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Marengo gas station clerk shot in overnight armed robbery, community raises thousands in hours

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TalkLPNews Editor
MARENGO, Ill. (WLS) -- Police in Marengo are asking for help finding two men who shot a gas station clerk during a robbery Wednesday morning, as his community rallies to his aid.Surveillance video shows the two men suspected in the robbery and shooting at the Circle K/Shell station around 3:30 a.m. Clerk Brian Pemble was airlifted to the hospital. Pemble's friends say despite being in pain, he is in good spirits. His Marengo community has already raised thousands of dollars to help the 35-year-old father of five. "This shouldn't have to happen to anybody. You go to work, you're making money, you're taking care of your family and now you get shot?" said Angela Johnson, owner of Wholesome Petz Pet Supplies.Working as a clerk at the Circle K/Shell was only one of Pemble's two jobs."He lost wages because he got shot during a part time job, and he's got a full time job so we're not sure how things are going to work out for him, so the church wants to be there to meet the need in between," said Justin Searles, campus pastor of Marengo Orchard Evangelical Free Church.Pemble's church, where he is a trustee, has already dedicated thousands of dollars in donations. And Angela and Richard Johnson, who own Wholesome Petz Pet Supplies, plan to donate proceeds from pet nail clipping over the next two weeks and Saturday sales to the family."This is what we do," Angela said. "We stick together and we take care of each other." The couple also set up a collection fund, taking cash, credit card and gift card donations for Pemble's bills."Very heartfelt from everyone," said Richard."We had somebody come in and donate a very large amount, and she doesn't know this family," Angela said.The donations they received just from today total nearly $600."I have no doubt in my mind they are going to come out above this, and they're definitely going to see how much Marengo loves them," said Angela.Friends said Pemble will hopefully be out of the hospital in a few days. Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.
Source:
ABC7 – Chicago

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TalkLPNews Editor
Claire Metz Daytona Beach officials urge Spring Breakers to follow COVID-19 guidelines Share Shares Updated: 8:44 PM EST Feb 24, 2021 Hide Transcript Show Transcript CLAIRE: DAYTONA BEACH HASN’T PROMOTED COLLEGE SPRING BREAK IN YEARS, BUT STUDENTS STILL FIND THEIR WAY HERE, PARTICULARY THOSE FROM THE SOUTHEAST WITHIN DRIVING DISTANCE. OFFICIALS SAY THEY ARE WELCOME, WITH REMINDERS, THOUGH, THAT WE ARE STILL IN A PANDEMIC. > > WE’RE STILL OPEN FOR BUSINESS, BUT WE JUST WANT TO FOCUS ON EDUCATION AND PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. CLAIRE: DAYTONA BEACH MAYOR DERRICK HENRY WALKS A FINE LINE, ADVOCATING FOR THE CITY’S TOURISM INDUSTRY WHILE KEEPING CITIZENS AND VISITORS SAFE FROM COVID. THE BEACH OFFERS SOME NATURAL SOCIAL DISTANCE, BUT THE MAYOR IS CONCERNED ABOUT ACTIVITIES WHEN THE SUN GOES DOWN. > > BUSINESSES HAVE TO BE RESPONSIBLE, HOLDING CUSTOMERS RESPONSIBLE, AND PUTTING UP SIGNS THAT REQUIRE MASKS, AND THEN REQUIRING THEM. CLAIRE: LAST YEAR'S SPRING BREAK WAS CUT SHORT AS THE COVID CRISIS SPREAD. THIS YEAR, THE CITY AND THE BEACH IS WIDE OPEN, BUT SCOTT EDWARDS, OWNER OF A MARKETING FIRM THAT WORKS WITH AREA HOTELS, STILL THINKS THE COLLEGE STUDENT CHECK IN NUMBERS WILL BE THIN. FOR ONE THING, HE SAYS A LARGE NUMBER OF COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES HAVE CANCELLED SPRING BREAK. > > I THINK SOME OF IT IS GOING TO BE LAST MINUTE. I THINK SOME OF THESE KIDS ARE GOING TO BE SHORTER STAYS, 3 TO 4 DAYS. CLAIRE: THE CITY AND COUNTY WILL STILL USE MESSAGING TO REMIND VISITORS ABOUT MASKS AND SOCIAL DISTANCE, BUT MARKETER EDWARDS BELIEVES 2021 WILL BE ANOTHER OFF-YEAR FOR SPRING BREAK. > > WE’RE PRIMARILY JUST MAKING SURE THAT EVERYBODY KNOWS WE’RE STILL A DESTINATION FOR BREAKERS, BUT WE’RE KIND OF EYEING 2022, TO BE HONEST WITH YOU. CLAIRE: THE UNOFFICIAL START OF COLLEGE SPRING BREAK IS THIS WEEKEND, THOUGH TYPICALLY IF STUDENTS COME, THE NUMBERS AREN’T SIGNIFICANT UNTIL MID-MARCH. IN DAYTONA BEACH, VOLUSIA COUNTY, CLAIRE METZ, WESH 2 NEWS. MEREDITH: SPRING BREAK OVERLAPS WITH BIKE WEEKS THIS YEAR IN DAYTONA BEACH, THE CITY DID MOVE FORWARD WITH P Advertisement Daytona Beach officials urge Spring Breakers to follow COVID-19 guidelines Share Shares Updated: 8:44 PM EST Feb 24, 2021 Claire Metz Spring in Central Florida is right around the corner. In Daytona Beach, that often includes college students on a break from the books.Claire Metz reports, though right now there are no restrictions in place when it comes to spring break, officials say visitors have to use common sense when it comes to COVID-19 and follow guidelines.See the full story in the video player above. DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Spring in Central Florida is right around the corner. In Daytona Beach, that often includes college students on a break from the books. Advertisement Claire Metz reports, though right now there are no restrictions in place when it comes to spring break, officials say visitors have to use common sense when it comes to COVID-19 and follow guidelines. See the full story in the video player above.
Source:
WESH Orlando
Golf without Tiger Woods? Injuries from wreck brings prospect closer to reality

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TalkLPNews Editor
The PGA Tour without Tiger Woods was always inevitable purely because of age. His shattered right leg from his SUV flipping down a hill on a sweeping road through coastal Los Angeles suburbs only brings that closer.Golf wasn't ready Wednesday to contemplate the future of its biggest star after the 10th and most complicated surgery on the 45-year-old Woods. There was more relief that he was alive.“Listen, when Tiger wants to talk about golf, we'll talk about golf,” Commissioner Jay Monahan said at the World Golf Championship in Florida. “When you're going to overcome what he needs to overcome, I think the love of all of our players and everybody out here, it's going to come forward in a big way and across the entire sporting world.“I think he'll feel that energy and I think that's what we should all focus on.”Woods made it clear what he faces with an update posted early Wednesday to social media by his team that outlined the “long surgical procedure” at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.Anish Mahajan, the chief medical officer, said Woods shattered tibia and fibula bones on his right leg in multiple locations. Those were stabilized by a rod in the tibia. He said a combination of screws and pins were used to stabilize additional injuries in the ankle and foot.Four previous surgeries to repair ligaments were done on the left knee. This is the first major trauma to the right leg. Woods has had five surgeries on his lower back in the last seven years. The most recent was in December, a microdiscectomy to remove a pressurized disk that was pinching a nerve.“I would say, unfortunately, it's very, very unlikely that he returns to be a professional golfer after these injuries,” said Dr. Michael Gardner, chief of orthopedic trauma at Stanford Medical Center. “His age, his multiple back issues, this is going to be a very long road ahead if he chooses to attempt to return to his previous level of golfing.”Can golf do without the player singularly responsible for its growth?His watershed victory in the 1997 Masters sent media interest in golf soaring. More than just the first player of Black heritage in a green jacket, he won at a more prolific rate than anyone in history. The timing was impeccable, for the PGA Tour negotiated a television contract that made prize money spike.Woods won his first tournament as a 20-year-old in the 1996 Las Vegas Invitational, where the total purse was $1.65 million. At the World Golf Championship this week, first place alone is worth $1.82 million.Woods made everyone rich.What now?The PGA Tour has been down this road before.Ten years ago, when Woods was still smarting from the sordid revelations of serial adultery and missed three months with more injuries, the PGA Tour negotiated a nine-year television deal with increased rights fees. There was no assurance Woods could get back to the top of his game.Woods was playing a small schedule even when he was younger and healthier. He has never played more than 21 times in a year on the PGA Tour, which stages events in 46 weeks this season.He also tends to return to the same courses. But when he plays, and there isn't a pandemic, no one needs to study TV ratings to measure his impact. Fans often stand six and seven rows deep behind tees and greens to get a look. No other player attracts that kind of attention. The top 10 in the world combined don't do that.Woods doesn't move the needle. Woods is the needle.“It's always great when he plays at a tournament or is out here because it gives that tournament an extra dimension that it usually doesn’t,” four-time major champion Rory McIlroy said. “We were all sort of heading towards that day that Tiger wasn’t going to be a part of the game.”Woods had only one top-10 finish last year, and that was before the pandemic. Even after golf returned, he waited an additional month to get started. He played only seven times since July and never cracked the top 35. He remains one victory short of his 83rd victory, which would set a PGA Tour record, the one most reasonable for him to break. That was before the crash.McIlroy already has seen one comeback. He often talks about having lunch one day with Woods in Florida, right after Woods' fourth back surgery to fuse his lower spine. He saw the pain. And two years later, he saw Woods win the Masters for a fifth time, his 15th major.“I don't want to take anything away from what Ben Hogan did after his car crash or any of the other comebacks that athletes have had in other sports, but right now I can’t think of any greater comeback in sports than the journey that he made from that lunch we had in 2017 to winning the Masters a couple years later,” McIlroy said.Hogan threw himself in front of his wife right before they were struck by a Greyhound bus in 1949. He broke his pelvis, collarbone and left ankle, chipped a rib and had blood clots that left him with circulation problems the rest of his life. Hogan was 36 at the time.What the future holds for Woods and for the tour is not anything players were ready to embrace.“At this stage, I think everyone should just be grateful that he’s here, that he’s alive, that his kids haven’t lost their dad,” McIlroy said. “That’s the most important thing. Golf is so far from the equation right now, it’s not even on the map.” The PGA Tour without Tiger Woods was always inevitable purely because of age. His shattered right leg from his SUV flipping down a hill on a sweeping road through coastal Los Angeles suburbs only brings that closer. Golf wasn't ready Wednesday to contemplate the future of its biggest star after the 10th and most complicated surgery on the 45-year-old Woods. There was more relief that he was alive. Advertisement “Listen, when Tiger wants to talk about golf, we'll talk about golf,” Commissioner Jay Monahan said at the World Golf Championship in Florida. “When you're going to overcome what he needs to overcome, I think the love of all of our players and everybody out here, it's going to come forward in a big way and across the entire sporting world. “I think he'll feel that energy and I think that's what we should all focus on.” Woods made it clear what he faces with an update posted early Wednesday to social media by his team that outlined the “long surgical procedure” at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. Anish Mahajan, the chief medical officer, said Woods shattered tibia and fibula bones on his right leg in multiple locations. Those were stabilized by a rod in the tibia. He said a combination of screws and pins were used to stabilize additional injuries in the ankle and foot. Four previous surgeries to repair ligaments were done on the left knee. This is the first major trauma to the right leg. Woods has had five surgeries on his lower back in the last seven years. The most recent was in December, a microdiscectomy to remove a pressurized disk that was pinching a nerve. “I would say, unfortunately, it's very, very unlikely that he returns to be a professional golfer after these injuries,” said Dr. Michael Gardner, chief of orthopedic trauma at Stanford Medical Center. “His age, his multiple back issues, this is going to be a very long road ahead if he chooses to attempt to return to his previous level of golfing.” Can golf do without the player singularly responsible for its growth? His watershed victory in the 1997 Masters sent media interest in golf soaring. More than just the first player of Black heritage in a green jacket, he won at a more prolific rate than anyone in history. The timing was impeccable, for the PGA Tour negotiated a television contract that made prize money spike. Woods won his first tournament as a 20-year-old in the 1996 Las Vegas Invitational, where the total purse was $1.65 million. At the World Golf Championship this week, first place alone is worth $1.82 million. Woods made everyone rich. What now? The PGA Tour has been down this road before. Ten years ago, when Woods was still smarting from the sordid revelations of serial adultery and missed three months with more injuries, the PGA Tour negotiated a nine-year television deal with increased rights fees. There was no assurance Woods could get back to the top of his game. Woods was playing a small schedule even when he was younger and healthier. He has never played more than 21 times in a year on the PGA Tour, which stages events in 46 weeks this season. He also tends to return to the same courses. But when he plays, and there isn't a pandemic, no one needs to study TV ratings to measure his impact. Fans often stand six and seven rows deep behind tees and greens to get a look. No other player attracts that kind of attention. The top 10 in the world combined don't do that. Woods doesn't move the needle. Woods is the needle. “It's always great when he plays at a tournament or is out here because it gives that tournament an extra dimension that it usually doesn’t,” four-time major champion Rory McIlroy said. “We were all sort of heading towards that day that Tiger wasn’t going to be a part of the game.” Woods had only one top-10 finish last year, and that was before the pandemic. Even after golf returned, he waited an additional month to get started. He played only seven times since July and never cracked the top 35. He remains one victory short of his 83rd victory, which would set a PGA Tour record, the one most reasonable for him to break. That was before the crash. McIlroy already has seen one comeback. He often talks about having lunch one day with Woods in Florida, right after Woods' fourth back surgery to fuse his lower spine. He saw the pain. And two years later, he saw Woods win the Masters for a fifth time, his 15th major. “I don't want to take anything away from what Ben Hogan did after his car crash or any of the other comebacks that athletes have had in other sports, but right now I can’t think of any greater comeback in sports than the journey that he made from that lunch we had in 2017 to winning the Masters a couple years later,” McIlroy said. Hogan threw himself in front of his wife right before they were struck by a Greyhound bus in 1949. He broke his pelvis, collarbone and left ankle, chipped a rib and had blood clots that left him with circulation problems the rest of his life. Hogan was 36 at the time. What the future holds for Woods and for the tour is not anything players were ready to embrace. “At this stage, I think everyone should just be grateful that he’s here, that he’s alive, that his kids haven’t lost their dad,” McIlroy said. “That’s the most important thing. Golf is so far from the equation right now, it’s not even on the map.”
Source:
WESH Orlando
Republican senators send letter to Jeff Bezos asking why Amazon pulled book by conservative author

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TalkLPNews Editor
A group of Republican senators is asking Amazon.com Inc. to explain why it recently removed a book about transgender issues that had been on sale on the platform for about three years. In a letter to Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos dated Wednesday, Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida, Mike Lee of Utah, Mike Braun of Indiana and Josh Hawley of Missouri said a book by conservative scholar Ryan T. Anderson, "When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment," was no longer available on Amazon or on its Kindle and Audible platforms. Amazon, they wrote, has been "unable to provide a sufficient explanation" as to how the book "supposedly violated a vague, undefined ‘offensive content’ standard." An Amazon spokeswoman didn’t have a comment regarding the letter. In a statement earlier Wednesday, the company said it reserved the right not to sell certain content based on its content guidelines for books. AMAZON ACCUSED OF 'ABSURD AND UNACCPETABLE' CENSORSHIP AFTER BOOK QUESTIONING TRANSGENDER MOVEMENT VANISHES "All retailers make decisions about what selection they choose to offer and we do not take selection decisions lightly," the statement said. In their letter, the senators wrote that Amazon’s move "openly signaled to conservative Americans that their views are not welcome on its platforms." They requested the company provide documentation explaining its decision, including whether the book violated an Amazon policy. A spokesman for Encounter Books, a nonprofit based in New York City which publishes "When Harry Became Sally," said Wednesday that it had been informed by its distributor that the book was removed for violating Amazon’s content guidelines. Under the category "Offensive Content," Amazon’s content guidelines include a sentence that reads: "We don’t sell certain content including content that we determine is hate speech, promotes the abuse or sexual exploitation of children, contains pornography, glorifies rape or pedophilia, advocates terrorism, or other material we deem inappropriate or offensive." ALEX BERENSON'S CORONAVIRUS BOOKLET HITS AMAZON AFTER ELON MUSK, OTHERS CALL OUT ONLINE RETAILER FOR 'CENSORSHIP' In an interview Wednesday, Mr. Anderson said he first learned that his book was no longer for sale on Sunday afternoon after a would-be book purchaser called him to say they couldn’t find the book on Amazon. Mr. Anderson then looked and also couldn’t find it. "It’s hard to understand," said Mr. Anderson, president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, a conservative think tank based in Washington, D.C. "As far as I know I haven’t done anything. The book has been saying the same thing for three years." The book, which focuses on a variety of issues including gender identity, was originally published in February 2018. In a tweet Wednesday, Mr. Anderson thanked the group of Republican senators for their support. Leading tech platforms have been under criticism for implementing bans or suspensions of conservative figures. Twitter Inc. earlier this year permanently banned former President Trump’s personal account from its service, while Facebook Inc. moved to disable Mr. Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely. Apple Inc., Amazon and Alphabet Inc.’s Google also recently took steps to boot Parler, a social-media app and website that has grown in popularity among conservatives. The actions against Mr. Trump and Parler starkly illustrate the companies’ influence over conversation online—and the political nature of their decisions. While lauded by many, ejecting the president and some of his supporters also infuriated others who said it amounts to censorship. CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP A longstanding truism in the book business is that the only bad publicity is no publicity, and that appears to be true for Mr. Anderson as well. The print edition is now sold out at BarnesandNoble.com, but on late Wednesday afternoon the ebook ranked No. 3 on the bookseller’s Top 100 list for digital books. A spokesman for Encounter Books on Wednesday said the publisher has reordered 5,000 paperback copies.
Source:
FOX News
4 Arrested In Connection To Manteca, Modesto Organized Retail Thefts

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TalkLPNews Editor
MANTECA (CBS13) — Detectives have linked a group of four people to a series of alleged organized store thefts across...
Two women jailed for pushout theft from Old Navy, Target

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TalkLPNews Editor
Two women have been arrested in connection with a couple of thefts at Old Navy and Target, according to Laredo...
Two big reasons investors are worried about the housing market

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TalkLPNews Editor
Tonight: GameStop stock is all fired up — again. Plus, the US Postal Service's new vans look like ducks, and somehow Michael Bolton gets a financial news headline in 2021 ... Let's get into it. House Party The housing market is hot, and maybe a bit of a hot mess. As the country locked down and home became home/office/gym/padded confinement cell, a lot of folks started buying houses or renovating.  And nearly a year later, the house party is still raging: DIY holy sites Home Depot and Lowes both had better-than-expected earnings this week.  Zillow fantasy scrolling is practically the national pastime.  Lumber supply has tightened, pushing up prices. That's also thanks to all those shacks restaurants have built to make "outdoor" dining areas. Mortgage rates remain near record lows after falling below 3% for the first time ever this past summer, and mortgage applications are still up from where they were a year ago.   But... * record scratch *    There are two big reasons why some investors are growing concerned about the housing market: Mortgage rates are still low, but they're ticking back up. Mortgage rates are closely tied to 10-year Treasury bond yields, which are beginning to spike. When borrowing is more expensive, that can discourage buyers.  In an ominous sign, Home Depot declined to give any profit guidance for 2021 when it reported earnings Tuesday, sending shares down 3%. That lack of guidance signals uncertainty. And being uncertain right now makes sense. The pandemic has upended everything, and it's not clear what the new normal will be as vaccinations roll out and the pandemic continues to shape consumer behavior. NUMBER OF THE DAY GameStop shares more than doubled in the final moments of trading Wednesday. The stock ended the day at $91.71, up nearly 104% from the previous day, and trading was halted several times for volatility. Having déjà vu yet? NEW WHEELS   Just take a look at this adorable duck-billed mail truck.  On Tuesday, the Postal Service announced its very cute next-generation vehicles will start hitting the road in 2023. The new vans have a low engine compartment and hood and a very high windshield. Some will be electric. All will have long-overdue safety upgrades. USPS didn't say whether the vehicle is amphibious or not, but it sure does look like a duck, right?  WHY THE NEW RIDE? Few things have changed less during the course of this century than America's fleet of postal delivery vehicles, CNN Business' Chris Isidore writes.  The current ubiquitous fleet of 200,000 squat, boxy vans has been around longer than iPhones. Many of them were born in the '80s. They don't have airbags or air-conditioning, so, yeah, I think it's safe to say most of us would never last one summer day as a mail carrier.   USPS said the contract for the new vans, which will have airbags and air-conditioning, was awarded to Oshkosh Defense, a unit of Oshkosh Corp, which will build between 50,000 and 165,000 vehicles over a period of 10 years. QUOTE OF THE DAY  "Tell me how am I supposed to trade without you?" Michael Bolton, yes that Michael Bolton, wants you to break up with Robinhood. In the strangest twist yet in the already bizarre saga, Bolton is singing about payment for order flow to the tune of his 1989 breakup ballad "How Am I Supposed to Live Without You." Because nothing screams "relevant cultural touchstone" like Michael Bolton.  GOODBYE FRY'S  Fry's, the wacky West Coast electronics store and monument to nerd culture, abruptly shut down Wednesday after nearly four decades. The company's website said it decided to close permanently because of changing consumer shopping habits and the Covid-19 pandemic. The business' kitschy themed stores and oddball inventory gained it a cult following.  In 1998, the Wall Street Journal summed up the superstore's offerings as "everything tech-related you can think of, as well as about a billion vaguely tech-related things you can't." You could stop in for a new modem, and grab a handful of CDs, acid-rain testing kits, Leatherman tools and phonograph needles (because one should always have a supply of phonograph needles). Fry's, like other electronics chains (RIP RadioShack), struggled to adapt to the shift to online shopping. And like so many other retailers, the pandemic became a final blow to the bottom line. WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON The Fed suffered a widespread disruption in multiple payment services Wednesday, including a system that banks and businesses rely on to zip trillions of dollars around the financial system each day.  The New York Times acknowledged problems with its own workplace culture, particularly around the treatment of Black and Latino employees, in a new report following an eight-month investigation.   Dunkin' introduced avocado toast to its menu because, millennials?  A Newsmax anchor derided Champ Biden as a "junkyard" dog and that simply will not stand here at Nightcap. CNN's Jeanne Moos on the internet's resounding defense of the First Good Boi.
Source:
CNN – Buzz
Restaurants Hopeful Orange County Will Soon Move To Red Tier, Allowing Indoor Dining To Resume

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TalkLPNews Editor
TUSTIN (CBSLA) — As Orange County’s COVID-19 metrics continued to move closer to the less-restrictive red tier Wednesday, restaurant workers began to prepare for the possibility of indoor dining returning. Orange County restaurant owners hope that lower COVID case numbers are a sign that the county will be moving from the most-restrictive purple to the red tier in the coming weeks. READ MORE: Lynne Thompson Announced As 2021 Los Angeles Poet Laureate Business has dropped 35 percent at Christakis Greek Cuisine since indoor dining has stopped. (credit: CBSLA) At Christakis Greek Cuisine restaurant in Tustin, staff and customers were counting down the days until the dining room can reopen for business. The tables in the dining room have been sitting empty since November, but that’s expected to change soon. “We’re excited that there’s some movement hopefully,” said one customer. Under the red tier, restaurants would be permitted to reopen indoors at 25 percent capacity. “I’m looking forward to that,” said customer Angel Carrzaco. “So hopefully, knock on wood, we’re almost there.” Meanwhile, all retail would be allowed to double the current capacity, increasing to 50 percent. People would be able to work out at gyms with at 10 percent capacity and museums, zoos and aquariums could reopen at 25 percent capacity. READ MORE: Mayor Eric Garcetti Urges Property Owners To Sign Up For City's New Program “Everything has been very difficult,” said Esmeralda Aguilar, a hostess and server working at Christakis, where business has been down 35 percent since indoor dining closed. She said on windy days it can be a challenge to only have outdoor seating. “It will be amazing to have everyone back inside and it would be like a dream,” Aguilar said. The county’s test positivity rate improved from 7.8% last week to 5.4% Tuesday, and the adjusted case rate per 100,000 on a seven-day average with a seven-day lag improved from 20.7 to 11.9. The Health Equity Quartile Positivity Rate, which reflects the rates in lower-income and minority neighborhood hot spots, improved from 10.7% to 7%. On Wednesday, the positivity rate dropped to 5.1%, the Health Equity rate dropped to 6.6%, and the case rate per 100,000 dipped to 10.4, according to Orange County CEO Frank Kim. “If it keeps dropping a point every day,” then the county might reach the red tier metrics by Sunday, Kim said. To get to the red tier, the county has to have a case rate per 100,000 population of 4 to 7, positivity rate of 5 to 8% and a Health Equity Quartile rate of 5.3 to 8%. MORE NEWS: Former California State Senator John Moorlach Infected With COVID-19 Meanwhile Wednesday, Orange County reported 325 new COVID-19 infections as positivity and case rates continue declining, along with hospitalizations.
Source:
CBS – Los Angeles
Arizona man arrested for staging a kidnapping to get out of work

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TalkLPNews Editor
COOLIDGE, Arizona – Police in Coolidge, Arizona are still puzzled after a bizarre call for a kidnapping ended up being an elaborate excuse to get out of work by a 19-year-old. According to a statement by police, on Feb. 10, officers were called out to the area of 1st Street and Northern Avenue in Coolidge for reports of a man whose “hands were bound behind his back with a belt and had a bandana stuffed in his mouth.” According to police, the man first told officers that two masked men kidnapped him, knocked him unconscious and drove around in a vehicle before they left him in the area. “An extensive investigation was conducted by Coolidge detectives and evidence was discovered showing his story was fabricated and no kidnapping or assault occurred,” the department said in a statement. Police say, Brandon Soules, was arrested on Feb. 17 for false reporting and admitted during an interview that he “made up the story as an excuse to get out of work.” Related: San Antonio police hope bracelet will help identify woman found dead behind nursing home in November
Source:
KSAT – San Antonio

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TalkLPNews Editor
TALITHA: NEW AT NOON, CHARLOTTE WOMAN IS ACCUSED OF GOING ON A SHOPPING SPREE WITH $150,000 IN CORONAVIRUS RELIEF MONE 24-YEAR-OLD JASMINE CLIFTON IS FACING FEDERAL CHARGES. SHE’S FREE ON $25,000 BOND. PROSECUTORS SAY SHE APPLIED FOR A RELIEF LOAN MEANT TO HELP EXISTING SMALL BUSINESSES HARMED BY PANDEMIC SHUTDOWNS. THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT SAYS SHE FALSIFIED DOCUMENTS FOR ONLINE CLOTHING BUSINESS THAT HAD BEEN CLOSED SINCE 2019 OFFICIALS SAY SHE SPENT THE ON DIAMOND STORES AND LUXURY CLOTHING RETAILE Advertisement Woman allegedly went on shopping excursions with $150,000 COVID-19 relief loan Share Shares Updated: 6:13 PM EST Feb 24, 2021 Associated Press A North Carolina woman who lied to get a coronavirus relief loan spent the money on shopping excursions to Nieman Marcus, Nordstrom, Louis Vuitton and diamond stores, federal prosecutors said. Jasmine Johnnae Clifton, 24, appeared in court Monday and was later released on $25,000 bond, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina.The release said Clifton applied in March for a Small Business Administration loan designed to provide relief to existing businesses harmed by pandemic shutdowns. She created false documents claiming $350,000 in gross revenue in 12 months for her online clothing business, Jazzy Jas, even though other paperwork filed in early 2020 showed the company was effectively dissolved in September 2019, it said.The loan application was approved in early August and Clifton received $149,900, which she later spent at over two dozen retailers, also shopping at Ikea and Rooms to Go, the release said.On Feb. 17, a grand jury indicted Clifton on wire fraud in relation to a disaster benefit and fraud in connection with major disaster or emergency benefits. If convicted, Clifton faces 30 years for each charge and a possible $1,250,000 combined fine.Clifton's defender declined to comment on the charges Tuesday. A North Carolina woman who lied to get a coronavirus relief loan spent the money on shopping excursions to Nieman Marcus, Nordstrom, Louis Vuitton and diamond stores, federal prosecutors said. Jasmine Johnnae Clifton, 24, appeared in court Monday and was later released on $25,000 bond, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina. Advertisement The release said Clifton applied in March for a Small Business Administration loan designed to provide relief to existing businesses harmed by pandemic shutdowns. She created false documents claiming $350,000 in gross revenue in 12 months for her online clothing business, Jazzy Jas, even though other paperwork filed in early 2020 showed the company was effectively dissolved in September 2019, it said. The loan application was approved in early August and Clifton received $149,900, which she later spent at over two dozen retailers, also shopping at Ikea and Rooms to Go, the release said. On Feb. 17, a grand jury indicted Clifton on wire fraud in relation to a disaster benefit and fraud in connection with major disaster or emergency benefits. If convicted, Clifton faces 30 years for each charge and a possible $1,250,000 combined fine. Clifton's defender declined to comment on the charges Tuesday.
Source:
WESH Orlando
New shipping scams targeting online shoppers

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TalkLPNews Editor
The COVID-19 pandemic brought with it a high demand for many basic needs of people everywhere to be met through having items shipped right to their front doorstep."Oh yeah, I was a shipping fool, didn't want to go out and catch COVID-19," one person told WESH 2 News.A constant flow of boxes has created an opportunity for confusion and has given scam artists inspiration to dream up new scams -- "shipping scams."WESH 2 News looked into one scam that's essentially a new twist on an old scheme: the "phishing" scam.It goes like this: a user receives a text message saying that "Amazon" is trying to reach them and that the driver needs help with the order. The scammer then says they want the user to click on a link.Users are advised not to click on that link, because the scammer is "phishing" for personal information."At the end of the day, what would be most valuable to them would be payment card information, credit card information," said Holly Salmons, of the Better Business Bureau.Experts have offered the following tips to avoid this scam: Never click on stray links; and do not respond to text messages that claim to be from drivers. Delivery drivers with reputable shipping companies are not in direct contact with customers.Experts say the end goal is that somebody is going to make money at the victim's expense.WESH 2 News looked into another shipping scam that has the same end goal, but is far more complicated, called the "brushing" scam.It's based on a simple premise: product "reviews" are "good as gold."Here's how it works: A product you never ordered shows up on your porch. It's nothing fancy or expensive. Regardless, you call Amazon. "They'll tell you to keep it or donate it, whatever, you don't owe for it," Salmons said.It's your lucky day, right? Wrong.At some level, you've been hacked. The scammer used your personal information to "place" the order and will now use the same information to go online and give their company or the company they're working for a "stellar" review. The more gold stars, the more orders they get, and the more money they make. "The scammers have sent you this purchase so that they have a verified buyer, and then they are entering an Amazon review on your behalf, because your reviews are very valuable to them," Salmons said.If you're the victim of a "brushing" scam, you should call Amazon so they can review the seller for this type of behavior. Next, you need to change all of your account passwords. Then, you need to keep a close watch on your credit reports, credit card bills and bank statements. The goal is to stay ahead of the scam artists, because they're certainly trying to stay ten steps ahead of you.ORLANDO, Fla. — The COVID-19 pandemic brought with it a high demand for many basic needs of people everywhere to be met through having items shipped right to their front doorstep. "Oh yeah, I was a shipping fool, didn't want to go out and catch COVID-19," one person told WESH 2 News. Advertisement A constant flow of boxes has created an opportunity for confusion and has given scam artists inspiration to dream up new scams -- "shipping scams." WESH 2 News looked into one scam that's essentially a new twist on an old scheme: the "phishing" scam. It goes like this: a user receives a text message saying that "Amazon" is trying to reach them and that the driver needs help with the order. The scammer then says they want the user to click on a link. Users are advised not to click on that link, because the scammer is "phishing" for personal information. "At the end of the day, what would be most valuable to them would be payment card information, credit card information," said Holly Salmons, of the Better Business Bureau. Experts have offered the following tips to avoid this scam: Never click on stray links; and do not respond to text messages that claim to be from drivers. Delivery drivers with reputable shipping companies are not in direct contact with customers. Experts say the end goal is that somebody is going to make money at the victim's expense. WESH 2 News looked into another shipping scam that has the same end goal, but is far more complicated, called the "brushing" scam. It's based on a simple premise: product "reviews" are "good as gold." Here's how it works: A product you never ordered shows up on your porch. It's nothing fancy or expensive. Regardless, you call Amazon. "They'll tell you to keep it or donate it, whatever, you don't owe for it," Salmons said. It's your lucky day, right? Wrong. At some level, you've been hacked. The scammer used your personal information to "place" the order and will now use the same information to go online and give their company or the company they're working for a "stellar" review. The more gold stars, the more orders they get, and the more money they make. "The scammers have sent you this purchase so that they have a verified buyer, and then they are entering an Amazon review on your behalf, because your reviews are very valuable to them," Salmons said. If you're the victim of a "brushing" scam, you should call Amazon so they can review the seller for this type of behavior. Next, you need to change all of your account passwords. Then, you need to keep a close watch on your credit reports, credit card bills and bank statements. The goal is to stay ahead of the scam artists, because they're certainly trying to stay ten steps ahead of you.
Source:
WESH Orlando
Teen accused of leading Melbourne police on high speed chase, injuring officer

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TalkLPNews Editor
Melbourne Police say an officer was pinned against his car as a suspect repeatedly rammed the door, triggering a chase that led to a 17-year-old's arrest.Police say a driver in a stolen car took off when they tried to stop him at University Boulevard and Lipscomb Street.The chase returned to the same intersection as police parked nose-to-nose with the driver, but he didn’t stop. A police report says (the driver) then put the vehicle in reverse and drove into a parking lot.It continues: When officers tried to surround him, (the driver) accelerated at the patrol vehicle, pinning Officer Self’s leg in the door. (The driver) continued to strike the patrol vehicle, causing extreme pain and injury to Officer Self. The driver then sped westbound on I-95, with another chase through the roadway.Police finally caught up with the 17-year-old driver on Florida Avenue, where the report says he ultimately drove through a chain-link fence, down a dirt road then exited the vehicle and began to run. The teen was charged with aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer and aggravated fleeing, among other things. Police did not elaborate on the officer’s injuries.MELBOURNE, Fla. — Melbourne Police say an officer was pinned against his car as a suspect repeatedly rammed the door, triggering a chase that led to a 17-year-old's arrest. Police say a driver in a stolen car took off when they tried to stop him at University Boulevard and Lipscomb Street. Advertisement The chase returned to the same intersection as police parked nose-to-nose with the driver, but he didn’t stop. A police report says (the driver) then put the vehicle in reverse and drove into a parking lot. It continues: When officers tried to surround him, (the driver) accelerated at the patrol vehicle, pinning Officer Self’s leg in the door. (The driver) continued to strike the patrol vehicle, causing extreme pain and injury to Officer Self. The driver then sped westbound on I-95, with another chase through the roadway. Police finally caught up with the 17-year-old driver on Florida Avenue, where the report says he ultimately drove through a chain-link fence, down a dirt road then exited the vehicle and began to run. The teen was charged with aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer and aggravated fleeing, among other things. Police did not elaborate on the officer’s injuries.
Source:
WESH Orlando