<![CDATA[NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth - Top Stories]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC+5-KXAS+Logo+for+Google+News.png NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth http://www.nbcdfw.com en-us Sat, 30 May 2015 11:52:47 -0500 Sat, 30 May 2015 11:52:47 -0500 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Heavy Rain, Flooding Reported in North Texas]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 11:38:29 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Little+Elm+Flooding.jpg

Rain moved across North Texas once again on Saturday morning flooding roads and adding to the already rising lake and creek levels.

For the second day in a row, flash flood warnings were activated for many of the bigger counties including Dallas, Tarrant, Denton and Collin.

From Dallas to Lewisville, Denton and beyond, police departments, cities and residents reported high water and road closures.

People who live along Singleton Boulevard in West Dallas are watching the weather very closely after Dallas Police officers drove through the neighborhood on Friday night urging residents to evacuate.

Some waited until Saturday morning.

"We knew it was going to flood since we stayed in front of the little river so we just left," said Juanita Hernandez.

Garland, one of the hardest hit areas, has seen 9 inches of rain fall in the last two days.

And in Dallas about 6 inches fell as of Saturday morning. The rain is not a welcomed sight for many in Dallas County after flooding blocked Loop 12 under Interstate 30 overpass on Friday. That area is expected to be closed well into next week.

In Lewisvlle John Beachman who has lived by Timber Creek since 2001 said 8 feet of his property is now under water.  

President Barack Obama signed a disaster declaration amid the severe weather, offering federal funding to affected people in Harris, Hays and Van Zandt counties, the White House said in a statement early Saturday. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott had earlier requested a presidential disaster declaration to get federal help for affected counties.

Two Dead in North Texas Flooding

Two North Texas deaths have been blamed on the flooding. 

Mesquite Fire Department Capt. Kelly Turner said a man's body was found early Friday morning after his truck had been swept into a culvert and submerged.

The Dallas County Medical Examiner's Office identified the flood victim as 47-year-old John Jeffrey Usfrey.

Turner said people stranded on two cars that were also swept off the road told responders about the truck. He said the truck had been underwater for some time before they found it, and that authorities believe the man, whose name has not been released, was alone in the vehicle.

In Dallas, police said Friday afternoon the body of a man was found near California Crossing and Northwest Highway as flood waters receded. Police did not release the man's identity, but did say he was not found in a vehicle.

Recent storms are being blamed for killing seven people in Oklahoma and at least 23 in Texas, where 13 remain missing or unaccounted for. 

Dallas County

Flooding has blocked a busy highway west of Downtown Dallas, causing major traffic delays in both directions.

Overnight rain caused water to pool on Loop 12, under the Interstate 30 overpass Friday morning, trapping commuters for several hours. Some of the drivers said they had been there since 5 or 6 a.m.

Texas Department of Transportation spokesman Tony Hartzel said a crane was brought in after 11 a.m. to remove a section of median so that motorists trapped in the southbound lanes could get off the roadway. The northbound lane had already been cleared.

He said the southbound lanes were more challenging because streets where people could have exited were flooded as well. He said they think that the area where the road usually drains to flooded as well, so there was nowhere for the water to go.

 

On Friday an NBC 5 photographer captured video of a driver maneuvering around a police cruiser beneath an overpass on Northwest Highway early Friday and heading directly into high water.

Rescue crews used a raft to help that driver to safety after the SUV gave way to the water.

"We have a sincere plea with our drivers. If you see a barricade or a sign, please do not try to drive through that area," said Sana Syed, City of Dallas spokesperson.

Tarik Hawkins told NBC News he was became stranded while trying to drive to work. He said it took him two hours to drive about a mile and described the situation on the road as "very chaotic."

"Right off I-35, there has to be 50 or 60 cars stranded," he said.



Photo Credit: Casey Brezovsky
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<![CDATA[Car Drives Off Heliport at Dallas Convention Center]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 11:35:33 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Dallas+Convention+Center+Accient.jpg

One person is in critical condition after an overnight crash.

Dallas Police Tweeted the person was injured after driving a car off the heliport at the Kay Bailey Convention Center in Dallas.

The crash happened just after midnight. Police tell NBC 5 a 28-year-old man rammed the helipad barricade at the convention center before plunging over the side.

Witnesses tell police, the driver of the car also rammed the security gate with his vehicle multiple times before the crash.

Video from NBC 5 shows a red sedan with extensive front end damage. 



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Hastert Resigns From College Board]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 08:03:56 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/wheaton-college-hastert-cen.jpg

Former U.S. House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert has resigned from the board of the Christian school's public policy and government center that bears his name, a Wheaton College spokesperson said.

The resignation was the latest fallout from a federal indictment accusing Hastert of violating banking laws. The indictment alleges Hastert was paying hush money to keep someone silent about "prior misconduct."

A federal law enforcement official on Friday afternoon told NBC News the misconduct involved an alleged sexual relationship between Hastert and a former male student at the school.

Wheaton College is home to the J. Dennis Hastert Center for Economics, Government and Public Policy. The center was established in 2007, when Hastert stepped down from Congress after eight years as speaker.

A college spokewoman told the Chicago Tribune that no decisions had been made Friday about possible changes to the center's name or programming.

Hastert's name was removed Thursday from the Washington, D.C. lobbying and law firm where he worked, and a spokesperson there said Hastert had resigned.



Photo Credit: NBC Chicago]]>
<![CDATA[NBC 5 Forecast: Flood Threat Continues]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 06:02:41 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/bj+wx.jpg

Today will begin with another round of rain and storms ... and the possibility of more flooding. A few lingering showers and storms will be possible this afternoon too ... but after that, we can look forward to a stretch of dry weather! It won't be dry for just a few hours either! The forecast looks dry all the way through the end of next week!

7 DAY FORECAST:

TODAY:  FLASH FLOOD WATCH IN EFFECT UNTIL NOON.  Widespread AM rain and storms. Mostly cloudy with isolated PM showers and storms. High: 78.  Wind: N 5-10 mph.

TONIGHT:  Isolated evening showers and storms, then mostly cloudy. Low: 62. Wind: N 5-10 mph.

SUNDAY:  Mostly cloudy AM, decreasing clouds PM. High: 80.  Wind: N/NE 5-10 mph.

MONDAY:  Mostly sunny and warm.  Low: 63.  High: 82.  Wind: E/SE 5-10 mph.

TUESDAY:  Mostly sunny and warm.  Low: 64.  High: 85.  Wind: SE 5-10 mph.

WEDNESDAY:  Mostly sunny and warm.  Low: 69.  High: 86.  Wind: SE 10-15 mph.

THURSDAY:  Partly cloudy and warm.  Low: 70.  High: 87.  Wind: SE 10-15 mph.

FRIDAY:  Partly cloudy and warm.  Low: 71.  High: 87.  Wind: SE 5-10 mph.



Photo Credit: Meteorologist Brian James
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<![CDATA[Flooding Reported Across North Texas ]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 08:58:37 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/New+First+Alert+Radar+Image.jpg

Forecasters warned that yet another series of thunderstorms was set to pummel North and Central Texas early Saturday morning, a day after flood waters submerged Texas highways and threatened homes across the already storm-damaged state.

A squall line stalled over Dallas overnight Thursday, dropping record-setting rainfall and triggering a Flash Flood Emergency in North Texas. The most recent rain added to the damage inflicted by thunderstorms that have killed at least 23 people statewide, including two overnight in North Texas, and left 13 missing.

The rain seeped into homes and stranded hundreds of drivers across the Metroplex, many of whom lingered along Dallas' Loop 12 for six hours Friday morning after being gridlocked by high water and abandoned vehicles.

Overnight, Dallas Fire-Rescue crews responded to more than 270 calls that included trapped vehicles and crashes, authorities said.

The Colorado River could crest in Wharton Saturday, causing major flooding in the community 60 miles southwest of Houston, forecasters said.

President Barack Obama signed a disaster declaration amid the severe weather, offering federal funding to affected people in Harris, Hays and Van Zandt counties, the White House said in a statement early Saturday. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott had earlier requested a presidential disaster declaration to get federal help for affected counties.

Two Dead in Overnight Flooding

Mesquite Fire Department Capt. Kelly Turner said a man's body was found early Friday morning after his truck had been swept into a culvert and submerged.

The Dallas County Medical Examiner's Office identified the flood victim as 47-year-old John Jeffrey Usfrey.

Turner said people stranded on two cars that were also swept off the road told responders about the truck. He said the truck had been underwater for some time before they found it, and that authorities believe the man, whose name has not been released, was alone in the vehicle.

In Dallas, police said Friday afternoon the body of a man was found near California Crossing and Northwest Highway as flood waters receded. Police did not release the man's identity, but did say he was not found in a vehicle.

Recent storms are being blamed for killing seven people in Oklahoma and at least 23 in Texas, where 13 remain missing or unaccounted for.

Rainfall Sets New Record

Thursday's storm, which dropped nearly five inches of rain overnight at Dallas Love Field and more than two inches elsewhere around the Metroplex, helped set a record for the wettest May in Dallas-Fort Worth history.

The previous record for May rainfall was set in 1982 at 13.66 inches and was eclipsed at midnight when 13.87 inches had been recorded for the month. By 8 a.m., the total rose to 16.07 inches; 8.62 inches received in the last week alone.

According to The National Weather Service in Fort Worth, those 16 inches of rainfall amount to more than 35 trillion gallons of rain. 

The wettest month ever recorded in North Texas goes all the way back to April 1922 where 17.64 inches were recorded.  With more rain expected Friday night and into Saturday, shattering that record remains a possibility.

Dallas County

Flooding has blocked a busy highway west of Downtown Dallas, causing major traffic delays in both directions.

Overnight rain caused water to pool on Loop 12, under the Interstate 30 overpass Friday morning, trapping commuters for several hours. Some of the drivers said they had been there since 5 or 6 a.m.

Texas Department of Transportation spokesman Tony Hartzel said a crane was brought in after 11 a.m. to remove a section of median so that motorists trapped in the southbound lanes could get off the roadway. The northbound lane had already been cleared.

He said the southbound lanes were more challenging because streets where people could have exited were flooded as well. He said they think that the area where the road usually drains to flooded as well, so there was nowhere for the water to go.

At 10:20 a.m., Dallas Fire-Rescue spokesman Jason Evans said they had received more than 270 calls for help, most of which were for cars stranded in high water.  Evans added there were about 70 crashes reported.

"Obviously 'turn around don’t drown' is the phrase of the day," Evans said in a news release. "In addition to turning around, we would encourage drivers to map out at least two alternate routes to where they’re going, that way they don’t feel pressured to put themselves at risk. Better to be late to something than to put yourself in a situation where you just don’t get there at all."

Evans also reminded drivers that if they see an emergency vehicle blocking a roadway, it's there for a reason and to not drive around it.

"While not seeing a warning sign, for high water, can be understood; what’s inexcusable is drivers who drive around emergency and service vehicles to drive into the same high waters from which we are rescuing people," Evans said.

An NBC 5 photographer captured video of a driver maneuvering around a police cruiser beneath an overpass on Northwest Highway early Friday and heading directly into high water.

Rescue crews used a raft to help that driver to safety after the SUV gave way to the water.

"We have a sincere plea with our drivers. If you see a barricade or a sign, please do not try to drive through that area," said Sana Syed, City of Dallas spokesperson.

Tarik Hawkins told NBC News he was became stranded while trying to drive to work. He said it took him two hours to drive about a mile and described the situation on the road as "very chaotic."

"Right off I-35, there has to be 50 or 60 cars stranded," he said.

Israel Ramos, a 32-year-old tower inspector, said there was three inches of water inside his home and the street outside resembled "a river." He told NBC News that his neighbor called police when he saw an SUV floating down the street with a person inside.

The American Red Cross opened a shelter at the Tony Shotwell Life Center in Grand Prairie, according to spokeswoman Anita Foster. Supplies should arrive at the center at about 8 a.m.

Tarrant County

Arlington police said they blocked East Abram Street near Texas 360 because of major flooding over the roadway.

Authorities also received high-water calls on Interstate 30 near Oakland Boulevard and University Drive, 7200 Wichita Street and Trinity Boulevard near Precinct Line Road.

An NBC 5 viewer reported that Walnut Creek in Mansfield is swollen and pushing toward residential areas. Nearby Oliver Nature Park is also reportedly under water and closed.

Johnson County

Officials have evacuated or rescued about 19 people, according to Johnson County Emergency Management Coordinator Jamie Moore, but many more could be trapped in their homes.

"This is our fourth major flooding since April 26," he said. "We're doing rescues and having homes that are inundated with water."

About 45 roads are closed in the county due to flooding.

Parker County

Authorities said the Brazos River in Parker County is rising again due to new rain and the opening of two flood gates upstream at Possum Kingdom Lake.

County emergency management spokesman Joel Kertok said Friday that the river had risen above flood stage again after dropping below it Thursday night.

On Thursday, water was lapping at the foundations of 11 homes as the river crested at 23.58 feet before dropping to about 20 feet. The flood stage is at 21 feet. The level rose Friday to 21.4 feet and was expected to rise to nearly 27 feet Saturday.

Residents of about 250 homes near the river, most in the Horseshoe Bend community, were asked to voluntarily evacuate.

"The river is already above flood stage and will continue to rise through today and tomorrow," county emergency management coordinator George Teague said. "This situation will get worse before it gets better."

Flights Impacted

As of 10 a.m., officials reported that 44 flights into Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport had been canceled; 56 arrivals were delayed. Thirteen flights departing from the airport were canceled and 52 more delayed.

One of D/FW Airport's runways closed temporarily after a storm drain crews were repairing to address a nearby sinkhole collapsed. Officials said they expect the closure to have minimal impact on flights.

Nineteen flights departing from Dallas Love Field were delayed and 19 more canceled. Eighteen flights into the airport were delayed and 18 more canceled.

Dallas Love Field also experienced a power outage caused by a surge overnight, according to airport official Jose Torres. Power has since been restored.


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<![CDATA[Grapevine Roads Closed, Lake Expected to Top Spillway]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 22:55:12 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/c248d4aae8b24db293bf67ae59bec76a.jpg

The City of Grapevine is closing several roads, parks and boat ramps over concerns Lake Grapevine will rise above the spillway. 

  • Fairway Drive, per the US Army Corps of Engineers, was closed Friday afternoon in anticipation of the lake reaching the spillway level of 560 feet which has not occurred since 1990.  This includes the closure of the Grapevine Golf Course and the Grapevine Concourse;
  • Dove Road in the vicinity of Silvercrest Lane was closed Friday evening. When water goes over the road at this location, it will remain closed until flood conditions cease;
  • All boat ramps and lake parks are closed.

The closures were put in place Friday and will remain in place until roads are determined to be safe to pass.

Additionally, officials are "strongly discouraging" boating activities on Lake Grapevine for the next several days due to rising water levels, displaced wildlife and submerged objects that could cause damage to boats and boaters.

Thursday's storm, which dropped nearly five inches of rain overnight at Dallas Love Field and more than two inches elsewhere around the Metroplex, helped set a record for the wettest May in Dallas-Fort Worth history.

The previous record for May rainfall was set in 1982 at 13.66 inches and was eclipsed at midnight when 13.87 inches had been recorded for the month. By 8 a.m., the total rose to 16.07 inches; 8.62 inches received in the last week alone.

The wettest month ever recorded in North Texas goes all the way back to April 1922 where 17.64 inches were recorded.  With more rain expected Friday night and into Saturday, shattering that record remains a possibility.

Midway Road was closed at Midway Court as well, about a quarter of a mile south from Paradise Cove, a wedding and special events venue.

On Thursday, NBC 5 highlighted the plight of owner Tina Nealy, who was busy putting sandbags in place along the perimeter of the events center.

Nealy watched as Lake Grapevine swallowed the gazebo which has played host to wedding ceremonies for years.

"Well, I mean, this is my baby," Nealy said Thursday, fighting back tears. "I designed all of that. So, I mean, it's hard."

Friday morning Nealy returned to a heavy dose of reality – the lake water had risen to the point that her business' parking lot was under water, as was about 200 yards of Midway Road leading up to her property.

However, hope was not lost.

Dozens of people began to show up, as well.

"I saw a bunch of trucks," Nealy said Friday night. "And I thought they were people just coming to look and see the water, as so many have done. And then I realized that it was people that were there to help."

"We moved everything needed for three weddings at Paradise Cove in two hours over a flooded parking lot because of, just, community," Nealy said. "Community, all over. Not just [Grapevine] but all over the Metroplex. People that I didn't even know."

Nealy said she could not give enough thanks to the volunteers who helped to make sure that the weddings would still be a possibility – albeit in other venues, provided by friends and competitors.

"Anybody out there that I did not get to shake your hand or thank you, thank you so much," Nealy said. "Because it was huge. People I didn't even know. Neighbors… I didn't know half the people that were here."



Photo Credit: Mike Mckenna]]>
<![CDATA[Priest Convicted of Sexually Assaulting Woman]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 02:17:54 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/220*120/05.29.15_Marcelo-De-Jesumaria.JPG

A Catholic priest was found guilty Friday in federal court of sexually assaulting a woman aboard a flight from Philadelphia to LAX.

A federal jury found Father Marcelo De Jesumaria, who is based out of Arrowhead, California, guilty of abusive sexual contact on the US Airways flight to Los Angeles last August.

The FBI told the NBC4 I-Team that a female passenger, identified in legal documents only as "BD," woke up during the flight to find the priest’s "hands on her breast, groin, and buttocks."

De Jesumaria had previously served in the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Bernardino, but was removed from the ministry in November when the allegations against him surfaced, the diocese said in an emailed statement. He is a member of the Chicago-based Congregation of the Resurrection, which will determine his future in the priesthood, the statement said.

Last year, the NBC4 I-Team exposed the growing problem of sexual assaults reported aboard airplanes. The FBI told NBC4 that most of the assaults happen on red-eye flights when the cabin is dark and the victims are asleep or dozing off.

The FBI urges anyone who is assaulted aboard a plane to immediately report it to the flight crew while still in the air.

"Criminal activity aboard an aircraft that is reported several days or weeks after an incident occurs presents greater challenges for investigators," said FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller.

In the US Airways incident, FBI agents met De Jesumaria at the gate, when the plane landed last August. They gathered enough evidence to indict him in October.

Friday, after a three-day trial in federal court, a jury found De Jesumaria guilty of abusive sexual contact, which is defined as "the intentional touching… of the groin, breast, inner thigh or buttocks of any person with the intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, degrade and arouse."

De Jesumaria will be sentenced Aug. 24. He faces a two-year statutory maximum sentence.

NBC4 asked the Diocese of San Bernardino for comment and they emailed this statement:

"The Diocese of San Bernardino considers the actions alleged of Father De Jesumaria in the federal indictment to be sinful and unlawful. We removed him from ministry in the diocese immediately after we became aware of this allegation in November and we are deeply regretful of any harm that may have occurred as a result of his actions. He belongs to a Chicago-based religious order, the Congregation of the Resurrection, that will determine the future of his priesthood."

]]>
<![CDATA[Waist-Deep Water Floods Grand Prairie Apartments]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 19:27:25 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/215*120/arlington+high+water+052915.JPG

The American Red Cross is assisting dozens of people in Grand Prairie, after feet of water rushed up into their apartments early Friday.

A creek near the Fox Hollow apartments flooded badly, causing the water to rapidly rise over the sandbags the complex had laid out.

Grand Prairie firefighters went door-to-door asking residents to evacuate.

"When I got down here the water was up to [my waist]," said Angelle Gossom, who lives at the complex. "I'm not a very tall person, but that's extremely high water."

The water made its way into many first floor apartments. After it receded late Friday morning, residents came back to find most of their furniture, floors and appliances waterlogged.

Though not quite to this extent, residents say they've had to deal with water in their parking lots and homes several times this spring.

"It's very frustrating that nothing is really happening," said Gossom. "It's disheartening and it's just dangerous."

Signs have been put up in one section of the complex, warning residents that they're in a flood zone and that their vehicles could be flooded if they park them there.

A city spokesperson tells NBC 5 it's difficult to mitigate episodes like these when the area is having record rainfall. They say they continue to monitor flood prone areas and are trying to work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to control releases from area reservoirs, so as not to add to the problem.

City employees were sent out to the complex Friday morning to inspect the units. Officials say that will allow the apartment managers to begin making repairs so residents won't be displaced for as long.

The Red Cross opened a shelter for those affected at the Tony Shotwell Life Center in Grand Prairie. They also have a response team that will visit the complex to determine the various needs and help the people who live there.

Water Carries SUV onto Arlington Homeowner's Yard

High and fast-moving water early Friday carried an SUV into an Arlington woman's yard.

Sue Jones lives on Doty Lane in South Arlington, which backs right up to Rush Creek. Heavy rains sent the creek surging out of its bed and into Jones' and her neighbors' yards.

Although water did not get inside her house, it did reach her garage.

As she watched the water rise, Jones noticed lights in her yard and realized an SUV was sitting there with water nearly up to its hood.  She called 911 immediately.

"Police and fire came out, got to the car, and no one was in it," said Jones. "I just pray that whoever was in it got out and they're safe."

It's not clear where the SUV came from.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Homes Flooded, People Stuck in Johnson County]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 18:15:29 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/218*120/joco+ellis+flood.JPG

In Johnson County, officials have evacuated or rescued about 19 people, according to Johnson County Emergency Management Coordinator Jamie Moore, but many more could be trapped in their homes.

"This is our fourth major flooding since April 26," he said. "We're doing rescues and having homes that are inundated with water."

Several drivers needed to be pulled from their cars, including Jeremiah Carter. The National Guard pulled him out.

“The current got too high over here, it slung the back end of the jeep sideways, and started pulling it in the ditch,” said Carter

About 45 roads are closed in the county due to flooding.

One major problem area was Gardega Road and County Road 805.

Buffalo Creek rose above the bridge, so even if people could get out of their homes, they could not get down the road.

Tracy Plemons lives on Gardega, and as soon as the water went down, she and her grandson, AJ, went to get a horse trailer. Earlier, they could not get to their horse and ponies because their yard was flooded.

“Earlier they were trying to swim to get to dry ground,” said AJ Salazer of Cleburne.

So when the water receded, they went to try and find them, to take them to higher ground. They were able to rescue all but one, who they think is way back in a field.

“They said rain again tonight so we had to come and get them,” said Tracy Plemons.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Snake Bites Increasing with More North Texas Rain]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 22:57:30 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/214*120/snake+hand.JPG

North Texas doctors say with all the rain and flooding forcing wild animals out of their natural habitats, they are seeing a spike in snake bites this spring.

On average Children's Health in Dallas sees about a dozen snake bites in a year, but just in the last two weeks they have treated six snake bite victims.

One snake bite victim is a third grader bitten while on the playground outside Timber Creek Elementary School in Flower Mound.

"Saw something green and looked more closer and it was a snake," said the Timber Creek student, Skyler Brown. "I tried moving the snake with the wood chip, and it just bit me."

Skyler's hand is still swollen after the bite from a copperhead snake Thursday during recess.

"It started bleeding and I [shook] my hand and it made it worse, so then I ran to my teacher and they made everyone get off the playground," Skyler said.

The Lewisville Independent School District canceled all outdoor activities as a result, telling NBC 5 in a statement Friday:

"The campus and the district will continue to monitor the weather and will evaluate at that time if outdoor activities will continue during the remaining days of this school year. "

Now, the third grader is among the half-dozen snake bites seen at Children's Health in just the last 12 days.

"I'm not too surprised by that just because of the increased rain and flooding that we're experiencing. The snakes are attracted to safe, dry ground," said Dr. Victoria Yang, with Children's Health.

Owner and founder 911 Wildlife Bonnie Bradshaw, which has a contract with North Texas and Houston to address wildlife problems, said her business is getting a lot of calls.

“We are getting people panicking and hysterical just from seeing the snakes because they see them in their yards,” Bradshaw said. She added that most are nonpoisonous, but people are still alarmed by them because they grow four to six feet.

Bradshaw also advised people not to make matters worse by trying to kill them.

“We tell people do not try to kill the snakes by throwing stuff at them because if it feels threatened, the snake will try to defend itself,” Bradshaw said. “The other thing we tell people not to do is put out mothballs. One of the main ingredients is a carcinogen and with all the flooding, it gets into streams and kill fish and frogs.”

Skyler's hand is starting to get back to normal after the swelling.

"When the snake bit me it felt like, basically, like a bee stinging," he said.

The pain is going away, too. But the 10-year-old said he isn't afraid of snakes.

"Not really," he said. "Because now I know what those look like and I'm gonna stay away from those."

Medical professionals say anyone bitten by a snake should keep the wound elevated and immediately go to the emergency room.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Ex-House Speaker Hastert Indicted]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 06:16:57 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Dennis-Hastert1.jpg

Former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert made regular bank withdrawals below a limit that would require reporting and then lied to federal officials when asked about those withdrawals, according to a federal indictment handed down Thursday.

The Department of Justice and IRS allege Hastert, 73, withdrew $1.7 million from various banks between 2010 to 2014 and provided the funds to an unnamed person "to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct."

The indictment indicates the Illinois Republican promised "Individual A," a resident of Yorkville, Illinois, a total of $3.5 million for "prior misconduct" against that person. The indictment does not describe the misconduct Hastert was trying to conceal.

Hastert's withdrawals over the four years were in increments less than $10,000 each in an effort to evade the filing of "Currency Transaction Reports" required by banks and avoid detection by the IRS, an act known as "restructuring."

The withdrawals spurred the FBI and IRS to begin investigating whether Hastert was trying to avoid reporting requirements for bank transactions or if the former speaker was a victim of an extortion scheme, according to court documents.

When questioned by the FBI last December, Hastert said, "Yeah . . . I kept the cash. That’s what I’m doing," when in fact he was handing the money over to someone else, the indictment alleged. 

If convicted, Hastert faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

A spokesperson with the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago told NBC Chicago that a judge has not yet been assigned to the case and that Hastert is not likely to appear in court until next week.

"I am speechless. He is my friend, has been my friend [and] will always be my friend," said Illinois House Republican Leader Tom Cross.

Hastert was a history teacher and coach in Yorkville when Cross was his high school student, and Hastert recruited Cross into the Republican Party and into politics. Hastert served as the Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1999 to 2007 before joining the Washington, D.C., lobbying and law firm of Dickstein Shaprio as a senior advisor.

A spokesman for Dickstein Shapiro says that the former House speaker has resigned, The Associated Press reported. 

The website for Dickstein Shapiro LLC had Hastert's biography as a "featured attorney" as late as Thursday afternoon, but Hastert's contact details appeared to have been removed from the website hours later.



Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla, Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Woman Accused in Fatal Road Rage]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 05:39:28 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/ducati+motorcycle+alleged+road+rage.JPG

A woman was under arrest Friday, accused of murder for striking and running over a motorcyclist on a busy San Diego highway at rush hour.

Imperial Beach resident Darla Renee Jackson, 26, was driving a black Nissan Altima northbound on Interstate 5 near E Street in Chula Vista at around 5:30 p.m. Thursday.

California Highway Patrol (CHP) officers say Jackson and a man on a red Ducati motorcycle got into some type of disagreement.

After the two drivers transitioned from I-5 to eastbound State Route 54 and passed National City Boulevard, Jackson hit the Ducati from behind and ran over the rider, CHP officers say.

The motorcyclist — identified by friends as 39-year-old Zachary Buob — died about an hour later at a hospital. A Santee resident, Buob was an active duty chief petty officer in the Navy's special operations.

Jackson was arrested and now faces one count of murder in what officers are calling a road rage incident. She was booked into Las Colinas Detention and Re-entry Facility and is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

The crash caused a Sig Alert for more than two-and-a-half along SR-54 in the middle of a very busy evening commute. Investigators are in the process of tracking down drivers who may have witnessed the act of road rage from start to finish.

Anyone who may have seen anything involving these two vehicles should contact the CHP investigator at (619) 220-5492.

Describing the victim, friend Kathryn Cramer said Buob served in the military for more than 20 years and completed many tours overseas.

"He was so strong but his heart was so sweet," she said in an email. "He was truly one of the 'good guys' and my heart is broken. My prayers are with his Mom and Dad and family. He loved them so much."

Another good friend, Tim James, told NBC 7 Buob worked as an elite special boat operator, but motorcycles and trucks were his passion — only overshadowed by his love for family and friends.

"Zach was energetic, intelligent and a superb leader. He would light up any room he entered with his friendliness and wittiness...a heart of gold," said James in an email.

CHP Officer Jake Sanchez warned drivers Friday to not let road rage ever escalate to such a deadly point. He warned drivers not to pick fights with others on the roadway because you don't know what that person may be going through or if that person could be capable of something like this.


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<![CDATA[More Flooding Surrounds Lake Lewisville]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 18:48:46 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Denton-Flooding.gif

In just a matter of hours, Highland Village Road went from dry to a part of the lake near Interstate 35E.

Crews had to shut down the road Friday morning near the interstate due to significant water over the stretch from overnight rains.

Neighbors said they had seen some water on the road during past flood events, but Friday's was the worst many had encountered yet.

Some also expressed concern that those waters would continue to rise and put homes nearby at risk with more storms possible this weekend.

Denton County Emergency Management said Friday that they are watching areas around the lakes closely for flooding issues right now, and they urged residents to sign up for emergency alert systems like Code Red to stay informed of closures.

Crews on I-35E had to shut down the Garden Ridge and Farm-to-Market Road 407 exits on the southbound side as well Friday due to water on the roads.

FM 407 was eventually reopened to traffic, and the 35Express crew said they plan to continue work there this weekend as the FM 407 bridge will be demolished.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Flier Singles Out African-Americans]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 20:14:56 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/05-29-15_Toscana-Flier-Controversy.jpg

Controversy is shaking up a Southern California apartment complex after a flier appeared in community elevators specifically asking African-American residents to speak quietly and to turn down music levels at night.

The fliers were posted in at least two of the elevators at the Toscana Apartments, located near the campus of University of California, Irvine, and advised and reminded residents about the appropriate noise levels, citing several recent complaints.

And, at the bottom left, this:

"We would like to remind our African-American residents to keep conversation volume down and reduce music levels between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m.”

The complex is located about a mile from the UC Irvine campus, many students live at this complex.

"I definitely feel uncomfortable here, I don't feel safe here,” one resident, who did not want to be identified by name, told NBC4.

The flier ends by thanking residents for their cooperation and is signed as if it is from Toscana’s management. It includes the actual address and phone number to Equity Residential, the company which manages the complex.

"I want the lease cut off, I don't feel comfortable here, I don't want to be a part of this community and obviously the apartment complex doesn't want us to be here either," the resident NBC Los Angeles interviewed said.

The regional manager for Equity Residential, Mary Linder, categorically denied any involvement.

"The flier is a fake. No one from Equity, not any of our employees or Equity Residential had anything to do with the creation or the distribution. We're outraged with the content and we are investigating it," Linder said.

Still, some residents remain infuriated.

"This is what happens, they try to deny it and they try make it private and try to talk to us and try to deal with it, they send cops and security to intimidate and try to stifle us," a resident who asked to be identified as DD said.

Irvine police did visit the complex Friday, mostly hearing residents concerns.

"(I’m) really surprised,” resident Christine, who asked to be identified by her first name, said. “I think it's horrifying that someone would write specifically about one culture and point that out."

]]>
<![CDATA[Boehner, Colleagues React to Hastert Allegations]]> Sat, 30 May 2015 04:46:31 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Dennis-Hastert-1981.jpg

Former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert's old school employer, current House Speaker John Boehner and family member are speaking out after the federal government charged Hastert with allegedly evading banking rules and lying to the FBI.

"The Denny I served with worked hard on behalf of his constituents and the country," Boehner said in a statement. "I'm shocked and saddened to learn of these reports."

In a statement, U.S. Senator Mark Kirk said anyone who had ever worked with Hastert is "shocked and confused" by the new developments and that the former speaker "should be afforded, like any other American, his day in court to address these very serious accusations." 

Hastert supported Kirk's campaign for U.S. Senator in 2010.

Officials from the Illinois school district that used to employ Hastert as a teacher and wrestling coach said Friday they have no information regarding the alleged misconduct with which Hastert was charged.

"The District was first made aware of any concerns regarding Mr. Hastert when the federal indictment was released on May 28, 2015," a Yorkville Community Unit School District #115 spokesperson said in a statement to NBC Chicago.

In a Facebook interview with Charles Hastert of Joliet, nephew of Dennis Hastert, the family member said: 

"I don't believe it. Denny has always been honest and clean as they come. He is loved by his family and community."

Federal charges were handed down Thursday against Hastert, accusing him of evading banking rules and lying to the FBI when asked about them. The Department of Justice and IRS allege the 73-year-old made repeated withdrawals from his accounts and handed the cash over to an unnamed person "to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct."

In its statement, Hastert's former school district said it had no knowledge of the alleged misconduct, nor had anyone come forward to report misconduct.

"If requested to do so, the District plans to cooperate fully with the U.S. Attorney's investigation into this matter," the district said. 

A federal law enforcement official on Friday afternoon told NBC News the misconduct involved an alleged sexual relationship between Hastert and a former male student at the school.

Hastert's employment with Yorkville Community Unit School District #115 began in 1965 when he was hired to teach history and coach the wrestling team. Eleven years later, Hastert was named Illinois Coach of the Year after leading Yorkville to state wrestling championship.

He left the district in 1981, shortly after entering politics.


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<![CDATA[Video From NBC 5's Texas Thunder Truck]]> Mon, 25 May 2015 18:21:26 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Texas+THunder+Truck+New+Image+Storms.jpg

Watch video from NBC 5's Texas Thunder Truck, in the player above.

If you do not see video in the player above, the truck is not currently streaming live video.

Follow @TXThunderTruck on Twitter for the latest on location.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Flooding Closes Parks in Plano]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 17:51:28 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/217*120/plano+park+flood+image.JPG

Parts of Collin County are under water and the threat of more rain means the areas will not dry out anytime soon.

On Friday, the parking lot at Bob Woodruff Park was full of people playing the waiting game. Several inches of rain overnight caused Rowlett Creek to jump its banks, turning parks into ponds.

Javier Martinez was one of the many people letting the sight sink in.

"Wow, this all used to be grass and now it's just water. Even the lake got bigger and we're just like, that's pretty crazy. It's mind-blowing really," said Martinez.

Water rose so high it flooded backyards of nearby homes and caused several streets to temporarily close.

Water was flowing above bike paths at Oak Point Park which was also closed because of flooding.

Jim Norton has lived in the area for 20 years. He's one of the homeowners who watched the creek creep into his backyard.

"Never have seen anything like it at all," said Norton. "This is a record flood for Rowlett Creek."

Fortunately for Norton, the water began receding almost as fast as it came in.

Crews with the city of Plano were out checking out the flooding Friday and said they won't know the extent of the damage until parks begin to dry out.

The parks are expected to remain closed for at least the next week.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Mom Chases iPhone Thief After Son, 6, Punched in Face: Cops]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 22:44:03 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/laundromat+chase.jpg

A would-be thief who tried to grab a 22-year-old mother's iPhone at a Bronx laundromat punched the woman's 6-year-old son in the face when the boy stepped in his way as he tried to flee the mother's grasp, authorities said.

The man walked into the laundromat on Boone Avenue in Crotona Park East shortly before 5 a.m. Sunday and tried to sell the woman DVDs. She said she wasn't interested in buying any, and the man grabbed her iPhone, which was charging on a chair next to her, authorities said.

The suspect tried to run off with the phone but the woman grabbed him, trying to keep him there. He managed to break free with the phone and started running toward another exit when the 6-year-old boy stepped in his path.

Police say the suspect punched the young child in the face, knocking him to the ground, before running out to the parking lot. The boy's mother chased the suspect outside and wrestled her iPhone from the suspect before he managed to break free and ran off again.

Surveillance video shows the mother chasing the suspect back and forth across the laundromat (above).

The woman suffered minor injuries in the altercation and her 6-year-old son had facial swelling and lacerations. Both were treated at an area hospital.

"I really can't imagine a grown man punching a 6-year-old in the face," said Luis Rodriguez, a patron at the laundromat. "That's horrible." 



Photo Credit: Handout]]>
<![CDATA[Loop 12 Closed Near I-30 Due to Flooding]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 22:08:23 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/CGLiGLYUsAEx18R.jpg

Dallas city officials say a stretch of Loop 12 between Irving Boulevard and Interstate 30 will be closed for the next several days due to flooding.

Water began pooling along Loop 12 underneath the Interstate 30 overpass overnight Thursday, gridlocking dozens of drivers in both directions for up to six hours between parked cars and rising water.

Texas Department of Transportation spokesman Tony Hartzel said a crane was brought in after 11 a.m. to remove a section of a concrete median so that motorists trapped in the southbound lanes could get off the roadway.

The northbound lane had already been cleared.

He said the southbound lanes were more challenging because streets where people could have exited were flooded as well. He said they think that the area where the road usually drains to flooded as well, so there was nowhere for the water to go.

City of Dallas Public Information Officer Sana Syed said Friday that the city's flood control area was working, there was simply too much water to allow what fell to flow into the Trinity River.

Syed said pumps are being brought to the area that will take the water from the roadway, over the levee and into the Trinity River.

Motorists are encouraged to avoid the area through the weekend.



Photo Credit: Ellen Bryan, NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Denton Co. Leaders Prepare for More Flooding]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 20:58:23 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/203*120/denton+ema+flood+presser.JPG

Due to flooding and the potential for more flooding, Denton County leaders are urging residents to prepare for high water, especially those living near Lakes Lewisville, Ray Roberts and Grapevine.

The area is likely to get several more inches of rain late Friday night into Saturday morning.

As of late Friday afternoon, Denton County reports approximately 40 road closures, mostly auxiliary roads.

Currently, there are about 16 homes isolated, surrounded by water.

"All of the county's lakes are functioning as they should," said U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Lake Manager Rob Jordan.

Lake Lewisville is expected to rise three-fourths of a foot over next 24 hours.

However, Jordan said the spillway at Lake Ray Roberts is their main area of concern.

The spillway level of Lake Ray Roberts is 532 feet. 536 feet is what the lake is expected to reach by tomorrow morning, officials said.

If necessary, the Lake Ray Roberts spillway will be activated for first time ever, according to Jordan.

"At this point the experts are telling me that we're maybe one heavy rainfall event away from [water toppling the spillway]," said Lt. Col. Clay Morgan of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. "A major event would be a 4-inch rain, something like we saw last night over Dallas."

Lake Ray Roberts' watershed had 22.5 inches of rain in May. That's two-thirds of the normal rainfall amount for the year. The lake has been in existence since 1987.

Although they said they do not expect to issue mandatory evacuations, that could change depending on the amount of rainfall overnight.

Jody Gonzalez, Director of Denton County Emergency Services, said any residents living along a Denton County lake who are concerned about rising water, first call your city, or call your county if you live in an unincorporated area. 

Gonzalez discussed how it's a good thing the lakes will rise slowly.

"Those increases will be slight, giving us the opportunity to provide citizens ample warning in the event that elevations do increase," Gonzalez said.

Residents are urged to visit www.dentoncounty.com to get more information, plus, sign up for Code Red emergency system alerts. 

NBC 5's Ben Russell contributed to this report.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Tarrant Co., Grand Prairie Confirm West Nile Samples]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 15:07:24 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/ground-spraying-dfw-generic-01.jpg

Tarrant County Public Health and the City of Grand Prairie have confirmed positive samples of the West Nile virus in mosquito pools.

On Friday, Grand Prairie tweeted positive mosquito samples were confirmed and that they will ground spray in three areas beginning Sunday through Wednesday.

  • Area 1 -- This area is bound by Beatty Dr. and Kirby Creek Dr. on the north, Corn Valley Rd. on the east, S. Carrier Pkwy. and Corn Valley Rd. on the south, and S. Carrier Pkwy. on the west.
  • Area 2 – This area is bound by W. Polo Rd. on the north, Prairie Ln. on the east, Camp Wisdom Rd. on the south, and Kite Rd. and Barn Owl Trail on the west.
  • Area 3 – This area is bound by W. Tarrant Road on the north, N.W. 7th on the east, Dalworth St. on the south, and 161 N. Bound Service Road on the west.

The Dallas County city previously said they will ground spray every Thursday and Friday night, weather permitting, from May through October in neighborhoods testing positive for infected mosquitoes.

Tarrant County officials said their first positive sample of the season was collected in Richland Hills in the 76118 zip code.

Tarrant County officials said 1,043 mosquito samples have been tested at the North Texas Regional Laboratory since seasonal surveillance began on April 1. Last year, TCPH reported its first WNV positive mosquito sample on June 25.

At this time, ground spraying has not been announced by Tarrant County health officials.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Helicopter Rescues Police Officer Trapped in High Water]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 14:02:05 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/sachse-cop-stuck.jpg

A Sachse police officer had to be rescued Friday after his patrol car got stuck in high flood waters.

The officer stopping traffic on Pleasant Valley Road when he got into trouble.

"The officer was on Pleasant Valley Road blocking the road where water had come up just to the south of him,” said Sachse Police Department spokesman Lt. Martin Cassidy. “While he was there the water crested the road just to the north of him, and surrounded him before he could get out."

It took two hours to rescue the officer.

"Wylie swift water rescue was here to try to make the rescue,” said Lt. Cassidy. “The water was moving too quickly for their hover craft. They couldn't get to him."

The officer was finally rescued when the Department of Public Safety brought in their helicopter. They lowered a rope down and hoisted the officer out of the raging flood waters.

The officer was in good health after the rescue.

"He is fine,” said Lt. Cassidy. “He is a little shaken up, a little nervous. He, like I have, lived in the area all his life, and he has never seen the water this high in this area ever."

This was not the only rescue at this location on Friday. A woman had to be rescued from her vehicle as well. The Wylie swift water rescue team was able to get her.




Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Anheuser-Busch Sends Canned Water to Texas, Okla.]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 11:57:02 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-463244716.jpg

An Anheuser Busch plant in northwest Georgia has started canning water instead of beer to help flood victims in Texas and Oklahoma.

Multiple media outlets report the Cartersville plant halted its beer production to produce 50,000 cans of water to distribute to the flooded areas by this weekend.

Cartersville brewery manager Rob Haas told NBC News the brewery has participated in similar initiatives in the past, including during the Northeast's recovery from Superstorm Sandy.

The brewery even has a special white can that it uses for the water.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Eagle Mountain Lake, Lake Bridgeport Closed to Boat Traffic]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 10:43:06 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/eagle+mtn+.jpg

The Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD) says Friday that it has closed Eagle Mountain Lake and Lake Bridgeport to recreational activities, including boat traffic, until further notice.

The closures are a result of inflows created by heavy rainfall in recent days. Wakes created by boaters could potentially flood low-lying homes at both reservoirs.

In addition, rising lake levels and debris could create hazardous conditions for other recreational activities.

TRWD’s staff has been monitoring conditions 24-hours a day since May 11, and will continue to do so until conditions improve. The latest information on the district’s lakes can be found at www.trwd.com/lake-level-blog.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Texas Regulators Warn of Water Seeping Into Gas Tanks]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 09:01:42 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NJ-Gas-Prices.jpg

State regulators in Austin are warning Texas drivers about a potential problem caused by all this rain that could cost thousands of dollars in repairs.

They say that rainwater may be seeping into some underground tanks at gas stations.

"If there is a problem with the tank, there could be some seepage of water because of the dramatic amount of rain we've received over the last few weeks," said Bryan Black, spokesman for the Texas Department of Agriculture.

That's what may have happened at one gas station in the 300 block of Legacy Drive in Plano.

The pumps were shut down early this week after at least six customers reported finding water in their gas tanks.

"My fuel pump is trashed, needs to be replaced. We put the new one in, the car still won't start, and then we started taking gas out of the tank and we have spoiled gas here and water," said customer Kurt Treber.

One North Texas mechanic heard from another customer who filled up there in Sunday.

"I pulled out about seven gallons of water-fuel combination, about five gallons of it was water," said Mike Jamieson, of Mike's Mobile Mechanic.

The store manager promises to cover the cost of repairs for his customers and have the tanks cleaned out and replaced with good gas before the pumps are open again.

"So maybe we have some water going to the tank," said store manager Hani Ramzi. "We don't know exactly what happened, but this [is] what I think."

Jamieson, the mechanic, said after all this rain, it could happen anyway.

"If you just recently got gas, there's a good possibility that you've got water in your gas. If you've got water in your gas, your car's not going to start," he said.

"So it could be happening at some stations. It should not be happening. So if it is, we want to stop it," said Black, with the Department of Agriculture.

You can file a complaint with the Texas Department of Agriculture if you suspect a potential problem where you fill up.



Photo Credit: Getty Images/OJO Images
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<![CDATA[Hastert Received Odd Phone Call During C-SPAN Show]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 16:30:24 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/hastert-cspan.jpg

Video posted to a "MyC-SPAN" account on Thursday of a phone call former House Speaker Dennis Hastert received during an appearance on the network has raised questions as to whether there's any link between the call and the federal charges brought against Hastert.

The Washington Journal episode aired on a Nov. 13, 2014, one week after the midterm elections. The caller identified himself only as "Bruce" from Illinois.

"Hello, Denny," the caller said.

"Do you remember me from Yorkville?" he added, before laughing and hanging up.

"Yeah, go ahead," said Hastert.

"I think he's gone," said C-SPAN host Pedro Echevarria before moving onto the next caller. 

Hastert on Thursday was charged with making regular regular withdrawals from his bank accounts below a limit that would require reporting and then lying to federal officials when asked about those withdrawals. The Department of Justice and IRS allege Hastert, 73, withdrew $1.7 million from various banks between 2010 to 2014 and provided the funds to an unnamed person "to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct."

The indictment did not specify the alleged misconduct or identify "Individual A" other than saying the person was someone from Yorkville, Illinois, where Hastert was employed as teacher and wrestling coach from 1965 to 1981. District officials on Friday said they had no knowledge of any alleged misconduct.

A federal law enforcement official on Friday afternoon told NBC News the misconduct involved an alleged sexual relationship between Hastert and a former male student at the school.

"The Hill" newspaper noticed the video after it was posted to the C-SPAN website.


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<![CDATA[Man Shot Neighbor 19 Times]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 21:13:07 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/CV-SWAT-Marjerus-Reynolds.jpg

Police released the name of the man Friday accused of shooting his neighbor 19 times before sparking a 10-hour-long standoff with law enforcement at an apartment complex in Chula Vista, south of downtown San Diego.

According to the Chula Vista Police Department (CVPD), Michael Majerus, 42, shot and killed neighbor Nicholas Reynolds, 43, at the Mission Gardens apartment complex located at 160 E Street on Thursday morning. Witnesses told police the men had a long-standing dispute over neighborhood issues.

Police said Majerus shot Reynolds 19 times with an AR-15 rifle as Reynolds was getting into his car at the apartment complex.

After the deadly rounds were fired, Majerus barricaded himself inside his apartment along with his wife, Laura, and two young children, still armed with the AR-15.

Dozens of police officers and SWAT officials surrounded the apartment complex and crisis negotiators were called in as a lengthy standoff with Majerus ensued.

A number of other agencies were called in for backup, including the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, the San Diego Police Department and National City Police Department.

Officials shut down major roads in the area and evacuated dozens of residents from the apartment complex as the standoff unfolded.

MTS assisted in transporting evacuees to the nearby Norman Park Senior Center where the residents remained for hours. The American Red Cross provided food to the evacuees and police officers throughout the very long day.

After hours of on-again off-again negotiations with the suspect and sending a direct message to Majerus via news cameras, the suspect released his wife and the children from the apartment at around 3:35 p.m. They were unharmed.

Majerus remained holed up inside the apartment.

About an hour later, three shots rang out. CVPD Lt. Fritz Reber said the first came from a police test canon shot. The second was inside the apartment and did not come from officers. The third was a flash bang grenade that shattered a window so the SWAT team could send in two robots and check on the suspect.

One robot spotted a man down in an upstairs room, and a SWAT team soon followed to confirm. They found Majerus dead inside from a single self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

Police said two other handguns were found inside the apartment.

Investigators believe there was no verbal argument before Majerus shot his neighbor. According to the CVPD, officers had been called on two prior occasions to the apartment complex regarding the ongoing dispute between the neighbors.

However, in both instances, police determined there was no crime and no police report was filed. Police confirmed Majerus had no significant criminal history.

The deadly shooting remains under investigation. No other residents or law enforcement were injured in the standoff.
 



Photo Credit: NBC 7 San Diego]]>
<![CDATA[Hastert Paid To Hide Sexual Relationship: Official]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 15:07:07 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Dennis-Hastert-1981.jpg

Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert was making payments to a man in order to conceal a sexual relationship they had while the man was a student at Yorkville High School, a federal law enforcement official told NBC News on Friday.

Hastert was indicted Thursday with making regular withdrawals from his bank accounts below a limit that would require reporting and then lying to federal officials when asked about those withdrawals. 

The Department of Justice and IRS allege Hastert, 73, withdrew $1.7 million from various banks between 2010 to 2014 and provided the funds to an unnamed person "to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct." The indictment said Hastert promised a total of $3.5 million to the unnamed person.

The indictment did not specify the alleged misconduct or identify "Individual A" other than saying the person was someone from Yorkville, Illinois, where Hastert was employed as teacher and wrestling coach from 1965 to 1981. District officials on Friday said they had no knowledge of any alleged misconduct.

Hastert's name was removed Thursday from the Washington, D.C. lobbying and law firm where he worked, and a spokesperson there said Hastert had resigned.

If convicted of the charges against him, Hastert faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. 

]]>
<![CDATA[Garland Homes Flooded Friday Morning]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 18:10:16 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Josh-07.jpg

Residents living along Duck Creek in Garland spent the day cleaning up after flash flooding Friday morning.

The Garland Fire Department had at least a dozen water rescues from cars and homes.

Many people living along Glenbrook Drive in Garland woke up Friday morning to water pouring in their home.

"It’s about 3:30 in the morning and my wife wakes me up and says there’s water coming in the house," said Allan Pettit.

More than a dozen homes on Glenbrook Drive were flooded with several feet of water.

"When we looked out the door, a couple minutes later, and it had already risen several inches," said flood victim Abby Hare. "We were like its coming and it's coming fast, so there was barely any time to do anything."

Hare has lived in her home on Glenbrook for 16 years. She says there was some flooding in 2006, but says it has never been this bad.

"It was almost two and a half feet of water in the house," she said. "Everything was floating around, couches, tables."

Daniel Guitierrez, who also lives on Glenbrook Drive, found his car on the other side of the street.

"I looked outside the same time it was flooding completely, and I didn't see my car,” said Gutierrez, "Thought it's probably down the street somewhere."

Clean up in the neighborhood brought out friends and family to help neighbors hit by flash flooding and overflow from the Duck Creek.

"There was water probably 18 inches [of water] which is kind of weird," said Pettit. "It’s like an aquarium in your back yard."

Neighbors say the water rose quickly. But just as soon as it came, it receded.

"The water is coming up and we're trying to move stuff upstairs and I’m going around in my rain boots and it keeps coming quick," said Abby Hare.

Now folks have the tedious process of removing ruined belongings one by one.

All the families we spoke with have remained positive, despite the damage, and are glad no one was hurt.

"God has our back and he will definitely take care of us,” said Hare. "We have friends in our lives that will help us clean up the wreck."

Many of the families we spoke with did have flood insurance.



Photo Credit: Josh Ault, NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Rescued Dog on Instagram]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 14:23:13 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Yorkie-Dog-Rescue-NY.jpg

A tiny Yorkshire terrier that was dumped down a trash chute in the Bronx in September has recovered from its injuries and has a new home -- and its very own Instagram account.

The ASPCA said that the dog, named Frankie, is thriving with a new owner, months after the pup was found at the bottom of the chute with a fractured skull and neurological trauma that left him nearly blind.

Veterinarians monitored Frankie for three months after he was rescued, and he quickly became a favorite at the ASPCA.

Frankie didn’t have to wait long to find a new home once he recovered, the ASPCA said. The rescue said an Amherst College student home on winter break visited the rescue and fell in love with the pup and eventually returned to adopt him.

The ASPCA said that after a difficult adjustment process compounded by his partial blindness, Frankie is at home with his new owner. He even has an Instagram account chronicling his adventures and collection of stylish sweaters.

“He is now well-adjusted, like any other fun-loving, cuddly Yorkie,” his owner said. “He loves his new home where he is meeting lots of new people and experiencing new things.”


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<![CDATA[Car Window Glass Could Change Escape Plan]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 13:41:28 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/laminated-glass-050613.jpg

With some automakers changing the type of glass used in side windows, experts say it's a good idea to know what type of windows your car has because it can affect your escape plan if the vehicle is in a water-related accident.

Tempered glass has been the standard on the side windows of cars for several decades, but some automakers are switching to laminated glass. Laminated glass, long the standard on front windshields, can now be found on the side windows of luxury, economy, American-made and foreign automobiles.

Laminated glass is basically two layers of glass fused together with plastic in the middle, which keeps the glass in one piece.

"It's more difficult to break. It can be almost impossible to actually penetrate," said engineer John Waskow of Architectural Testing, which tests glass used in buildings, including hurricane-resistant laminated glass.

Laminated glass differs from tempered glass, which is designed to break in smaller, safer chunks.

The Enhanced Protective Glass Automotive Association says there are benefits to using laminated glass in side windows. It keeps the car quieter in the cabin and can be more fuel-efficient. It can keep would-be thieves out because penetrating it can be nearly impossible. For that same reason, it also can reduce injury to passengers from flying pieces of glass in accidents.

Plus, in rollover accidents, laminated glass can help save lives by keeping occupants inside of the vehicles, especially when used in combination with side-impact airbag curtains.

The EPGAA estimates that 12 percent of new cars built in 2013 will have laminated glass on the side front windows. By 2018, it will be 20 percent.

"If you wanted to keep you from being ejected from the vehicle in a rollover, the laminated glass is going to keep you in the vehicle," said Capt. Donny Dean, of the Fort Worth Fire Department Swift Water Rescue Team. "For escaping the vehicle, the laminated glass is going to be more difficult."

And in a water-related accident, the type of windows in a car could change the escape plan.

The NBC 5 Investigates Consumer Unit asked the Fort Worth Fire Department to help demonstrate the difference in how laminated and tempered glass breaks. The 2011 Chevrolet Malibu from a salvage yard used in the demonstration had tempered glass in the back-seat window and laminated glass in the front-seat window.

Firefighter Jake Sims easily broke the tempered glass window with a commercially available rescue hammer.

But the laminated glass was dramatically different.

Sims repeatedly banged on the laminated window with the same rescue hammer he used on the tempered glass. Strike after strike, the hammer fractured the glass, but the lamination held it together.

"I did not break the laminated glass," Sims said. "I wanted to punch through that, but I couldn't."

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration told NBC 5 Investigates in a statement, "We believe that safety experts would agree that in a rollover, it is better to be retained in a vehicle than ejected. Occupants have a much higher rate of survival if they are not ejected. We are not aware of any data or studies that support a claim that occupants in a vehicle with laminated side windows are at greater risk related to drowning."

But the only way Sims could get out of the laminated window was to kick it out in one piece after it was fractured, and that's what you may have to do.

"The last situation you would put yourself in is to go ahead and be fully submerged and break the windows," Dean said.

"Break the Glass"

In November, a mother and her young daughter found themselves in that situation.

"Break the glass. Break the glass," a panicked Christina Williams told a 911 dispatcher after her car crashed into a Fort Worth pond in November with her toddler, Tisiphone, in tow.

Two young men driving by saw the accident unfold and jumped in to help.

"It all happened so quick," said John Piszor, a passer-by who stopped to see what he could do. "As soon as I got off the phone with 911, I jumped in there, and we swam out there and tried to help."

Piszor and his friend, Nathan Brown, worked frantically in the frigid water to free the mother and daughter.

"I started banging on the window and, in the back seat, I saw a baby, so I moved to the back and I tried to break the back window instead," Brown said.

As the car's front sank, Brown swam to the rear, kicking with all his strength and finally the back window broke open. He said he felt the child grab his finger, but he could not unbuckle her car seat.

Dive teams later pulled the mother and daughter from the submerged car. Neither survived.

Escape Plan

"You don't want to call 911," Dean said. "You've got 30 seconds to a minute to evacuate the car, to get out."

It's best to escape while the car is above water, experts say.

"The first thing that you should do is unbuckle your seat belt and roll your windows down so you have a way to get out of the vehicle," Dean said.

Then, you should get passengers out and unbuckle any children.

"You want to evacuate your children from the oldest to the youngest," Dean said, which gives the children the greatest chance of survival.

The next step is to get out of the car.

Most sunroofs and rear windows are tempered.

To figure out what kind of glass is in the side window of your car, you can look in the bottom corner. There may be a label that says "tempered" or "laminated." If not, roll down the window and look at it from a bird's-eye view. If it's smooth and looks like one piece, it's tempered. If it looks like a sandwich with a ridge, it's laminated.

You can also call your automaker and ask.



Photo Credit: NBC 5]]>
<![CDATA[Vet Dies After Drop at SoCal Fair]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 16:48:03 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/212*120/5-29-15+Navy+Death+San+Bernardino+Fair+FreeDrop+USA.JPG

A Navy veteran died several hours after a mishap on a platform dive attraction making its debut at a Southern California fair Thursday night, authorities said.

Sabrina Gordon, 31, of Hesperia fell from the FreeDrop USA ride at the San Bernardino County Fair Thursday night at 8:14 p.m., and was airlifted to a hospital, deputies said. Less than five hours later, at 12:20 a.m. Friday, Gordon died.

Her heartbroken family remembered her as a wonderful person whose death could have been prevented.

“She was a very funny little girl… Always independent, doing her own thing,” Lyle Bell said, Gordon’s father.

She followed her father’s footsteps and joined the Navy right out of high school.

“Like I did and my dad… His father, two older brothers, one younger… we all served,” he said.

It appeared Gordon hit the air cushion and bounced onto the asphalt ground, subsequently injuring her head, according to her father.

"This was stupid, this was something for professional stunt people," Bell said.

Three platforms let participants jump 20, 28 or 36 feet onto the inflated pillow that stands 13-feet tall, according to a news release from the fair. FreeDrop USA was making its debut in California at the fair, according to the release.

A video posted to the San Bernardino County Fair's Facebook page showed the attraction in action, and its caption described the ride as "no bungee cords, no wires, no harnesses, just pure free fall."

"The ride was immediately closed and will remain so indefinitely," San Bernardino County Fair CEO/General Manager Geoff Hinds said in a statement. "The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department is conducting a thorough investigation."

Gordon reportedly dove off the 28-foot platform, according to the fair’s news release.

She was working at the fair for a vendor when friends egged her into making the jump.

"There were no safety nets ... this accident could have been completely avoided," her husband said, Clifford Gordon. He was not there when she fell but said that when they saw the attraction days before, they both agreed it was too dangerous.

The company that makes FreeDrop defended its safety record in a statement, saying more than 50,000 people have made safe jumps on the ride across the country.

Fair Board of Directors President Paul Russ said in a statement: "This is a heart wrenching tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family."



Photo Credit: Courtesy: Family]]>
<![CDATA[Abbott Adds 24 Counties to Disaster LIst]]> Fri, 29 May 2015 13:26:55 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Josh-07.jpg

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott declared a state of disaster in 24 additional counties Friday, bringing the total number of counties under Texas' state disaster declaration to 70, the governor's office says.

The counties added to the declaration are: Angelina, Burleson, Cherokee, Edwards, Ellis, Fayette, Gillespie, Kaufman, Lamar, Liberty, Leon, Lynn, Madison, Milam, Real, Refugio, Rusk, Sabine, Travis, Tyler, Uvalde, Victoria, Waller and Wharton.

Additional counties may be added as the situation develops.

"The large number of Texas counties currently experiencing a state of disaster is an indication of how severe this ongoing weather situation is, and I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for everyone to heed local officials' warnings," said Abbott. "Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with all those affected, and I strongly urge all Texans to take all precautions to protect themselves and their families and neighbors."

To view Abbott's disaster declaration, click here.

The following 70 counties have been declared in a state of disaster: Angelina, Archer, Bastrop, Blanco, Bosque, Bowie, Burleson, Caldwell, Cass, Cherokee, Clay, Collin, Comal, Cooke, Denton, Dewitt, Eastland, Edwards, Ellis, Fannin, Fayette, Gaines, Garza, Gillespie, Grayson, Grimes, Guadalupe, Harris, Harrison, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hill, Hood, Houston, Jasper, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Lamar, Leon, Liberty, Lynn, Madison, Milam, Montague, Navarro, Newton, Nueces, Parker, Real, Red River, Refugio, Rusk, Sabine, San Jacinto, Smith, Travis, Tyler, Uvalde, Van Zandt, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Wharton, Wichita, Williamson, Wilson, Wise and Zavala.

The following resources are involved in the state’s continued response to this weather event:

  • Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS): Assisting with reconnaissance, search and rescue efforts, and providing personnel and resources as needed.
  • Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD): Conducting search and rescue missions during flash flooding/water incidents in affected areas.
  • Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS): DSHS have mobilized resources, equipment and personnel to provide medical assistance as needed. 
  • Texas Military Forces (TMF): TMF has deployed aircraft and high-profile vehicles, and continues providing assistance with search and rescue missions as needed.
  • Texas Task Force 1 (TTF1): Air and boat rescue squads have been deployed for search and rescue missions as needed.
  • Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ): Continues to monitor dams and river levels in the affected areas.
  • Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT): Crews have deployed resources to address flooding conditions and debris cleanup impacting roadways.
  • Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC): Personnel continue to work with utility companies to resolve power/utility issues.
  • Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA): Assisting communities to apply for funds administered by TDA that will help with storm cleanup and rebuilding.
  • Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD): Organizations continue to provide shelter and other mass care needs as requested.

Additional partners and resources include: Texas A&M Forest Service; Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service; Civil Air Patrol; Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs; Texas Department of Criminal Justice; Texas General Land Office; Texas Health and Human Services Commission; Texas Department of Insurance; Railroad Commission of Texas; Texas Education Agency; Department of Aging and Disability Services; Department of Family and Protective Services; Texas Workforce Commission; Texas Animal Health Commission; Texas 2-1-1; and Texas Department of Information Resources.



Photo Credit: Josh Ault, NBC 5 News
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