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3 arrested after 3-year-old drinks soda spiked with meth, police say

A mother and her two siblings are facing charges after a 3-year-old girl accidentally ingested methamphetamine that had been mixed into soda and poured into a water bottle while the siblings partied last month, police said Monday.

>> Read more trending news

Authorities arrested the girl’s mother, 30-year-old Lucinda Black, and her siblings, 27-year-old Ashley Black and 23-year-old Danie Black, after being called by employees at the emergency room at Mountain West Medical Center, KTVX reported.

In a probable cause statement obtained by the news station, Grantsville police said the child’s guardian, identified in court records as her grandmother, said she took the girl to the emergency room after the 3-year-old started acting strangely. She said her son and daughter, the girl’s aunt and uncle, said that the child “started acting weird after she drank from a water bottle with soda in it.”

Investigators went to the trailer park where the 3-year-old was before her grandmother took her to the hospital, where they found two women and a man identified as the Blacks.

Police said Danie Black agreed to speak with investigators after he tested positive for recent meth use.

“He stated that his sisters, Lucinda and Ashley Black, gave him meth and that the bottle (that the 3-year-old drank from) belonged to Lucinda or Ashley,” authorities said in court records. “(He said) Lucinda and Ashley would always mix him drinks with meth in them.”

The trio was taken into custody. Police said that after a urine test proved Ashley Black had meth in her system, she told investigators she gave Lucinda Black methamphetamine and that her sister showed up at their mother’s house a short while later carrying a water bottle with soda in it.

“(Ashley Black) said after a few minutes, Lucinda started freaking out as she was looking for her bottle, because she could not find it,” police said.

In court records, Detective Lydon Allred said the siblings gave conflicting stories and tried to blame the incident on each other, “but I was able to show that Ashley gave the meth to Lucinda and that Lucinda put it in the bottle, which she took to her mother's where the 3-year-old consumed the meth by accident.”

The trio was arrested on charges that included child endangerment and child abuse. Police said they could also face additional charges.

Teen girl sold drugs from bedroom window with mom’s permission, police say

A 15-year-old Haverhill high school freshman is accused of running a 24-hour drug pickup operation from her bedroom window.

>> Read more trending news

The girl was arrested, and according to court documents, police believe she was selling the drugs with her mother’s consent.

Police and neighbors said it was easy as walking up the back stairs of the multifamily home where the girl lived and making the exchange.

“(For it) to happen in your own building -- I sleep in the back with my son,” said Tanya Silva, a woman who lives on the second floor of the building, just below where the alleged drug deals were happening. “To know they were coming up the back there and drugs were being bought it is kind of disturbing.”

The 15-year-old girl is not being named because of her age. In court documents, authorities alleged that her mother, 37-year-old Heather Vittorioso, told narcotics detectives “... she knew that (her daughter) was selling weed but had no idea about anything else.” 

Neighbors said they found that hard to believe, saying it sounded like a routine stampede of foot traffic heading up to Vittorioso’s daughter’s bedroom. 

“People were going up and down the stairs (at) 2 and 3 a.m.,” Brianna Rogers said.

Investigators said they found marijuana, cocaine, fentanyl, two unlicensed guns and ammunition while executing a search warrant Friday on the Vittoriosos’ third-floor apartment. Police also reportedly seized $1,069 in cash.

Authorities said the bulk of the cash and a stash of drugs were found in a top drawer of the teen’s bedroom dresser, just 3 feet from the window.

“You’ve got to know how to raise your children,” said Elijah Silva, a friend of the teen suspect. “It starts from the base.” 

He told Boston 25 News that he believes the girl made a mistake and that he hopes she learns from it.

“There comes a fine line where you got to tell your children to stop,” he said. “You can’t let your children take control of you.”

Eighteen-year-old Cameron Dawson is also charged in the case. According to investigators, Dawson is the boyfriend of the 15-year-old girl and had been living in her bedroom.

Police said the teen girl’s dad is also in jail on unrelated assault and kidnapping charges.

Fugitives in 4-year-old’s killing caught in Georgia as grisly details released in death

A Michigan woman and her boyfriend, charged with murder in the grisly death of her 4-year-old daughter, were captured Tuesday evening in Georgia after a manhunt that involved U.S. marshals. 

Candice Renea Diaz, 24, and Brad Edward Fields, 28, both of Sumpter Township, were taken into custody near Lake Park, not far from the Georgia-Florida state line. Both are being held on fugitive warrants in the Lowndes County Jail. 

>> Related story: Mom, boyfriend sought in burning, beating death of 4-year-old

Diaz and Fields are charged with felony murder, second-degree murder, first-degree child abuse and torture in the New Year’s Day homicide of Diaz’s daughter, Gabrielle “Gabby” Barrett. The Detroit Free Press reported Tuesday that the Washtenaw County medical examiner called the girl’s death the “worst child death case” he’d seen in 27 years on the job. 

The Free Press gave some of the chilling details of the case, including the extent of Gabby’s burns, which were found on her legs, elbows and buttocks. Court documents stated that the girl was burned so badly that one of her big toes fell off, and that investigators found some of her skin in the bathtub drain. 

“Gabrielle had burns all over her body and bruising to her entire body,” a court document read, according to the newspaper

A police news release issued Monday stated that Sumpter County deputies and paramedics went to the couple’s mobile home shortly before 11 a.m. on New Year’s Day following a 911 call reporting an unresponsive child. When first responders arrived, they found family members attempting CPR on Gabby, who had obvious, severe burns on her arms and legs.

The girl was taken to St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor, where she was pronounced dead. The medical examiner ruled the girl’s death a homicide two days later. 

>> Read more trending news

Gabby’s autopsy showed multiple traumatic injuries on her body, as well as evidence of old injuries consistent with ongoing child abuse, police officials said. 

Warrants were issued for the arrest of Diaz, who had custody of Gabby, and Fields, who were nowhere to be found. U.S. marshals from the Detroit field office were called in to aid in the search for the fugitives. 

Gabby’s 1-year-old half-sister was also taken into the custody of Michigan Department of Health and Human Services workers. 

The Free Press reported that Diaz gave investigators a statement on what she said happened to her daughter the night before the girl died. 

“The mother claimed she ran Gabrielle’s bath and placed Gabrielle into the tub after she filled the tub halfway,” the court documents said. “The mother then claimed she left Gabrielle alone in the tub and went to the kitchen to make pancakes.”

Diaz said that when she returned, Gabrielle was under the surface of the water. The mother said she pulled her from the tub, at which time the girl began to vomit.

“The mother said she called Brad … to the bathroom for help,” the court documents said. “According to the mother, Gabrielle continued to vomit, and Fields attempted to provide CPR.”

Diaz told authorities that they waited more than a half-hour to call 911. Officers discovered cocaine while searching the couple’s mobile home.

Investigators also found guns on the premises, and the house was filled with animal waste, investigators previously told WDIV in Detroit.

Family, friends and members of the public celebrated the couple’s capture on social media.

“They caught them!” one woman wrote. “I wish they would’ve been caught by some other people first who would’ve tortured them and put them through all the hell they put that sweet baby through. But at least they are not just running free now.”

“I am so sorry to the whole Barrett family. Thank goodness the monsters are in custody,” another woman wrote. “I don’t know what else to say. I am just speechless. My heart hurts for all you guys. Love y’all. #JusticeForGabby.”

Gabby’s grandmother described the little girl as a “ball of joy” who always had a smile on her face. 

A GoFundMe page initially set up to help her family bury her has since been removed, but a second one has been established. The second page makes clear that donations will be used by Gabby’s father, Kyle Barrett, to lay his daughter to rest. 

Barrett spoke to WJBK about his daughter Sunday night at a candlelight vigil held in her memory. 

“She didn’t have to pass the way she did, but I hope we get justice for her really soon,” Barrett said. “I know we may not have a lot of information at all, but it just hurts.”

Barrett told the Free Press that he last saw his daughter in September, just before turning himself in on an outstanding warrant. He was released from jail two days after his daughter died. 

“I got to give her a kiss and a hug and say I loved her,” Barrett told the newspaper of that last visit. 

Texas woman killed her husband, 2 sons before killing herself at resort, police say

An entire Texas family is dead after a Galveston murder-suicide during which a mother allegedly killed herself, her husband and two young sons.

According to KTRK, the family, reportedly from Baytown, checked into the iconic San Luis Resort on Sunday evening.

Early Monday, however, guests reported hearing “pops” from their eighth-floor room at the hotel.

Hotel authorities said they dispatched police to the room, who said they found a man and two children in the bed, unresponsive, and a woman on the floor who also appeared to be shot.

Police pronounced the man, later identified as 39-year-old Mauricio Morales, and one of the boys dead at the scene.

The mother, whom a neighbor of the family identified as Flor De Maria Pineda De Canas, 37, and another child were transported to the University of Texas Medical Branch hospital, where police said they both later died.

>> Read more trending news 

Witnesses further said the two boys, ages 10 and 5, attended Victoria Walker Elementary School, and the Goose Creek ISD released the following in a statement:

“The tragic circumstances surrounding these students’ deaths are almost too much to bear. A student death can have a ripple effect on a school community and, because of this and out of concern for the students’ classmates and the campus faculty, we will have additional counseling services at the school. We are grieving for the loss of young life and its infinite possibilities and we pray for the family, friends and students most affected by this tragedy.”

While police said they are searching for a motive for the killings, they also said they are not looking for suspects.

Landry’s Inc., which owns the hotel, also offered a statement about the incident:

“Our thoughts are with the victims and their family members during this difficult time. We are still gathering information about this isolated incident, however it appears to have been a murder suicide amongst a family in their room,” said Paul Schultz, vice president of Hospitality for Landry’s Inc.“We are fully cooperating with the police department during their investigation and will assist them in any way we can.”

Florida man accused of hiding full rack of stolen ribs in his pants

A Florida man’s alleged attempt at stealing food was short-ribbed.

>> Read more Floridoh! stories 

According to TCPalm, authorities said Maeli Aguilar-Alvarez, 26, of Indiantown tried to get away with placing a few items into his pants waistband and walking out of Rines Market IGA in December. The Martin County Sheriff’s Office claimed that he might have gotten away with it, had a sergeant not spotted him revealing some of the evidence of his crime in full view.

According to an arrest affidavit, Aguilar-Alvarez “removed a full rack of ribs from his waistband.”

>> Read more trending news 

And that’s not all he's accused of stealing. The grocery list of stolen items reportedly included the following:

  • Nine pieces of fried chicken
  • Some mashed potatoes
  • Two packs of hamburger buns
  • And, of course, the one “full rack of ribs” — whether they were beef or pork has not been clarified

The price tag for this alleged theft, which sounds like a carnivorous take on the “12 Days of Christmas,” amounted to $32.49.

Authorities said Aguilar-Alvarez smelled a little like alcohol and was intoxicated at the time.

Police: Man stole stepdaughter’s puppy, sold it for meth

A North Carolina man is accused of stealing his stepdaughter’s puppy and selling the dog to buy drugs.

Christopher O’Neal Eakes, 41, of Dudley, is charged with larceny of a dog, according to WNCN in Raleigh. He was booked into the Wayne County Jail in lieu of a $2,500 unsecured bond.

>> Read more trending news

Deputies responded Jan. 1 to a report of an 8-week-old Yorkie puppy stolen from a home. When investigators probed the theft, they determined that Eakes had taken the dog from his own home.

He sold the dog for meth, the news station reported. 

Eakes was arrested on the larceny charge Monday. 

Girl, 8, dies after being shot with BB gun by younger brother

An Indiana 8-year-old died Friday after being shot in the eye with a BB gun by her 6-year-old brother, Allen County officials said. 

Deborah Kay Schwartz, of Grabill, died at a local hospital. The Allen County Coroner’s Office ruled her death a homicide, the county’s first of 2018.

>> Read more trending news

Her death remained under investigation Tuesday by the Allen County Sheriff’s Department, but authorities told WANE in Fort Wayne that the shooting appeared to be a tragic accident. Police and paramedics were called to the girl’s home around 3:30 p.m. Thursday, where they found her with the wound to the head. She was in critical condition when they arrived. 

According to her obituary, Deborah is survived by her parents, six siblings and other relatives. 

Vodka bottle worth $1.3 million found drained but intact at construction site

A vodka bottle worth $1.3 million -- stolen from a bar in Copenhagen last week -- has been recovered, dented and empty of alcohol but otherwise intact, according to multiple reports.

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Police announced on Twitter that the bottle, stolen from Cafe 33 in Copenhagen on Jan. 2, was found at a construction site north of the city just days after it was stolen.

"I don't know what happened with the vodka, but the bottle was empty," Copenhagen police spokesman Riad Tooba told AFP.

Created by Latvian car manufacturer Dartz Motorz, the Dartz and Russo-Baltique vodka bottle is made of more than 6 pounds each of gold and silver, according to The New York Times. Its cap is diamond-encrusted and shaped to look like a vintage car front. The bottle is also fitted with a leather strap from Dartz’s first Monte Carlo rally car, made in 1912, according to the Times.

The bottle was on loan to Brian Ingberg, owner of Cafe 33, when it was snatched from a locked area by an intruder who was seen in surveillance video. The man can be seen scanning shelves holding some of the 1,200 bottles Ingberg keeps in his collection, according to Denmark’s TV2, before the thief grabs the vodka bottle and runs.

Ingberg posted an image of the bottle on Facebook last week, calling it “the world’s most expensive vodka,” and asking for help identifying the thief.

Police said it was recovered at a construction site in Charlottenlund, a wealthy suburb of Copenhagen.

"I feel fantastic," Ingberg told Denmark's Ekstra Bladet. "The vodka god saved us."

Mom, boyfriend sought in burning, beating death of 4-year-old girl

A manhunt is underway for a Michigan woman and her boyfriend charged in the death of the woman’s 4-year-old daughter, who suffered injuries that included severe burns on her arms and legs.

Sumpter Township police investigators have filed multiple charges against Candice Renea Diaz, 24, and Brad Edward Fields, 28, including felony murder, second-degree murder, first-degree child abuse and torture. Fields is also charged as a habitual offender.

A police news release stated that officers and paramedics went to the couple’s mobile home on New Year’s Day following a 911 call reporting an unresponsive child. When first responders arrived, they found family members attempting CPR on the badly burned girl.

The girl, identified as Gabby Barrett by Detroit Fox affiliate WJBK, was taken to St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor, where she was pronounced dead. The Washtenaw County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the girl’s death a homicide two days later. 

A GoFundMe page initially set up to help her family bury her has since been removed, but a second one has been established. The second page makes clear that donations will be used by Gabby’s father, Kyle Barrett, to lay his daughter to rest. 

Barrett spoke to WJBK about his daughter Sunday night at a candlelight vigil held in her memory.  

“She didn’t have to pass the way she did, but I hope we get justice for her really soon,” Barrett said. “I know we may not have a lot of information at all, but it just hurts.”

Police officials said Gabby’s autopsy found multiple traumatic injuries on her body, as well as evidence of old injuries that were consistent with ongoing child abuse, according to police officials. 

Gabby’s grandmother, Deborah Barrett, described the little girl as a “ball of joy.”

“She always had a smile on her face, loved to play,” Deborah Barrett said. “She would run around the house when we had her, always with a big ol’ smile on her face.”

Investigators told WDIV in Detroit that the home where the girl lived with Diaz and Fields was full of animal waste, and that guns and drugs were found on the premises. Child Protective Services and the Michigan State Police are assisting local detectives on the case. 

Diaz and Fields are believed to be traveling in a black 2002 Chevy Cavalier with Michigan tag number DTR1854, police officials said

>> Read more trending news

WDIV reported that the girl’s Jan. 1 death was not the first time police have been called to the couple’s mobile home. Officers had to storm the home on May 20, 2016, after receiving a report of a gunman barricaded inside following a domestic assault.

Police records show that Diaz told investigators that Fields had beat her and shot her dog before shooting himself in a suicidal outburst, the news station reported. Fields fled the scene, but was later picked up on domestic violence charges. 

Mugshots released Monday by Sumpter Township police officials appear to stem from charges filed against both Fields and Diaz following that incident. WDIV reported that Diaz was booked on weapons charges at that time. 

Anyone with information about their whereabouts is asked to call the U.S. Marshals’ Fugitive Apprehension Team’s 24-hour Detroit-based hotline at 313-234-5656 or the Sumter Township Police Department at 734-461-4833, ext. 305.

What we know about Daniel McCartney, deputy slain while responding to call in Washington

Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputy Daniel Alexander McCartney was shot and killed during a foot chase late Sunday as he responded to a home invasion in the Frederickson area, about 45 miles south of Seattle.

>> Read more trending news

McCartney lived in Yelm and was the 34-year-old father of three boys. He also had years of service in the Navy, earning the Afghanistan Campaign Medal among other honors.

McCartney worked for the Hoquiam Police Department for six years and was recruited there as an entry-level officer. Hoquiam is about 115 miles southwest of Seattle, near the Washington coast.

>> Related: Deputy shot, killed while responding to burglary in Washington state

McCartney, who enlisted in the Navy on Sept. 10, 2002, was an electronics technician 2nd class (E-5).

He reported to a Navy recruit training center that month and stayed at a Great Lakes, Illinois, training center until October 2003. McCartney moved to the Center for Surface Combat Systems in San Diego later that month and was there until Feb. 20, 2004.

McCartney served on the USS Abraham Lincoln from Feb. 25, 2004, through Oct. 6, 2008.

In the Navy McCartney, who was an enlisted surface warfare specialist, received several awards. He was given the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the NATO Medal and twice was given the Good Conduct Medal and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon. 

Shooting scene in Pierce County

McCartney was shot shortly after 11:30 p.m. Sunday as he was responding to a 911 call reporting an intruder at a residence on 200th St. E. During the 911 call, dispatchers could hear screaming and a scuffle taking place, deputies said.

One suspect was found dead at the scene but the other escaped, prompting a manhunt that lasted into Monday morning.

McCartney was rushed to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tacoma where he died.

Early Monday morning officers and medical staff took part in a procession for McCartney when his body was taken from St. Joseph to the Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office.

CrossFit Yelm, where McCartney worked out, organized a fundraiser for his family, aiming to raise $10,000. 

“Today we lost a Hero, Son, Father, Husband, Veteran and Police Officer,” friend Annie Malone wrote on the fundraising page. “Daniel McCartney was an amazing human! At CrossFit Yelm you couldn’t ask for a better athlete or coach. Our hearts are breaking with all of you during this time.”

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