Deserts

Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, among 9 killed in a helicopter crash in California

Basketball legend Kobe Bryant and one of his daughters were among nine people killed Sunday morning when a helicopter crashed into a hillside in Calabasas, California, sources and officials said. Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Maria Onore Bryant had been expected at the Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks for a basketball game scheduled for Sunday. Gianna was expected to play in the game and Bryant was expected to coach, according to Lady Mavericks team director Evelyn Morales. The helicopter crash, about 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles, caused a brush fire, Los Angeles County Fire Department Chief Daryl Osby said. The crash killed all nine people aboard, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said. Earlier, the sheriff’s department said five people were killed in the crash. Officials have not identified the victims. Tony Altobelli told CNN his brother, Orange Coast College baseball coach John Altobelli, 56; John’s daughter Alyssa and wife Keri were killed in the crash. Altobelli was a former assistant baseball coach at the University of Houston, the school said. Alyssa and and Gianna were teammates, Tony Altobelli said. Christina…

Kobe Bryant and Daughter Killed in Helicopter Crash

Former Los Angeles Laker and five-time NBA Champion Kobe Bryant reportedly died Sunday in a fatal helicopter crash in the Los Angeles area that killed four others, according to multiple outlets including the Los Angeles Times and ESPN. TMZ has also confirmed that Kobe’s daughter, Gianna Maria, was on the helicopter and was killed in the crash. A call for a downed helicopter in Calabasas went out at 10:01 a.m. local time, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. People who were out mountain biking in the area and reported the downed helicopter. “Unfortunately there were no survivors,” Los Angeles County Fire Captain Tony Imbrenda told reporters Sunday. NBC News has not confirmed Bryant was on board. Bryant tweeted the day before the crash congratulation LeBron James for surpassing him on the NBA’s all-time scoring list Saturday night. It’s unclear why the 41-year-old basketball legend was on the helicopter and who he was with. County officials said firefighters were able to extinguish the flames and are working to preserve evidence for investigators. NBA athletes, officials and fans mourned the loss of Bryant, who was…

Trump captured on tape demanding firing of ambassador to Ukraine, attorney says

President Donald Trump was captured on tape at a 2018 dinner with Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman demanding the firing of Marie Yovanovitch, who was then the US ambassador to Ukraine, according to an attorney for Parnas. “Get rid of her!” a voice appearing to belong to Trump says on the recording, according to ABC News, which on Friday first reported its existence. “Get her out tomorrow. I don’t care. Get her out tomorrow. Take her out. OK? Do it.” CNN has not reviewed the tape. According to Parnas’ attorney, Joseph Bondy, the recording was made by Fruman and shared with Parnas “shortly after it was recorded.” An attorney for Fruman declined to comment. The recording appears to substantiate accounts of the dinner Parnas has provided in interviews, at a time when he has emerged as one of the central figures of the impeachment proceedings against the President. The conversation appears to have occurred about a year before Yovanovitch was removed from her post in April 2019. “We do believe that contents of the conversation as portrayed by ABC News are of critical importance in the impeachment trial of the President,”…

Researchers make surprising discovery in one of the universe’s oldest stars

It’s one of the oldest known stars in the universe and it’s been hiding a surprise, according to new research. The primitive star is known as J0815+4729. It’s 5,000 light-years away from us in the Lynx constellation. And when astronomers used the W. M. Keck Observatory on Maunakea in Hawaii to study it, they were able to understand its chemical composition, which reveals previously unknown secrets about the earliest times in our universe. The findings from the observation published this week in The Astrophysical Journal Letters. “The primitive composition of the star indicates that it was formed during the first hundreds of millions of years after the Big Bang, possibly from the material expelled from the first supernovae of the Milky Way,” said Jonay González Hernández, lead study author and Ramón y Cajal postdoctoral researcher at the observatory. Hydrogen and helium are the most plentiful elements in the universe. Oxygen ranks third behind those, and while we know it’s essential for life on Earth it didn’t exist when the universe began. Instead, oxygen was only created within the nuclear reactions powering massive stars that are ten times…

House impeachment managers wrap up their case with Trump’s obstruction

House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff and the impeachment managers are finishing their opening arguments Friday in their final chance to make an uninterrupted pitch to senators on the fence that they should hear from more witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. The House managers wrapped up their case for why the President abused his office and turned to the argument that Trump conducted unprecedented obstruction of the House’s impeachment investigation, which is the second article of impeachment the House passed last month: obstruction of Congress. Schiff had made an impassioned closing argument to end the House’s second day of presentations on Thursday evening, urging the removal of Trump and repeating that “right matters.” He continued that theme Friday with a personal pitch to senators in concluding the House’s abuse of power case, even playing a clip of the late Sen. John McCain — an Arizona Republican beloved by many in the Senate chamber who famously clashed with Trump — talking about the importance of Ukraine as a bulwark against Russia. Schiff showed Trump’s news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2018 in which Trump talked about the Democratic…

2 people killed in an explosion at a Houston manufacturer that shook the city and damaged homes

At least two people were killed in Friday morning’s explosion at a northwest Houston manufacturing business, police said. The blast shook much of the city, damaged buildings up to a half mile away and left some residents at least temporarily displaced. The explosion rocked Watson Grinding and Manufacturing around 4:15 a.m. CT (5:15 a.m. ET), tearing apart several structures while sending debris and shock waves much farther, pushing some nearby homes off their foundations, officials said. “This is, in essence, a disaster area right now,” Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said of the area roughly an 18-mile drive northwest of downtown. An investigation into what caused the blast is underway and may take months, Acevedo said. “We don’t have any evidence that an intentional act is involved,” but police and arson investigators and federal explosives experts will explore all angles, he said. The names of the dead haven’t been released, partly because investigators are waiting for small fires to burn themselves out before entering the blast site and confirming who was there, officials said. But there’s a “high probability” they are two men who worked…

Changes are coming to your credit score

Your credit score could soon go down — or up. FICO announced Thursday its latest version of the FICO score, a three-digit number that assesses a person’s credit risk. The new scoring model will take consumers’ debt levels into account and will more closely track personal loans. Previous scoring models took snapshots of a person’s payment history. The new model will take a historical view of payments over time and can process much more information, including account balances for the previous two years, aiming to give lenders more insight into how individuals are managing their credit, FICO said. About 80 million people will see a shift of 20 points or more, according to a statement from Dave Shellenberger, vice president of product management at FICO. Of those, about half will see scores go up, while the other half will see their scores drop. Those who have a high amount of credit card debt relative to their overall credit, or who have recently missed payments, could see a more significant drop. But people who make on-time payments and don’t carry high balances will likely see a slight increase in…

Local Hospitals on High Alert for Coronavirus

Hospitals around the U.S. are on high alert as new patients walk through the doors. Health officials from local hospitals say they’re getting alerts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention every day about the dynamic disease. Eisenhower Medical Center said it updated its electronic medical record with a new question: Have you traveled to China in the last 30 days? A new case of Coronavirus was found in Chicago. A woman in her 60’s returned from Wuhan, China last week. “I am pleased to report she is clinically doing well and is in stable condition,” Dr. Allison Arwady, Commissioner of Chicago Dept. of Public Health, said. Health officials are monitoring her contacts as well as those of the first patient in Seattle. “So they’re following these people who have been exposed or who have come from china for at least 14 days for symptoms,” Michael Conners, an infection preventionist for Eisenhower Medical Center, said. Eisenhower, along with other hospitals, are constantly learning how the new Coronavirus works. “The virus spreads through the air, not so much touch to touch,” Conners said. “So if…

Exclusive: New Year’s Day Palm Springs Hit and Run Remains Unsolved

Police are asking for help in solving a horrific crime that left a Palm Springs tourist hospitalized and his partner seeking answers. It was at Toucans night club, the night of December 31st,  Hector Beleche and his partner, Jeffrey Billinger were celebrating the last night of 2019. Little did Hector know then, it would also be nearly the last night of his life. Shortly after midnight, Hector’s partner, Jeffrey returned to the Zoso hotel where the Hollywood Hills couple was staying to take their dogs for a walk.  He left Hector at the nightclub. When Hector didn’t return to the hotel by 4:00AM,  his partner became concerned. Billinger wondered, “Did somebody abduct him? Did he get hurt?” Eventually, Billinger discovered Hector was in the emergency room at Desert Regional Hospital, clinging to life, his body mangled. Billinger recalls, “They opened the curtain. He was on a ventilator and life support. And I passed out.” I thought oh my god, this may be the last time I see him.” It was then that Bellinger learned his partner of 14-years had been struck by a speeding hit and run vehicle…

NBC Palm Springs Sits With Holocaust Survivor ahead of Remembrance Day

Henry Friedman was born in Brody, Poland in 1928. “Had a Jewish population of 10,000 and in 1944 when I was liberated there was less than 100 of us that survived,” said Holocaust survivor, Henry Friedman. His mother, father and brother escaped death by hiding upstairs in a barn. “18 months up in an attic above animals and all I could do was lay or sit up. I couldn’t speak a loud word. Finally when I was liberated all I had was skin and bones,” said Friedman. Monday is Holocaust Remembrance Day and marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. “2/3 of the Jews in Europe were murdered. Its not just to remember, but to make sure history never repeats itself,” said Mensch Foundation Founder, Steven Geiger. A ceremony will be held Monday at 1:00 p.m. Monday January 27th at Civic Center Park. “Representative of Israel and Poland will be here and mayor of cities in the Coachella Valley will be here,” said Geiger. Remembering the millions who lost their lives, and for Henry Friedman he’s not taking his life for granted. “I…

Teen trying to get the Super Bowl to be moved to Saturday has received thousands of signatures

A teen in New York doesn’t think having the Super Bowl on Sundays is practical, so he’s trying to change it. Football fans must stay up pretty late on Sunday to watch the game and it makes it hard to get up for school and work the next day, says 16-year-old Frankie Ruggeri. “Why not have a kid say, ‘How about the Super Bowl be on a Saturday?” the high school junior told CNN on Tuesday. The idea came up a week ago when the upstate New York family was talking about the playoffs over dinner. Frankie said it should be on a Saturday and he followed up by starting a petition on Change.org. He’s asking people to get behind changing next year’s Super Bowl to a Saturday and people seem to be into it. More than 10,000 people have signed the petition, as of Wednesday evening. Frankie argues that more people will watch, the NFL will get more money and more people would travel to the game if it were on a Saturday. Historically, professional football games have always been on Sundays. You can thank Congress for…

3-Year-Old Azusa Girl Hospitalized for 1 Month With ‘Common’ Form of Coronavirus

A 3-year-old girl from Azusa has been hospitalized for a month with a form of coronavirus, her mother told KTLA on Wednesday. Aliyah Cardoza was an active, typically healthy child when she suddenly became ill days before Christmas, Gloria Aguilera said of her daughter. It started with normal flu-like symptoms: “fever and a cough, and it just escalated to where her fever was not breaking,” Aguilera said. Aliyah was initially diagnosed with a case of viral flu. But her symptoms worsened and medications didn’t help, prompting the single mother of two to bring the toddler to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles on Dec. 23. Doctors told Aguilera that her daughter has the NL63 strain of the coronavirus, which is different from the one that has killed at least 17 people and sickened hundreds in China. “They said it is common,” Aguilera said. “It’s … really relieving that she doesn’t have that strain.” Nevertheless, the mother worries about her little girl, who has been at the hospital for a month and remains intubated with breathing and chest tubes. She said the toddler’s lung collapsed, and she had…

Democrats accuse Trump of improperly hiding classified testimony from Pence aide

There’s a new fight about evidence brewing on the sidelines of President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial. Shortly before impeachment proceedings wrapped up Wednesday, Chief Justice John Roberts disclosed that the House managers submitted a “one-page classified document” that senators could review in a classified setting, but not release to the public. The chief justice was referring to testimony from Jennifer Williams, an aide to Vice President Mike Pence who gave House investigators new details about Pence’s contacts with Ukrainians. Democrats say there’s more to learn from her testimony, but it isn’t public yet. She gave a private deposition and later testified in public during the House inquiry. House Democrats announced in December that Williams later provided even more testimony about one of Pence’s phone calls with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. But they said the new information couldn’t be revealed because Pence’s office wouldn’t declassify the material. “I’ve read that testimony,” Democratic House manager Zoe Lofgren said Wednesday on the Senate floor. “I’ll just say that a cover-up is not a proper reason to classify a document.” Lofgren and other Democrats have accused Pence’s office of keeping the information classified because…

Trump expected to sign US-Mexico-Canada trade deal next week

President Donald Trump is expected to sign the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement next Wednesday, according to a White House official and an administration official. Senators from both parties came together last week to pass one of Trump’s foremost legislative priorities — the revised North American Free Trade Agreement — just days before his historic impeachment trial formally began.. Among other changes from the Clinton-era NAFTA, the USMCA includes new provisions for digital commerce, more stringent rules of origin for auto parts and new minimum wage requirements for certain autoworkers. Reuters was the first to report the expected signing from Trump The deal was signed by the three countries’ leaders in November 2018, but the text was later changed after months of closed-door negotiations between the Trump administration and House Democrats. The new version enshrined additional labor protections and got rid of controversial patent protections for biologic drugs. The House of Representatives passed the deal on December 19, 2019, one day after the chamber took the historic vote to impeach the President, marking a legislative victory for the Trump administration despite bitter division. And the Senate passed the bill last week with a vote of…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!