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News
Police: Man intentionally caused Gwinnett fatal wreck
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Police: Man intentionally caused Gwinnett fatal wreck

Gwinnett police: Man purposely caused deadly 7-car pile-up

Police: Man intentionally caused Gwinnett fatal wreck

The man accused of killing a woman while crashing his vehicle into several others has been charged with murder and 10 counts of aggravated assault, Gwinnett County police said Thursday. And investigators now say the man hit the vehicles on purpose, but they aren’t sure why.

The upgraded charges are in addition to the ones Jacob Nicholson, 22, of Gainesville, was previously charged with in connection to the Jan. 16 string of wrecks in the Norcross area.

Investigators believe Nicholson was driving a Honda Odyssey southbound on Singleton Road at a high rate of speed around 7:30 a.m. when he drove through the Jimmy Carter Boulevard intersection and crashed into six vehicles stopped at the traffic light, Gwinnett police Cpl. Ed Ritter said.

“He ran the red light moving at 80 to a 100 miles an hour,” a witness, Mike Alvarado, previously told Channel 2 Action News.

The driver of a tan Honda Accord, 59-year-old Cynthia Thornton of Norcross, died at the scene of the crash, police said. The driver of another vehicle was treated for minor injuries.

Nicholson was ejected from his van and critically injured in the wreck and remained hospitalized until Thursday at Gwinnett Medical Center, Ritter said. Around 7 p.m., Nicholson was booked into the Gwinnett County jail, where he was being held late Thursday without bond.

After the wreck, Nicholson was charged with first degree vehicular homicide, reckless driving, speeding, driving on the wrong side of the road, no seat belt, and expired driver’s license, according to police.

The investigation into the crashes continues.

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  • Two children were killed in an accident involving a police SUV in Los Angeles on Thursday night. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department vehicle was rushing to the scene of a gunshot victim at 7:25 p.m. PT when it struck five pedestrians in the Boyle Heights section of the city, according to police. In addition to the two killed, three other pedestrians were injured, and two sheriff's deputies in the vehicle were taken to the hospital, according to authorities. The deputies were treated and released Thursday night. The extent of the injuries to the other three pedestrians was unknown.  TRENDING STORIES: Judge grabs flagpole to defend himself as suspect tries to escape courtroom Lawsuit: Sun Dial restaurant ‘had no protections’ to stop 5-year-old’s death $500K worth of items stolen from jewelers' car after convention  Police did not provide the ages of those killed, but said both were minors. 'I was inside in my home and I heard the crash. Within seconds, I was outside and just a few feet from the incident,' eyewitness Paulette de la Cruz told Los Angeles ABC station KABC. 'When I got there I saw a little boy with a white blanket over him. Another one across, I'm not sure if he was conscious or not, but it didn't look like he was.' There were two other vehicles involved in the accident, but no one in the cars were injured. Police said an investigation into the accident was ongoing.  
  • A Georgia seventh-grader had quite the statement planned for his field trip to CNN, but his school ruined it all. >> Read more trending news Jaxon Jester, son of elected local officials Nancy and Stan Jester, donned a shirt that mocked CNN’s logo as “FNN,” standing for “Fake News Network,” on the morning of his school’s trip to visit the network’s Atlanta headquarters. However, a teacher at his school asked him to remove the shirt before the trip even began and now his parents are livid, saying the school violated his First Amendment right to free speech. “This year when the CNN tour was announced, my seventh grade son Jaxon asked me if he could purchase an FNN-Fake News Network shirt to wear for his field trip. As an advocate for the First Amendment, I agreed to his request,” Stan Jester wrote in a blog post about the incident. “His mother cautioned him that he might cause a controversy and needed to be prepared for that. He was fully aware of the implications of his decision and made the affirmative choice to wear his shirt.” The parents reportedly received a phone call from the school’s principal on the morning of the trip, notifying them that their son had been instructed to change his shirt. The Jesters were “disappointed by the hypocrisy” in the school’s decision. “Some students are celebrated when they make a controversial display during the National Anthem,” the boy’s father continued, pointing out that the school previously issued a statement in defense of students who kneeled for the national anthem on the basis of the First Amendment. “My student was forced to remove his shirt because someone didn’t like it. I defend speech and expression, even if I disagree, or it makes me uncomfortable.” In the comments section, Nancy Jester gave readers an update on what happened after the field trip: “After the class was back from the field trip, the principal and the teacher involved called me. The teacher involved said that she told Jax to change his shirt because she thought his shirt said ‘F-CNN.’ I told her that it absolutely did NOT say that. She apologized and said that she now realizes that the shirt has no profanity or suggestion of profanity on it. The principal stated that he should have been made aware of the situation before Jax was made to change his shirt. He apologized for the incident. We discussed how the shirt could have provided valuable learning opportunities if Jax and his fellow students could have explored how we get news and how we process it. The teacher agreed. “Once home Jax described the situation a little differently. He stated that after he boarded the bus for the trip, the teacher came onto his bus and called his name to come forward. He did so. He felt that he was spoken to in a harsh tone and told he must change. He was respectful and complied. He was very upset but kept that to himself.” While the Jesters are displeased with their son’s school’s decision, others have argued that it wasn’t appropriate for the county commissioner and school board member to send their child off to school wearing the shirt in the first place.
  • A woman says she was robbed and kidnapped while she was pumping gas. The victim said that around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, she was at a Kroger gas station on Highway 138 in Stockbridge. She said a man came up behind her, covered her face with a scarf and dragged her into another vehicle. She said someone grabbed her keys and debit card out of her hand and she heard them drive off with her SUV, which had her wallet and phone inside.  TRENDING STORIES: Another cheating scandal: APS police chief disciplines 17 officers, dispatcher Lawsuit: Sun Dial restaurant ‘had no protections' to stop 5-year-old's death Police: UGA student Snapchats during high-speed chase The victim said she was taken to Atlanta and dropped off at a gas station on McDonough Boulevard, where she called police. The woman tells us about the moment she begged the kidnappers not to kill her, on Channel 2 Action News at 5.   'They blindfolded me & dragged me into another car while I was pumping gas, I begged them not to kill me' said a woman who wants to warn everyone about what happened to her pic.twitter.com/iPRXrsjARa — Tyisha Fernandes (@TyishaWSB) November 17, 2017  
  • Congratulations, Major League Soccer. You're on the verge of becoming a real American sports league. Greedy owner? Check. Complicit commissioner? Check. Playing one city off another to get a new stadium paid for at least in part with the public's hard-earned tax dollars? Check. The Columbus Crew is one of MLS' charter franchises. In fact, they're the ones that set the gold standard in the league's fledgling early years, becoming the first to build a soccer-specific stadium that also served as a second home for the U.S. national team. Yet that stadium is no longer good enough for the Crew's owner, Anthony Precourt, who has made it abundantly clear he plans to move the team to Austin, Texas for the 2019 season. In the end, MLS will be as big a loser in this affair as the good people of Columbus. For the league's growing fan base, who chant and sing and tell themselves that MLS is different than those other American leagues, this should be a clear sign that it's not. Money rules, not loyalty. If Columbus can lose its team, who's to say they won't be next? Especially after MLS completes its next wave of expansion, awarding four more teams from among 12 contending cities. Rest assured, at least some of those that lose out will immediately begin their pursuit of existing franchises. Columbus, in all likelihood, will only be the first victim. There was a half-hearted meeting in New York on Wednesday, in which Precourt and his ally, MLS Commissioner Don Garber, sat down with Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther and the head of a local business group looking for ways to keep the Crew from moving. Afterward, it was apparent these talks are going nowhere. 'Extremely disappointed' is how Precourt put it. 'We were united in putting all options on the table, with the expectation in return that the MLS and ownership would cease pursuing moving the team to Austin,' the mayor's side said in a statement. 'Great American cities do not get into bidding wars over sports teams to benefit private owners.' Actually, they do. Goodbye, Columbus. Hello, Austin. Making this even more uncomfortable, the Crew are in the midst of a playoff run , having already pulled off upsets of Atlanta United and New York City FC to reach the Eastern Conference final against top-seeded Toronto FC. The teams open their two-leg series next at Mapfre Stadium in Columbus. If the Crew pulls off another upset, they'll head to the MLS Cup. That could set up the very uncomfortable scenario of Garber presenting the championship trophy to a carpet-bagging owner and his lame-duck team. While MLS has tried to mold itself along the lines of soccer leagues around the world, it still has distinctly American flair — from playing out of season (spring to fall, instead of fall to spring like most major countries) to keeping a playoff system to decide its champion. Now, we're getting that most American touch of all. The stadium flimflam. When Precourt bought the Crew in 2013, he reportedly agreed to keep the team in Columbus for another decade but also made sure to give himself an exit strategy, and now it seems he was merely biding his time in Ohio's capital city. Precourt sees dollars signs in Texas . While Austin is similar in size to Columbus, it has a booming economy, a bunch of hip millennials and status as the largest municipality without a major league team. Austin officials are playing right along, taking steps toward giving Precourt the downtown stadium he wants with all the bells and whistles. 'Despite our investments and efforts, the current course is not sustainable,' Precourt said in October when news first broke that he was pondering a move, a statement that should sound all-too-familiar to other North American cities that lost teams. 'We have no choice but to expand and explore all of our options.' He went on to rave about Austin's potential, hardly a way to keep the loyalty of fans in his current city. 'Soccer is the world's game,' he said, 'and with Austin's growing presence as an international city, combined with its strong multicultural foundation, MLS in Austin could be an ideal fit.' To its credit, MLS has largely avoided franchises bouncing around from one city to another. Sure, it's played the stadium game as well as those more-established leagues, resulting in most teams having their own soccer-specific facilities, financed in part by millions of tax dollars. But other than Tampa Bay, which folded during the league's early years as MLS dealt with heavy financial losses, the remaining nine original teams are still around — a remarkable accomplishment as MLS approaches the end of its 22nd season . For now, the San Jose Earthquakes are the only franchise to move to another city, becoming the Houston Dynamo in 2006, but they technically went on hiatus for two seasons. The Earthquakes returned in 2008, retaining all of their records and history, while the Dynamo were officially recognized as an expansion team. If the Crew heads to the Lone Star State, they'll take their history with them. For Columbus, it will surely be the end of its run as a soccer city. And with that, MLS becomes just another league. ___ Paul Newberry is a sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at pnewberry@ap.org or at www.twitter.com/pnewberry1963 . His work can be found at https://apnews.com/search/paul%20newberry
  • It’s become a tradition in many families – instead of roasting the Thanksgiving turkey, they fry it up in a vat of oil. Some say the idea of frying the holiday bird came from Justin Wilson, the Louisiana chef who made everything Cajun popular a few decades ago.According to an article in Vogue, in 1996, Martha Stewart Living published a photograph of a deep-fried turkey for its November issue. The New York Times included a piece about deep-fried turkey a year later.While people who have included frying a turkey as part of their holiday celebration swear by the moist taste, frying 15 pounds of bird is not without its risks.Here’s a step-by-step guide to cooking the bird without burning down your house. 1. Pick the bird.  With frying turkeys, small is generally better. Go for birds around 10-12 pounds. If you have a big crowd of turkey lovers coming for dinner, fry two of them. 2. Prepare the bird. There is an important step in frying a turkey that you don’t necessarily take when you roast one. It is important, really important, that the turkey is completely thawed (no ice on it at all) and that it is dried off when you lower it into the oil. Just remember, oil and water are not a good mix. 3. Don’t forget to season. After the bird is thawed, season it liberally with salt, pepper and any other seasonings your guests would like. Some people use “turkey injectors” to shoot seasoning under the turkey skin. 4. Don’t forget the cavity. And while you are in the cavity, make sure you get the giblets out of there. For those new to turkeys, it’s that bag that is stuff into a frozen turkey that contains the neck, the heart, liver and other parts that were once inside the bird in a different fashion. You can do all of this the day before Thanksgiving and put the bird in the refrigerator until it is show time. 5. OK, your bird is ready. It’s time to set up the frying gear. First, and most importantly, you will be doing the frying outside, not in or near a garage or a carport. Turkey frying isn’t a family activity. Make sure the kids and the pets are inside while you fry. That’s very important. 6. Now comes the setup for the fryer. What you generally get when you buy a turkey fryer is a metal pot, something that looks like a coat hanger, a burner, a thermometer and a gas regulator. The other thing you need is oil. You want an oil that can stand up to high heat. Peanut oil or cottonseed oil is a good choice. 7. How much oil do you need? That’s a good question. Here’s an easy way to figure it out. The day before you fry, take the bird, still in its packaging, and lower it into the pot. Cover the turkey with water. Make a note of how much water was needed to cover the turkey. That’s how much oil you will need. (Note: You want to leave at least 3-5 inches for the top of the pot clear for safety’s sake.) .  8. Now, find a level spot to put the burner. Fill the pot with the amount of oil you measured by using the water the day before. Turn the burner on and heat the oil. The oil should be at 340-350 degrees before you lower the turkey into it. 9. Putting it in. Take the hanger-like device and stick it in the turkey. The legs should be facing up, the breast down. Slowly lower the turkey into the oil. Use long oven mitts while you do this. Once the turkey is in the oil, take out the coat-hanger device and let the turkey sit. 10. How long do you cook it? Here’s a ballpark estimate: allow 3 1/2 minutes for every pound. So, for a 12-pound bird, it should take about 42 minutes.  11. Getting it out. Once the bird is cooked, put the hanger-like device back into the bird. Remember to wear the long oven mitts. Carefully lift the turkey out of the oil. Allow it to drain a bit, and then place it on a platter. Check the temperature of the bird. It  should be between 167 and 180 degrees. If the temperature is OK, leave the bird alone for a while. If it’s not hot enough or is undercooked in spots, you can put the turkey back into the oil.   
  • John Hart has left the Atlanta Braves, less than a week after being stripped of his role as president of baseball operations.The decision announced Friday was not unexpected given the hiring of general manager Alex Anthopoulos, who now has autonomy over all baseball-related decisions. Hart was given the title of senior advisor, but clearly had no real power.The 69-year-old Hart calls it 'a difficult decision' but says the team 'is in great hands' with Anthopoulos.Hart took over as interim general manager in 2014 after the late-season firing of Frank Wren and wound up staying on as head of baseball operations while the team groomed John Coppolella to take over as GM.Coppolella was forced to resign last month after an investigation by Major League Baseball disclosed rule violations committed by the Braves in the international player market.___For more AP baseball coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball