.

In a series of tweets, Egan seemed to admit to creating the character as an "exact opposite" of himself.

News that the character was fake sparked a mixed reaction with some criticizing the character’s stereotypical nature.

“It just seems that there are so many racial issues going on in the country,” said Tony Marchionne of Collingswood, New Jersey. “Why do we continue to promote these stereotypes?”

Some fans of the show didn’t find the character offensive, however, and instead believed he was simply entertaining.

“I didn’t take it as being extremely racial at all,” said Dave Whitman of Lansdale. “I kind of saw it more as just kind of a crazy, funny guy creating a reason to talk.”

Mike Missanelli directly addressed the controversy on his show Tuesday.

“The only thing I can do is tell you that I wasn’t in on it and I had no idea about it,” he said. “If you don’t want to believe that, that’s your choice. I could tell you first hand that had I known this was a fake I would have shut it down immediately because I would’ve been sensitive to the racial undertones of it.”

It’s unclear whether anyone at the radio station will be disciplined for the character. NBC10 reached out to 97.5 for comment but we have not yet heard back. 

The Philadelphia Business Journal also reports Josh Innes, a radio host on Sportsradio 94 WIP, was fired for his comments on the controversy.

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<![CDATA[Trooper Admits Assaulting Driver]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 16:07:07 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/214*120/Andrew+Monaco+Beating.png

A New Hampshire state trooper caught on our TV helicopter camera beating up a man after a police chase apologized and was sentenced for his actions after entering a plea deal Thursday.

The assault was caught on camera at the end of a high speed police chase through two states where the suspect, Richard Simone, appeared to be surrendering peacefully, when then-New Hampshire State Police Trooper Andrew Monaco and Massachusetts State Police Trooper Joseph Flynn began striking him.

"I severely regret my actions and cannot explain why I engaged in actions I had always promised myself I wouldn't do," Monaco said in court.

Monaco, now resigned from his job as a state trooper, pleaded guilty, saying his actions were not consistent with his training.

"I was unable to separate the events that occurred during the pursuit from my conduct during the arrest," Monaco said.

As part of the plea deal, Monaco got a one year suspended sentence, meaning he will not serve any time in jail as long as he doesn't violate the terms of his probation -- including anger management classes, community service, and no longer serving as a law enforcement officer.

"Officers working in law enforcement are and must be held to a high standard of conduct in every interaction with public particularly in moments of high stress," New Hampshire Attorney General Joseph Foster said.

But Simone's attorney expressed his client's "frustration" with what he called a double standard for those who wear a police uniform.

"The message that's being sent is that there are two sets of rules by letting this officer walk out with what he feels is a little more than a slap on the wrist," Simone's attorney Joe Comenzo said.

Foster says while he wrestled with the plea deal sentence, he feels it's more than appropriate for simple assault charges.

"Losing one's chosen profession is not typically an outcome of a plea to simple assault and therefore represents severe punishment on its own," he said.

Massachusetts Trooper Flynn still faces assault charges in this case, and as part of his plea deal, Monaco is expected to testify against him.



Photo Credit: New Hampshire State Police/necn]]>
<![CDATA[Backlash for #StopWhitePeople Class]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 10:21:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/textbook-GettyImages-543195795.jpg

SUNY Binghamton is catching flak for offering a "StopWhitePeople2K16" seminar for its residential assistants.

Hundreds of Twitter and Facebook users began blasting the state university after the Binghamton Review, a conservative student publication at the university, posted the description for the training course titled "#StopWhitePeople2K16."

The course description states that "the premise of this session is to help others take the next steps in understanding diversity, privilege, and the society we function in."

In a letter posted to the university's website on Wednesday, Vice President of Student Affairs Brian Rose said that the course description was borrowed from a Twitter hashtag that is often used ironically.

He added that he had "no indication that this particular program was inconsistent with the respectful environment we hope to support and sustain."

A university spokesman said that the curriculum for the one-time course was developed for students by students. The spokesman said that while many at the university felt the name of the session was chosen poorly, the actual course was not "anti-white" and "represented a respectful open dialogue among participants."

Still, the title of the course quickly began circulating on social media and was picked up by several conservative news outlets. Social media users across the country, meanwhile, accused the university of racism.

Some posting to the university's Facebook page to call out the course.

"Apparently "Don't Be White at This School" should be your #1 hack. This school is an F'in joke," wrote one Facebook user.

And on Twitter, hundreds of people from across the country used the course's description as a hashtag as they lambasted the course.



Photo Credit: Getty Images/Blend Images
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<![CDATA[Portrait Honors Nation's Oldest Living Veteran]]> Thu, 25 Aug 2016 13:50:02 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_overtonportrait0825_1920x1080.jpg An artist known for painting more than 300 portraits of fallen soldiers presented a portrait to the nation's oldest living veteran, Richard Overton of Austin, who turned 110 in May.

Photo Credit: KXAN]]>