Storms combining east of Rockies, pushing treacherous weather east

U.S. NEWS Storms combining east of Rockies, pushing treacherous weather east

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Two storms are forecast to combine east of the Rockies Tuesday, creating a major mess of snow, ice and heavy rain.

Alerts have been issued Tuesday morning for 28 states from Arizona to New Jersey.

A storm system in the western Gulf of Mexico is gaining strength Tuesday morning and already spreading rain from Houston to New Orleans.

Meanwhile, a separate storm system is moving out of the Rockies, delivering snow from Tucson, Arizona, to Denver.

By Tuesday night, as the storms merge, heavy snow and ice likely will break out in the southern Plains, from northern Texas into Oklahoma and Kansas. Around the same time, heavy rain will be spreading throughout the Tennessee River Valley and most of the South.

Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, snow will begin in Chicago, Minneapolis and Detroit as it approaches Washington. Heavy rain is forecast in the Ohio River Valley.

The storms should be fully merged by Wednesday afternoon after combining over a cold front and moving into the Northeast, which will see snow, ice and rain from Washington to Boston. New York City, Philadelphia and Boston all should briefly see snow, then ice, then rain. Not much snow accumulation is expected there.

Washington, D.C., could see 4 to 6 inches of snow, while Philadelphia, New York and Boston may get just 1 to 2 inches.

In the Midwest and the Plains, Oklahoma City is expected to get icy conditions, Kansas City could get 1 to 3 inches of snow, and both Des Moines, Iowa, and Minneapolis could see 4 to 6 inches of snow.

Half a foot of rain in parts of the South, from Memphis, Tennessee to Atlanta, could lead to flooding.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

Source: Brothers implicated in Jussie Smollett plot tell police the ‘Empire’ actor was upset that threatening letter didn’t get enough attention

Entertainment News  Source: Brothers implicated in Jussie Smollett plot tell police the 'Empire' actor was upset that threatening letter didn't get enough attention


ABC(CHICAGO) — The two brothers who were interrogated by police investigating the alleged attack on actor Jussie Smollett claim they helped him concoct the assault after he became upset that a now-suspicious letter threatening him, sent to Empire‘s studio, did not get enough attention, sources told ABC News on Monday.

Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo also told investigators that Smollett paid them to help him orchestrate and stage the January 29 attack that he said occurred near his Chicago apartment, sources said.

A letter threatening Smollett was sent January 22 to the studio in Chicago where Empire is filmed, police said. The letter contained threatening language and was laced with a powdery substance investigators believe was likely crushed-up Tylenol.

Detectives are actively investigating the account of Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo, but thus far police have not independently verified the allegations, a law enforcement official briefed on the investigation told ABC News.

The Osundairo brothers agreed to cooperate with authorities after detectives confronted them with evidence that they bought the rope — allegedly used in an attack that Smollett described to police as laced with racial and homophobic slurs — at a Chicago hardware store, sources said.

Smollett also claimed the attackers shouted “MAGA country,” an apparent reference to President Donald Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again.”

“We are not racist. We are not homophobic and we are not anti-Trump. We were born and raised in Chicago and are American citizens,” Osundairo brothers said in a statement to CBS Chicago affiliate WBBM which has been confirmed by ABC News.

Detectives have now shifted the investigation towards determining whether Smollett made up the entire story, sources said.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

Scoreboard roundup — 2/18/19

Sports News Scoreboard roundup -- 2/18/19

iStock(NEW YORK) — Here are the scores from Monday’s sports events:

Calgary 5, Arizona 2
Tampa Bay 5, Columbus 1
Chicago 8, Ottawa 7
Colorado 3, Vegas 0
OT Boston 6, San Jose 5
Washington 3, L.A. Kings 2

(3) Virginia 64, (20) Virginia Tech 58
(22) Wisconsin 64, Illinois 58
(23) Kansas St. 65, West Virginia 51

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

Mexican man dies in Border Patrol custody after crossing US-Mexico border

U.S. NEWS Mexican man dies in Border Patrol custody after crossing US-Mexico border

Phototreat/iStock(MCALLEN, Texas) — A Mexican man died at a McAllen, Texas, hospital Monday while in Border Patrol custody after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border into Texas earlier this month, officials said.

The cause of death remains unknown, according to a statement released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection Monday night.

The unnamed 45-year-old man died at the McAllen Medical Center where he was admitted on Feb. 3 for what was initially diagnosed as cirrhosis of the liver and congestive heart failure, the release said.

“This loss of life is tragic. Our condolences go out to the family and loved ones. CBP remains committed to ensuring the safe and humane treatment of those within the care of our custody,” Andrew Meehan, CBP’s Assistant Commissioner for Public Affairs, said in a statement.

The agency said that the man requested medical attention when was taken into custody on Feb. 2 for illegal re-entry into the U.S. near the Roma Port of Entry, about 55 miles west of McAllen. The man was returned to the Rio Grande City Border Patrol Station after he “was cleared to travel” by the Mission Regional Medical Center, officials said.

The next day, he was brought to the McAllen Medical Center after a welfare check showed that he needed medical attention, according to the CBP statement.

This man is the third person to die in CBP custody in as many months.

In Dec. 2018, a 7-year-old Guatemalan girl and an 8-year-old Guatemalan boy died in CBP custody.

Following the second death, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan told ABC’s This Week that the deaths were “absolutely devastating for us.”

CBP said that in accordance to agency policy, CBP’s Office of Professional Responsibility has initiated a review.

The Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General and the Mexican Government have all been notified of the man’s death.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

Michael Cohen to give America a ‘chilling’ peek into Trump Tower, says lawyer

Political News Michael Cohen to give America a 'chilling' peek into Trump Tower, says lawyer

Michael Cohen’s lawyer Lanny Davis seen here in the center during an interview for “The Investigation” podcast. (ABC News) (WASHINGTON) — When Michael Cohen appears before Congress in the coming weeks, he plans to describe details of life inside the Trump Organization boardroom that he witnessed firsthand for nearly a decade, his lawyer told ABC News.

“He needs to tell his personal story to the American people,” Lanny Davis, Cohen’s attorney, said in a wide-ranging interview for the second episode of “The Investigation,” a new podcast focused on the probe led by special counsel Robert Mueller.

“And when he does,” Davis added, “you’re going to hear personal, front-line experiences of memories, and incidents, and conduct, and comments that Donald Trump said over that 10-year time period behind closed doors that, to me when I first heard Michael tell me all this, even as much as I knew about Trump that was negative, was chilling.”


Cohen has pledged to appear before closed sessions of the House and Senate intelligence committees and in a public session of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee before he reports for a federal prison sentence on March 6.

Davis shared for the first time with ABC News details about the topics Cohen plans to cover when he finally appears. Davis said that while Cohen cannot talk about subjects vital to the special counsel investigation, he can describe his life at Trump’s side, where he spent years as a lawyer and fixer.

He said the issue Cohen “can speak to better than anyone” is President Donald Trump’s character.

Davis said that lawmakers will hear “how he speaks in bigoted words in private, which Michael Cohen will tell you.”

“He treats people badly,” the veteran Washington, D.C., attorney continued. “He has no moral character in defrauding people in his businesses, and going bankrupt, and taking cash out, and putting people out of work. He lacks the moral compass that we expect in our presidents.”

Cohen pleaded guilty in August to six felonies associated with his personal business dealings, including tax evasion and making false statements to a bank, and two felony campaign finance violations in connection with his role in arranging non-disclosure agreements during Trump’s campaign with two women who had claimed past affairs with the president.

In November, he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about a Moscow real estate project that Trump and his company pursued at the same time he was securing the GOP nomination in 2016. Cohen has on repeated occasions scheduled, and then canceled, appearances before Congress in recent weeks.

The president and his advisers have made no secret about how they plan to rebut claims made by Cohen, repeatedly describing him in media interviews as a dishonest broker who will say anything to try and reduce his impending prison sentence.

“The man is pathetic,” Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani told ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos in December on This Week.

“He knows the truth, I know the truth, others know the truth, and here is the truth: The people of the United States of America, people of the world, don’t believe what he is saying,” Giuliani continued. “The man doesn’t tell the truth.”

John Dowd, who once led Trump’s legal team, told “The Investigation” last week he thought Cohen “has done a great job of putting the rope around his neck.”

Davis compared such comments from the president and his team to mafia tactics. He took issue with a tweet from Trump describing Cohen as a “rat,” a euphemism for “snitch” that Davis said could put his client in danger when he reports to prison.

“Here’s the president of the United States, the top official in law enforcement and everything else in the United States, using Twitter to call a person who is cooperating with prosecutors a ‘rat,'” Davis said. “That in and of itself is an abuse of power that could lead to his ouster.”

Davis offered few clues about where he thought the special counsel investigation was headed, other than that he thought it held the potential to do damage to Trump. He dismissed the suggestion from Dowd that the investigation would not yield a report at all — a prediction Dowd made on the previous episode of “The Investigation.”

“It sounds like wishful thinking to me,” Davis said.

What he knows, Davis said, is that Cohen contributed “70 hours and seven days” of interviews with the Mueller team.

Davis said the team viewed that testimony to be “relevant, important, significant and it went to the core issues of the Mueller investigation. That’s what we know.”

Whether the public is ready to accept Davis’ portrait of Cohen as a changed man — “transformed” was his word — remains to be seen. While the special counsel did credit Cohen’s cooperation, prosecutors in the Southern District of New York were not as swayed.

“Any suggestion by Cohen that his meetings with law enforcement reflect a selfless and unprompted about-face are overstated,” the prosecutors wrote in their sentencing recommendation. “Had Cohen actually cooperated, it could have been fruitful.”

Davis has deep experience in the trenches of political scandal, combining his legal background with his expertise in public relations. He served as special counsel to President Bill Clinton, guiding him through a series of fractious political investigations, including an impeachment trial born out of his affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

Davis, who spent 12 years representing Maryland in the Democratic National Committee, provided a harsh assessment of the Trump tenure, but also expressed some concern that Democrats risked overplaying their attacks on the president.

“We could overreach,” Davis said. “And we have a tendency, just like the Republicans, to follow the most extreme voices in our base. And there is a danger that we will do that.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

‘The Bachelor’ recap: As rumors fly about two of the women, Colton follows his heart

Entertainment News  'The Bachelor' recap: As rumors fly about two of the women, Colton follows his heart


ABC/Craig Sjodin(NEW YORK) — On Monday’s episode of The Bachelor, Colton Underwood hoped to gain some clarity after rumors involving two of the women had him conflicted over what to believe.

The first one-on-one date featured Colton showing Tayshia the sights of his hometown of Denver. The date took a serious turn when Tayshia told Colton she believed Cassie and Caelynn were the women to whom Katie, Sydney and Demi were referring last week when they warned him that he was being deceived. Tayshia and Colton also discussed their expectations for the upcoming hometown visit, in which she warned him that he might not get a warm reception from her father, in light of her of her previous failed marriage. The meeting will take place regardless after Colton offered her the date rose.

The next one-on-one date went to Caelynn, who hit the slopes for a snowboarding lesson from the Bachelor. Things got heavy, though, when Colton confronted her about Tayshia’s accusations about not being ready and, in particular, the suggestion that Caelynn was only interested in being the next Bachelorette. Caelynn assured him that she was “100 percent ready to be engaged.” Over dinner, Colton told her that he couldn’t meet her family until he was absolutely sure of his feelings for her. After she once again assured him that her intentions were true, he handed her the rose. The date ended with a private concert from country star Brett Young, who performed his hit “Here Tonight.”

Hannah B. won the next one-on-one date with Colton, but not before a little drama took place back at the mansion between Caelynn and Tayshia. Tayshia assured Caelynn that she wasn’t trying to throw the former Miss North Carolina under the bus, insisting that Colton simply asked for her opinion and she gave it to him straight.  

Meanwhile, Hannah B. was in for a surprise when her one-on-one date with Colton included a stop to meet his parents. During a private conversation with his dad, Colton confessed that despite Hannah’s declaration of love for him, he was “not quite there yet” with her. His father advised him not to second-guess himself, and to trust his gut. The remainder of the date did little to change Colton’s feelings, and she was the first woman sent packing.

Next, Hannah G., Kirpa, Cassie and Heather were invited on group date card that included an ominous message: “Saying goodbye is never easy.” A cozy rest stop provided a scenic backdrop for what turned into a stressful day for Colton and the women, as they tried to alleviate any doubts about each other before he meets their families next week. Heather made the job easier by telling Colton that she couldn’t bring him home if she wasn’t absolutely certain that he was the one, and so she left the competition.

During their private chat, Colton confronted Cassie with the rumors of her insincerity, which she tearfully denied. Her response came off as genuine and seemed to satisfy him, until Kirpa once again insisted that Cassie and Caelynn were not looking for a husband. That led to a heated confrontation between Kirpa and Cassie, which Cassie characterized as a “desperation move.” At the end of the day, Colton said he was no closer to a decision than he had been earlier.

Back at the mansion, however, Colton revealed that he was clear on at least one choice, and immediately gave Hannah G. the first rose. That left just Cassie and Kirpa vying for the last remaining spot. When Caelynn learned of this, she decided to take action.

“If Cassie goes home due to gossip and rumors and lies being spread, I would feel for Cassie the way that I would feel that I went home,” she said addressing the camera. “So if she’s going home because [Underwood] was fed false information, I won’t be OK with that.”

Caelynn then paid Colton a surprise visit to make sure he had “all the facts.” The camera cut away from them, and the next thing we saw was Cassie and Kirpa watching Caelynn walk out the door. When Colton joined the two, he handed Cassie the rose, and Kirpa was sent home.

The four remaining women are:

Caelynn, 23, Miss North Carolina 2018 from Charlotte, North Carolina
Cassie, 23, a speech pathologist from Huntington Beach, California
Hannah G., 23, a content creator from Birmingham, Alabama
Tayshia, 28, a phlebotomist from Corona Del Mar, California

The Bachelor returns Monday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

‘Alita: Battle Angel’ tops worst President’s Day movie weekend in 15 years

Entertainment News  'Alita: Battle Angel' tops worst President's Day movie weekend in 15 years


Courtesy Twentieth Century Fox(LOS ANGELES) — There was good new and bad news for James Cameron’s sci-fi adventure film, Alita: Battle Angel, which topped what will go down as the worst three-day President’s Day box office weekend since since 2004.

The film, starring actress Rosa Salazar as the title character in a CGI-enhanced motion-capture performance, beat expectations by delivering $27.8 million from Friday-Sunday, with expected earnings to reach about $33 million through Tuesday. That would bring the five-day totals for Alita, which opened on Thursday, to over $40 million — about $10 million more than anticipated.  The film earned estimated $56.1 million overseas, bringing its worldwide tally to $94.3 million.

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part dropped to second place in its second week of release, grabbing $21.2 million and upward of $27 million for the long weekend.

The weekend’s second debut, Rebel Wilson‘s comedy Isn’t It Romantic, took third place with an estimated $14.2 million from Friday-Sunday and $16.5 million through Monday. That adds up to a $22-23 million six-day haul for movie, which opened on Wednesday.

What Men Want landed in fourth place, earning an estimated $10.9 million for the three-day and around $12 million for the long President’s Day weekend.

Happy Death Day 2U, this week’s third and final debut, collected an estimated $9.8 million for the three-day, with expectations of gobbling up just over $11 million for the four-day period. The sequel to 2017 slasher dark comedy, which bowed on Wednesday, should rack up a total of $15 million-plus in its first six days, about $5 million shy of expectations.

Fighting with My Family, produced by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who also makes an appearance in the film, had an impressive debut in limited release, delivering and estimated $131,625 from four theaters. It expands nationwide next weekend.

Here are the top 10 movies from Friday through Sunday, with estimated domestic box office earnings:

1. Alita: Battle Angel, $27.8 million
2. The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, $21.2 million
3. Isn’t It Romantic, $14.2 million
4. What Men Want, $10.9 million
5. Happy Death Day 2U, $9.8 million
6. Cold Pursuit, $5.965 million
7. The Upside, $5.48 million
8. Glass, $3.9 million
9. The Prodigy, $3.16 million
10. Green Book, $2.85 million

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

Sailor shown in famous Times Square WWII kiss photo dies at 95

U.S. NEWS Sailor shown in famous Times Square WWII kiss photo dies at 95

Patrick Raycraft/Hartford Courant/MCT via Getty Images(PROVIDENCE, R.I.) — Just about everyone’s seen the photo. Taken in Times Square on Aug. 14, 1945 — Victory in Japan Day — the black-and-while image shows a sailor in a dark uniform and white cap delivering a passionate, celebratory kiss to a woman in a nurse’s uniform, holding her in his arms as he dips her backward.

The image came to be known as “The Kiss.” Taken by famed photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt, it was first published in LIFE magazine and has been reproduced countless times since.

But because it doesn’t show the faces of the sailor or nurse, it took over half a century — and more than a few false claims — before the couple’s identities were confirmed. She was Greta Zimmer Friedman, then a dental assistant. And he was George Mendonsa.

Neither of them had met before the kiss — which Mendonsa initiated — and they went their separate ways after, leaving behind that single, spontaneous moment of joyful celebration of the end of World War II.

Friedman passed away in 2016 in Richmond, Virginia at age 92. And according to Rhode Island’s Providence Journal, Mendonsa died last Sunday at an assisted living facility in Middletown, where he lived with his wife of 70 years. 

Mendonsa passed just two days shy of his 96th birthday after falling and suffering a seizure.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 19 Feb 2019

Deputy attorney general plans to leave Justice Department in mid-March: Official

Political News Deputy attorney general plans to leave Justice Department in mid-March: Official

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has told colleagues he plans to leave the Justice Department in mid-March, according to a Justice Department official familiar with the matter.

Jeff Rosen, the current deputy at Transportation, is newly-confirmed Attorney General William Barr’s top pick to become deputy attorney general, according to the official.

An announcement officially nominating a new deputy attorney general could come as early as this week, the official said.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 18 Feb 2019

Alabama mother begs to return to US, says moving to Syria and marrying ISIS fighters was ‘a big mistake’

WORLD NEWS Alabama mother begs to return to US, says moving to Syria and marrying ISIS fighters was 'a big mistake'

Chris McGrath/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — With U.S.-backed forces closing in on ISIS in Syria, young mother Hoda Muthana is pleading for a second chance and the opportunity to return home to her family in Alabama.

“I realized I’ve made a big mistake and I know I’ve ruined my future and my son’s future and I deeply, deeply regret it,” she said in an interview with The Guardian newspaper.

Muthana is one 1,500 foreign women and children in a Kurdish-run refugee camp in northern Syria.

In 2017, Muthana’s father told ABC News’ Diane Sawyer that he’d been proud when she seemed to become more devout about religion. He said he had no idea that she was secretly taking cues from ISIS recruiters sending her messages over the phone.

“I never thought in my life that it would happen to us, to me, to my family, but it happened,” he said. “It could happen to any other family.”

Muthana, who now has an 18-month-old son, left Alabama four years ago at the age of 19. She spread ISIS propaganda online, calling for attacks on Americans.

According to, she tweeted messages encouraging people to “‘spill American blood.”

Now, after surrendering to Kurdish authorities, she told the Guardian that she fears for her safety.

“From what I heard, if they were to read my messages, I would have been killed,” she said.

Muthana has been married three times to ISIS fighters. Each time, she was made a widow.

In a letter obtained exclusively by ABC News, she described herself as a “naive, angry and arrogant” young woman when she set out for Syria. Muthana said she thought she understood her religious beliefs and had stopped listening to her family.

“That was a big mistake,” she said in the letter.

“During my years in Syria I would see and experience a way of life and the terrible effects of war which changed me. Seeing bloodshed up close changed me. Motherhood changed me. Seeing friends, children and the men I married dying changed me. Seeing how different a society could be compared to the beloved America I was born and raised into changed me,” she said.

“Being where I was and seeing the ppl around me scared me because I realized I didn’t want to be a part of this. My beliefs weren’t the same as theirs. In my quiet moments, in between bombings, starvation, cold and fear I would look at my beautiful little boy and know that I didn’t belong here and neither did he. I would think sometimes of my family, my friends and the life that I knew and I realized how I didn’t appreciate or maybe even really understand how important the freedoms that we have in America are. I do now. To say that I regret my past words, any pain that I caused my family and any concerns I would cause my country would be hard for me to really express properly.”

Muthana is expected to be brought home to face justice, which President Donald Trump has pushed other countries to do as well.

Muthana’s family lawyer, Hassan Shibly, said Muthana wanted to return to the U.S. to be “accountable for her choices,” and to hopefully be a powerful voice to ensure that others don’t repeat the mistakes she made.

“I think the facts are clear that Hoda Muthana was a vulnerable young woman who was taken advantage of by these terrorist, criminal masterminds who ultimately brainwashed her and led to make some extremely horrible choices that she deeply regrets,” he said.

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Posted On 18 Feb 2019