<![CDATA[NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth - Top Stories]]> Copyright 2014 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 Fri, 28 Nov 2014 06:15:28 -0600 Fri, 28 Nov 2014 06:15:28 -0600 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Fire Damages Apartments on Thanksgiving Day]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 18:37:34 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/172*120/Dallas-fire1.jpg

Some people in Dallas are forced to find somewhere else to stay after a fire damaged their apartments on Thanksgiving day.

Dallas Fire-Rescue crews battled the blaze at an apartment complex in the 5300 block of Peterson Lane, not far from the Galleria Thursday afternoon.

Officials said the fire started in a laundry room and spread to four apartment units.

The electricity was turned off to eight other units until the fire was contained.

No one was injured.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.



Photo Credit: Ruben Rubio ]]>
<![CDATA[Holiday Shopping Crime Warning]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 23:17:21 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/180*120/453097337.jpg Police are warning just as eager shoppers are out looking for deals, so are thieves, looking to steal wallet and purses.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Holiday Shopping Secrets Could Save Time & Money]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:50:23 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/dfw-generic-money-cash-05.jpg

There are 27 shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas day. And while there are great bargains Black Friday weekend, other deals may be worth the wait. The NBC 5 Investigates Consumer Team combed through Thanksgiving and Black Friday ads, and we talked to experts to come up with shopping secrets to save you time and money.

The key, according to Dwight Hill, retail expert and partner with McMillan Doolittle LLP, is to know what to buy and when.

Shopping Secret #1: On Black Friday weekend, go for electronics.

"If I were buying the TV I would go for the Black Friday weekend, Cyber Monday period. I think that's usually the best time for people to find those deals," said Hill.

Shopping Secret #2: Best deals on clothing may come later in the shopping season, according to Hill.

“It’s the apparel that starts getting pushed as you get further on into the holiday season,” Hill said.

Shopping Secret #3: But don’t wait too long. Hill said retailers’ inventories are tighter this year than last year. So if you see the perfect sweater, in the perfect size. Buy it, but save the receipt.

”If indeed it goes down further in another few days then work with that retailer on their adjustment policy. Talk to them about that,” Hill said.

Shopping Secret #4: You may not need to leave home on Thanksgiving to get the best deals. According to Adobe’s 2014 Digital Index Online Forecast, online prices will hit rock bottom on Thanksgiving Day, with an average discount of 24 percent. It says online prices are expected to increase the Tuesday after Cyber Monday.

Shopping Secret #5: Use Black Friday and budgeting apps to help you save time and money. That’s important so you don’t spend all year digging out from holiday debt.

“You need to have a plan of not carrying a balance that’s going to go beyond three months,” said Todd Mark, Vice President of Education of Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Greater Dallas. “If somebody has not paid off their holiday debt by the end of March following the holidays, it’s going to be with them through the holidays of the next year.”

And remember, when budgeting include not only the gifts you intend to buy, but also, food, travel, decorations, wrapping and shipping. It all adds up and you don’t want over spend.

“Use good strategies when it comes to shopping,” Mark said.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Frisco Family Restaurant Hosts Free Thanksgiving]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 17:46:31 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Frico+Cafe.jpg

The owners of Frisco’s 5th Street Patio Café started a new tradition this Thanksgiving.

“Instead of just sitting around on Thanksgiving and stuffing our faces and eating till we’re in a food coma, we thought we’re going to do something good!” said Kristy McDonald.

“We know there are people in need, so we decided this year we’re going to try and reach them.”

McDonald, her husband and business partner decided to open for a few hours on Thursday to serve a free holiday meal to whomever came through their doors.

Instead of asking their employees to work, they made it a family affair – staffed by volunteers, their children, in-laws and friends. “We have our whole family,” McDonald said. “I have my 86 year old father, my teenagers, my 20 year old son.”

Dozens of people showed up for the food and fellowship, more than the McDonalds expected, given that it was their first year. Leftovers were donated to area first responders.

The café’s owners plan on making the event a tradition, adding that next year, they may offer people in need transportation to reach them in Frisco.

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<![CDATA[Hundreds of Volunteers Help Serve Up Thanksgiving ]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 17:36:26 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Wright+Foundation+Thanksgiving.jpg

The Thanksgiving spirit was in full force in South Dallas this morning as thousands of people needing a Thanksgiving meal were served.

The S.M. Wright Foundation has been providing Thanksgiving meals for 16 years.

Hundreds of volunteers gathered at the People’s Baptist Church on Pine Street to serve the Thanksgiving meal.

“This is a wonderful day to continue to give hope and charity to so many families who are in need,” said S.M. Wright Foundation president Rev. S.M. Wright, II.

When the foundation first started providing Thanksgiving meals they only had 100 people come. This year they served more than 3,000.

The families in need are not only getting a Thanksgiving meal.

“The families this day will get bus passes,” explained Rev. Wright. “They will receive groceries through the Thanksgiving holiday. They will receive a traditional Thanksgiving meal, and clothing.”

Those who received the Thanksgiving meal were very grateful.

“It’s just a blessing,” said Dewain Freeman of Dallas, “A lot of people are going through things right now, and it’s just hard to do things for their own families, and for somebody to take the time out of their day to make sure our family is being taken care of . . . it’s just blessings.”

“Just thank you,” said Dallas resident Ashley Ross. “You didn’t have to take time out of your day to think about us, but it’s good to know there’s people out there thinking about the people in need.”

Rev. Wright says he hopes to continue this tradition for many more years to come.

“It’s wonderful,” he said. “It’s a blessing to be able to continue to assist the families and to see the joys in their lives, and to see the happiness in their eyes.”

To find out more about the S.M. Wright Foundation you can call 214-741-4990. 

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<![CDATA[Dallas Highway Reopen After Deadly Crash]]> Fri, 28 Nov 2014 05:45:37 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/dallas+crash.jpg

Police are investigating a deadly accident that shut down part of a Dallas highway Thursday night. 

Officers said an 18-wheeler cab was headed northbound on Interstate 45 at Overton Road when it went through the guardrail and plunged to the ground below.

Police said only the far right lane on northbound I-45 at Overton Road was getting by, but NBC 5 confirmed all lanes have reopened. 

The victim's identity has not be released. There are no other injuries reported at this time.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.




Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Police Warn NTX Shoppers About Holiday Thieves]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 23:30:29 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/175*120/shopping+bags+generic.jpg

Police are warning just as eager shoppers are out looking for deals, so are thieves, looking to steal wallet and purses.

In the last week, thefts have taken place at both NorthPark Center and Galleria Dallas. Both malls did not comment. Wallet thefts have taken place at Whole Foods in Dallas, as well.

Shelley Comer is constantly thinking about safety while shopping. She was a victim of a pickpocketer just last month at a popular department store. Her wallet was stolen from her purse, while it was on her shoulder.

“They reached in my purse, while it was on my shoulder, grabbed my wallet and took off...went to Target and spent $5,000,” said Comer. “When I got to the register to pay, I realized I had no wallet.”

Now she makes sure her purse isn’t an easy target.

“I'm aware of where everything is inside. I keep my wallet zipped up inside my purse, so that someone can't take my stuff. I also separate my cards out into different pouches,” she explained.

Security experts and police say make sure to not be distracted while shopping, and keep those valuables close and clutched to your side.

“I try to pay attention to what I'm doing and not get caught up in trying to get the latest, greatest for my kids,” said Comer.

She warns to always be on the lookout during the busiest shopping season of the year.

“If you feel like there's something going on that shouldn't be, there probably is, so you need to guard yourself and your belongings all the time,” she said.

The Target in Irving hasn’t had any instances of the crime, but has hired extra security ahead of the big Thanksgiving weekend sales.
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images/Scott Olson]]>
<![CDATA[18-Wheeler Wreck Shuts Down I-20]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 08:34:01 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/18wheeler-chicken.jpg

Interstate 20 was shut down in both directions in Benbrook for several hours after an 18-wheeler overturned Thursday morning.

Police said they are investigating what caused the 18-wheeler to fall on its side on westbound I-20 near U.S. 377 just before 4 a.m.

At about 6 a.m., Hazmat crews finished cleaning nearly 100 gallons of diesel fuel that spilled onto the freeway in the wreck, according to police.

Officials said they had to offload 40,000 pounds of chicken the truck was carrying to California, which delayed cleaning of the road.

As of 8 a.m., the truck had not been cleared from the road, but police reopened the freeway.

No injuries were reported.

Stay tuned to NBC 5 for the latest information.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[One-On-One With Lt. Gov.-Elect Dan Patrick]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 23:28:11 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/patrick+land.jpg

"Who am I? Is that kind of the question,?" Lt. Governor-Elect Dan Patrick says.

"I'm the luckiest person you know, I am the most blessed person you know. I am very fortunate in life. I have three grandchildren, I've been married 39 years. I came to faith late in my life, in my 40s. Christ is my guiding light everyday," he continues. "My wife only lets me have one antique car at a time. I have a '68 Cadillac convertible right now."

NBC 5's Meredith Land asked Patrick, "What are your top three priorities getting started?" Patrick said, "Number one, secure the border."

Land then asked, "So what is your plan, will we see more National Guard troops? A longer fence, a bigger fence?"

"Go to the experts and find out what they recommend. I am not an expert. Tell me what you need to secure the border and protect Texans, and I'm going to fund it for you in a way that's never been funded before," Patrick said.

"Would you say you're extreme in some of your views, or not at all?" Land asked.

"Okay, let's go back over this," Patrick said. "I want to secure the border, lower prop taxes, help find a way to fund our roads and water without raising taxes. I want to put priority on giving school choice to kids who are in the inner city in failing schools and I'm pro-life and I'm pro-family. So what's extreme?

Land asked, "So you feel, you're not extreme at all?"

"Marriage. I understand that people have different lifestlyes and it's not in my purview to tell people how to live. But that doesn't mean I can't stand up for marriage between a man and a woman. So actually I don't think I have any extreme views. You see, Meredith, those who say I am extreme, or Greg Abbott or anyone else, maybe they're the ones who are extreme because at the end of the day, they lost big," Patrick said.

"Is your family breathing a sigh of relief now that the campaign is over?" Land asked.

"My wife can watch television again without seeing attack ads all over the place," said Patrick.

Land asked, "Did that hurt?"

"I think the wives would tell you that it's pretty tough to see their husband and their family get beat up."

"Are you eager to show people who the real Dan Patrick is?" Land asked.

"I am just me. I know who I am. I love the Lord. I love my family. I love Texas. So, I'm really comfortable with who I am, don't have to prove anything to anyone," Patrick said.
 



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Parking Lots Full at Dallas Love Field]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 17:26:27 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/love+field+parking.jpg

The parking lots at Dallas Love Field filled up early Thanksgiving morning, leaving very few options for people to park.

"It was horrible," said Mayra Morales. "There’s no parking."

"By the time we got here there were two spots left," said Ben Abramowitz.

Many drivers had to improvise. "The attendant told us we could park in one of the striped area where you’re normally prohibited from parking," said Abramowitz.

For some, finding parking was easier than others. But there was certainly a little luck involved.

"I went up to the second [floor] and parked right at a turn," said Peggy Cox, who parked in a no parking zone.

Nearly all 7,000 spots were taken, valet was full and even the additional private lots near the airport were bumper to bumper.

Both remote lots were full at DFW International Airport, forcing travelers to park in the more expensive lots.

Thousands of travelers, friends and family who needed parking also needed a little patience.

"We circled around [the garage] once because they had blocked off the parking garage," said Jeff Cunningham. "And then the second time we came around they were opening up the gates so we were able to find a spot on the second floor."

Terminal 1 at Love Field is in the process of being demolished to make room for additional parking.  



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Two Flee After Truck Nearly Crashes Into Home]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:37:11 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/truck-v-fence.jpg

Several homes lost power after police said a vehicle nearly struck a house in Oak Cliff early Thursday morning.

Dallas Police Department officials said a truck crashed into a utility pole and a fence at a home in the 900 block of West Clarendon Drive just after 3 a.m.

The residents of the home told police that two people in the truck appeared to be intoxicated and called someone to pick them up, who arrived about five minutes later.

No injuries have been reported.

Oncor officials said 21 customers were without power as of 5:15 a.m. They hope to restore power by 6 a.m.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[3 Reasons the Cowboys Will Beat the Eagles]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 12:56:36 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/457968746.jpg

The Philadelphia Eagles seem designed to match up with the Cowboys, making them the ideal nemesis to face twice toward the end of the season with a division crown on the line.

The Eagles might be the toughest opponent of the year so far, but there are a few reasons Cowboys fans should expect to be thankful Thursday.

1. Bad Mark Sanchez Shows Up

“Good Mark Sanchez” showing up Thursday is bad news for Cowboys fans, but it’s far more likely that the Cowboys will face regular Mark Sanchez.

Since taking over as Philadelphia’s starting quarterback, Sanchez is pushing the ball downfield at the most efficient rate of his career. His 8.1 yards per attempt would rank fourth — just ahead of Peyton Manning — if he qualified. That number is up from about 6.5 per attempt during his time in New York.

Expect the Eagles to gain significant yardage, but also expect Sanchez to give the Cowboys offense a few additional possessions. In three of his four starts with the Eagles, Sanchez has thrown two interceptions. His 4.1 interception percentage would rank him 29th in the league and is in line with his career rate of 3.7 percent.

2. An Overworked Running Back

The NFL isn’t kind to overworked running backs, and the Eagles’ LeSean McCoy appears to be the latest victim.

The actual threshold of overwork is debatable, but it’s typically somewhere in the range of 320 to 370 carries. McCoy “only” carried 314 times last season, but he also caught 52 passes. Combined with the 25 touches he had in a playoff loss to New Orleans, and his 393 touches are well above the number that usually results in a dip in performance the following year.

McCoy's average of 4 yards per carry is well below the 5.1 he put up last year and his career average of 4.8 before the season started. Fellow running back Darren Sproles is averaging 6.4 yards per carry this season, so I wouldn’t blame the supporting cast.

Stats aside, McCoy just looks off. He is not listed on the injury report, but he lacks the same burst through the hole and he seems tentative at times. He seems slower and less shifty as well.

3. Veteran Security Blanket

The Cowboys obviously want to have their offense on the field as much as possible, but that’s especially important this week because the Eagles offense looks much more mediocre when they don’t lead the league in plays from scrimmage.

Led by defensive end Fletcher Cox, the Eagles defense is pretty good against the run, ranking ninth in the league giving up 3.9 yards per rush, so the Cowboys will likely be forced to throw for several critical third downs.

Against one of the most relentless pass rushes in the NFL this season, Tony Romo will look to his longtime hot route in Jason Witten. The veteran tight end is tied for eighth in the NFL in third-down catches that go for first downs this season with 15.

Bottom Line

Thursday's game is going to be nerve wracking, Cowboys fans, but have faith. The offense is good enough to shorten the game and, in turn, make the Eagles offense look more pedestrian. If the defense remains disciplined, they should expect a few gifts from Mark Sanchez.

If each team plays their "typical" game, the Cowboys should come out on top by a field goal.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dallas Police: 3 Injured in Head-On Wreck]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:39:07 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/great-trinity-forest-ax.jpg

Police said three people are in critical condition after a head-on collision in Dallas late Wednesday night.

One person was driving east in the westbound lanes in the 5600 block of Great Trinity Forest Way at a high rate of speed when they crashed into another vehicle carrying a man and a woman just before midnight, authorities said.

Police said the force of the wreck sent one of the cars rolling down an embankment.

Three people were taken to nearby hospitals where they remain in very critical condition, according to police. Their identities have not yet been released.

Police said one of the drivers had been drinking.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Record Online Sales Expected on Thanksgiving Day]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 09:02:14 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Black-Friday-Toys-R-Us-2013.jpg

If you’re looking for a holiday bargain, help yourself to seconds of turkey or another slice of pumpkin pie and turn on your computer, according to one online shopping survey.

Online prices are predicted to hit bottom on Thursday, lower than on any other day of the holiday shopping season including Black Friday, says the Adobe Systems Inc.’s 2014 Digital Index Online Shopping Forecast.

Record online sales of $1.35 billion are expected on Thanksgiving Day, an increase of 27 percent over last year. Black Friday meanwhile could be the fastest growing online sales day at $2.48 billion, a rise of 15 percent. Among the gifts that shoppers might be looking for, according to social media: iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, PlayStation 4 and the “Call of Duty” video game.

Plus those online prices are expected to match in-store prices except for specific Black Friday promotions and inventory clearances, according to the forecast, which was published this month.

A survey by Nerd Wallet, the personal finance website, found that many of the same Black Friday deals are offered year to year. That might not matter for luggage or Christmas trees but could mean less than good buys for year-old electronics or appliances, the web sites notes.

“Consumers are cottoning on to these clever tactics and so over time they are less likely to be fooled,” said Priya Raghubir, the chair of the marketing department at New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business in New York City. “And if they’re less likely to be fooled, the magic of Black Friday pretty much starts getting lost.”

The sales are meant to snap consumers out of any tendency to put off shopping until the last minute, Raghubir said.

“They give you a reason to get out in the cold and start spending money,” she said.

“Consumers love getting a deal or at least feeling they’ve got a deal, feeling smart, feeling that they are in control,” she said.

About 45 percent of consumers plan to shop on Thanksgiving Day, a survey by the New York based-consulting company Accenture found. Sixty-one percent of Americans or more than 140 million shoppers say they will be in the stores over the Thanksgiving weekend, according to the National Retail Federation.

Best Buy is among the retail chains that will open by 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. Other include Toys R Us and J.C. Penney. Target, Sears, Kohl's and Macy's will all open at 6 p.m. and Kmart will keep its doors open for 42 hours straight. Radio Shack will open at 8 a.m., however, after workers complained about the early hour, the electronics retailer decided to close between noon and 5 p.m.

J.C. Penney spokesman Joey Thomas said that when chain opened on Thanksgiving for the first time last year, the response from customers was overwhelmingly positive. Giveaways and other activities are planned to show staff members that their work is appreciated, Thomas said.

“Additionally, local store leaders recognize the importance of work-life balance when staffing regular and seasonal associates, and give priority to those who volunteer for holiday shifts,” Thomas said. “Hourly associates will receive time and a half for hours worked on Thanksgiving Day.”

Macy’s noted that there were 15,000 people in line for its Herald Square store in Manhattan last year at 8 p.m., a record. The large majority of shifts were filled voluntarily, according to Holly Thomas, a spokeswoman for the stores.

In contrast, Nordstrom will remain closed on Thanksgiving.

“Over the years, our tradition has been to be closed on Thanksgiving so we are able to unveil our holiday trim the following morning,” said spokesman Dan Evans Jr.

Dismay over the early shopping led 32-year-old Brian Rich of Boise, Idaho, a marketing coordinator at a credit union, to start a Facebook page called “Boycott Black Thursday.”

“The best way to stop this is for everyone to stop shopping on Thanksgiving,” he said.

Twenty-five-year-old Danielle Mesisca quit her job at Kohl’s in New York City rather than work on Thanksgiving. The single mother, who has a day job working for New York City, said she would not object if Black Friday started at midnight or later.

“I feel like working a minimum wage job on a holiday is not worth it,” she said. “Thanksgiving is that one day your entire family gets together to spend time together. I shouldn't have to be forced to work and miss time with my family so other people can shop.”

Kohl’s did not immediately respond for comment.

With sales beginning earlier, and uncertainty about when the best deals are to be found, Black Friday does offer one guarantee: long lines of other shoppers, Raghubir said.

“But yes there will certainly be the buzz also,” she said. “You’ll be with all these other shoppers who are also very excited at having got a deal.”

That excitement is one reason 28-year-old Sy Paulson, a general manager at a Best Buy store in New York City said he did not mind working over the holiday. He typically has his meal the weekend before or a few days afterward and works both Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday.

“This is my tenth Black Friday at Best Buy,” he said. “I get a lot of retail adrenaline. It’s a fun time. It kicks off the holiday season.”
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Texas Congressman Frustrated by WTU Complaints]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 22:48:51 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Rep+Burgess+112514.jpg

An NBC 5 Investigation found hundreds of injured soldiers have complained of mistreatment, harassment and verbal abuse inside the Army's Warrior Transition Units (WTUs) that were designed to help active duty soldiers heal.

Republican Congressman Michael Burgess says he's frustrated to see the hundreds of active soldiers complain of harassment and abuse at the Army's WTU.

NBC 5 Investigates partnered with The Dallas Morning News for a six month investigation to uncover stunning allegations described by soldiers recovering in Texas from the wounds of war.

At the Army's WTU, physically and mentally injured soldiers describe commanders who act more like drill sergeants.

Spc. Michael Howard said WTU leaders treated him like "a dirt bag."

Injured soldiers complained of leaders who try to motivate them by belittling them, cursing at them or threatening discipline.

"You know it was just demeaning for no reason," said Sgt. Zack Filip.

During a taping of NBC 5's political show, Lone Star Politics, Burgess said he's frustrated with the amount of complaints after seeing NBC 5's report.

“I think the frustrating thing from my perspective is that it’s taken so long to get it right,” said Burgess.

Burgess, a doctor himself, believes a doctor should be in charge of a soldier’s care instead of the current system where doctor’s partner with non-medical commanders as part of a team that supervises the injured.

“In some ways it may have been too many people in charge of a given situation. There does need to be a single point of contact, a single person who actually is the person who’s responsible for the treatment of these individuals,” said Burgess.

Army leaders insist mistreatment of injured soldiers is not widespread and they say they immediately deal with any complaints.

“Historically, we have learned over time these do occur we know it. And we have some procedures in place to address these situations when they occur,” said head of the Army’s Warrior Transition Command, Col. Chris Toner.

Commanders say care is improving. Burgess believes it should have been better from the start.

“But the big question is why it is even necessary to make progress? This thing should have been done right from the get go,” said Burgess.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News
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<![CDATA[Dallas Man Convicted for Child Porn, Fake Badge, Steroids]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 13:02:11 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Freed-Post-Office.jpg

Officials said a Dallas man pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography, mailing steroids and impersonating a police officer in federal court Tuesday.

Authorities said they arrested 40-year-old Nicholas Todd Freed at a Dallas post office Jan. 28 after tracking packages containing anabolic steroids, according to U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña. When an officer with Homeland Security Investigations arrested Freed, officials said he found a counterfeit U.S. Marshals Service credential and badge.

Later that day, law enforcement officials said they seized computers and other equipment used to make false government identification. Further investigation revealed images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

Freed pleaded guilty counts of attempted possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, possession of a document-making implement with intent that it be used in the production of false documents and possession of obscene visual representations of the sexual abuse of children.

Freed faces several decades in federal prison at his sentencing set for April 20, 2015.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News/Dallas County Sheriff's Office]]>
<![CDATA[Toddler Inspires Disney Petition]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 17:08:28 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/211*120/11-26-14-Disney-Princess-revised.JPG

A San Francisco family traveled to Disney's Southern California Headquarters Wednesday to deliver a petition with more than 75,000 signatures calling on Disney to create characters with Down syndrome and other disabilities.

Keston Ott-Dahl created the petition in honor of her 15-month-old daughter Delaney, who has Down syndrome.

"I want the world to change," Ott-Dahl said. "I want Delaney to grow up in a society where she knows there’s a place for her and she’s part of society and she’s loved and appreciated."

Ott-Dahl's Care2 petition asks Disney to fight back against stigmas by representing children with disabilities in their animated films.

Ott-Dahl's partner and two daughters — both dressed as Disney Princesses — joined her in Burbank to deliver the petition that has drawn media coverage across the country.

Disney has responded to the petition, saying the studio is "committed to continuing to create characters that are easily accessible and relatable to all children."

While the Ott-Dahl family believes Disney does a good job of teaching children moral lessons, they hope the company will realize "every little girl wants to feel like a princess" and will give the family a "firm commitment" to represent children with disabilities.



Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[Protesters Gather for Third Day in Downtown Dallas]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:16:47 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Ferguson+protest+Dallas.jpg

For a third day in a row protesters were in front of Dallas police headquarters on Wednesday.

They were holding signs and chanting massages in disapproval of Ferguson, Mo, police officer Darren Wilson not getting indicted in the shooting death of teenager Michael Brown.

About 30 people gathered at the protest Wednesday and marched about mile on sidewalks. It was unlike the night before when hundreds of people marched through the streets of Dallas and dozens stopped traffic along Interstate I-35E.

On Wednesday the demonstrators were joined by three members of "Come and Take It Texas," armed with assault rifles. The group, which advocates for Second Amendment rights, said they were there to protect businesses from looters.

It was a peaceful protest Wednesday where demonstrators say the size of the protest doesn't make a difference.

“Anybody that’s coming out, whether it’s five, 10, 15 or whatever may be, we are going to still keep on going,” said Dominique Alexander, who protested Wednesday. “We’re not stopping because there are about five people that showed up.”

There were no arrests or injuries related to the protest Wednesday in Dallas.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Officer Involved Shooting Leaves One Dead]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:22:13 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/211*120/Lewisvilel+crash.JPG

Lewisville police said they are investigating a fatal officer-involved shooting Wednesday morning.

Investigators said a man stole a car from Highland Village, was involved in apparent road rage altercation and the followed the other driver to a Cracker Barrel in the 800 block of South Interstate 35E at about 11:47 a.m. After a brief confrontation, the man pointed a shotgun at the other driver and then walked away.

At about 12:45 p.m., police said a patrol officer saw the stolen vehicle and started following the man. A 5-minute chase ended when the man crashed into two other vehicles on East Round Grove Road near Rockbrook Drive. One woman whose car was hit was taken to the hospital.

Police said the man grabbed his shotgun and ran to the parking lot at a RaceTrac gas station. He unsuccessfully tried to take one car before getting into another one, owned by Erica Montes. She had just finished pumping her gas, saw him coming with the gun and hid behind her car.

“I was very scared," Montes said. "I didn’t know if he was going to shoot at me or grab me because the police had already surrounded him."

Other drivers were ducking for cover.

“At one point I was down in my car because I did see him running around with a shot gun, and I didn’t know which way he was going to go,” said Katy Gallagher.

Police said the suspect fired, and the patrol officer returned fire.

The officer rendered aid to the man until paramedics arrived, police said. The man was taken to Medical Center of Lewisville where he later died. The officer was not injured.

The name of the deceased has not been released.

Lewisville police said that the officer will be placed on leave, per department policy.

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<![CDATA[Arlington Police Hero Reunites with Dog She Saved]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 20:47:46 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Arlington+dog+cop+saved.jpg

An Arlington family says a local police officer is their hero after she saved their dog’s life. And on Wednesday, they got to thank her in person.

The saying goes that a picture is worth a thousand words. But in Stacy Grubbs’ mind, the one she, her dog CJ, and Arlington Police Officer Amy Jenkins posed for Wednesday is worth a million.

“I don’t even have any words,” said Grubbs. “We are just so grateful.”

She came to the substation where Jenkins works, so she could look her in the eye and thank her for saving CJ’s life.

“That was so comforting to us to know the Arlington Police Department really cares,” said Grubbs.

“It was a great reunion,” said Jenkins.

The last time Jenkins saw CJ, things were not so happy.

On Oct. 2, she was driving down Kelly-Elliott Road on her way to another call, when she noticed that traffic had stopped and a few people were standing in the street.

“Then I saw a dog and I saw blood,” said Jenkins. “So I walked up to find out what was going on and found out a dog had been hit.”

Normally, she would have called Animal Control to handle the situation. But she feared CJ’s injuries were too severe to wait for an officer to arrive.

She took out some gloves and used them to make a tourniquet on CJ’s leg. She then carried him to her car and rushed him to nearby I-20 Animal Medical Center.

“I have three dogs myself,” said Jenkins. “So I know how I would feel in that situation if it was my dog.”

To make matters worse, Grubbs and her husband were in Colorado when this happened.

“We didn’t know what to do. We wanted to come home right away,” said Grubbs. “And I was just so grateful that someone was there to help.”

The veterinarians told Grubbs that if Jenkins hadn’t brought CJ to them so quickly, he most likely would have died.

“That’s the reason you go into this job,” said Jenkins. “To make a difference.”

CJ had to have two toes amputated, but he is fine otherwise.

Jenkins said seeing his tail wag was all the thanks she needed.

“I can’t quit smiling,” said Jenkins. “It just makes you really happy.”



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[2nd Grader Makes Donation Instead of Getting Presents]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 18:14:10 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Talia+Holmes.jpg

An 8-year-old second grader made a $300 donation to a Frisco nonprofit Wednesday.

At her birthday party a few days before, Talia Holmes had asked friends to not buy presents, but instead, to make a donation to the rescue organization Becky's Hope Horse Rescue.

"You can help more horses and people," said Holmes, about why making a donation felt better than accepting presents. "It's because you're donating it from your heart."

Becky's Hope takes care of two potbellied pigs, six feral barn cats, and 23 abused, neglected and abandoned horses.

They've discovered a few of their newer rescues may be expecting foals.

According to director Lari McConegly, Talia's donation will help feed three horses for one month this winter.

"I'm just flabbergasted that a young girl would think of that, to be so giving," McConegly added. "It just amazes me."

Becky's Hope runs its budget entirely from donations. 100 percent of its staff hours are from volunteer labor.

More: BeckysHope.net
 



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[NBC 5 Anchors During Commercial Breaks]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 17:33:13 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/214*120/eric-and-kristi.jpg Ever wonder what happens in commercial breaks during a live newscast? NBC 5 News at 11:00 a.m. anchors Kristi Nelson and Eric King sing along to one of their favorite tunes.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Crowds, Traffic, Food are Hallmark of Holidays]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 18:10:25 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Honeybaked+Ham.jpg

A dip in gas prices gives drivers something to be thankful for this holiday as 3.3 million Texans are expected to travel by car this Thanksgiving, according to AAA Texas.

They predict 3.6 million Texans will go farther than 50 miles from home during the Thanksgiving holiday – making this year the highest holiday travel volume since 2007.

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport expects 188,000 people to pass through the airport on Wednesday, but even more are expected Sunday and Monday.

Many North Texans who are not traveling spent Wednesday preparing to feed family and friends.

The line around Honey Baked Ham in Arlington wrapped around the building as some waited for about an hour to pick up their Thanksgiving centerpiece.

“Last 10 years I’ve always got hams,” said Bob McDonald. “And this was the longest wait I’ve ever had. I don’t know if it was a timing issue or what, but this was my longest wait.”

Others like Eddy Gonzales from Arlington and his brother, Ernest, from Kansas spent the day setting up their tailgate at AT&T Stadium for Thursday's Dallas Cowboys game.

“This is the first time we’ve done the actual Thanksgiving here,” Eddy Gonzales said. “We’re looking forward to it.”

The Gonzales family showed up at AT&T Stadium at 6:30 a.m. Wednesday hoping to be the first in line only to find around 20 other RVs ahead of them.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Popular Restaurant Closes With No Notice Before Thanksgiving]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 11:01:47 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Mimis+grapevine.jpg

A popular restaurant in Grapevine has closed down and now there is concern that families who booked their Thanksgiving reservations weren’t notified and will show up Thursday with plans ruined.

A viewer contacted NBC 5 after a family friend noticed Mimi’s Café on State Highway 114 is now closed.

Sharmayne Hall said she and her family had booked reservations for Thanksgiving Day back in the first week of October and no one from the restaurant called them to inform them of the closure.

“I think that it's their corporate responsibility. If you call and make a reservation, they have your name, they have your phone number, so they have a list of people that are going to come. It's their responsibility to call and say, ‘Hey, you know, we had to close this location but you can re-book at one of our locations,’” Hall said.

Hall re-booked at one of the other three Mimi’s Café locations in DFW but she’s worried about the families who show up to their Thanksgiving reservations at the now-closed Grapevine restaurant.

“We found out completely by surprise, just by sheer luck, that this location had closed,” she said.

“I didn't want people to show up here on Thanksgiving and be surprised, you know, grandma and all the kids in tow, and have no place to go for Thanksgiving and be completely unaware that this location is shut down now,” she added.

On Thursday Wendi Shapiro, senior vice president for  Mimi's Cafe told NBC 5: "Mimi’s Cafe in Grapevine had 20 Thanksgiving reservations on the books when it closed. Prior to closing, our managers were able to contact 18 of the parties by phone to notify -- and in many cases re-book -- them. There was some difficulty with the last two reservations -- for one we left voicemail messages and found the last reservation to have a disconnected phone number. The Mimi's cafes in Allen, Arlington and Fort Worth are all completely booked with families enjoying their Thanksgivings today. Our cafes look forward to continuing to serve these neighborhoods and others from DFW who visit us there."



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[20 Thieves in Chicago Robbery]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 20:23:42 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/219*120/smash+and+grab+garfield.jpg

Thieves made off with shoes and jeans after smashing a vehicle into a business in Chicago's West Garfield Park neighborhood early Wednesday, police said.

Officers responded to a report of a burglar alarm at a business in the 4000 block of West Madison and found a vehicle crashed into it. From NBC Chicago's helicopter, a red Dodge Caravan could be seen completely inside the building.

Police later said the vehicle had been used in a smash-and-grab style burglary, with thieves getting away with merchandise from the "Cisco NYC" store. Surveillance video recorded during the heist showed about 20 people taking part in the raid.

No one was at the scene when officers arrived, and no injuries were reported, police department spokeswoman Ana Pacheco said.

No arrests were reported as of 10 a.m.

Police on Tuesday released surveillance video recorded during last week's smash-and-grab burglary at the Louis Vuitton store at an upscale mall in Northbrook.

Three high-end retailers were targeted in September, at Luxury Garage Sale in Old Town, Moncler on Oak Street and Louis Vuitton at a mall in Oak Brook. Investigators said earlier they believe the break-in at the Moncler store is connected to the heist at Louis Vuitton in Oak Brook.

Earlier this month a stolen minivan was crashed into the Salvatore Ferragamo in the Chicago Premium Outlets Mall in Aurora, causing more than $20,000 in damage.


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<![CDATA[Suspect Seeks $10 Million Over Dallas Police Shooting]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 19:03:46 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/wilburn-shooting-scene-inset.jpg

As protests rage around the nation and in Dallas over police shootings, the lawyer for one wounded suspect says Dallas police did the right thing after a December 2013 shooting.

Officer Amy Wilburn was fired and charged with aggravated assault for the shooting of suspect Kelvion Walker.

Wednesday, Walker’s lawyer Geoff Henley announced he is now seeking $10 million in a lawsuit against Wilburn after months of depositions in the case.

“It was her repeated breaches of these policies designed to protect officers and the general public from harm,” Henley said.

Walker was a passenger in a car that had been stolen an hour before the shooting.

Police had followed the car and watched the driver get out and run away, leaving the vehicle rolling in an apartment complex.

Police dash cam video recorded Wilburn running up to the car and firing her weapon through the open driver side window.

Walker was never charged with any crime in the case, but Wilburn’s lawyer Tom Brandt said there was evidence that Walker was involved in the carjacking that happened that day.

But Brandt said Wilburn had good reason to believe the car was empty as she approached it and that she was trying to protect neighbors from the rolling vehicle.

Brandt said Wilburn was surprised to find Walker in the car.

“In his deposition, Chief (David) Brown praised Amy Wilburn for her courageous actions that day,” Brandt said.

Wilburn’s lawyer said she had many commendations in her 13 years with the Dallas Police Department and should not have been fired or charged with a crime.

Wilburn is fighting both actions.

Walker’s lawyer said Chief Brown criticized Wilburn’s actions in his deposition.

“She threw out her training,” Henley said.

Juries may decide the civil and criminal cases pending against Wilburn.
 

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<![CDATA[Stepfather Killed Missing Mom: DA]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:13:41 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Stepfather-and-Padgett.jpg

The search for Jessica Padgett, a missing mother and newlywed from Northampton County, came to a stunning end the day before Thanksgiving when investigators announced she'd been murdered by her stepfather.

District Attorney John Morganelli said Gregory Graf admitted he shot Padgett in his home and disposed of her body, burying her in the yard behind a shed. The motive appears to be sexual assault, Morganelli said.

Padgett, a mother of three, was last seen Friday when she left her job at the Duck Duck Goose day care center in Northampton. She told co-workers she had to run an errand but never returned.

The 33-year-old woman's car was found less than a mile away in the parking lot of a Dollar General store. Her cellphone and keys were inside.

"I just want my sister found," said Jeremy Graf, sobbing just hours before being told her body had been found on their parents' property at Covered Bridge Road in Allen Township.

Padgett had a second job working for Graf's company, Distinctive Fence, located on the same property where he and Padgett’s mother live. Investigators believe Padgett went there Friday to use the fax machine.

"During an interview with the investigators he [Graf] did admit that he intentionally and knowingly caused the death of the victim at his home," Morganelli said, adding the crime may have been premeditated. Surveillance video shows a man prosecutors believe is Graf, dropping his truck off in the Dollar General parking lot Friday morning. Later in the day, Morganelli said Graf returned to the parking lot in Padgett's SUV, parked it and drove off again in his truck.

Family and friends launched an intense search effort for Padgett, and started a Help Find Jessica Padgett on Facebook. The victim's sister, Kristi Davis, posted this message:

"We are devastated by the loss of Jessica. she was a beautiful, vibrant young woman who was beloved by her family and friends. The world shines less bright today." 

Greg Graf was one of the 7-thousand people following that Facebook page. Family friends said Graf helped search for Padgett several times after she disappeared.

"The fact that this person was right under our noses and was that close to Jess," said Jim Wilkins, a family friend. "That he could just betray the family...This was a man who was around Jess since she was a child. We're obviously heartbroken." 

Graf, 53, was taken into police custody Wednesday night. He faces murder charges.

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<![CDATA[18-Wheeler Wreck Blocks Westbound I-635]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 11:04:37 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/18-wheeler-wreck1.jpg

A wreck involving an 18-wheeler slowed traffic for commuters near the Galleria Dallas early Wednesday morning.

Police said the wreck blocked three lanes of westbound Interstate 635  near the Dallas North Tollway beginning at about 4 a.m.

Authorities said the truck's fuel tank ruptured and spilled fuel onto the road. Hazmat crews headed to the wreck to clean the spill.

Only the left lane of Interstate 635 was open until nearly 10 a.m.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Record Number of Travelers Expected at DFW Airport]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:04:07 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/DFW+Airport+112614.jpg

Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport is expecting record number of travelers this Thanksgiving holiday.

They say more than two million passengers will be coming from the airport from Wednesday until December 2.

"We are encouraging passengers, those who are out there to arrive early, give yourself at least two hours in advance time to get here, that reduces the stress on you," said DFW International Airport spokesperson Cynthia Vega.

Vega says they anticipate Sunday to be the busiest day as people return from their trips.

She says one reason for the increase of passengers at DFW Airport is because of more international options the airport now offers.

The airport also has some new upgrades to security check points. They include wider lines, and couches at the exit, so passengers can put their shoes on easier.

Passengers need to be aware remote parking lots were already full Wednesday morning and some terminal parking lots were closed according to DFW Airport's website.

"This is the first year you can take DART light rail to the airport, which is a big plus for many who don't want to deal with parking at all,” said Vega. "The downtown ride from Dallas to here is about 55 minutes."

The airport will also be having helpers on Sunday, November 30, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. to help passengers with their luggage. This service will be available at terminals A, C and E.

Vega says since more people will be traveling this weekend it would be a good idea to arrive at the airport two hours early, and check to make sure your flight is still on before arriving to the airport.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Starving Dog Found Wandering in Parker County]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:03:40 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/203*120/IMG_05751.JPG

Investigators want to find the owner or anyone who recognizes a severely underweight Great Dane found wandering collarless and alone Tuesday in Millsap, Parker County, according to the Parker County Sheriff's Department.

The dog, named "Grace" according to her microchip, weighs just over 50 pounds, roughly half of what she should weigh, according to the veterinarian now caring for her.

The bones of her ribs, spine and hips are very pronounced, and she is "ravenously hungry," according to Dr. Shelley Finger, of the Aledo Vet Clinic.

"She is the thinnest dog that I have ever seen that's walking," Finger said. "She is definitely the most extreme case that I've seen."

Tests are underway to determine if Grace is suffering from any disease or parasite that is contributing to her condition, Finger said.

If the extreme weight loss is a result of starvation, Grace would clearly be a victim of animal cruelty, according to the veterinarian.

“Grace’s state is deeply saddening,” said Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler in a statement released Tuesday. “She has been suffering for quite some time. It is terrible to see an animal in this condition. This is starvation in its worst form.”

The dog's demeanor indicates Grace has been someone's pet, Finger said, and data stored on her microchip said she received veterinary care as recently as March, when she weighed approximately 80 pounds.

Investigators have been unable to locate the listed owner of the dog, according to a news release.

Anyone with knowledge of Grace’s owners is encouraged to call the sheriff’s office at (817) 594-8845.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Dollar Day at the Dallas Zoo Wednesday]]> Wed, 26 Nov 2014 11:19:28 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/dallas-zoo-112614.jpg

Dollar Day at the Dallas Zoo is Wednesday which usually means traffic tie-ups, parking predicaments and crowds of people.

Chopper 5 was over the zoo just before 11 a.m. and while the scene wasn't as crazy as in Dollar Days past. It could just be a matter of time, after all, it's the day before Thanksgiving, school is out and some North Texans may be looking for cheap entertainment for out-of-towners.

On Wednesday, not only is admission $1, so are some snacks and nectar for the lorikeets.

A ride on the Endangered Species Carousel is $2, giraffe feedings are $5 and parking is $8.

Zoo officials always encourage people to take DART's Red Line to the zoo to avoid traffic.

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<![CDATA[Pool Time: Dallas Man Grateful He Took Plunge]]> Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:33:41 -0600 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/IMG_5307.JPG

Temperatures were below freezing Thanksgiving Day last year, but they were soon to be above average for Danny Doyle.

He was home in Dallas, in bed and watching the news on NBC 5.

"You guys made an announcement about a turkey swim at SMU," recalled 46-year-old Doyle. "I made a decision, right then, to stop feeling sorry for myself, get out of bed and go down there."

Danny was 298 pounds, taking medicine for high blood pressure and cholesterol and looking to make a change.

"I was overweight. I was out of shape. I was depressed, and I was in a rut," he said. "And I did not know how to get out of it."

Doyle swam competitively as a child and knew he could swim again. So that morning, he got out of bed, drove to the outdoor pool at Southern Methodist University and joined Dallas Aquatics Masters for its Turkey Day Swim 2013.

"Once I got through that first practice, I knew I could do this. I never missed a practice after that," he said. "The people I swim with are the nicest and coolest people I ever met."

He credits the professional coaches and other swimmers for keeping him motivated and committed during the past 12 months.

"When you show up to a group environment to exercise, it's much easier," he said.

These days, Doyle is in the pool four days per week — spring, summer, fall and winter. Thankfully, the outdoor pool is heated to a swimmable 83 degrees.

A year after that first plunge and 51 pounds lighter, Doyle is a new man.

"People are used to seeing me at 300 pounds. They're not used to seeing me this thin," he smiled. "I feel great. The main thing is I'm off of my prescription medication for high blood pressure, high cholesterol."

His next goal? "Now, I want to get down to 225."

Swimming got Doyle out of his rut and he hopes his story encourages others to make a change, too, preferably in a pool.

"I just feel fantastic, wake up with a smile on my face every day," he said.

Anyone can join Dallas Aquatics Masters. Sign up for a FREE trial week at damswim.com.
They have six pool locations with various swim practices scheduled mornings through evenings and weekends.



Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>