While there is no known cure for breast cancer, scientists are working on medicine that could be key for treating the disease, according to a new report.
Researchers from the Mayo Clinic recently conducted a study to develop a vaccine that could eliminate cancer cells and potential disease recurrence.
The vaccine helps the body resist the return of the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2), a protein that can cause breast cancer. It should be used with Trastuzumab, an immune-stimulating drug given to women following HER2 tumor removal surgery. If successful, the researchers believe the vaccine could prevent the cancer from returning and spreading to other parts of the body.
Here’s exactly how it works:
The vaccination in combination with Trastuzumab works by activating the immune system's B-cells, which attack breast tumor cells with HER2. The process then triggers other groups of cells so that they that promote resistance to the recurrence of the illness.
“The vaccine provides a prevention strategy to deter cancer reformation,” coauthor Keith Knutson said in a statement. “The body's T-cells and B-cells synergize with each other for a strong, durable, immune response.”
The analysts found the medicine can cause mild responses like fatigue. For future research, they hope to find out how long immunity will last and whether it can be use to help target other cancerous cells.
“The standard approaches to treating cancer address the existing disease,” Knutson said. “Our goal is to develop a strategy to address recurrence. We have good drugs, like Trastuzumab, that can interfere with the recurrence of HER2 breast cancer. Our hope is that a vaccine that engages multiple aspects of the body's own immune system will build on those successes.”
The researchers have received an $11 million grant from the U.S. Department of Defense for further exploration.
Ready-to-eat salad with meat products that contain a corn ingredient have been recalled due to possible salmonella and listeria monocytogenes contamination, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service.
More than 700 pounds of salad products were recalled by a Green Cove Springs, Florida, establishment known as GHSE LLC.
The possible contamination was discovered Oct. 15 after the establishment received a notification that the corn used was recalled by their corn supplier due to concerns over salmonella and listeria monocytogenes.
The recalled salad was shipped to stores in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.
"There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products," the USDA said.
Details on the product recalled below:
Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a health care provider.
A Georgia teacher accused of sexually abusing a DeKalb County middle-school student was found dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound Wednesday afternoon, police said.
Zachary Meadors, 28, of Lawrenceville, was found dead in a vehicle in the 1200 block of Scenic Highway around 5:15 p.m., Gwinnett County police said in a news release.
He was accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a sixth-grade male student at Freedom Middle School, according to an arrest warrant by DeKalb County police. He faced charges of child molestation, computer pornography and child exploitation, WSB-TV reported.
He was a sixth-grade English teacher at the school in Stone Mountain, and he had worked there for two years, WSB-TV reported. He was placed on unpaid administrative leave on Friday.
His parents filed a missing persons report Monday with police after Meadors left letters and an iPad at his parents’ front door. He was last seen Saturday.
The missing persons report said Meadors apologized for his relationship with the student and asked his parents to divide his money among family members, WSB-TV reported.
For the first time since 2013, the Boston Red Sox are one win away from a spot in the World Series after their Game 4 win against the Houston Astros in the ALCS.
But Wednesday's 8-6 win, which put the Red Sox ahead 3-1 in the series, didn't come without controversy.
A ball launched from the Astros' Jose Altuve to right field looked like it was about to put the Red Sox in a tough spot, but Altuve was called out on a contentious fan interference ruling involving Boston outfielder Mookie Betts, changing the entire game.
The call sparked debate on Twitter among fans, sports journalists and celebrities, including Hall of Famer Chipper Jones and supermodel Kate Upton, who is married to Astros pitcher Justin Verlander.
The Astros fan said to have interfered with the play, Troy Caldwell, told the Houston Chronicle that he "didn't do anything wrong."
Atlanta's WSB-TV has learned a reality television star was arrested Tuesday at her child's middle school in Cobb County, Georgia.
Jefferson is accused of shoving her child’s head into a locker, among other things, at Griffin Middle School.
According to Smyrna police, Jefferson was charged with felony aggravated assault, simple battery, first-degree child cruelty and disruption of public schools.
Johnson reports she posted $27,000 bond Wednesday morning and is out of jail.
Jefferson has had several other run-ins with the law. She was arrested in July after police said she refused orders from officers and hit a valet on the head.
The valet didn't press charges, but Jefferson was charged with "disorderly under the influence" and booked at Atlanta City Detention Center.
Jefferson was also accused of attacking an Atlanta mall employee in February.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reporting an increase in cases of a rare polio-like illness affecting kids.
So far this year, the CDC has confirmed 62 cases acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM, in 22 states, and has received reports of 127 patients who are under investigation.
The CDC started detecting the increases in 2014. Since, then there have been 386 cases of the mysterious illness, including one death in 2017.
Despite the increase in cases, the disease remains rare, with fewer than an estimated one in a million people getting AFM each year, the CDC said. However, it’s not mandatory for health providers to report AFM, so it’s possible there could be more cases.
According to Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, most AFM cases occur in late summer and fall. The Associated Press reported that "similar waves of the same illness occurred in 2014 and 2016," appearing to follow "every-other-year pattern."
“As far as we know, it has only been detected in the United States. In terms of clustering in the United States, many states in the U.S. have been impacted by this disease, so we are not seeing geographic clustering in 2018, nor have we seen it in 2016 or 2014,” Messonnier said.
In Jacksonville, Florida, doctors believe Aamira Faircloth, 3, has AFM. She is in fair condition at Wolfson Children’s Hospital.
Aamira's mother, Reba, told ActionNewsJax on Tuesday that her daughter suddenly couldn’t walk.
“It was just like how a baby learns to walk, and she collapsed and fell to the ground,” Reba said.
Dr. Mobeen Rathore, chief of infectious diseases at Wolfson Children’s Hospital, said this isn’t cause for panic, but parents should be aware.
“The good news is we know it’s not polio, but unfortunately it’s still happening, it almost looks like every other year, and still affecting children,” he said.
Rathore said the most frustrating thing about the illness is "not knowing what causes it and not knowing how to treat it."
ActionNewsJax's Facebook post about the illness received hundreds of comments, including one from Christina Strickland, who wrote that in 2012 she woke up one morning to find her son “crying laying on the floor screaming in pain that he couldn’t walk.”
Other parents on the thread blamed vaccinations – a claim that Rathore disputed.
“Absolutely not. There is no evidence. There’s absolutely no evidence that vaccines have anything to do with this,” Rathore said.
According to Rathore, there’s also no evidence that AFM is caused by the flu shot.
He said there is something parents can do right now.
“Good hand hygiene, good cough etiquette, stay away from people who are sick,” Rathore said.
A 5-year-old boy last seen in Massachusetts about two years ago was found 1,500 miles away in Orlando, Florida.
An anonymous tip sent to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children on Tuesday helped Florida sheriffs locate the boy.
Police in Webster, Massachusetts, said Matthew Hale was kidnapped by his mother, Christina Hale, in 2016, first going from New York to her mother's home in Webster.
The child's father showed up in Webster in January 2017 and asked police for help.
"He was from New York. He had paperwork stating he had full custody of his child, and he wanted officers to go with him to keep the peace," Master Deputy Ingrid Tejada-Monforte said.
When they arrived on Emil Street, they came up empty-handed.
"When they went there, Christina and Matthew were not there," Tejada-Monforte said. "They learned she had left a few weeks prior."
Police filed a missing person's report, with posters featuring Matthew and his mother's pictures going up across the area.
Seven months later in July, the mother's car was found in Maine. That trail went cold, as the two eventually made their way to Florida to stay with a cousin, authorities said.
The anonymous tip led the Florida sheriffs to the home, where an arrest was made.
"She was located down in Florida with a relative, I assume, because it’s the same last name [Warren Hale], and she was taken into custody," Tejada-Monforte said. "Matthew was taken into custody of the Department of Children and Families, and they’re working on reuniting him with his father.”
The mother will face a charge of parental kidnapping in Webster, while Matthew's father gets a weight lifted off his shoulders.
“For the father, this is a good relief for him to know that his child is OK and is in good health," Tejada-Monforte said.
Salmonella linked to raw chicken has made dozens of people sick across the country, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday.
In total, 92 people from 29 states have been sickened in the outbreak.
The CDC said 21 people have been hospitalized, but no one has died.
The people who became sick reported eating different types and brands of chicken products bought from many different stores.
“A single, common supplier of raw chicken products or of live chickens has not been identified,” the CDC said in a statement.
The drug-resistant strain of salmonella making people sick has been found in samples taken from raw chicken pet food, raw chicken products and live chickens, which the CDC said indicates the outbreak may be widespread in the chicken industry.
Two national lottery games – Mega Millions and Powerball – are sporting huge jackpots, topping a billion in total combined winnings.
Update 12:52 a.m. EDT Oct. 18: The estimated jackpot for Saturday’s Powerball drawing has climbed to $430 million, according to the Powerball website.
Update 11:30 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: No one won the $345 million Powerball jackpot in Wednesday’s drawing, but five lucky players won a $1 million. The Powerball website said the winners were in Michigan and Nebraska.
Update 11:10 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: The winning Powerball
numbers for the drawing on Wednesday, Oct. 17 are: 03-57-64-68-69 and the Powerball number was 15. The jackpot is $345 million.
Update 12:10 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: The Mega Millions jackpot has swollen to $900 million ahead of Friday’s drawing. If a person wins the jackpot, he or she will also have the option of taking the jackpot as a $513 million cash payout, according to the Mega Millions website.
The next Mega Millions drawing is set to take place Friday at 11 p.m. EDT.
Update 12:59 a.m. EDT Oct. 17: No tickets matched all six numbers in Tuesday’s Mega Millions drawing. Friday’s estimated jackpot has climbed to a record $868 million, with a cash payout of $494 million, according to the Mega Millions website.
Update 11:15 p.m. EDT Oct. 16: Mega Millions numbers drawn Tuesday night were 69-45-61-3-49 and the Mega Ball was 9. It is not yet known if there is a winner.
Original report: If you have a few dollars and dreams of riches untold, the coming week could be a game-changer for you.
Two national lottery games – Mega Millions and Powerball – are sporting huge jackpots this week, now topping a billion in total combined winnings.
The Mega Millions drawing set for Tuesday has the second largest jackpot in the game’s history, worth $667 million (or $372 million with the cash option). That breaks the game’s previous record jackpot of $656 million.
Add to that a hefty $345 million Powerball jackpot, and you’re looking at nearly a billion dollars in lottery money being up for grabs this week.
The Powerball jackpot is the 17th largest in the game’s history. The cash payout on the $345 million would be $199 million.
How did we get the chance to play for such jackpots? You can thank all those who played and didn’t hit the jackpot. The Mega Millions jackpot has been building since July 24, the last time the grand prize jackpot was won.
The Powerball game has not seen a grand prize winner since Aug. 11.
The Mega Millions numbers drawn Friday were 04-24-46-61-70. The Megaball was 07. The Megaplier was 3.
One ticket sold in Arkansas matched all five numbers, but did not match the Megaball number. That winning ticket is worth $3 million because the person who purchased the ticket purchased the “Multiplier” option which tripled the $1 million prize.
The Powerball numbers drawn Saturday were 11-14-32-43-65 and the Powerball was 15. The Power Play was 3. Two players – one in Nebraska and one in Michigan – matched the five numbers, but not the Powerball number. Each of those tickets is worth $1 million.
Cost estimates for the damage to Georgia Agriculture after Hurricane Michael are well over $1 billion, according to a new report from Georgia Agricultural Commissioner Gary Black.
Hurricane Michael was the first major hurricane to hit Georgia since the 1800s. It moved through southwest Georgia last week after slamming into the Florida Panhandle.
It destroyed crops, in places ripping entire pecan trees out of the ground. Some South Georgia farmers lost their entire livelihoods in just one day.
Black called the losses unprecedented and said they will impact generations to come.
“Unfortunately, our worst thoughts were realized. We saw months and sometimes years of work just laid over on the ground in a matter of seconds,” Black said. “These are generational losses that are unprecedented and it will take unprecedented ideas and actions to help our farm families and rural communities recover.”
On Tuesday, Vice President Mike Pence toured the damage, pledging support to help communities rebuild.
“It’s not going to go unnoticed in this administration and we’re going to make sure the people of this region will have the support to rebuild," Pence said.
Here’s the new breakdown of the devastation by crop release Wednesday by the Georgia Department of Agriculture:
COTTON: $300 MILLION to $800 MILLION -- Cotton was the second highest contributor to Georgia’s farmgate value last year, contributing just over 7 percent. The final loss estimate will be dependent on farmers’ ability to harvest what remains in the field. Georgia had the potential of record yields for this year, so this loss is even more devastating.
PECAN: $560 MILLION -- Pecan trees that were blown over or broken are a severe, generational loss for farmers. It takes about seven years for a tree to begin producing nuts, and there is 100 percent crop loss in Seminole County, 85 percent in Decatur County and 30 percent in Grady County. Pecan farmers will take a decade to recover from the loss of a mature tree, and many of these farmers were still recovering from Irma when Michael rolled through.
VEGETABLES: $480 MILLION -- Vegetables affected include sweet corn, cucumbers, squash, peppers, peas and more. Georgia is home to a wide variety of produce, much of which was affected by the high winds and hard rains of Michael. After Hurricane Florence, prices were elevated so this enhanced the loss estimate because Georgia was in a very good position to supply the market prior to Hurricane Michael. This comes as a blow to growers who had a difficult spring harvest and were counting on the fall.
POULTRY: $25 MILLION -- Poultry is Georgia’s leading agricultural industry, contributing nearly 32 percent of the state’s 2018 farmgate value in broilers and an additional 5.62 percent in eggs. Michael will make a lasting impact on this poultry industry with the loss of 97 houses and well over 2 million chickens.
PEANUTS: $10 MILLION to $20 MILLION -- While peanuts fared better than many other crops, infrastructure loss remains uncertain. The final loss estimate will be impacted by the ability to get the remaining peanuts out of the field and into storage facilities. The grading and sorting of these peanuts will play a large part of determining the final loss. Peanuts contributed nearly 5 percent of Georgia’s 2018 farmgate value.
AGRITOURISM: Fall is typically the most important season for many agritourism sites, as it includes activities like corn mazes and pumpkin patches that bring many families and school field trips to the farms. Multiple mazes have been destroyed in addition to other farm damage. The loss estimate will be difficult to determine, even after the season is over.
TIMBER: $1 BILLION -- Approximately 1 million acres were destroyed, most belonging to small or private landowners.
A 5-month-old girl is fine after police said her mother recorded herself plunging the baby's head underwater.
Laquanda Mosley faces charges including aggravated assault with intent to murder, first-degree child cruelty and terroristic threats after police said she recorded a video of herself holding her baby underwater.
The baby’s father said he believes anger drove her to do it.
"That was a vindictive act," Kevin Dandridge said.
Dandridge said Mosley became upset and threatened to harm the child when he asked for custody. He said Mosley was angry at him and sent him the videos threatening to kill the child in retaliation.
He posted it on social media and it went viral. Dandridge, who lives out of state, said he posted it for one reason only.
"I just needed some help and I didn't know how to locate her," he explained.
He says a friend of Mosley's saw his post and told him where she lives, and that's how police found her.
Officers said the infant was taken to the hospital and was released.
Dandridge told Jones no father should have to see his child's life threatened like that.
"I guess she just went off the deep end. I don't understand," he said.
Dandridge said Mosley was angry with him over money and the fact that he wanted custody of his child.
Police said when they arrived at her home she had the baby and two other children, 5 and 7-years-old.
All the children are in the custody of child protective services.
The Emmy Award-winning “Golden Girls” sitcom, featuring the adventures of four feisty older women, ran for seven seasons starting in the mid-1980s. More than 30 years later, the show is still airing on cable TV and its still-growing fan base spans the generations.
Maybe that’s part of the reason Funko, known for its pop culture-themed products, just debuted a limited-edition “Golden Girls”-inspired tribute cereal.
The cereal just hit store shelves at select Target stores late last month, and it is already hard to find.
The multigrain cereal, based on the characters of Dorothy, Blanche, Rose and Sophia, is basically a monochrome version of Fruit Loops, with thick O’s in an unusual shade of blue, according to Parenting.com, and goes for an expensive $7.99 a box, if you can find it.
Just one of the Golden Girls is still alive. Actress Betty White has outlived her co-stars by years, and at 96, she is still going strong in Hollywood.
A Florida man is facing charges after police said he attempted to abduct a child Saturday at Orlando International Airport.
Kissimmee resident Alfredo Sanchez, 49, of walked up behind an 8-year-old girl, wrapped his arms around her waist and tried to walk away, authorities said.
Witnesses said the child started screaming and Sanchez yelled, “This is my girl.”
Two of the witnesses knew something wasn’t right and held Sanchez to the ground until police arrived, according to a police report.
An officer at the airport heard the child’s screams and saw Transportation Security Administration agents yelling into their radios to respond to the B side exit.
When the officer got to the scene, he saw Sanchez lying on the ground with his hands behind his back and two witnesses holding him down, according to the report.
Police said the child was not physically injured, but was “obviously traumatized by the suspect."
The officer called for backup and based on witness and the child’s mother’s statements, he believes that Sanchez tried to kidnap the child.
Sanchez is jailed without bond on charges related to the incident.
Update 6:45 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: A California surgeon and his girlfriend are facing five additional charges of drugging and raping women, according to news reports.
Reality TV star and celebrity orthopedic surgeon Dr. Grant Robicheaux, 38, and Cerissa Riley, 31, are accused of “rape by drugs, kidnapping, oral copulation by anesthesia, assault with intent to commit sexual offenses and other crimes” in cases dating back to 2009, The Los Angeles Times reported.
Robicheaux was additionally charged with sexually assaulting five women and Riley was charged in connection with attacks on three women, according to the newspaper. The original charges involved attacks on two women.
The pair pleaded not guilty during a court hearing Wednesday in Newport Beach, California, to a number of felony charges relating to the alleged drugging and raping of women, the Times reported.
A judge also increased Robichaeux’s bail to $1 million, the L.A. Times reported. If convicted on the charges, he faces more than 80 years in jail.
Riley is facing more than 60 years in prison if she’s convicted on the charges
Original story: A California surgeon who appeared on a reality TV show and a woman are accused of drugging and sexually assaulting at least two women.
Authorities said Grant W. Robicheaux, 38, and Cerissa Laura Riley, 31, were taken into custody Sept. 12 on multiple charges, including “rape by use of drugs.”
Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said in a news conference that the investigation into the pair began in October 2016.
Police were called to Robicheaux’s Newport apartment on Oct. 2, 2016, after a neighbor called 911 when he or she heard a woman screaming. The alleged victim said she was sexually assaulted by Robicheaux and Riley when they brought her to his home after meeting them at a bar, where she drank “until she was unconscious,” according to The Associated Press.
A 32-year-old woman claimed she was assaulted by the pair in April 2016 after meeting them at a local restaurant. She told police she “consumed large amounts of alcohol” before going to Robicheaux’s home for an after-party, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Prosecutors claim the woman was then drugged and sexually assaulted. The AP said “a forensic exam found multiple controlled substances” after she called police the day after the alleged incident.
On Jan. 9, 2018, authorities searched Robicheaux’s home and allegedly found unregistered firearms and large amounts of illegal drugs, including GHB, according Rackauckas.
In a press conference, Rackauckas also said investigators were combing through “thousands and thousands of videos and images on Robicheaux’s phone, many also including Riley.”
Some videos reportedly show women who are inebriated and “barely responsive to the defendant’s sexual advances,” leading investigators to believe there are other victims.
Robicheaux, a board certified orthopedic surgeon, was featured on a 2014 reality dating show that aired on Bravo, “Online Dating Rituals of the American Male.” Orange Coast Magazine also named him “Orange County’s Most Eligible Bachelor” in 2013, according to the LA Times.
An Arizona high school dance team is getting attention once again for an impressive performance.
In the video, members the the PAC Dance Team and Advanced Dance perform a series of synchronized moves to “Hedwig's Theme” from the “Harry Potter” film series, complete with props, before moving into Flor Rida’s “My House” and Nicki Minaj’s “Chun-Li.”
The video has more than four million views, and it isn’t the first time the dance team has gone viral. The group’s “The Wizard of Oz”-themed homecoming routine in 2017 has more than three million views. In July, it competed on “America’s Got Talent” with the same “Oz” routine.
Watch the performance in the video below.
After more than a decade together, mogul and musician Sean “Diddy” Combs and singer Cassie are no longer together.
People reported that, according to an unnamed source, “the decision was amicable and they remain friends.”
“They are indeed no longer together and haven’t been for months,” a representative for Cassie, whose full name is Cassie Ventura, told celebrity gossip site LoveBScott.
The news comes after LoveBScott reported that Combs is dating 26-year-old model Jocelyn Chew. According to the website, the two were seen in Miami in September and at a Drake concert Friday in Los Angeles.
After keeping their relationship private for years, Combs and Cassie went public with their relationship in 2012. The two collaborated on multiple songs together and first met when Cassie was signed to Combs’ Bad Boy Records.
The two have no children together. Combs is father to sons Quincy Brown, 27, Justin, 24, Christian, 20, twin girls D’Lila Star and Jessie James, 11, and daughter Chance, 11.
Reps for each had no comment to People about the reported breakup.
Pets rescued from south Georgia following Hurricane Michael need new homes.
The Atlanta Humane Society, as it often does following disasters, has taken in dogs and cats from the Albany area. Shelter facilities there were without power or water for days after the devastating storm. Last year the organization took in more than 1,000 animals from areas impacted by hurricane damage.
The Albany arrivals will be medically evaluated and then put up for adoption at the AHS’ two shelter locations. The main branch is at 981 Howell Mill Road in Midtown and the north Fulton one is at 1565 Mansell Road. Call 404-875-5331 or see atlantahumane.org for information.
Hurricane Michael slammed into the Florida Panhandle a week ago as a powerful Category 4 storm. The Alaqua Animal Refuge, about 70 miles from the coast, has launched a program to extend relief to animals and their owners in the hard- hit area.
The refuge’s structures and the 350 animals it houses came through the storm fine, with only minimal property damage, so it is now offering help.
“We’re blessed, so we’re turning our focus to help others,” president and founder Laurie Hood said. “Losing a pet during this time adds more strain to people who are already over-stressed and have little or no resources.”
Alaqua is offering to help search for lost, abandoned and injured animals in addition to offering temporary refuge for pets, displaced horses and farm animals. The facility’s veterinary staff members are on stand-by to provide medical treatment.
“We take the animals out, provide medical treatment and keep them safe, with the goal to eventually reunite them with their owners,” Hood said. “We work with appropriate agencies, manage the process in an organized manner, and know how to handle frightened and injured animals.”
Florida Panhandle pet or farm-animal owners can reach out by calling 850-880-6694 (leave a message) or by emailing LHood@alaqua.org. For full details see alaqua.org/michael.
Three members of rapper Machine Gun Kelly’s entourage are wanted by police in connection with an alleged attack on an actor in Atlanta last month.
The Atlanta Police Department confirmed Wednesday that battery warrants were obtained for Brandon Allen, 28, John Cappellety, 24, and Lamar Reed, 42.
The men are accused of beating up Gabriel “G-Rod” Rodriguez on Sept. 13 in a hotel lobby.
Surveillance video released by police appears to show the attack. In the video, one man in a gray shirt picks Rodriguez up and slams him to the ground, and the other men hit and kick him. The man who allegedly body-slammed the actor is believed to be Kelly’s personal bodyguard, according to police.
Rodriguez said the fight followed a heated exchange between Rodriguez and Kelly at a restaurant.
Rodriguez told WSB in September that he had an issue with Kelly ever since the rapper called Eminem’s daughter “hot as (expletive)” in a tweet when she was just 16 years old.
He told police he later crossed paths with the rapper’s entourage when he returned to an area hotel.
“He’s a coward for having his goons jump me,” Rodriguez, who was in Atlanta filming a television show at the time, said.
When officers arrived at the hotel, none of the alleged attackers were there. Police said Rodriguez suffered “major injuries to the right side of his face.”
It is unknown if Allen, Cappellety and Reed still work for Kelly, or if any of them live in Georgia.
Tennessee officials are struggling to explain why an apparently loving mother shot her four adopted children to death before taking her own life.
Cynthia Collier’s adult biological son called 911 shortly after 6 p.m. Monday after he returned home from work and found Collier, 55, and his four youngest siblings dead of gunshot wounds in their Columbia home. Evidence found at the scene indicated Collier committed the killings, officials said Tuesday during a news conference.
“There was some information that was left -- it was very brief and vague -- that would indicate that it would be murder-suicide,” Maury County Sheriff Bucky Rowland said.
Rowland on Tuesday identified the dead children: Kaileigh Lin, 17, Lia Lin, 15, and 14-year-olds Meigan Lin and Bo Li. Court records indicate the children were adopted from China, The Tennessean reported.
Rowland did not specify where in the house the children were killed, but he said there were multiple crime scenes in the home. Investigators recovered two weapons believed to have been used in the slayings.
The sheriff described Collier as a stay-at-home mother who homeschooled her adopted children. Fox17 in Nashville reported that Collier had properly registered with the state to teach her children and submitted curriculum and attendance records.
The children did not participate in extracurricular activities in Maury County, and neighbors said the family kept to themselves, the news station said.
Rowland said the motive for the shootings remained elusive. By all accounts, Collier was a “very loving mother, with the exception of this one incident.”
“This appears to be a loving home,” the sheriff said. “It’s an immaculate home and a very loving family, so a motive would be very important to know what would lead someone to do this to her loved ones.”
Watch Rowland’s entire news conference below.
Besides her adopted children, Collier had three adult biological children -- two sons and a daughter. The Tennessean reported that Collier and her long-estranged husband, Randall Collier Sr., began divorce proceedings in March after 36 years of marriage.
They attempted to reconcile in May, according to court records obtained by the newspaper, but it was unclear how the reconciliation was going. Randall Collier did not live in the house where the homicides took place.
In sworn statements the four youngest children gave during the divorce proceedings, they asked to continue living with their mother, The Tennessean reported. The teens said they barely knew their father.
The three biological Collier children also gave statements in which they said their relationship with their father had also been a strained one, including their interactions before Randall and Cynthia Collier’s 2007 separation, the court records said.
Rowland said Randall Collier and other family members were interviewed during the investigation into the shootings, but the department has no evidence that the crime was anything other than a murder-suicide. His department had no record of any domestic calls to the home prior to the son’s 911 call Monday.
The sheriff asked the public to keep the victims and their family in prayer, as well as the deputies and other first responders who witnessed the crime scenes in the Collier home.
“We deal with difficult situations, we deal with carnage each and every day, but the magnitude of this, it was more than what we’re used to on a day-to-day basis,” Rowland said.
Rowland said it is difficult for law enforcement agencies to deal with potential issues involving mental illness. He encouraged those in crisis to seek help.
“Don’t be embarrassed,” the sheriff said. “Don’t hesitate. Always try to seek professional help any time that you feel a loved one or yourself may be suffering from that.”
One teenage boy will probably reconsider taking his mother’s BMW for a ride again.
According to Campero, Aaron disconnected the Wi-Fi in the house, which cut off security cameras and kept their mother, Liza Martinez, from seeing him slip out while she was at work.
But Isiah’s mother alerted Martinez to what he was doing.
Campero told KTRK she lives next door to her mother, so she checked to see if her car was there. It wasn’t.
“She told me she was on her way home and to grab her belt,” Campero said.
Campero and her mother stopped by Aaron’s girlfriend’s house first.
“The girlfriend called his best friend and there was another girl with them,” Campero said. “The girl that was with them said that mom was looking for them.”
For Martinez, it was a matter of safety.
“She wanted to find him before he wrecked the car and before the police did,” Campero said.
Once Aaron was tracked down, Martinez got him to pull over. A video posted by Campero shows the mother driving alongside her son and screaming, “Pull over now!”
“My mom said once she opened the door, he had smirk on his face until she started spanking him,” Campero told the Houston Chronicle.
“What my mom did want to say is that it wasn’t Aaron’s first time taking a car,” Campero said. “The first time that he took a car, she talked to him.”
“I deserved it,” Aaron said. “It was a bad choice. I just can’t do it again. That’s what I have to learn.”
Aaron has since been grounded until further notice, KTRK reported. He will go the rest of the year without his cellphone, PlayStation 4, and without a door on his bedroom. He can only go to school or be with his mother.
“He was embarrassed at first, but he went back to school yesterday, and everybody tells him he’s like a legend,” she said.
Aaron and Campero spoke more about the experience on Campero’s YouTube channel.
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