National News

Small Plane Lands on Florida Beach, One Dead


Photo Credit: Zack Arceneaux(VENICE, Fla.) -- A small plane in distress landed on a Florida beach on Sunday afternoon, killing one man and injuring one of his children.According to the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office, the plane had contacted the Venice Airport noting that it was in distress and would not be able to return to the airport. The pilot is believed to have made an attempt to land on the beach.Preliminary information from the Federal Aviation Administration indicated that the man and his daughter were struck by the plane as the pilot attempted to land. The man was pronounced dead and his daughter was taken to All Children's Hospital. The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office said that she was believed to be in critical condition.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Former WWE Champion Thwarts Home Invader with Wrestling Move


Photo by Erika Goldring/Getty Images(PHOENIX) --  A former WWE champion used his ring skills to foil an attempted robbery in his Arizona home.Bryan Danielson, better known by his stage known Daniel Bryan, and his wife, fellow-wrestler Brie Bella, were pulling up to their home early this week when they saw two burglars try to escape their home with stolen items.Danielson, a four-time world champion, chased the two burglars and managed to use his signature wrestling move to catch one, according to ABC affiliate KNXV-TV in Phoenix."I took him down and put him in a rear naked choke," Danielson said. "I didn't want to hurt him, I just wanted to make sure he was subdued."Danielson caught Cesar Sosa, 22, who was booked and charged with burglary, allegedly trying to steal from the couple's home with an unidentified accomplice, according to police.Danielson, his wife, and their dog, a bulldog named Josie, are doing just fine, the former wrestler said."I was very angry, Brie was very angry," Danielson said. "They're actually lucky I got them instead of Brie, because she probably would have been a little more violent."Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Alleged Pennsylvania Hospital Shooter Richard Plotts Arraigned in Bed


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(PHILADELPHIA) -- A Pennsylvania psychiatric patient has been arraigned on charges including murder and attempted murder for allegedly shooting his caseworker in the head in a hospital office and then engaging in a gun battle with a doctor who tried to subdue him.The patient, Richard Plotts, 49, was arraigned late Saturday night in his bed at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he is being treated for his wounds and is under police guard, a spokeswoman for the Delaware County district attorney's office said.Delaware County District Attorney Jack Whelan told ABC station WPVI-TV in Philadelphia that police seized two guns and a computer from Plotts' home in Clifton Heights this weekend.Plotts is accused of opening fire inside the wellness center of Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital in Darby Borough just after 2 p.m. Thursday.Police told WPVI that they believe Plotts went to his appointment intending to kill his psychiatrist, Dr. Lee Silverman. They said Plotts was angry because the hospital posted a sign declaring the building a "gun-free zone."Plotts was inside Silverman's office for a scheduled appointment Thursday when he suddenly pulled a gun out of his waistband and shot his caseworker, Theresa Hunt, in the head at point-blank range, police said. Hunt was killed instantly.Silverman dove to the floor, pulled a semi-automatic pistol out his pocket and had a furious close range gun battle with Plotts, who police said fired at least 10 rounds. The doctor, who was using a chair for protection, aimed his gun at Plotts and fired until it was empty, Whelan said Friday.The doctor, who was grazed in the head and wounded in the thumb while covering his face, was able to get out of the office, unaware that he had struck Plotts three times.According to Whelan, caseworker John D'Alonzo heard the shooting and called 911. He then climbed through a window into Silverman's office because the door was locked and "engaged in a wrestling match with Mr. Plotts," getting him on the ground. Whelan called D'Alonzo's actions "nothing short of heroic." Dr. Jeffrey Dekret helped D'Alonzo wrestle the gun away from Plotts and hold him for police, Whelan said.Whelan said that D'Alonzo "believed Plotts was trying to reload." The prosecutor said Plotts had another 39 bullets."If it wasn't for the heroic actions" of Silverman and Dalonzo, "we believe he (Plotts) was going to reload that revolver and continue to fire," Whelan said.The prosecutor said that had the doctor not had a gun and fired back, "he would probably not be alive today."Plotts had a history of violence with arrests for simple assault and a federal bank robbery as well as illegal firearms possession.Plotts did not have a license for the gun that he used. It was not clear whether he had a lawyer.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

California Wildfires Spread, Force Evacuations


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(YOSEMITE, Calif.) -- A fire near Yosemite National Park has burned over 2,000 acres of land, more than four times as much land as it had on Saturday.Officials called in planes and helicopters and about 400 personnel to help battle the flames. Park spokeswoman Ashley Mayer told ABC News that there have been some evacuations, but officials were not certain whether any structures were lost in the fire.No injuries have been reported in the fire. The Sand Fire in northern California also continued to spread over the weekend with more than 3,800 acres burning on Sunday. Officials say that fire is 35 percent contained, but 10 homes have been destroyed and more than 500 are still at risk. Mandatory evacuations for the area remain in place.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Reward Offered in Carjacking that Killed Three Children


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(PHILADELPHIA) --  Philadelphia police are offering a $110,000 reward to anyone who can help them find two men suspected of carjacking an SUV and killing three children and injuring three adults when they crashed it.Siblings Thomas Reed, 10, Keiearra Williams, 15, and Terrence Williams, 7, were selling fruit outside their church Friday when they were hit and killed by a white Toyota 4Runner SUV that blew a tire while making a turn at a high speed.The children's mother was also hit in the crash and taken to a hospital in critical condition. Another woman who was hit by the SUV was also injured, and the SUV's owner, who was in the vehicle when it crashed, was also injured."Taking innocent people's lives. That's my son, you took him away from me. Turn yourself in, dog. Whoever y'all is, turn yourself in," the father of Thomas Reed told ABC's Philadelphia affiliate WPVI.The SUV crashed into the fruit stand and then crashed into a nearby grove of trees, where two suspects got out of the vehicle and fled on foot, police said.They are still at large and police on Sunday announced the reward to anyone who can help track them down.The two suspects are described as one Hispanic male wearing a white shirt and one black male wearing a white shirt, according to WPVI."We have a tragedy here. We will use all the resources at our disposal to find the people responsible," Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey told WPVI."I've been in the homicide unit for six years and this is one of the saddest cases that I've come across," Capt. James Clark of the Philadelphia Police added. "You have three innocent children who had the rest of their lives in front of them who were taken in this fashion. It is very sad and very tragic."An estimated 40,000 carjackings occur every year in the United States, particularly in hot spots like Northern New Jersey where proximity to ports like Newark that ship luxury vehicles overseas entice carjackers."The crime of carjacking has reached epidemic levels," New Jersey Acting Attorney General John Hoffman told ABC News.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio 

California Man Killed Wife, Set Home on Fire to Cover it Up, Police Say


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(ESCONDIDO, Calif.) --  Police officers in California are grieving one of their own as her husband sits in jail, accused of shooting his wife and trying to cover up her murder by lighting his house on fire.Freddy Perez-Rodas called 911 on Wednesday and said his wife, Laura Perez, was inside their burning home in Escondido, California, according to police. Investigators suspected arson after firefighters put out the blaze and were unable to find her inside.“We started to look for her and it became something of an arson, missing person investigation,” said Murrieta Police Lieutenant Tony Conrad.Within hours, police took Perez-Rodas into custody and charged him with murdering his wife. Although police said that Perez-Rodas confessed, he pleaded not guilty.“He essentially admitted to shooting his wife three times in the chest and removing her body from the home and taking it to a storage locker,” said Conrad.Escondido Police Chief Craig Carter called Perez a "fantastic officer." She graduated from the police academy in December."[She was] quickly moving into a leader on her shift and with her teams,” said Carter.The couple’s 4-year-old daughter is being watched by family members as Perez-Rodas awaits his trial.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Kayakers Breach Security System at New York's JFK Airport


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A pair of kayakers who overturned in Jamaica Bay reportedly breached a secure area at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport on Saturday, getting through the airport's security system.The two men pulled themselves from the water at the end of a pier that sticks out into the bay near one of the airport's runways, says ABC's New York affiliate WABC. That pier supports navigation equipment that assists planes with takeoff and landing.Maintenance workers spotted the two men at about 1:30 a.m. on Saturday, WABC reports. Port Authority Police Benevolent Association Spokesman Bobby Egbert said that the breach "raises serious concerns" about the security system.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Over 100 Million Could Face Severe Weather This Weekend


Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Severe storms are threatening the midwestern United States this weekend with over 100 million Americans at risk of facing severe weather.Parts of Illinois, Indiana, Missouri and Iowa are under a severe weather outlook for Saturday evening, the National Weather Service says. The storms could bring hazardous hail, strong winds and potential tornadoes.The system is also thought to threaten parts of Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania on Sunday, with areas as far north as Boston and as far south as Nashville being at risk of thunderstorms.A powerful tornado touched down near an airpark in Edgewater, Florida on Saturday. David Sharp of the National Weather Service says the storm brought winds that touched 100 to 105 mph. No injuries were reported immediately. ABC's Orlando affiliate WFTV said no injuries were reported.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

NM Authorities Say Girl, 7, Was Not Kidnapped


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(MORIARTY, N.M.) -- Authorities in New Mexico say that a girl who called authorities repeatedly on Friday was not kidnapped, and that she was acting out a scenario out of a movie she had watched.On Friday, the Torrance County Sheriff's Office said that the girl, 7, had called approximately 40 times, saying that she was being held against her will in a vehicle. Deputies located the semi-truck and questioned the driver, who they later determined was the girl's uncle.Sheriff Heath White said that the man had adopted the girl, who is believed to have learning disabilities. The girl, White said, had recently watched a film in which a character was being held hostage inside a car, a scenario that she mimicked on Friday.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Teen Arrested for Making Threats of Violence Ahead of US Open of Surfing


Purestock/Thinkstock(HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif.) -- A teenager was arrested on Saturday after he allegedly made threats of violence in advance of the U.S. Open of Surfing.The U.S. Open of Surfing is the world's largest surf event, with officials telling ABC's Los Angeles affiliate KABC-TV that they expect about 500,000 people to attend the nine-day event. Lt. Mitch O'Brien of the Huntington Beach Police Department said that a search warrant was served and the 16-year-old was placed under arrest. Last year's event was marred by looting and fighting. O'Brien warned attendees that security is going to crack down on bad behavior this year. "If you want to come down and watch surfing, we're going to welcome you. If you want to come down here and try to repeat last year, we're going to identify you as quick as we can and send you home."KABC said a shotgun and a handgun were found at the teenager's home.Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Family Forgives Montana Man Accused of Plotting a Hit on Own Mother


iStockphoto/Thinkstock(BILLINGS, Mont.) -- The family of Matthew Campbell, a Montana man who is in prison after allegedly plotting to hire a hit man to kill his mother, says they have forgiven him.“He wants to move on and put everything past him and we do too,” his sister Nikki Campbell told Nightline Prime.Campbell, of Billings, Montana, was just 19 years old when he was arrested in 2010 after being accused of hiring a hit man and plotting the murder of his mother, Dana Campbell. He pleaded guilty to using a cellphone with intent to commit murder for hire. He was sentenced to five years in federal prison, but is set to be released next month.Dana Campbell learned from an FBI agent in 2010 that she was the target for the hit man her son allegedly hired."He asked to speak to me out in private and he said, 'I hate to be the one to inform you, but we've been notified that there's been a contract put out on your life,'" Campbell said of the conversation with the FBI agent at the time. "It sounds insane."According an FBI agent, Matthew Campbell had offered to pay $5,000 upfront for killing his mother and another $5,000 after the job was done.“The fact that he was only thinking of himself and what he could get out of it made me question everything I ever knew about him,” Nikki Campbell said. “Was I next? Was my sister next?”Nikki said she thought their family had an unbreakable bond. She said they enjoyed family trips together and bickered the way brothers and sister do.“We picked on each other and pick on my little sister a lot but we knew that we had each other,” she said.But the bond frayed, she said, when Matthew started to get into trouble.“He didn’t want to live at home with my parents any more it was a tough living situation and he decided to run away basically,” Nikki Campbell said. “We didn’t know where he was and he got himself in a little bit of trouble with some cars and what not.”Matthew Campbell ended up in a halfway house in Helena, Montana, where Campbell said he had conversations with some of his fellow inmates about whom they could kill for money. According to court documents, Campbell wanted his mother killed so he could collect insurance money and a recent inheritance that she had received, as well as other household items.But one of the inmates informed the authorities about Matthew’s plan.“That other person went to the Department of Corrections and basically told on my brother and said, ‘Matthew Campbell wants to hire someone to kill his mother,’” Nikki Campbell said.That ultimately lead Matthew Campbell to meet unknowingly with an undercover FBI agent, according to court documents. Then the undercover agent approached Campbell and told him was a hit man. Nikki said Matthew had written her a letter saying he was afraid of the man and felt pressured to go through with the plot.“If he tried to back out of this that the guy would come after him just because now my brother has a name of a contract killer,” Nikki said.That’s how Matthew Campbell’s plan was exposed.The family now believes Matthew never really intended to kill his mother and are waiting for him to come home from prison.Nikki shared a recent email she received from her brother, saying, “Hey I need an address from you so I can send you this [birthday] card and how is the shoe hunting coming?”“My birthday is coming up and he is still going to be in prison when my birthday is here and he is still going to send me a card. It’s the first time I’ve gotten a card from him since he’s been gone,” she said. “It’s touching, I guess… I think we are going to flourish probably into the best relationships we’ve ever had.”Follow @ABCNewsRadio!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio