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Child endangerment charges against YouTube stars dropped, officials say

Child endangerment charges against a West View, Pennsylvania, couple have been dropped, officials said.

>> Read more trending news

Isaac and Nicole Guest were charged in June after police said their two young sons were found by a good Samaritan on the side of a busy road.

According to police, their mother was a block away at a park while their father was at home.

The Guests are YouTube stars with their own channel and have been criticized before.

At the time of the incident, both parents proclaimed their innocence and said they expected the charges to be dropped.

The charges against Isaac Guest were dismissed and those against Nicole Guest were withdrawn.

5 signs your relationship is toxic and hurting your mental health

Everyone in a relationship knows how easy it is to accuse a partner of something they didn't do. It's their fault, you tell them, whether the spat is about towels on the bathroom floor, an angry mother-in-law or a missed restaurant reservation.

>> Read more trending news 

Sometimes you know you're wrong the second these words leave your mouth; other times you recognize your mistake in the days to come.

But the same people often miss a much more critical aspect of their relationship, despite repeated examples and gut feelings that something is wrong. It's far more difficult to realize that your partner may actually be at fault when you suffer from mental health issues.

"Some have the power to uplift our spirits, to lend comfort during life's strains and stresses, to weave fun and playfulness into our day, and to imbue life with a profound sense of purpose," psychologist and Harvard lecturer Holly Parker, author of “If We're Together, Why Do I Feel So Alone?,” told Bustle. "Sadly, others can pull us downward, drain our energy and emotional reserves, fill us with heartache and erode our happiness."

Some of these woeful partners contribute to a condition, like depression, that may have already been present. Others push a person with relatively strong mental health into a rapid decline.

In both situations, it's all too easy to miss the signals. Bustle writer Suzannah Weiss, for example, started obsessive hair picking (trichotillomania), had trouble concentrating on work and wasted lots of time watching television for a good while before she realized an emotionally abusive partner was the root cause of her mental anguish. 

>> Related: Which ‘down-and-dirty’ men should you spring-clean from your life?

You owe it to yourself to figure out if you're having a toxic reaction to a relationship, psychologist Andrea Bonior told Health.

"Keeping a finger on your own emotions can help you develop insight about the people in your life, so you can choose healthier situations," she said.

And while each person has to weigh a relationship's worth for themselves, there are common signs that indicate a partner's actions are hurting your mental health:

Your self-esteem is slipping. If you can honestly say you were more confident and felt better about yourself before this relationship got going, your partner could be the one lowering your self-esteem, Parker said. The routine might be subtle, like a partner who talks about themselves constantly while asking you very few questions, which can lead you to feel less interesting. (This could also be a symptom that you are in a relationship with one type of narcissist.) Or it could be more obvious, a constant barrage of overt insults that reaches emotional abuse proportions.

"When one of the people you're closest to is making you feel inferior, you may start to believe you are," Weiss noted.

You're always walking on eggshells. A controlling relationship partner can do plenty of damage even without physical threats or violence. "It can simply be that you feel frightened to share your opinions—you're constantly walking on eggshells because you're afraid of your partner's emotional reactions," Bonior noted.

Your physical health has tanked since the relationship started. 

Sure, it could be a coincidence. But Parker warned that an unhealthy relationship can cause headaches, insomnia or muscle pain. The link to mental health? If one of those physical problems has erupted due to your relationship, it may indicate an underlying mental issue as well.

You're relieved when your partner checks out. 

Of course you could just be losing interest, but a physical sense of relief when your partner leaves after you've spent substantial time together could indicate your partner's causing you stress. Give this observation even more credit if your relief when your partner departs is accompanied by "a sense of weight and physical tension in the parter's presence," Parker noted.

You go to great lengths to distract yourself from the relationship. 

This is a psychological arc: when you are in a relationship with someone, you will make every attempt to avoid negative thoughts about them. When the negativity threatens, it can cause you so much cognitive dissonance you will do anything to push it to the back of your mind. Some of the distraction techniques can wear away mental health, like oversleeping or playing video games for long hours. 

>> Related: 6 signs it's time to break up with your workplace friend

Of course, eliminating the relationship is not going to magically erase your mental health problems, but it could have a positive impact. "Although many stressors in life can undermine emotional health, the possible role of relationships should not be dismissed," Parker said. "If a romantic relationship is having a negative impact on your psychological well-being, it's vital to turn attention to that."

Snake massage great way to relax, if you can stand the creepy crawlers slithering all over you

The latest trend in massages doesn’t involve cactus or snail facials or even cleavers. It seems the hottest practice heating up the massage table lately in some spas involves snakes.

>> Read more trending news 

A spa in Poughkeepsie, New York, places boa constrictors on the body and allows them to slither all over, wrapping themselves around a client’s neck, feet and torso.

“Just enjoy them and feel them,” a masseuse specializing in snake massages named Serpentessa said to a client  undergoing the snake massage, according to CBS 2 NY.

“They tone and stimulate the vagus nerve in our body, and that releases endorphins and oxytocin. Those are the feel-good nerves,” Serpentessa, who works at the Dreaming Goddess spa, told CBS 2.

The vagus nerve is one of the cranial nerves that connects the brain to the body.

But how safe is this kind of massage with a snake like a boa constrictor? Serpentessa said it depends.

“There are no guarantees with a wild animal,” she said. “You’re the one who’s going to choose whether it’s safe for you or not. So no one has ever been hurt by one of my boa constrictors.”

>> Related: 6-foot boa constrictor falls from ceiling, landing on sleeping man

She has four of them and charges $300 for an hour and 15 minute massage.

Serpentessa also told CBS 2 that people usually come to her for a couple different reasons: healing, empowerment or to conquer a fear of snakes.

Clinic's errant form letter reveals health care's faulty human touch

When Dr. Seth Walker, an Emory Healthcare pulmonologist, decided to take a position in Cleveland, Emory sent out a letter letting his patients know.

“My leaving in no way diminishes my concern for you and your well-being,” Walker wrote.

>> Read more trending news

It didn’t have the desired effect. The letter was riddled with bizarre typos that the family of one patient, Kaitlin Fowler, found off-putting. Worse, Kaitlin received the letter — or rather, her parents did — four years after her death.

Emory should have known: Kaitlin died of cystic fibrosis, the disease Walker was treating her for, at Emory’s flagship hospital on Clifton Road.

“We’re just amazed,” said Jeff Fowler, Kaitlin’s father. “It’s like … how can you send this out to us?” Another family they know also got such a letter sent to their dead child.

Emory is one of the most prestigious medical institutions in the South, and it’s expanding. It puts big muscle into academic expertise and gets high marks for clinical outcomes. But one area where it comes out average, according to federal data, is patient experience.

The letter incident exemplifies a tension in a human-centered trend in health care, said Jason Wolf, the president of the Beryl Institute and founding editor of the Patient Experience Journal.

“You want to give them a little bit of credit,” Wolf said. “It’s good you’re being active in your outreach. But you’ve got to be mindful in the way you do it.”

His organization this week will publish a study on what patients expect from health care workers and institutions. First, of course, comes health. “Second, and not far behind,” he said, “is that they were treated as a person.”

The implications can be significant, he said, not only for a health system’s popularity and financial health. If patients don’t feel engaged, they may slack off or change their participation in their care, and that can have an impact on their clinical outcomes.

“So it has significant implications, I think,” Wolf said.

Health care institutions are driving to improve “patient experience” these days; they’re rated on it and in some instances are paid based on it. But not all of them agree on what “patient experience” even is.

The Beryl Institute defines patient experience “as the sum of all interactions, shaped by an organization’s culture, that influence patient perceptions across the continuum of care.”

One article in the journal Health Leaders led off with the example of another messed-up patient form letter to illustrate lack of connection and poor patient experience.

Another expert in patient experience, though, cautioned not to read too much into such incidents.

“I’d be more concerned if something like that happened during the episode of care,” said Dr. William Maples, an oncologist and president of the Institute of Healthcare Excellence. “If a physician did not create an environment where the patient felt respected, cared for, heard, listened to. Those are the critical things, where we truly are understanding the patient’s needs, we truly are showing that we have empathy and compassion as we provide our scientific care for that particular patient.”

That’s where it’s crucial that doctors are creating an environment where patients and team members can speak up, Maples said, so health care providers have the information they need to make the right decisions. “All of those things are incredibly important to how patients do,” Maples said.

A technological glitch should be fixed, Maples said, but “this is not about patient experience.”

In modern health care generally, “the clinical team is trying very hard to really create the best experience with the situation and the environment that we have,” he said. And “if we begin to make (‘patient experience’) something that it’s not, it only disillusions the team.”

Emory did not say how the mistakes happened, but it released a statement saying it was working to prevent such a situation from ever happening again.

“Emory Healthcare is deeply sorry for sending a physician’s departure letter to the family of a deceased patient and for the pain and disruption this error caused,” the statement said. “The letter and its distribution were not up to Emory’s quality standards.”

As for the Fowlers, the letter is nothing compared with the way cystic fibrosis ground them down. They received attentive, personal care under the Emory umbrella while Kaitlin was a minor, at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s Egleston Hospital on Emory’s campus, Fowler said. At Emory University Hospital, things changed. Sometimes care was heroic. Sometimes it was a revolving door of residents.

“My daughter was in the hospital over 380 days of her life,” Fowler said. “It’s one of these diseases that really wears on you. … You spend a lot of time in hospitals. You spend a lot of time with doctors. You just kind of get used to the dealings.”

Mom gets 40 years for murder of 2-year-old son who wet bed, gave her ‘sideways look’

A South Dakota woman was sentenced Tuesday to 40 years in federal prison for the brutal 2016 beating death of her 2-year-old son, which occurred less than two months after she regained custody of the boy. 

Katrina Pauline Shangreaux, 30, who is also known as Katrina White Whirlwind, pleaded guilty March 20 to second-degree murder in the death of Kylen Shangreaux. The boy died of blunt force trauma July 28, 2016, at Shangreaux’s home in Porcupine, a small community on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. 

>> Read more trending news

Angie Shangreaux, Kylen’s paternal aunt, had custody of the boy for about 14 months, a majority of his life, before Katrina Shangreaux regained custody June 1, 2016, through Oglala Sioux Tribal Court. Angie Shangreaux, 38, described for Native Sun News Today what Kylen’s life was like in her home. 

“A lot of people think ‘Oh he’s just another abused and neglected Native American kid,’” Shangreaux said. “There’s so much more to his life. That wasn’t his life. That was the last fifty-eight days of life.”

She told the newspaper that Kylen’s life was filled with laughter and love before he was returned to his mother. She described him as a “good boy” who loved Chicken Little, Home, Lego Batman 2 and Cars.

His favorite meal was breakfast. 

“He loved to eat waffles," Shangreaux said. “He would sit and drink coffee with me. He called it ‘foffee.’”

Angie Shangreaux’s Facebook page, along with one titled Justice for Kylen, is filled with photos and videos of a smiling, happy Kylen. In one video on the Justice for Kylen page, the toddler and his aunt tell the camera good morning and giggle. 

“I love you, Ky,” Shangreaux says. 

“I love you more,” Kylen responds. 

As Shangreaux starts to say, “I love you the most,” Kylen says, “Most!” The boy laughs. 

A statement of fact filed in federal court in March, when Katrina Shangreaux entered into a plea agreement with prosecutors, details the crime, which U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Viken on Tuesday described as “horrific, depraved, torturous (and) humiliating,” according to the Rapid City Journal

[Warning: The following details are graphic.]

Shangreaux, who said she had consumed a large amount of alcohol and taken the pain medication Tramadol before her son’s killing, admitted in the court records that she returned home the night of July 27, 2016, and became angry when she found that her son had wet the bed. Shangreaux and Kylen lived with her other children and her mother, Sonya Dubray. 

“She took him to the bathroom and tried to force him to use the toilet,” the statement of fact said. “Shangreaux perceived (Kylen) was being defiant and that made her even angrier.”

Shangreaux admitted she hit her son multiple times, including with a studded belt, and put him in the corner as punishment. Her anger grew, she said, when the boy gave her a “sideways look.”

When the toddler accidentally called her “Angie,” she became infuriated. 

“Shangreaux despised (Kylen’s father’s) sister Angie,” the statement said. 

Katrina Shangreaux admitted in the statement of fact that, after her son called her by his aunt’s name, she threw the boy to the floor and repeatedly kicked him in the abdomen and head.

“She stopped only when she saw that he appeared different and she realized how badly she had injured him,” the statement said. 

Shangreaux also bit the boy multiple times and caused damage to his genitals. 

“The most shocking was the damage that she did to his scrotum,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Collins said during the sentencing, according to the Journal

The newspaper reported that the toddler’s genitals were “practically obliterated” by the beating. According to court records, his scrotum was torn and a long hair had been wrapped around it and his penis. 

Shangreaux told Dubray what she had done, the statement of fact said. At some point early the following morning, the mother and daughter sat Kylen at the kitchen table with Shangreaux’s other children and tried to get him to drink some apple juice.

He became more unresponsive and fell on the floor, where he soiled himself. His mother and grandmother cleaned the boy up -- and cleaned the crime scene with bleach -- before calling an ambulance, court records showed. 

Shangreaux told police when she called 911 that Kylen had choked on his juice and stopped breathing, the Journal reported

When the ambulance arrived, Kylen was in clean clothes and there was no visible blood on his body, according to the statement of fact. 

“Shangreaux did not accompany (Kylen) to the hospital,” the document said. “Instead, she had three cigarettes, then found a ride to Pine Ridge, where the hospital staff told her (Kylen) had died. She fled, to White City, Nebraska, and later to Rapid City.”

Rigor mortis had already set in and Kylen’s body temperature was 90.7 degrees when he was pronounced dead around 8:30 a.m., according to the record. The treating physician estimated that he had been dead for about four hours. 

Emergency room doctors saw belt and bite marks on the boy’s body and found that he had a skull fracture and possible abdominal injuries. 

The pathologist who conducted the boy’s autopsy reported that he had bruises over most of his body.

“He noted (Kylen) suffered extensive and severe bruising over 70 percent of his body and this also likely contributed to his death, as the blood pooling at the bruises may have deprived his organs of sufficient blood,” the statement of fact said. 

The Journal reported that the pathologist found 111 distinct external injuries, including what appeared to be cigarette burns on his head. He also suffered broken ribs and bleeding in his abdomen and brain. 

Shangreaux was initially charged with multiple crimes, including first-degree murder, assault resulting in serious bodily injury of a minor, felony child abuse and neglect. Those charges were reduced to a single second-degree murder charge in the plea deal. 

Read the facts Katrina Shangreaux admitted to as part of her plea agreement below. WARNING: The document contains graphic details of Kylen Shangreaux’s death and may not be suitable for some readers. 

The toddler’s paternal relatives hoped for a life sentence in the case, the Journal said.

“You’re the last person who can give Kylen the justice he deserves,” Angie Shangreaux told the judge prior to Katrina Shangreaux’s sentencing. “I’m begging for what would be a lifelong sentence for her.”

Angie Shangreaux and her mother, Patti Shangreaux, told the court how much Kylen was loved and wanted by their family, the Journal reported. They described how he loved to run around in his diapers.

Kylen also loved music and playing on the computer with Angie Shangreaux’s sons. Before taking her seat following her victim impact statement, Angie Shangreaux told the boy’s mother she hated her. 

“I will never forgive you,” Angie Shangreaux said, according to the newspaper. “You deserve hell.”

The grieving aunt told Native Sun News Today that she has been haunted by the knowledge of what her nephew, who she considered one of her own children, went through before he died. 

“It took a toll on me emotionally. I literally just checked out,” Angie Shangreaux said. “The thoughts of what he suffered that morning. The thoughts of what it was like the last fifty-eight days invaded my mind constantly. The fact that he cried for me when she was killing him.”

Dubray was charged in September 2016 with being an accessory to first-degree murder, tampering with evidence, making a false statement and concealment of a felony. Prosecutors allege that she helped Shangreaux evade authorities, concealed the abuse of her grandson and misled investigators about the extent of the abuse. 

Aside from helping her daughter clean up the crime scene, Dubray is also accused of washing the clothes Kylen was wearing when he was abused to hide evidence, court records show. 

Her indictment states that Dubray also lied to investigators from the FBI and the Bureau of Indian Affairs when she told them that Kylen was potty-trained. The boy was still in diapers, they learned during the investigation. 

Dubray is scheduled to stand trial in November. 

Restaurant tries shaming teen who used quarters to pay, inspires campaign to buy other’s meals

A restaurant that faced backlash after trying to shame a teenager who paid a bill mostly in quarters, inspired the customer to start fundraising to pay for more people’s meals with change. 

>> Read more trending news

Cohen Naulty took a couple of his friends out for lunch Monday to Beer 88, where he picked up the $45 tab. He used a $20 bill and mostly quarters to cover the check as well as a $10 tip, he said. 

"It's just U.S. currency. I'm allowed to use it. It's not illegal. I'm not doing anything wrong," Naulty told WSET

Later that day, the restaurant shared a picture of the change and included hashtags “#nohometraining” in a post that has since been removed. 

The restaurant said in a later post that its original post was not intended to be hurtful. That post has also been removed. 

“In response to our earlier post, it was posted as a joke, intended as a joke and should be taken as a joke. It was posted as a light-hearted way of saying that something like this can be annoying to people that work in the restaurant/retail industry. In no way did we publicly shame ANYONE for paying OR tipping. We try to keep our page funny and relatable. And had no idea that this would be offensive to anyone.”

"On that part, yes, I do apologize," Yao Liu, the owner of Beer 88, told WSET, referring to the hashtag. "Because, you know, I didn't see it."

Naulty, 17, who works as a server at Kountry Kitchen, turned the worldwide interest into a way to keep buying lunch for people. He started The Quarter Boy, a fundraiser to pay for stranger’s meals in change at least once a week. It has raised $4,900.

“If you are a restaurant that wouldn’t mind a register filled with quarters at the end of the night and a special treat for one of your patrons now and then please post so I know who I won’t offend by coming by,” he wrote on Facebook.

'They aren't dead?' Florida man asks police when he learns 2 survived shooting, officials say

A man was arrested Thursday just hours after a fatal shooting at the Best Southern Sun Plaza Motel on South Ridgewood Avenue, police said.

Police said they arrested Marcus Pinckney, 40, in connection with the shooting. He was found in an Ormond Beach hotel, police said.

>> Read more trending news

The shooting happened at about 3 a.m. at the Best Southern Sun Plaza Motel.

A 57-year-old man died at the scene and two other men were injured. The survivors were taken to Halifax Medical Center, where they are in stable condition, officials said.

“This is an Isolated incident. Suspects and victims all knew each other,” Daytona Beach Police Chief Craig Capri said during a news conference. “His targets were intended targets. Almost like an execution, if you want to call it (that).” 

Police said the shooting started in the parking lot of the motel, where there was likely a feud with the gunman about a deal gone badly. 

“The deceased male and one of the injured males are father and son. The third male may be partially blind,” police said in a news release.

Witnesses told officers they looked outside when they heard gunshots, police said. Capri said there have been some narcotics complaints at the motel.

The manager showed WFTV reporter Sarahbeth Ackerman surveillance video of the incident. The video shows a man getting out of a silver Honda and opening fire on three other men.

Police said Pinckney kidnapped his girlfriend, who was in the car at the time of the shooting. She was able to later escape, officers said.

Officers received several tips that Pinckney was at the Ormond Beach motel. They found him armed with a gun at the hotel with his ex-girlfriend, police said.

“He got right into the hands of the police,” a police spokesperson said.

Police said when Pinckney was arrested, he asked officers, “They aren’t dead?” in reference to the victims.

The motel’s manager, Charles Urban, said the three men had been living there for 2 1/2 years and knew the shooter. Urban said they had caused problems at the motel before.

“Nothing like this. It's just that there's a lot of traffic coming in and out. You'd have to live here to understand, but there's a lot of homeless people. There's a lot of prostitutes, and they seem to always gravitate to (room) No. 4," Urban said.

Pinckney was arrested on charges of first-degree murder, two counts of attempted murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and a slew of other charges, police said.

Court records show Pinckney has prior arrests on charges of battery and drugs.

The names of victims have not been released. 

Walmart employee breaks window to rescue infant from hot car, police say

A Walmart employee broke a hot car’s window Tuesday to save an infant locked inside, police said. 

>> Read more trending news

The employee was on break when (he or she) saw Casey Hornsby park her car and walk into Walmart with a child, according to the Valley Times-News. The employee, who has not been identified, went back to work about 20 minutes later and saw an infant in a car seat.

The employee got help from co-workers and people walking by in order to break a window and remove the child from the car, Valley Police Maj. Mike Reynolds told the Times-News.

“The vehicle was off, the windows were rolled up and it was approximately 93 degrees at the time,” Reynolds said. “(People) have all rights to do what they need to do to ensure the safety of a child.” 

The child, who was lethargic and flushed, was removed from the vehicle and taken inside the store. After cooling off, there were no injuries.

Hornsby was paged inside the store and after several attempts was found leaving the store. Hornsby told police she had “forgotten the child was in the car,” according to the Times-News

She was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child, according to the Times-News. The children were taken into custody by child protective services and then later released to the father.

Traffic surge on Amazon Prime Day buckles servers, leads to hours of glitches

UPDATE 3:30 p.m. EDT, July 19: 

Amazon failed to secure enough servers capable of handling the traffic surge on Prime Day, one of the tech giant’s biggest shopping days of the year, causing a series of glitches that temporarily affected some customers.

>> Read more trending news 

The information comes from CNBC, which obtained internal Amazon documents on the problem.

Amazon also had to add servers manually to handle the traffic, CNBC reported.

“A breakdown in an internal system called Sable, which Amazon uses to provide compute and storage services to its retail and digital businesses, caused a series of glitches across other services that depend on it, like Prime, authentication, and video playback,” according to CNBC, citing Amazon documents.

Despite the outage, which lasted for hours, Amazon said this year’s Prime Day was the “biggest shopping event” in the company’s history, with over 100 million products sold over a 36-hour period.

ORIGINAL STORY 3:30 p.m. EDT, July 16:

Amazon Prime Day started at 3 p.m. Eastern time today, but not without some glitches.

CNBC reported that customers complained of errors on desktop and mobile. According to the outlet, some customers got an error page featuring “dogs of Amazon.” On those pages, a photo of a dog appears with the text, “Sorry. Something went wrong on our end,” “Sorry. We couldn’t find that page,” or a similar error message. The dog photo changes with each refresh. There are more than a dozen dog images.

Visiting Amazon.com, navigating to the Prime Day page and clicking on “shop all deals,” or “shop deals by interest” led some users to a redirect loop to the “shop all deals” page.

Related: Amazon glitch: Here's how to get on the Amazon Prime site

According to Tech Crunch, direct links to product pages work fine, including direct links to specific products on the Prime Day page. 

Amazon has not commented on the reports about Prime Day site glitches. The Associated Press reported that the extent of the outage is not clear.

New York City steam pipe explosion injures 5, sends massive plume over Manhattan

A steam pipe explosion in Manhattan’s Flatiron District sent massive plumes into the sky Thursday morning over New York City.

>> Watch WABC’s coverage here

Update 3:05 p.m. EDT July 19: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said tests have confirmed that an 86-year-old steam pipe that exploded in Manhattan early Thursday was lined with asbestos.

The explosion, reported just before 6:40 a.m. near the intersection of 21st Street and Fifth Avenue, sent a massive smoke plume into the air and prompted authorities to evacuate dozens of buildings. New York City Fire Department Commissioner Dan Nigro said five people suffered minor injuries in the explosion.

De Blasio said streets closed by Thursday morning’s explosion would remain so until at least Saturday to give authorities the opportunity to clean the facades of the affected buildings.

“Our concern is the debris that was thrown off by the rupture,” he said. “Some of that is still visible on the street and on the building facades -- that all needs to be cleaned up.”

He said officials will conduct an assessment to ensure no asbestos remains in the area before they open it back up for business and residents.

Officials said the air cleared of asbestos shortly after the explosion, however, authorities warned people who were in the area during the incident that they should bag their clothing and shower.

“The challenge is anything that might cause repeat exposure,” de Blasio said. “One time brief exposure is generally not a problem.”

Update 12:50 p.m. EDT July 19: Streets closed Thursday morning when a nearly century-old steam pipe exploded in New York City could remain closed for several days if officials confirm the pipe was lined with asbestos, according to The New York Times.

New York City Fire Department Commissioner Dan Nigro said officials were working under that assumption on Thursday because the pipe was installed in 1932.

City officials told the Times that the exteriors of buildings in the area will have to be decontaminated if asbestos is confirmed.

In a statement obtained by WPIX, officials with the utility company Con Edison warned people to stay clear of the area of the explosion, on 5th Avenue and 21st Street in Manhattan.

“Environmental testing is being conducted to determine whether asbestos or other contaminants are present, but as a precaution anyone in the vicinity of the rupture who was covered in material is advised to bag their clothing and shower,” the statement said.

According to The Associated Press, there are more than 100 miles of steam pipes running beneath Manhattan. 

Update 11:15 a.m. EDT July 19: New York City Fire Department Commissioner Dan Nigro said five people suffered minor injuries when a high-pressure steam pipe that was installed in 1932 exploded Thursday morning.

“The major disruption is that not only did this steam line burst, but it caused the disruption of a gas line, a water main and some electrical power,” he said Thursday at a news conference.

Officials said 28 buildings were evacuated by 11 a.m. Thursday, up from the 11 reportedly evacuated in the immediate aftermath of the explosion.

Nigro said authorities sent samples to be tested for asbestos because of the age of the burst pipe.

“We are operating as if the samples will come back positive,” Nigro said.

Original report: According to WNBC, the blast occurred about 6:30 a.m. EDT Thursday near the intersection of 21st Street and Fifth Avenue.

>> Read more trending news 

Authorities have not reported any injuries in the explosion, which “spewed debris all over the streets,” the news station said.

Fire crews were still at the scene an hour later, and officials closed streets in the area as commuters headed to work. 

Starbucks to the rescue when weather cancels teen’s senior pictures

The employees at some Starbucks locations really feel like they don’t just work at a coffee shop, they’re part of the community. One shop in Fountain, Colorado, apparently is one of those type of stores. 

Sydney Johansson was getting ready to have her senior portraits taken Sunday afternoon, but the weather wouldn’t cooperate. So her mother drove her around, with the photographer in tow, looking for anywhere that could accommodate them, KKTV reported

The photography session couldn’t be rescheduled because Sydney has an upcoming surgery. She is also in a wheelchair. 

Sydney has cerebral palsy among other health conditions, KKTV reported

Laura Johansson suggested Starbucks, thinking the worst that could happen, would be that the shop would say no.

Photographer Jessica Vallia posted what transpired at the store to Facebook

Vallia said that the man at the counter told them that they could absolutely use the store for the photos. The employee, Chris, offered the Johanssons his umbrella so they could stay dry as the trio transferred from the vehicle into the store. Chris then went out with them, getting soaked in the rain in the process, to help Sydney and Jessica into the shop.

Chris warmed the group up with hot chocolate and inquired multiple times if they needed anything else. As the session progressed, Chris got paper and markers out to make Sydney a backdrop for her photos. 

>> Read more trending news 

Vallia said they took over the Starbucks for at least an hour. 

“All of these fates aligned and gave me the most perfect story for my most perfect kid, and I couldn’t ask for anything better,” Laura told KKTV.

Vallia’s post caught the attention of Starbucks’ offices, which said in its own Facebook post, “To Chris and the partners at our Fountain, CO store -- thank you for going out of your way to do the right thing, for setting an example for all of us, and most of all, bringing some sunshine to Sydney and her family on this very special day.”

Resident calls police on black student canvassing voters in Georgia

Morehouse College junior Eli Sabur has been canvassing since 2015. He’s spent countless hours knocking on doors, trying to get metro Atlanta residents to support causes — from political candidates to public broadcasting — that he cares about.

Approximately three times a month, someone calls the police, Sabur said.

>> Read more trending news

That happened on June 30 in Snellville. Sabur and a friend were canvassing for Democratic congressional candidate David Kim, who is in the July 24 runoff election for the 7th Congressional District, when three Gwinnett County police cars pulled up. Someone in the neighborhood had called 911 and reported a suspicious vehicle, said Cpl. Wilbert Rundles, a Gwinnett County police spokesman.

The caller told a 911 operator that one man had been sitting in a parked car near the caller’s house for about 20 minutes while another man walked around the neighborhood, according to audio from the call. The caller did not say he saw either man doing anything potentially criminal, but wanted officers to come check on the situation.

>> WATCH: 'Permit Patty' appears to call police on girl selling bottled water in viral video

Sabur pulled out his phone and started recording. In the brief clip, he counted the police cars and shook his head. Once officers learned Sabur and his friend were legally canvassing, they left without issuing any citation or warning. 

Sabur posted the short video on social media after the encounter. The clip blew up online when social justice activist Shaun King shared it on Twitter. The video has been viewed more than 149,000 times. 

Sabur was surprised that the clip had gained such attention, mostly because he has to deal with the same situation so often. Sabur, who is black, believes it’s racial profiling, but has gotten used to dealing with cops showing up when he’s knocking on doors.

“Just growing up black you kind of have to be aware that you have to live like you’re being feared,” Sabur told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “If I went out every day and a cop got called, I wouldn’t be surprised. It happens so consistently, it makes no difference to me.”

In the June 30 call, the caller made no mention of race until asked by the 911 operator for identification purposes.

>> Huge cookout held at Oakland park where cops called on black family's barbecue

Gwinnett police spokesman has said the incident had nothing to do with race, and that the resident was only doing as law enforcement has instructed citizens, to speak up when they suspect suspicious behavior.

Sabur has supervised other canvassers before and has noticed the disparity in how often black canvassers and white canvassers deal with police. For black men and women, Sabur said, it’s a regular occurrence, but white canvassers rarely encounter law enforcement on the job. 

“You can blatantly see it,” Sabur said.

He expects that he’ll still have to regularly deal with the police being called on him, but he’s not deterred.

“Canvassing is super important. I love people and it’s always work for purpose,” Sabur said. “If there’s any drawback, it’s the Georgia heat and unpredictable weather.”

Florida gas station owner charged after shooting man who stole $36 worth of beer, police say

A gas station owner was arrested after shooting a man who left the store with $36 worth of Natural Ice beer, police say. 

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Rennie Defoe Jr. walked into a Shell gas station Tuesday night and walked out with three 18-packs of Natural Ice beer without paying, according to WFLA

Mehedeun Hasan, 22, who co-owns the gas station with his father, grabbed a 9mm handgun and walked out in order to confront Defoe, according to WFLA

Defoe, 43, is seen in surveillance footage loading the beer into his car, then getting in and shutting the door. Hasan then arrives and appears to be pointing a gun. 

Defoe was shot in the left arm and chest as he reversed to leave. He drove a short distance before crashing. He was taken to a hospital, where he is in critical condition, according to WFLA.

Hasan, who has no prior criminal history, was arrested and charged Wednesday with shooting into an occupied vehicle and attempted second-degree murder, according to WFLA

Defoe has 12 previous felony charges and nine previous misdemeanors, including firing a missile into a dwelling, battery, grand theft and grand larceny, according to WFLA. He was most recently released from prison June 12.

Woman accused of hitting 16-year-old sister with car, assaulting officers

A 16-year-old girl was struck by a vehicle driven by her sister Wednesday night in Pittsburgh’s Fineview neighborhood, authorities said.

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The girl jumped on the hood of the moving vehicle, fell off and was hit shortly after 10 p.m. on Belleau Drive, according to investigators.

Police said the teenager was taken to a hospital in critical condition. She was later upgraded to serious condition.

As the girl was being taken to the hospital, a crowd started gathering and people were separated by officers because they were about to fight, according to a criminal complaint.

Officers then attempted to talk with the driver, 23-year-old Breyanna Fields. She was uncooperative and was handcuffed, police said.

Fields kicked two officers and pushed a third, the complaint said. She tried to bite another officer.

Witnesses told police Fields was seen speeding up and down the street before the 16-year-old was hit, and the car was moved before police arrived, the complaint said.

Charges against Fields include driving under the influence, aggravated assault, resisting arrest and driving while operating privilege is suspended or revoked.

‘Brady Bunch’ house for sale

If you’ve ever dreamed of being a sister or a brother to Greg, Marsha, Jan, Peter, Bobby and Cindy, you can now partially live that dream. 

The iconic house that served as the exterior shot for the introduction to the “Brady Bunch” television show is for sale in all of its 1970s glory. 

>> Read more trending news 

The home, at 11222 Dilling St., Studio City, California is currently listed for $1.85 million, Deadline reported

The home, which sits on a third of an acre of land, offers two bedrooms, three bathrooms and two master suites. The home was bought by the current owners way back in 1973, and this is the first time it has been offered for sale since, according to Deadline

The McCallisters, who owned the home for four decades passed away. Their children are now selling the property, The Los Angeles Times reported.

The real estate agent listing the property says that while the home has been updated and upgraded, it has the same interior decor from the ‘70s, the LA Times reported

But some may be disappointed to learn that the layout isn’t the same as what was seen on the show. 

The house is in danger of going the way of shag carpeting and egg chairs. 

The neighborhood it is in has been popular for tearing buildings down for new developments, the LA Times reported.

But the owners will give first priority to those who want to keep the house and preserve it, instead of knocking it down, the LA Times reported.

Department of Justice seeking reimbursement for Georgia sheriff’s $70K muscle car

The U.S. Department of Justice is demanding reimbursement for the nearly $70,000 that Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway spent on the high-powered sports car he drives to and from work.

In a letter to Conway, the DOJ characterized the sheriff’s purchase of a Dodge Charger Hellcat — a 707-horsepower muscle car that some have called the fastest sedan ever built — as extravagant.

The federal government previously approved the purchase, which used asset forfeiture funds, but are now questioning if the Hellcat is being used for its stated purpose.

>> Read more trending news 

Gwinnett County officials said this week they’ll comply with the reimbursement request, and that they’ll be adding “review points” to their acquisition process.

Conway, who has been sheriff since 1996, is standing behind the purchase.

“Sheriff Conway maintains that this vehicle is an appropriate purchase, especially for an agency with a $92 million budget and the opportunity this vehicle provides in making our roadways safer,” Deputy Shannon Volkodav, a sheriff’s office spokeswoman, said in a written statement, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Conway’s office purchased the all-black Hellcat with heavily tinted windows in April. It used $69,258 that had been previously approved by the DOJ’s Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section as part of its “equitable sharing program,” which distributes assets seized during enforcement efforts to state and local agencies hoping to make purchases to support their missions.

The sheriff’s Hellcat application touted the high-powered vehicle’s potential use in Gwinnett County’s Beat the Heat program, a nonprofit that uses drag races in controlled environments to “educate drivers about the dangers of distracted driving and illegal street racing.”

Guidelines prohibit “the use of equitably shared funds for extravagant expenditures,” the DOJ’s letter, dated July 10, said. “The vehicle in question is a high-performance vehicle not typically purchased as part of a traditional fleet of law enforcement vehicles.”

The department also took issue with part of the request that stated Conway would also use the car for undercover and covert operations.

The Sheriff’s Office defended the claim, saying that, in addition to driving the car to and from work, Conway uses it “when he participates in field operations, covert and otherwise, with our deputies.”

William Perry, the executive director of Georgia Ethics Watchdogs, called the sheriff’s office’s explanations of the car’s use “bullfeathers.” He said money from seized assets should be “treated the same way as a dollar coming out of a taxpayer’s pocket.”

“In my eyes, the only way Butch Conway can save face is if he writes a personal check for that vehicle and apologizes to the taxpayers of Gwinnett County,” Perry said.

According to the Department of Justice’s letter, the sheriff’s office is not eligible to request or receive more asset forfeiture funds until the Hellcat money is reimbursed. A deadline of July 31 was given.

Volkodav said Wednesday that the sheriff’s office hadn’t yet formally responded to the letter and was exploring its options.

Gwinnett County spokesman Joe Sorenson said the county was “committed to resolving the matter quickly and will be adding review points in our process for equipment purchased with asset forfeiture funds to make sure we comply with guidelines set forth by the Department of Justice.”

Bread, Swiss Rolls sold at Walmart, Food Lion, H-E-B recalled for potential salmonella presence

Flowers Foods Inc. has issued a voluntary recall on various Swiss Rolls sold under brand names at Walmart, Food Lion, H-E-B and others due to the potential presence of salmonella in an ingredient. The Thomasville, Georgia-based company has also recalling Captain John Derst’s Old Fashioned Bread.

>> Read more trending news 

“The ingredient recall was initiated by a third-party whey powder manufacturer and supplier,” the company said in a Wednesday news release. “No illnesses have been reported in connection with the recalled items.”

Walmart’s Great Value brand of Swiss rolls is included in the recall, as well as Mrs. Freshley’s Swiss Rolls, Food Lion Swiss Rolls, H-E-B Swiss Rolls, Baker’s Treat Swiss Rolls and Market Square Swiss Rolls.

Captain John Derst's Old Fashioned Bread has been distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina according to the news release.

The recalled products are:

  • Mrs. Freshley’s Swiss Rolls - 4-count, 7.2-ounce packages with UPC No. 072250011907, best by/enjoy by dates 10/09/18 through 10/19/18.
  • Mrs. Freshley’s Swiss Rolls - 6-count, 12-ounce packages with UPC No. 072250903233, best by/enjoy by date 10/14/18.
  • Food Lion Swiss Rolls - 6-count, 13-ounce packages with UPC No. 035826092779, best by/enjoy by date 10/16/18.
  • H-E-B Swiss Rolls - 6-count, 12-ounce packages with UPC No. 0412202965830, best by/enjoy by date 9/19/18.
  • Baker’s Treat Swiss Rolls - 6-count, 13-ounce packages with UPC No. 041498188382 best by/enjoy by dates 9/21/18 through 9/28/18.
  • Market Square Swiss Rolls - 6-count, 12-ounce packages with UPC No. 087381760556.
  • Great Value Swiss Rolls - 6-count, 13-ounce packages with UPC No. 078742147550 best by/enjoy by dates 9/17/2018 through 9/25/2018.
  • Captain John Derst’s Old Fashioned Bread with UPC No. 071316001180, best by/enjoy by dates 07/16/18 through 7/28/18.

Customers with the affected products should discard them or return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Questions can be directed to Flowers’ Consumer Relations Center at 1-866-245-8921 or contact the center by email at flowerfoods.com/contact/customers.

More information on the recall can be found at flowersfoods.com.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a salmonella is a bacteria. A salmonella infection can be fatal for young children, frail people, elderly people and others with weakened immune systems. Symptoms of infection include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps.

The CDC estimates salmonella causes 1.2 million illnesses and 450 deaths in the United States each year.

4 injured in explosion at Pennsylvania Army depot

Four people were injured Thursday morning after an apparent explosion and subsequent fire at the Letterkenny Army Depot in Pennsylvania, officials said.

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Update 11 a.m. EDT July 19: Letterkenny Army Depot Commander Col. Steven Ledbetter said a small explosion happened around 7:20 a.m. in a paint area at one of the depot’s production facilities.

“In this particular production facility, it’s vehicles and some major end-items (and) large pieces of equipment,” Ledbetter said. “No munitions.”

He said four people were taken to hospitals with injuries after the incident.

Authorities do not believe the blast was connected to terrorism. Officials continued to investigate the cause of the explosion on Thursday.

Update 10:20 a.m. EDT July 19: Col. Steven Ledbetter, the commander at Letterkenny Army Depot, told WPMT that a small explosion and fire Thursday morning left four people injured.

Three people were flown to a Maryland hospital in serious condition, the news station reported. A fourth person was taken to Chambersburg Hospital with unknown injuries, according to WPMT.

Original report: Authorities at Letterkenny Army Depot confirmed in a series of since-deleted Facebook posts Thursday morning that an explosion was reported at the depot. The incident happened around 7:15 a.m., according to WPMT.

Officials with the volunteer Franklin Fire Company said three people were flown from Letterkenny after firefighters responded Thursday morning to an “explosion with burn victims.” The Franklin County Office of Emergency Management also told Fox News three people were flown from the Army depot after the blast.

It was not immediately clear what caused the explosion.

A spokesman for Letterkenny Army Depot told WHTM-TV that authorities do not believe the blast was the result of a terrorist attack. Employees told the news station that the explosion happened in an area of Building 350 used for painting and that they were “worried about peers who ran out of (the) building screaming (and) on fire.”

Established in 1942, the 18,000-acre Letterkenny Army Depot employs more than 3,600 people in Franklin County. Its mission is to “deliver superior maintenance, manufacturing, logistics, life cycle support and service worldwide to the Joint Warfighter and our International partners.”

Police officer chases murder suspects through Las Vegas, shoots through windshield during pursuit

It looks like something out of a movie, but it was real life when a police officer in Las Vegas was involved in a high-speed chase and had to open fire on the escaping vehicle.

The incident happened July 11 after a traffic stop. Police officers had tried to pull some men in an SUV over while they investigated a murder, KVVU reported

The men fired on police as they drove through the streets. As Officer William Umana negotiated the turns, keeping up with the truck, he opened fire to try to stop the SUV, Fox News reported

>> Read more trending news 

The entire chase, and resulting gunfire, was caught on Umana’s body camera.

It finally ended when the truck crashed into a wall at an elementary school, Fox News reported

Rene Nunez left the vehicle and tried to get into the school, which was locked. He was wounded in the shootout. He was arrested and is now facing charges, including murder, Fox News reported.

The passenger, Fidel Miranda, tried to move the SUV toward the cruiser, but police opened fire on Miranda, KVVU reported. He died at the scene.

Both Umana and his partner are on paid administrative leave until an investigation into the shooting is done, KVVU reported.

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