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Olympic curling star's husband handles stress by double-fisting beers at 9 a.m.

One doesn’t normally associate pressure with curling -- oh sure, placement, guarding and furious sweeping are crucial to a team’s success -- but the husband of Canadian women’s team skip Rachel Homan was experiencing plenty of anguish during the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Gangneung, South Korea. 

>> Read more trending news

What better way to calm your nerves than to have a beer or two? Or, three or four?

Even if it’s 9 a.m.

As Homan tried to lift Canada back into medal contention against Japan -- the women’s team is in sixth place after Monday’s competition -- Shawn Germain was seen hoisting beers and heading back to the concession stand for refills, SB Nation reported.

“You can judge all you want,” Germain tweeted. “The stress level is high, I’m not a drunk, I’m just Canadian.”

Germain knows about athletic competition, having competed as a hockey player in the ECHL. He missed the end of Canada’s match against Japan because he was fetching more beers, SB Nation reported. 

Canada’s 8-3 victory against second-place Japan was a big win and kept the team’s medal hopes alive. 

If the Canadians reach the medal round, the stakes will be higher and nerves will be taut.

One can only wonder how Germain will react.  It could be a stressful day for people from the Great White North, but they remain supportive.

Dog found tied to tree with note attached to collar gets adopted

A dog left tied to a tree with a note around its neck has been adopted.

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Zeus was found tied to a tree with a note attached to his collar and a bag of food nearby.

“I am a very good dog. My owner just can’t afford me anymore,” the handwritten note read, according to WTVR. “She tried to find me a home but nobody would take me.”

The Prince George County Animal Shelter posted images of the 2-year-old German shepherd, Labrador mix Feb. 10. Zeus, who can sit, shake and loves to fetch, was able to get adopted Feb. 13, the first day he was available for adoption. 

“Zeus' new family are wonderful pet owners who will give Zeus the kind of home that loves him for life this time,” the shelter said on Facebook.

Monkey, dog live inseparable lives

A Capuchin monkey and a dog have made an unlikely pair in Colombia.

The dog, according Reuters, recently lost her litter of pups. She then became a surrogate mother of sorts to the monkey, Reuters reported.

Now the two are the best of unusual friends, Sky News reported.

>> Read more trending news 

But their friendship may soon be forced to come to an end. 

The monkey becomes upset when anyone gets near them, so the Environmental and Ecological Protection Police took the dog and monkey and could separate them, returning the monkey to the wild, the Independent reported. But there could be a hiccup to their plan. The Independent reported that the Capuchins in the wild may not welcome the monkey into their group.

Do video games lead to violence seen in Parkland, other mass shootings?

One day after the mass shooting at a Florida high school, Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin told a radio host he believes the “culture of death that is being celebrated” in violent video games and movies was the trigger for the violence that led to the deaths of 17 students and teachers.

Bevin, in an interview with radio host Leland Conway, said violent video games that glorify murdering people and even allow players to rack up points for showing less compassion was at the core of the increasing number of attacks on schools, churches and concerts.

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"There are video games that, yes, are listed for mature audiences, but kids play them and everybody knows it, and there's nothing to prevent the child from playing them," Bevin told Conway. "They celebrate the slaughtering of people. There are games that literally replicate and give people the ability to score points for doing the very same thing that these students are doing inside of schools, where you get extra points for finishing someone off who's lying there begging for their life."

It is not the first time Bevin has called out the makers of video games where players score points for killing. In January in Bevin’s own state, a 15-year-old boy killed two classmates and injured 14. After the shooting at Marshall County High School in Benton, Kentucky, Bevin posted an 11-minute video on Facebook where he said violent videos were a “cultural problem” that sparked the incident.

"We are desensitizing young people to the actual tragic reality and permanency of death," Bevin said. "This is a cultural problem."

After the shootings at Marjory Stonehouse Douglas High School last week, Bevin stepped up his attack, calling out other cultural influences such as music, television and movies, slamming them for violent lyrics or plots.

"Why do we need a video game, for example, that encourages people to kill people?" Bevin said. "Whether it's lyrics, whether it's TV shows, whether it's movies, I'm asking the producers of these products, these video games and these movies, ask yourselves what redemptive value, other than shock value, other than the hope you'll make a couple of bucks off it. At what price? At what price?"

Bevin isn’t the only one speaking out against violent video games. Others have pointed to such games as inspiration for similar attacks. But is there evidence that links playing violent games with taking a rifle and shooting people at a high school or some other venue?

The psychological community is split. 

A study by researchers at the University of York in York, England, found no evidence that adults who play violent video games were any more likely to commit a violent act then those who do not play the games.

The study of 3,000 participants released in January showed the games do not “necessarily increase aggression in game players.

The York study also examined the realism of the games and whether that had an effect on the way players later acted. They looked at games that used characters that moved and reacted as a human would, not just an animated character. Researchers concluded that “there is no link between these kinds of realism in games and the kind of effects that video games are commonly thought to have on their players.”

The York researchers pointed out in their conclusions that the tests were conducted on adults. "We also only tested these theories on adults, so more work is needed to understand whether a different effect is evident in children players."

A 2015 study by the American Psychological Association contradicts the York study in part. The APA study found that playing violent video games is linked to increased aggression in players, but that there is “insufficient evidence” to link game playing with criminal violence or delinquency.

Those conducting the study stressed that while an increase in aggression was seen in the subjects of the study, the games’ effect on certain people with certain risk factors needs to be studied further.

“We know that there are numerous risk factors for aggressive behavior,” said Mark Appelbaum, the chairman of the task force that conducted the study. “What researchers need to do now is conduct studies that look at the effects of video game play in people at risk for aggression or violence due to a combination of risk factors. For example, how do depression or delinquency interact with violent video game use?”

A study of 105 Canadian teenagers – boys and girls – found that the teens that spent more than three hours a day playing violent video games were in danger of delayed emotional development .

Mirjana Bajovic, the author of the study, noted that not all the teens playing violent games showed a delay in emotional development, and that no correlation existed between the level of emotional development and those who played nonviolent games. Bajovic did note that the time spent playing those games was the main factor in influencing “empathic behavior and tendencies.

A study published in Psychological Science led researchers to conclude that for some, assuming an identity in a video game can have real-world impact.

Researchers asked 200 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to choose to be either a villain or a hero in a video game, and what they saw was an impact in levels of consideration in the students.

“Our results indicate that just five minutes of role-play in virtual environments as either a hero or a villain can easily cause people to reward or punish anonymous strangers,” said Gunwoo Yoon, lead author of the study.

The students were given the choice to serve chocolate sauce to a stranger or to serve hot chili sauce. Researchers found that those who chose to play the hero – in this case, cartoon character Superman – would serve chocolate to the stranger. Those who assumed the villain role – Voldemort from the Harry Potter novels – would serve the chili sauce. 

The choices from the students were measured after as little as five minutes of playing the games. 

 

NC woman thanks 'guardian angel' after huge tree crashes through bedroom 

Three people living in a North Carolina home are grateful to be alive after a massive tree crashed through their house overnight.

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The enormous tree fell about 3:45 a.m. on the northwest Charlotte home. The force of the impact flattened a portion of the house and sheared off a section of roof.

Three cousins who were renting the house were inside when the tree fell, police said. They were able to escape the home by crawling out a window.

One woman said she was “amazed” she was still alive after the tree crashed through her bedroom while she slept.

"Nightmares coming true,” is how Lapresha Clark described the moment when she woke to the tree crashing through her ceiling.

“That's the only thing I can think of. I just thank God that my grandmother shielded me because it was raining in my room when I opened my eyes," she said.

The tree, which stood behind the home, split in two when it fell, damaging not only the home but also vehicles nearby, police said.

Family members said they will stay with relatives in town but that many of their belongings were damaged by the rain.

6-year-old boy, 3 family members shot outside Texas steakhouse

Police are investigating after a 6-year-old boy and three of his family members were shot Sunday evening in the parking lot of a Texas Roadhouse steakhouse in San Antonio.

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Police Chief William McManus said Sunday that the shooting, which happened as people were waiting outside the restaurant to eat, left the 6-year-old with a gunshot wound to his leg. Police said two of the boy’s three injured family members, all adults in their 20s, were hospitalized Sunday in critical but stable condition.

The shooting happened around 8:40 p.m. outside the Texas Roadhouse steakhouse on Cinema Ridge, the San Antonio Express-News reported.

“We do not believe that this shooting is random,” McManus said. “There were a number of people that were standing (outside the restaurant). All the people that were hit were from the same family.”

The gunman, who has not been identified, fired about 10 shots at the family within 15 feet of the front of Texas Roadhouse, the Express-News reported. He was masked at the time of the shooting, according to the newspaper.

Police continue to investigate the attack.

Parkland teacher gave fiancée instructions in case he died in a shooting

One of the teachers killed in last week’s mass shooting at a Florida high school once told his fiancée what to say at his funeral if he ever was killed in a school shooting, the New York Post reported.

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Scott Beigel, who was watching coverage of a school shooting on television with his fiancée, said her “Promise me if this ever happens to me, you will tell them the truth — tell them what a jerk I am, don’t talk about the hero stuff,” Gwen Gossler said during Beigel’s funeral at Temple Beth El in Boca Raton.

“OK, Scott, I did what you asked,’’ Gossler said during Beigel’s funeral service, the Post reported. “Now I can tell the truth. You are an amazingly special person. You are my first love and my soulmate.’’

>> Florida shooting heroes: 3 coaches, teachers gave lives for students

Beigel, 35, a geography teacher at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, was one of 17 people killed when a gunman opened fire at the South Florida school on Valentine’s Day. Beigel had unlocked his classroom to allow students to enter and was killed when he tried to lock the door again, the Post reported.

Stoneman Douglas student Kelsey Friend told ABC’s “Good Morning America” that Beigel saved her life.

“He unlocked the door and let us in,” Friend said. “I had thought he was behind me, but he wasn’t. When he opened the door, he had to relock it so we could stay safe, but he didn’t get the chance to.

“He was in the doorway and the door was still open and the shooter probably didn’t know we were in there because he was lying on the floor. If the shooter had come in the room, I probably wouldn’t be (alive).”

Beigel was born in Dix Hills, New York, and attended the University of Miami, according to his obituary. He also coached the Stoneman Douglas cross-country team and was a counselor at Camp Starlight in Pennsylvania. A post on a Facebook page for the camp called him a “friend and hero.”

Police, FBI search for missing 5-year-old Kansas boy

Police, along with the FBI, are searching for a missing 5-year-old boy in Kansas. 

Lucas Hernandez was reported missing Saturday evening. He was last seen at 3 p.m. in his bedroom by his stepmother, after she took a shower and fell asleep, KAKE reported.

Police were called more than 3 hours later, at 6:15 p.m., to alert them he was missing.

As of Sunday, an Amber Alert was not issued because there was no indication that he was abducted, KAKE reported.

>> Read more trending news 

A relative of Lucas told KSN, “He’s a bright little boy. He loves school. He loves his dad, his stepmom and his siblings. We just want him home safe, and if you have any information, anything about Lucas, please bring him home safely.”

But a great aunt of Lucas’ said they were worried about him, The Wichita Eagle reported.

Sally Rasmussen told the paper that she called the Kansas Department for Children and Families last year. His great grandmother, Jeannie Houchin, said that she was told that there was an investigation launched by the child protection agency, but the department didn’t confirm the women’s allegations The Eagle reported.

Police searched Lucas’ home and neighborhood using K-9 units, but didn’t find anything. They also went door-to-door asking neighbors if they noticed anything, The Eagle reported.

The FBI has sent its Child Action Rapid Deployment team to help find Lucas, KAKE reported.

12-year-old sister of murder victim reported missing in Florida 

Police in Florida are searching for a 12-year-old girl who was reported missing early Monday, seven months after her sister went missing and was found dead several days later, the Bradenton Herald reported.

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The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office said Jalyssa Shannon left her home around 9 p.m. Sunday. Her mother, Michelle Mosley, called deputies around 1:30 a.m. when the girl did not come home, The Tampa Bay Times reported.

Jalyssa’s sister, 13-year-old Janessa Shannon, was found dead in Riverview, Florida, on July 12, 2017, 10 days after she was reported missing, the Herald reported. Janessa’s body was found in a nature preserve near the Riverview home of her father, Nahshon Shannon, the Times reported.

>> Police, FBI search for missing 5-year-old Kansas boy

In October 2017, Nahshon Shannon. 37. was arrested on charges of first-degree felony murder and aggravated child abuse, the Times reported.

Jalyssa is about 4-foot 11-inches tall and weighs approximately 175 pounds, sheriff’s deputies said. She has black hair and brown eyes, and was last seen wearing a black shirt and capri pants.

 

Teen arrested in connection with Instagram death threat aimed at S. Florida school

A 15-year-old Florida boy was arrested after posting a message on Instagram threatening to kill people at several Broward County schools, authorities said. 

>> Read more trending news

Just after midnight Friday, Broward Sheriff's Office detectives were notified about the online post from a Fort Lauderdale teen. He posted it one day after 17 people were killed during a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. 

The teen told detectives that the post was a joke aimed to scare his cousin and he appeared remorseful, according to a sheriff’s news release

The juvenile is facing one count of sending a written threat to kill, which is a third-degree felony.

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