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Honolulu bans smokers in cars when children are present

Smoking in a car in Honolulu can bring a hefty fine if there are children in the vehicle, KHON reported.

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In a unanimous vote Wednesday, the Honolulu City Council passed a bill that would make it illegal to smoke in a vehicle if someone under 18 is in inside. The ban also extends to electronic cigarettes, KHON reported.

First offenders would be fined $100, and the fee jumps to $200 if a smoker is cited within a year. A third offense within a year of the second offense would cost the smoker $500, KHON reported. 

The ticket would be issued to the person smoking in the vehicle.

Lila Johnson, program manager for tobacco prevention at the Department of Health, says youths are the most vulnerable to be exposed to secondhand smoke.

“It is probably 10 times as toxic as it is to be sitting inside a smoky bar for a child to be sitting inside a confined unit exposed to secondhand smoke,” Johnson said.

Health officials said drivers are permitted to smoke as long as there are no minor in the vehicle, KHON reported.

Court: Cross shaped monument honoring WWI vets ruled unconstitutional

A 40-foot Latin cross-shaped monument in Maryland, built nearly a century ago to honor soldiers who died during World War I, has been ruled unconstitutional by a federal appeals court, CNN reported

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The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday by a 2-1 margin that the 92-year-old structure was in violation of the First Amendment because it is on public land at a busy intersection in Prince George's County and is maintained with government funds. The court's decision does not address whether the monument should be removed or modified.

The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission and the American Legion, who were named as defendants in the case, argued that the cross had a nonreligious purpose “does not have the primary effect of endorsing religion.”

But the appeals court in Richmond, Virginia, sided 2-1 with the American Humanist Association, an organization that advocates for secularism and represented several non-Christian residents of Prince George's County.

The memorial was completed in 1925 using contributions from private donors and the American Legion. It was acquired in 1961 by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.

If the Supreme Court declines to hear the case, a district court judge would have to decide whether to order the removal of the cross, said David Niose, legal director of the American Humanist Association.

"It's hard to think of remedies other than removal," Niose told CNN, though he said there is the "possibility of modifying the structure."

Georgia man, 93, eats lunch daily next to photo of late wife 

A 93-year-old man from Georgia lost his wife four years ago, but he still has a daily lunch date with her.

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Clarence Purvis takes a picture of his late wife, Carolyn, and sets up her photograph at a table of their favorite eatery, Smith’s Restaurant in Reidsville, WTOC reported.

“She was always with me when we were livin',” Purvis told WTOC. “She's with me now."

Purvis met Carolyn Todd in 1948, when she was 16 years old and he was 24. They were wed the next year and were married for 64 years. She died on Nov. 22, 2013, at age 81, The Purvises owned Purvis Garage in Glennsville, where Carolyn lived her entire life. The couple had three children, six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Clarence and Carolyn dined at Smith’s Restaurant for the last 13 years of her life. 

“Ain't nobody loved one another more than me and my wife loved one another,” Clarence Purvis said. “I wanted what she wanted and she wanted what I wanted."

Although his wife is gone, Clarence Purvis still bonds with her at lunchtime.

“He's a part of this restaurant,” Joyce James, the restaurant’s owner, told WTOC. “I asked my husband, I said, ‘You know, if something happened to me, will you put my picture on the table?’ He said, ‘I don't think so, dear.’ He said, ‘I love you but, that might be a little much.’” 

Purvis visits the Glennville Cemetery “at least four times a day” to visit his wife, WTOC reported.

“I imagine I come 125 times a month,” he told WTOC. “I love her that much. And miss her that much. And think she would with me."

Australia receives ‘unprecedented’ letter from North Korea

In an unusual step, North Korea has sent an open letter addressed to parliaments in several countries, declaring itself a “full-fledged nuclear power” and accusing President Donald Trump of “trying to drive the world into a horrible nuclear disaster,” CNN reported.

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Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop called the letter, dated Sept. 28, “unprecedented” and posted a copy of the cover letter on her verified Facebook page.

Her office confirmed to CNN that the letter, which was published by The Sydney Morning Herald, was genuine.

The letter appears to have been distributed a week after Trump’s address to the United Nations Security Council, after the president said that if the United States was forced to defend itself or its allies, it would have no choice “but to totally destroy North Korea.”

In the letter, North Korea condemned Trump’s statement and reiterated that it was tantamount to a declaration of war, CNN reported.

In the letter, North Korea condemned that statement as tantamount to a declaration of war, something North Korean officials said shortly after the speech. The United States denied that Trump had declared war on North Korea, which is also known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

“If Trump thinks that he would bring the DPRK (Democratic People's Republic of Korea), a nuclear power, to its knees through nuclear war threat, it will be a big miscalculation and an expression of ignorance,” the letter said, according to CNN.

"I see (the letter) it as evidence that the collective strategy of imposing maximum diplomatic and economic pressure through sanctions on North Korea is working," Bishop said.

Massachusetts man arrested for dragging badly beaten dog

A Massachusetts man accused of beating a dog so severely it was coughing blood and limping was arrested for animal cruelty, authorities said. 

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Police say, Mark Rodney Hurd, 22, of Everett left the dog in critical condition Friday. Officers said they arrived at a home to find Hurd dragging the pit bull down the driveway after the abuse had been reported to them. 

“It's extremely disappointing to see this type of violence perpetrated on an animal especially a domesticated pet,” Everett police Chief Steven Mazzie said. “The Everett Police Department takes these cases seriously and would like to remind the public to report abuse of this type if they witness it.”

Neighbors said the dog, Chance, is “docile and friendly.” Others said they were awakened Friday morning by the commotion at the house. 

Chance was rushed to a veterinary hospital for emergency treatment, police said.

Hurd is being held without bail as the abuse charges have been added onto a probation violation. 

‘Underwear bomber’ sues US government over treatment in prison

The “underwear bomber” has filed legal briefs against the United States government, protesting his treatment in federal prison.

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Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab of Nigeria, who is serving life sentences after his conviction for his failed attempted to set off a bomb on an international flight near Detroit in 2009, filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the Federal Bureau of Prisons and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, CBS News reported.

Abdulmutallab cited violations of his First, Fifth and Eighth Amendment rights, and claims his rights also were violated under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993.

On Christmas Day in 2009, Abdulmutallab tried to blow up an international flight -- with a bomb sewn into his underwear -- bound from Amsterdam to Detroit on behalf of al Qaeda, Reuters reported. He had called his attempt part of his “religious duty” as a Muslim to wage jihad against the United States.

Abdulmutallab, 30, who has been in federal custody since the failed bombing attempt, is serving four terms of life imprisonment plus 50 years, The Denver Post reported. He was convicted in 2012 on charges including attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction on a commercial airliner. The Northwest Airlines flight had 289 passengers on board.

In a lawsuit filed in a Colorado federal court Wednesday, Abdulmutallab said authorities in a maximum security prison were violating his constitutional rights by holding him in long-term solitary confinement under Special Administrative Measures (SAMs), CBS News reported.

According to the complaint, “The SAMs imposed on Mr. Abdulmutallab prohibit him from having any communication whatsoever with more than 7.5 billion people, the vast majority of people on the planet.”

Abdulmutallab’s SAMs “severely restrict his ability to practice his religion,” the complaint alleges. Abdulmutallab, a Muslim, is not allowed to “participate in group prayer.”

The lawsuit accused the staff at the United States Penitentiary-Administrative Maximum Facility in Florence, Colorado of repeatedly force feeding Abdulmutallab during a hunger strike using “excessively and unnecessarily painful” methods, Reuters reported.

White supremacist inmates were also permitted to harass him during prayer times, according to the lawsuit.

“Prisoners retain fundamental constitutional rights to communicate with others and have family relationships free from undue interference by the government,” Abdulmutallab’s attorney, Gail Johnson, said in a statement to the New York Times.

“The restrictions imposed on our client are excessive and unnecessary, and therefore we seek the intervention of the federal court.”

Police: Man uses fishing line to steal change from car washes

Ohio police are looking for a man who they say is reeling in money illegally from local car washes, WKBN reported.

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According to Boardman police, a man used a $20 bill attached to a fishing line to steal hundreds of dollars in change from car wash coin box machines. Police said that according to surveillance camera video, the suspect is as a white man in his 50s or 60s, heavyset, balding and wearing glasses.

The man was driving a blue Dodge Caravan, police said.

The suspect allegedly stole money from car wash facilities in Boardman, Austintown and Geneva, and also could be responsible for thefts in Illinois and Indiana, WKBN reported.

Police find woman, child and infant naked and unconscious under mysterious circumstances

A baby girl passed away, and a woman and an older girl, believed to be the infant’s mother and sister, are still hospitalized after police discovered all three of them naked, unconscious and covered in white powder in the parking lot of a Los Angeles, market.

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Officers responded to the scene around 2 a.m. Thursday after receiving a report of a woman screaming. They arrived to find the victims in the mysterious condition, none of them breathing. Authorities believe the three are residents of the area. According to the owner of the market, the woman was barefoot, and the 8-year-old girl was crying when they purchased three cans of Ajax cleaner and latex gloves.

There were no signs of obvious trauma on the trio’s bodies, and police are not sure what happened to them or what injuries they may have suffered. Both the woman and the girl are in critical condition. A hazardous-material team identified the white powder covering the victims as a baby product.

“It is devastating when you’re dealing with children,” LAPD 

Capt. Michael Rimkunas said.

While an unidentified man was seen in handcuffs during a preliminary investigation, he was later released. Police will review surveillance video from the scene and are currently looking for witnesses who may have information on what happened.

Ex-Gators quarterback Chris Leak loses teaching license after allegedly asking student to touch his genitals

former Florida Gators quarterback did not contest allegations that he asked an underage student to touch him inappropriately.

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Edgewater High School football coach and Art Recovery teacher Chris Leak, who played quarterback at the University of Florida just before Tim Tebow, voluntarily surrendered his Florida Educator’s Certificate amid allegations that, around Sept. 5, 2016, he received a massage from a 15-year-old female student and asked the student to touch his penis, according to an order filed by the Florida Education Practices Commission on Tuesday. 

Leak allegedly was wearing only a towel when he received the massage.

As a condition of the voluntary surrender of his certificate, Leak will never have the certificate reinstated and will not be allowed to apply for a new one. He also chooses “not to contest any of the allegations or charges” levied against him in the Administrative Complaint, according to documents.

“My client voluntarily talked with the police and denied the allegations,” said Leak’s lawyer, Tim Jansen. “No charges were filed and the investigation was closed last year. He has no plans to teach in the future. He maintains his innocence.” 

Dashcam video shows woman tripping over pants while running from police

A felony suspect tried to make a run from police, but her clothes did her in.

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WSB-TV received dashcam video of the suspect running from a car. Her pants eventually fall down, and then, so does she.

A Norcross, Georgia, police officer pulled over a Toyota Camry this week after running its plates and discovering its owner was wanted on several charges. 

Police said driver Dayana Maldonado then took off.

The chase was on until Maldonado pulled into a bus maintenance yard at the end of a dead end street and tried to run. Her pants dropped and she fell to the ground -- not once, but twice.

That allowed for officers to catch up and take her into custody. 

“Can you pull up my pants please, sir,” Maldonado said in the video. “This is so embarrassing.”

Police said Maldonado was wanted on several felony probation violations, including burglary. She now faces several additional charges as well. 

Maldonado remains in jail as of Friday afternoon, held without bond. 

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