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Rare, 400-pound crocodile gets surgery at Florida zoo

A 13-year-old Orinoco crocodile was taken into surgery at the Zoo Hospital in Miami on Friday to treat an infected wound.

A team of zoo staff veterinarians operated on the croc’s left wrist when “something, probably another cranky crocodile, took a bite out of it,” the Miami Herald reports.

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Orinoco crocodiles are a rare, endangered species that reside in fresh-water areas of the Orinoco River in Colombia and Venezuela, the zoo told the Herald. They can grow up to 15 feet long.

The zoo’s 10-foot reptile resides at the “Amazon and Beyond” exhibit, according to the Herald. Veterinarians did routine screenings before operating on the crocodile, which included X-rays and blood tests.

The nearly 400-pound crocodile is currently recovering at the hospital and will remain there for a few days until the wound heals. 

Mother hopes new sketches will help find son 38 years after kidnapping

A mother whose son was kidnapped just days after he was born believes she will one day find him.

"I wonder about him, pray about him. I pray he's OK," Donna Green said.

Green's son, Raymond, was kidnapped nearly 40 years ago. She believes a woman who befriended her at the hospital took him.

"I was standing at the nursery, looking at the window, looking at my son, when this young lady came up to me and asked which one was my son. I pointed at him," Green said.

The woman introduced herself as Lisa Morris on Nov. 1, 1978, at Grady Memorial Hospital.

Green was 16 years old at the time and had just given birth.

"She said how beautiful he was. I asked he why she was there. She said her sister just had a baby," Green said.

Green checked out of the hospital five days later and Morris showed up at her southwest Atlanta apartment uninvited.

"She said she wanted to see how I was doing and how the baby was doing. That's when my radar went up a bit," she said.

Green left her son with her brother to go take a shower and when she returned, her brother was asleep and the baby was gone.

Police have now released an age-progressed sketch of the child and the woman who they say kidnapped him.

"I want him to know that I never stopped looking for him, and I never will. I believe in my heart he will come home," Green said.

The mother hopes the new sketches will help police continue their search.

If you know anything about the case, call Crime Stoppers at 404-577-8477.

Hernandez family thankful for condolences, asks for privacy at funeral

The body of former football star and convicted murderer Aaron Hernandez will be moved to a funeral home in Connecticut this weekend, just days after he apparently took his own life in jail. 

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His family sent a statement Saturday, thanking the public for offering condolences and complying with the family’s request for privacy:

"The family of Aaron Hernandez wishes to thank all of you for the thoughtful expressions of condolences. We wish to say goodbye to Aaron in a private ceremony and thank everyone in advance for affording us a measure of privacy during this difficult time."

The family wishes to remain private during the funeral, to which the media will not be allowed.

Hernandez’s body was taken from Massachusetts to the O’Brien Funeral Home in Bristol, Connecticut.

Police officer playing hopscotch with child wins internet's heart

While police officers are required to have certain skills, hopscotch is not one them. That didn't stop an officer in Texas from showing off his hop game.Lyle Gensler, an officer with the Grand Prairie Police Department, spotted a girl playing hopscotch in his neighborhood Wednesday while heading to work, according to Inside Edition. He decided to pull over and join the game, obtaining a rock for the girl to use as a marker.

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Gensler hopped while the girl's mother filmed the scene on her cellphone. He posted the video clip on his Twitter page, writing, "We can do what we want on our breaks, correct? Child's game, phooey."Gensler told Inside Edition that he was focused on not falling while wearing all of his top-heavy equipment. The internet loved the officer’s effort.

Ilie Nastase under fire for comment about Serena Williams

Tennis great Ilie Nastase could face censure after apparently making a racist comment about Serena Williams' pregnancy, ESPN reported.

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At a news conference to tout Romania’s Fed Cup playoff against Great Britain, Romania's captain apparently made a comment about Williams, a 23-time Grand Slam singles champion who announced she was pregnant with her first child Wednesday with fiancé Alexis Ohanian.

"Let's see what color it has,” Nastase said, according to ESPN. “Chocolate with milk?"

Williams, who won the Australian Open in January, said she was taking time off from the tour to have her baby. Ohanian, the co-founder of Reddit, is white.

Nastase was not directly asked about Williams, but made the comment, in Romanian and clearly audible, to the other players while team No. 1 player Simona Halep was answering a question about Williams.

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) said it has launched an investigation. In a statement, officials said that “The ITF does not tolerate discriminatory and offensive language and behavior of any kind. We are aware of alleged comments made by Romanian captain Ilie Nastase and have begun an immediate investigation so that we have the full facts of the situation before taking further and appropriate action."

The Romanian tennis federation declined comment.

It’s the second time in a month that Nastase has made controversial comments about Williams, ESPN reported. After being appointed Romania’s Fed Cup captain in October, Nastase made unsubstantiated allegations of doping against Williams, based entirely on her physique.

Death toll rises to 140 after Taliban attack in Afghanistan

The death toll has risen to “as many as 140” Afghan soldiers in the wake of Friday’s attack on a military base by Taliban members apparently disguised in military uniforms, officials said.

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One official in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif, where the attack occurred, said Saturday at least 140 soldiers were killed and many others were wounded, Reuters reported. Other officials said the toll could even be higher.

A U.S. official in Washington on Friday had put the toll at more than 50 killed and wounded, Reuters reported.

As many as 10 Taliban fighters, dressed in Afghan army uniforms and driving military vehicles, slipped onto the base and opened fire on mostly unarmed soldiers eating a meal and leaving a mosque after Friday prayers, officials told Reuters.

The base is the headquarters for the Afghan National Army's 209th Corps, responsible for much of northern Afghanistan, including Kunduz province where there has been heavy fighting.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement on Saturday the attack was retribution for the recent killing of several senior Taliban leaders in northern Afghanistan.

"The attack on the 209th Corps today shows the barbaric nature of the Taliban," U.S. Gen. John Nicholson, the commander of coalition forces, said in a statement on Friday.

Virginia police put on dancing shoes at ‘Cops and Curls’ event

Virginia police gave young girls a whirl on the floor last week during the second annual “Cops and Curls” dance in Norfolk, WKTR reported.

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More than 50 members of the Norfolk Police Department hosted the event in a downtown ballroom for girls ages 6 to 12. Each girl received a corsage, a red carpet walk, and photographs to commemorate the event, WTKR reported.

The goal of the event is to uplift, motivate and encourage positive self-esteem among girls through engagement with police officers, Norfolk Police Chief Larry Boone told WTRK.

“Cops and Curls is an additional interface occasion to connect and channel positive relations between our youth and our officers,” Boone said. “We nurture our outreach with the curls throughout the year with activities, so that they understand we care and also recognize us as mentors.”

Rob Lowe debuts as KFC’s newest colonel Sunday

Meet the new KFC colonel — actor Rob Lowe.

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The actor has played many roles through the years — as Sam Seaborn in “The West Wing” and Chris Traeger in “Parks and Recreation,” for example — but the former Brat Pack member who also starred in “St. Elmo’s Fire” is branching out into fast food.

Lowe will portray Colonel Harland Sanders beginning Sunday, donning the colonel’s white suit, black string tie and trademark goatee — but he also will be wearing a space suit, USA Today reported.

Lowe, 53, will be promoting KFC’s Zinger chicken sandwich, the restaurant chain announced Friday.

“My grandfather was the head of the Ohio chapter of the National Restaurant Association in the 1960s and took me to meet Colonel Harland Sanders when I was a kid,” Lowe told USA Today. “It was a big deal. I thought this would be a nice homage to both Colonel Sanders and to my grandfather.”

Among the other seven celebrities who have portrayed the founder of the Finger Lickin’ Good chicken are Darrell Hammond, Norm Macdonald, Jim Gaffigan and actors George Hamilton and Billy Zane.

Lowe, 53, has previously done commercials for DIRECTV.

The spicy Zinger sandwich will debut Monday in the United States after a 33-year stint overseas, KFC said. In a video promoting the sandwich, Lowe steps to the podium in his space suit and proclaims that “The time has come to explore beyond our known horizons.”

Lowe ends the video by asking, “Can you actually launch KFC’s world-famous Zinger chicken sandwich into space?”

His answer? “We certainly hope so. Our entire marketing campaign depends on it.

“But when we succeed, we will lick our fingers. We will lick our fingers good.”

Serena Williams shares another shot from Mexico vacation

Tennis star Serena Williams announced she was pregnant on Snapchat earlier this week as she shared — and then deleted — a photo of her baby bump with the cryptic caption “20 weeks” from her vacation in Mexico.

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The world’s top-ranked female player shared another shot from her getaway with fiancé and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian on Instagram, Today reported. The 35-year-old is looking out over the Caribbean Sea at the edge of Mayan ruins in Tulum. Earlier, Williams posted a photo of herself and Ohanian horsing around in New Zealand last January.

Williams has won 72 career WTA titles during her career. She has won 23 Grand Slams in singles competition and has 14 in women's doubles. She also won two Grand Slam events in mixed doubles.

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