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National

    A woman with multiple sclerosis says Delta Air Lines employees tied her to her wheelchair because she can’t sit up on her own and they didn’t have the chair she needed. >> Watch the news report here Maria Saliagas travels to Europe with her husband every year. When she was diagnosed with MS five years ago, she didn’t want to break her tradition of traveling with her husband. >> Southwest Airlines cancels dozens of flights amid inspections after deadly engine failure She said Delta normally accommodates her by making sure staff members have a proper wheelchair that has straps to help her sit up straight. When she flew out of Atlanta on April 1 and arrived in Amsterdam, Delta didn’t have a chair with straps, so employees tied her to a regular wheelchair with someone else’s blanket, said her son, Nathan Saliagas. >> Memorial service held for woman killed during Southwest Airlines flight “They took a dirty blanket and tied her forcefully with it, and she has bruise marks on part of her arm because it was so tight and she started crying. That’s when that picture was taken,” Saliagas said. A Delta representative sent WSB-TV a statement about the incident, saying:  “We regret the perception our service has left on these customers. We have reached out to them, not only to resolve their concerns, but also ensure that their return flight exceeds expectations.” >> Read more trending news  The family returns to Atlanta on April 30. When the family complained to Delta, they said the airline offered them 20,000 free SkyMiles, but they said that's not enough.  They want to see a policy change regarding how Delta handles passengers with disabilities.
  • It took a big money push from the Republican Party, tweets by the president and the support of the state's current and former governors, but the GOP held onto an Arizona U.S. House seat they would have never considered endangered in any other year. Tuesday's narrow victory by Republican Debbie Lesko over a Democratic political newcomer sends a big message to Republicans nationwide: Even the reddest of districts in a red state can be in play this year. Early returns show Lesko winning by about 5 percentage points in Arizona's 8th Congressional District where Donald Trump won by 21 percentage points. The former state senator defeated Hiral Tipirneni, a former emergency room physician who had hoped to replicate surprising Democratic wins in Pennsylvania, Alabama and other states in a year where opposition to President Trump's policies have boosted the party's chances in Republican strongholds. Republican political consultant Chuck Coughlin called Tuesday's special election margin 'not good' for national Republicans looking at their chances in November. 'They should clean house in this election,' said Coughlin, longtime adviser to former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer. 'There's a drag on the midterms for Republican candidates that's being created by the national narrative. And it would be very hard to buck that trend if you're in swing districts, much less close districts, if you can't change that narrative between now and November.' Lesko replaces former Rep. Trent Franks, a Republican who resigned in December amid sexual misconduct allegations. A former aide told The Associated Press that he pressed her to carry his child as a surrogate and offered her $5 million. The district sprawls across western Phoenix suburbs, covering some of the most conservative areas of the red state, including the retirement community of Sun City. At a victory party in her Glendale neighborhood, Lesko greeted supporters and looked back in wonder. 'I've really come a long way and this is really quite overwhelming, it's very surreal,' she said. 'Twenty-five years ago I left an abusive husband and I sure as heck never would have dreamt in a million years that I would be running for Congress to be a congresswoman.' Brewer, who backed Lesko and was at her victory party, also warned that Republicans need to make changes if they want to hold the district and other seats in November elections. 'I think all Republicans need to wake up and listen to what the public wants,' she said. 'Before November, we're going to have to work very hard. We're going to have to listen to our constituents.' Tipirneni worked the district hard, making inroads rarely seen in an area that hadn't elected a Democrat since the early 1980s. She was seen as a fresh Democratic face with relatively moderate views that could get support in the district. Making a push for older voters, she had said Lesko would vote to go after entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicaid to pay for tax cuts that mainly benefit the wealthy. She's pushed a plan to allow some people to buy into Medicare. Tipirneni said she plans to run in November's general election and told supporters not to give up the cause. She said that despite the big Republican advantage in the district, the results show people were ready for a change. 'We have a very short amount of time, and clearly Ms. Lesko she had the registration numbers a little bit in her favor and she also had the name recognition,' Tipirneni said. 'But given more time I know we can get more folks on our side.' The Associated Press called the race for Lesko after state officials released tallies of more than 155,000 mail-in ballots, which represent about 75 percent of the votes expected. National Republican groups spent big to back Lesko, pouring in more than $500,000 in the suburban Phoenix district for television and mail ads and phone calls to voters. On Election Day, Trump and current Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey urged Republicans to go to the polls and vote for Lesko. National Democratic groups, meanwhile, didn't commit money to the race, a sign they didn't believe the seat was in play. Several Republican voters who spoke with AP said they backed Lesko primarily because she supported Trump's border security plans. David Hunt, a 64-year-old retired construction and warehouse worker from Glendale, said he cast his vote Tuesday for Lesko because he believed that immigrants in the country illegally are creating unfair competition for jobs for recent high school students in Arizona. 'She's the best candidate to deal with the porous border,' Hunt said. His views were echoed by Larry Bettis, a retiree from Glendale. 'Immigration - the fence,' Bettis said. 'That's all I really care about.' Democrats said they wanted to send a message to Trump and supported Democratic health care plans. 'I don't like the president and felt it was time to take a stand,' said Nikole Allen, a 45-year-old medical assistant from New York now living in Glendale. 'It's time for us to vote the Republicans out.
  • A 6-year-old child was abducted early Tuesday after two car thefts at a Georgia day care, authorities said.  >> Watch the video here About five minutes after the car thefts, the child was seen on surveillance video walking back to the Childcare Network Daycare, Clayton County police Sgt. Ashanti Marbury said. It’s not known where he was abandoned.  Three men are sought in connection with the crimes at the day care, located in the 6000 block of Fayetteville Road in Riverdale, police said.  About 7:25 a.m., Clayton County police were called to the day care in reference to two stolen vehicles left running and unattended.  Surveillance video showed a silver Nissan Altima parking next to a gray 2016 Chrysler 300. A man in the front passenger seat of the Nissan jumped into the Chrysler’s front passenger seat. Moments later, the Chrysler drove away.  Not long after the theft, the Nissan drove to another location in the day care parking lot and made an abrupt stop at a white 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe, Clayton County police said. The Hyundai, which had a 6-year-old inside, was also left running and unattended. A person in the back seat of the Nissan hopped out, got into the Hyundai and sped away, police said.  >> Read more trending news  In under a minute, all three cars were seen on surveillance video leaving the day care parking lot.  Shortly after, the child was seen walking back to the day care and was reunited with his mom. He was not injured.  Police later found the Hyundai Santa Fe at the intersection of East Faytetteville Road and Evans Drive — less than a mile from the day care. The Chrysler 300 has not been found.  Earlier this year, Clayton County police rescued two girls after someone stole an SUV with them inside from a gas station. A baby and her 4-year-old sister were dumped on the side of the road miles apart in freezing temperatures. Authorities arrested Khyree Swift and a 16-year-old in connection with the crime.  Anyone who may have information on Tuesday’s case or the identity of the suspects is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 404-577-8477. 
  • In the dark of night, three travelers advanced inexorably toward tragedy. Accompanied by her parents on her first train trip, 11-year-old Andrea Chancey couldn't sleep despite the steady rocking of the Amtrak coach. Aboard the same train after missing a flight, Ken Ivory lounged nearby. Miles away, Willie C. Odom steered a towboat as it pushed barges up a river that was getting foggier by the mile. A bump. A whoosh. A ball of fire. Suddenly, those three and more than 200 other people were caught up in what remains the deadliest accident in Amtrak history, the derailment of the Los Angeles-to-Miami Sunset Limited in a south Alabama bayou in 1993. Forty-seven people died and more than 100 others were hurt. Nearly 25 years later, the survivors remember that night vividly: 'I smell the oil. I see the fire. I hear the screaming,' said Chancey, now 36. But many others forgot about the disaster as other tragedies occurred, one after the other, through the years. Once survivors and victims were plucked out of a river delta so remote it's called 'America's Amazon,' the National Transportation Safety Board opened an investigation. The agency held a public hearing in Mobile, just miles from the bayou, made multiple recommendations to improve safety, and the world moved on. The same will no doubt happen in the aftermath of a recent string of three Amtrak accidents that killed a total of six people and injured about 170 others in Washington, Virginia and South Carolina. But for those who witnessed the horror of people drowning in rail cars at Big Bayou Canot, everything comes rushing back with every Amtrak disaster. It's particularly true for Chancey, whose parents both died in the crash. Chancey sometimes wonders why she lived when so many others died. Did one of her parents lift her out of the bayou waters before drowning, as news reports at the time said, or did God save her for something special? Or was it simply luck? Ivory, a Texas oil industry worker who helped save Chancey all those years ago, has a theory. 'She was the chosen one,' said Ivory of Houston. ___ Retired Marine Lt. Col. Geary L. Chancey, a pilot and Vietnam veteran, and wife Mary Jane Chancey, a schoolteacher, adopted Andrea when she was only a few weeks old. Born with severe cerebral palsy, their girl would need assistance the rest of her life; she still uses a wheelchair and has home health-care aides who cook and clean for her. The family was living in Orange Park, Florida, in 1993 when they boarded Amtrak's Sunset Limited for a trip to visit relatives in Ocean Springs, Mississippi. Andrea's wheelchair made boarding more difficult than for other passengers, but she was thrilled about her first train ride. 'I thought it was the coolest thing,' said Chancey, speaking with The Associated Press in her first interview since the accident. Their visit to the Gulf Coast done, the Chanceys board the eastbound Sunset Limited toward home at Biloxi, Mississippi, the night of Sept. 21, 1993. The train was running about 30 minutes late because of an air conditioning problem that was repaired in New Orleans. Around the same time, Willie Odom was piloting the towboat Mauvilla as it pushed six barges away from a wharf in Mobile and up the winding Mobile River. The journey would take the boat northward into the Mobile-Tensaw Delta. With the landscape shrouded in fog, a confused Odom unknowingly turned off the river into Big Bayou Canot, a narrow, non-navigable waterway that snakes through the delta and is crossed by a railroad bridge that lacked lights. As Odom tried to find a tree to tie up until the fog lifted, records show, a barge struck a bridge support, bending the rail tracks more than one yard out of line just eight minutes before the Amtrak train arrived. On board the Sunset Limited, Andrea Chancey was trying to doze off as the train click-clacked through the night. 'My dad was sitting in front of my mom and I was sitting next to my mom, and for some reason I couldn't sleep,' said Chancey. 'I had my head on her belly and she was rubbing me.' Traveling at 72 mph (116 kph), the lead locomotive reached the bridge and jumped the track at the spot where the rails were bent by the barge collision. The 3,000-horsepower, 240-ton engine flew across the bayou, embedding in about 46 feet of mud on the opposite bank. Two other locomotives followed it into the water, along with a baggage car, a crew dorm car and two passenger coaches. Chancey remembers tumbling as her double-decker coach, Car No. 34083, sailed off the end of the bridge and into the bayou. Her mother 'pushed me and I fell and I saw my dad fall and when the water came in it was like, 'Wow,' she said. 'And everything went black.' Chancey doesn't recall seeing either of her parents again, possibly because of water rushing into the car and inky darkness — the only light came from burning diesel fuel that spilled from the locomotives. But she does remember a few people who got her out of the wreckage, including Ivory, who had decided to take the train to North Carolina to see his wife only after missing a commercial flight. Ivory said he was on the upper level of the train getting people out of the bottom level when someone thrust the child above the water that was filling the coach. It was pitch black, the only light coming from burning diesel fuel just yards away. 'Whoever it was was being consumed by the water at that time,' he recalled. 'I didn't ever get to see who handed her up, but I assumed it was her parents.' After the crash, Andrea was hospitalized with injuries that included oil inhalation. It was left to relatives to tell her that her parents had died. ___ The 'miracle child,' as the media called her, went to live with the family of her mother's older sister in Lancaster, Ohio, until she was 18. Her upkeep was funded partly by a trust fund set up by Amtrak and CSX, which owned the bridge. After briefly attending Wright State University and a failed marriage, Chancey wound up back on the Mississippi coast in Biloxi, where she lives today in an apartment with an assistance dog. Still in a wheelchair, she has help during daylight hours from home health aides. Chancey gets news alerts on her phone, and she's always shaken when another passenger train crashes. 'Whenever I see Amtrak has another accident, I call my aunt and I say, 'They did it again. They did it again,'' she said. Ivory, who was honored by the Coast Guard with another passenger, Michael Dopheide, for his life-saving efforts that night, also struggled with the aftermath. He wondered both why he survived and why he couldn't save more people. For a while, the smell of diesel fuel took him back to the scene of the crash; he figures his work in oil fields where diesel is abundant helped him tamp down the response. Odom, the towboat pilot, was named as a defendant in more than 90 lawsuits after the crash but never faced criminal charges. He told investigators he felt a 'bump' as he was pushing the barges that night but didn't realize what had happened until he heard a 'whoosh' and saw the glow of fire through the fog. Still near the crash site, the Mauvilla and its crew helped pull people from the water. Odom did not respond to an interview request. He hasn't worked in the river industry since and has struggled for more than two decades with the guilt and pain of what happened, said brother Morsco Odom — though over time, his anguish has eased a bit. 'The nightmares aren't as bad,' he said. Andrea Chancey didn't attend a memorial service held in 2016 to honor victims of the crash, and she's never seen a monument erected at the site of the repaired bridge recalling the disaster. Despite worsening health problems linked in part to cerebral palsy, Chancey expresses less concern about herself than for Odom, who she doesn't blame for the loss of her parents. The bayou bridge should have been in better shape to begin with, she said, and Amtrak has had too many accidents in the years since. Willie Odom has suffered enough, Chancey said, particularly considering he helped save 17 people after the crash — including her — using the same towboat that hit the bridge. 'I don't blame him one bit,' Chancey said. Ivory, too, holds nothing against Odom. Too much time has passed, he said. But ever since the crash, Ivory said, he has always checked on airline flights well in advance. 'I haven't taken another train since then,' said Ivory.
  • Now that summer is just around the corner, experts are warning that ticks will be coming back in full force. >> Watch the news report here One tick expert in New England told Boston's WFXT that the warmer weather will cause what he called a 'tick explosion.' The tiny, pesky and possibly harmful arachnids are about to spring into action, and everyone should be extra vigilant. >> Tick spreading in the US gives people meat allergies 'They're up and looking for a host hoping something will walk by that they can latch on,' said Dr. Thomas Mather, aka 'The Tick Guy.' Mather said this season is prime for ticks, and his website, tickencounter.org, shows the type to watch out for in New England this season is the deer tick because it spreads Lyme disease. 'It's very important because around here it's the worst for Lyme disease more than anywhere else in the nation,' Mather said. The website also lists high tick activity in most of the eastern United States, as well as the Midwest, Plains states and West Coast. Deer ticks are the most prevalent species in the Northeast and Midwest, while Lone Star ticks dominate in the Southeast and much of the Central U.S. Wood ticks are more common in the Mountain region, and Pacific Coast ticks are prevalent on the West Coast, the site said. Learn more here. >> Rare tick-borne illness worries some medical professionals Stephen Novick of Boston-based FlyFoe said his business is extremely busy since the ticks never really went away. 'We had a mild winter, didn’t freeze too much, and because of that, the animal populations were active longer, and that enabled the tick populations to be active,' he said. Deer, chipmunks and rodents all carry ticks. Spraying is one way to keep ticks out of your yard. You may even opt for a garlic-based, organic repellent or a store-bought pesticide. 'The pesticide is the lowest rated by the EPA, so it’s also super safe,' Novick said. The pesticide is used for flea and tick collars for pets.  >> Read more trending news  Spraying has to be done once a month to keep ticks at bay, but for many it's the best alternative as it provides peace of mind. Ticks usually hide in tall grass, so if you go hiking or walking in the woods, make sure to wear long-sleeve shirts and pants or get tick repellent clothing, use bug spray and always check yourself for ticks after being outdoors. Checking for ticks is always important because if you happen to have been bitten, the quicker you remove the tick, the less likely it is that it will transmit any diseases. – The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.
  • Two Dallas police officers were critically wounded in a shooting that also injured a home improvement store employee Tuesday, authorities said. The shooting occurred about 4:15 p.m. as officers were escorting a man from the Home Depot in northern Dallas. The two officers and the store loss-prevention officer underwent surgery for their injuries, Police Chief U. Renee Hall said late Tuesday night. She did not provide details of their conditions but asked for continued prayers for their recovery. Police arrested Armando Luis Juarez, 29, on charges of aggravated assault on a police officer and felony theft. He was taken into custody shortly before 10 p.m. after a lengthy car chase involving officers of various law enforcement agencies. 'We got our man,' Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said at the late-night news conference. The two police officers were called to the store to help an off-duty officer with removing the man from the store. In a tweet about the shooting Tuesday evening, the Dallas Police Department said the officers were critically wounded, but Hall declined to go into detail about their conditions during two news conferences at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. She said surgery was completed on the police officers and store employee late Tuesday at the hospital. Rawlings said he continues 'to be upset at the lack of respect for our police in this city and in our country.' In 2016, four Dallas police officers and a transit officer were shot dead by a sniper in an ambush that came toward the end of a peaceful protest over the police killings of black men that had occurred in other cities. ___ This story has been corrected to show that the fatal shooting of five officers in Dallas was during a protest in 2016, not 2006.
  • Attorneys for a condemned Texas prisoner asked the U.S. Supreme Court to halt his execution scheduled for Wednesday evening for killing a young girl and her grandmother in a gang-related shooting a decade ago that turned a child's birthday party in Fort Worth into a bloodbath. Erick Davila faced lethal injection for using a laser-sighted semi-automatic rifle to spray bullets at the gathering of about 20 people — more than a dozen of them children — outside an apartment. The gunfire was in apparent retaliation for a previous run-in with one of the people attending the party for a 9-year-old girl. Killed in the April 2008 attack were Annette Stevenson, 48, and her 5-year-old granddaughter, Queshawn Stevenson. Four others were wounded, including the birthday girl. Davila, 31, would be the fifth Texas inmate executed and the ninth nationally. Davila's attorneys argued to the Supreme Court that his execution should be stopped because it was improper for his trial judge, Sharen Wilson, now the Tarrant County district attorney, to request an execution date. They also questioned the role of a lawyer working with Wilson on capital appeals cases who previously represented Davila in an earlier appeal. The appeal also contended prosecutors withheld information that Davila was high on drugs at the time of the shootings and 'likely intoxicated to the degree that it would have rendered him temporarily insane,' lawyer Seth Kretzer told the high court in a filing. He argued that could have influenced jurors to decide on a lesser penalty, and questioned whether the way Texas juries decide death sentences is constitutionally proper. State attorneys said Wilson never represented Davila, and state law and court rulings allow her office to represent the state's interests in the case. Prosecutors also argued Wilson prohibits assistants from participating in cases where they were defense lawyers and that courts have upheld the state's capital sentencing procedure. They also said evidence showed Davila's trial attorneys properly were provided notes from police investigators, that voluntary intoxication is not a defense under Texas law and that the shootings were intentional and deliberate. Katherine Hayes, an assistant Texas attorney general, told the justices that Davila told detectives he went 'to a shoot 'em up,' was trying to 'get the guys on the porch' and never mentioned any intoxication to police. Defense lawyers at Davila's trial tried to show he didn't intend to kill multiple people, a criterion for the capital murder charge. They argued he instead only intended to kill Jerry Stevenson, whose daughter and mother were shot to death. Authorities said Stevenson belonged to a rival gang, which he denied, but whose members Davila blamed for shooting him in 2005. Queshawn Stevenson's sister, then 11, testified she saw a man April 6, 2008, inside a dark car holding a gun with 'a red dot' on it, and a short time later saw him standing next door and shoot. Davila was caught the next day after a brief police chase. He previously was in prison for a 2004 burglary in Tarrant County and was released after about a year. Davila was accused but not tried for another fatal shooting days before the birthday party slayings. While awaiting trial for capital murder, evidence showed he attacked Tarrant County jailers and maintenance workers during an escape attempt. At the time of his trial, testimony showed Davila's father was in prison for a murder conviction. Charges against the getaway driver, Garfield Thompson II, were dropped after he pleaded guilty in unrelated cases. He's serving 20 years in prison.
  • Philadelphia-born rapper Meek Mill attended an NBA playoff game in his first public appearance since being released from prison while he appeals decade-old gun and drug convictions. Following a five-month campaign by his supporters to get him out, the state Supreme Court on Tuesday directed a Philadelphia judge who had jailed him to immediately issue an order releasing him on unsecured bail. Mill, whose real name is Robert Rihmeek Williams, was sentenced in November to two to four years behind bars for probation violations. He was taken from the State Correctional Institution in Chester by helicopter to nearby Philadelphia. 'I feel great,' Mill said before entering the Wells Fargo Center, where he rang the ceremonial bell before the start of Game 5 of the Philadelphia 76ers-Miami Heat playoff series. 'Just having someone that looks out for us, all of us here, it would just mean a lot for him to be back in Philly, in the city of Philadelphia with the fans, especially with a game like that tonight,' Sixers guard Ben Simmons said. 'Welcome home Meek Mill,' the game announcer told the rapper, who wore a Joel Embiid jersey and sat courtside next to actor Kevin Hart, Sixers co-owner Michael Rubin, Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie and Democratic Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf. Before the game, which Philadelphia won 104-91 to advance to the second round of the playoffs, Mill stopped by the Sixers' locker room to greet the players. A team of lawyers and public relations consultants had waged an all-out battle to get Mill freed, leveling fierce criticism at the judge as a stream of high-powered figures and celebrities visited him in jail just hours before the Supreme Court ruling. Mill issued a statement saying the past months had been 'a nightmare,' and thanked his many supporters and visitors, who included Rubin, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and Democratic Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney. 'Although I'm blessed to have the resources to fight this unjust situation, I understand that many people of color across the country don't have that luxury and I plan to use my platform to shine a light on those issues,' Mill said. He said he would now focus his attention on getting his convictions overturned, and that he looks forward to resuming his music career. Earlier this month, in a major victory for Mill, prosecutors said they agreed with his lawyers that he should get a new trial because of questions raised about the arresting officer. The now-retired officer was among a list of police officers the prosecutor's office has sought to keep off the witness stand in cases across the city because of credibility questions. A spokesman for District Attorney Larry Krasner said late Tuesday that the Supreme Court's decision on Meek Mill's release was consistent with the position taken by their office. Mill's attorney, Joe Tacopina, thanked the high court. 'Meek was unjustly convicted and should not have spent a single day in jail,' Tacopina said. In an opinion earlier this month, Judge Genece Brinkley, who sent Mill to prison for the probation violations, strongly defended herself against accusations by the defense she was waging a vendetta against the rapper. She said the court 'has impartially and without prejudice presided over numerous proceedings in this matter since 2008.' The Supreme Court denied a defense request to move the case to another judge, but said the presiding judge could opt to remove herself.
  • Jurors at Bill Cosby's sexual assault retrial are poised to start deliberating after a marathon day of closing arguments that portrayed the comedian both as a calculating predator who's finally being brought to justice and the victim of a multimillion-dollar frame-up by a 'pathological liar.' The seven men and five women sequestered at a suburban Philadelphia hotel will start weighing charges on Wednesday in the first big celebrity trial of the #MeToo era. They begged off a late Tuesday start, saying they were exhausted from 5½ hours of arguments. The prosecution and defense gave them lots to think about after a two-week trial pitting Cosby, the 80-year-old comedian once revered as 'America's Dad,' against Andrea Constand, a former Temple University sports administrator who testified that he knocked her out with three pills he called 'your friends' and molested her at his suburban Philadelphia mansion in January 2004. 'The time for the defendant to escape justice is over. It's finally time for the defendant to dine on the banquet of his own consequences,' prosecutor Stewart Ryan said, imploring jurors to stand with Constand, look Cosby in the eye and 'tell him the truth about what he did.' Cosby's lawyers argued that the charges were based on 'flimsy, silly, ridiculous evidence.' This time, prosecutors had five other women testify that Cosby drugged and violated them. One accuser asked him through tears, 'You remember, don't you, Mr. Cosby?' Cosby's lawyers, who contend the encounter was consensual, called a woman who said Constand spoke of framing a high-profile person to sue and extract a big settlement. None of that was allowed at Cosby's streamlined first trial, which ended in a hung jury last year after deliberations over six days. Nor were jurors told the amount of Cosby's 2006 civil settlement with Constand: nearly $3.4 million, which defense lawyer Tom Mesereau on Tuesday called 'one of the biggest highway robberies of all time.' 'I have never seen or heard of a retrial that was as different as this was from the first trial,' said lawyer Dennis McAndrews, who's been in court following the retrial and is not associated with either side. 'The prosecution now had multiple victims and the defense had the issue of money, which were powerful weapons for both sides.' Cosby faces three counts of aggravated indecent assault, each carrying up to 10 years in prison. His wife of 54 years, Camille, looked on from the gallery as his lawyers pleaded with the jury to clear him, the first time she has attended the trial. She also sat in for the defense's closing argument at his first trial. Camille Cosby, 74, had stayed away as the prosecution built its case that her husband maintained a sordid double life, plying women with drugs and preying on them sexually. Before the jury came in, she put her arm around Cosby, who is legally blind. They smiled and chatted, and he gave her a peck on the cheek. When it was the prosecution's turn to argue, she left the courtroom, and Constand entered. 'You're dealing with a pathological liar, members of the jury,' said Mesereau, who won an acquittal in Michael Jackson's 2005 child molestation case. 'You are.' Prosecutor Kristen Feden called Cosby the true con artist — wresting that label from Cosby's lawyers, who had applied it to Constand throughout the trial. 'Yes, you did hear about a con,' Feden said, her voice rising as she moved toward Cosby and pointed at him. 'The perpetrator of that con is this man, sitting right here.' She warned that the man trusted for his role as genial, sweater-wearing Dr. Cliff Huxtable on 'The Cosby Show' is 'nothing like the image that he played on TV.' The defense highlighted more than a dozen inconsistencies in what Constand has said over the years and painstakingly reviewed phone and travel records, saying they prove the alleged assault couldn't have happened when she says it did. They argued that he was charged after the 12-year statute of limitations for prosecuting him had run out. The Associated Press does not typically identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they grant permission, which Constand has done. ___ Follow Mike Sisak at https://twitter.com/mikesisak ___ For more coverage visit https://www.apnews.com/tag/CosbyonTrial
  • Travis Reinking's erratic behavior began years before police say he showed up without pants at a Waffle House restaurant and killed four people with an assault-style rifle. The onetime construction crane operator bounced between states and suffered from delusions, sometimes talking about plans to marry singer Taylor Swift, friends and relatives told police. He was arrested outside the White House last year after asking to speak to President Donald Trump, and his bizarre actions seemed to intensify in recent days with a car theft. Now Reinking is charged in Tennessee with four counts of criminal homicide. He's been jailed without bond. 'He's a good kid that went off the handle for some reason,' said Dave Warren, who once worked with Reinking in Colorado. Former co-workers at Rocky Mountain Crane in Salida, Colorado, told police after the shooting that Reinking was complex. He didn't drink or do drugs, according to a police report describing the interviews, and he was known as intelligent, polite and an excellent equipment operator. He didn't like the government or the National Rifle Association, and he talked about being a 'sovereign citizen,' although the meaning of the phrase wasn't clear. What seemed to drive Reinking more than anything was an obsession with Swift, the report said. Reinking told police — once in Tazewell County, Illinois, in 2016, and again in Colorado last year — that Swift was stalking him. He was infatuated with her and supposedly purchased a $14,000 ring and drove to California to try to meet her, authorities said. But co-workers also knew Reinking as openly gay, according to the interview notes. Ken and Darlene Sustrich, the owners of the crane service where Reinking worked for six months, recalled a time when he and other members of a crew were returning to Salida after completing a job. As they passed through the town of Last Chance, Colorado, Reinking quit on the spot. 'He misconstrued that was his last chance,' Ken Sustrich said. 'He got super-paranoid, and he quit that day. He said, 'This is my last chance.'' Reinking's intelligence impressed them. He would sometimes talk about astrophysics, Darlene Sustrich said. In his last few days at the crane service, he began showing signs of paranoia. 'You could see something was off with him, but nothing violent,' Darlene Sustrich said. Then came a call from the FBI, saying Reinking had tried to jump the White House fence. 'We told them, 'Hang onto him if you can. Help him if you can,'' she said. Ken Sustrich told police that he reached out to Reinking's father with concerns about his son's mental health. He said the father replied that he was aware of the issues and 'had been recently trying to rekindle his relationship with Travis,' the police report said. Back in Illinois last June, a sheriff's report showed, the younger Reinking barged into a community swimming pool and jumped in wearing only underwear and a pink woman's coat. That same day, an employee at his family's business, J&J Cranes, said he emerged from an apartment above the office wearing a pink dress, clutching a rifle and yelling profanities, according to a report. The sheriff's department called his father, who was out of state. He told officers that he had taken four guns away when his son was 'having problems' but later returned them. Police suggested that Jeff Reinking 'lock the guns back up until Travis gets mental help,' officer Randy Davis wrote in a report. The father agreed to do so. When he was arrested at the White House, Reinking was not armed, but Illinois state police revoked his state firearms card at the FBI's request. Four guns, including the AR-15 used in the Waffle House shooting, were transferred to his father, a procedure allowed under Illinois law. The father said he later returned the guns to his son again, police said. Signs of paranoid delusions continued: In August, Reinking told police he wanted to file a report about 20 to 30 people tapping into his computer and phone and people 'barking like dogs' outside his residence, according to a report. It isn't clear why Reinking moved recently to the Nashville area from Morton, Illinois, and if it had anything to do with being near Swift. The performer has a home in Nashville, though it's not her only residence. A representative of Swift did not return a message seeking comment, nor did the public defender appointed to represent Reinking, who has not entered a plea. Nashville police say they were not aware of Reinking's past fixation with Swift, but authorities in Music City say they are all too familiar with people being preoccupied with the superstar. 'You wouldn't believe how many people are obsessed with Taylor Swift,' Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson said. Reinking apparently kept a low profile until recent days. Alerted to the theft of a BMW from a car dealer last week, officers decided against a risky chase knowing the car had a GPS device and could be located. Police found the vehicle outside Reinking's apartment, but they did not figure out until after the attack that Reinking had apparently taken it. ___ Foody reported from Denver, Colorado. Reeves reported from Birmingham, Alabama. Associated Press writers Dan Elliott in Salida, Colorado; Ed White in Detroit; John Raby in Charleston, West Virginia; Kristin Hall in Nashville; and Michael Kunzelman in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, also contributed to this report.