MISSING GIRL-ONLINE CHAT
Florida teen safe after leaving home with man she met online
NORTH MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — A 14-year-old girl who was taken across state lines has been found safe days after leaving her home in Florida with a man she met playing an online video game. North Miami Beach Police Chief Richard Rand says a more than 10 years older than the girl picked her up on Saturday outside her home. She called her mother hours later saying she was cold and hungry, and authorities were able to ping her cellphone in North Carolina. The chief says the FBI is investigating and authorities are seeking relevant information from the maker of the “Free Fire Max” game.
Fire at Pilot Mountain State Park burns hundreds of acres
PILOT MOUNTAIN, N.C. (AP) — Fire crews in North Carolina are working to control a fire in Pilot Mountain State Park that has already burned hundreds of acres. WXII-TV reports that the North Carolina Forestry Service said the fire had burned over 300 acres as of Sunday evening. The North Carolina State Parks and Recreation Department has said the park will be closed all week. In a Facebook post Sunday evening, Pilot Mountain Mayor Evan Cockerham said the situation is being closely monitored and the dry conditions have led to a ban on outdoor burning in Surry County and the surrounding counties. The fire was first reported Saturday evening in the area of the Three Bear Gully Trail.
Researchers try producing potato resistant to climate change
BANGOR, Maine (AP) — University of Maine researchers are trying to produce potatoes that can better withstand warming temperatures as the climate changes. Gregory Porter is a professor of crop ecology and management. He says warming temperatures and an extended growing season can lead to quality problems and disease for the state’s potato crop. Maine farmers are coming off of a banner year thanks in part to the success of the Caribou russet, which was developed by UMaine researchers. Around the world, research aimed at mitigating crop damage is underway. A recent NASA study suggested climate change may affect the production of corn and wheat, with corn yields projected to decline while wheat could see potential growth.
Lee Enterprises tries to ward off hostile takeover by Alden
DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — The Lee Enterprises newspaper chain has adopted a “poison-pill” plan to protect itself from a hostile takeover while it considers an unsolicited offer from hedge fund Alden Global Capital to buy Lee for $24 a share. The plan would take effect if Alden gains control of more than 10% of Lee’s stock in the next year. The Davenport, Iowa-based company said the plan would allow its other shareholders to buy shares at a 50% discount at that point or possibly get free shares for every share they already own. Alden said last week that it already owed more than 6% of Lee’s stock. The plan Lee adopted Wednesday would make it more expensive for Alden to acquire a controlling stake.
USE OF FORCE DATABASE
Statewide database on police use of force won’t be public
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Incidents in which police officers kill or injure someone in North Carolina are going to be recorded statewide for the first time in a database. But the information will not be made available to the public. WRAL reported Sunday that the North Carolina General Assembly authorized the database earlier this year as part of legislation for policing reform. The database will be for law enforcement agencies to use in an effort to weed out problem officers. Police reform advocates have been pushing for the database to be made public for reasons of transparency and accountability. But lawmakers behind the law say it was only designed to provide information to law enforcement agencies.
USGS reports 7th minor earthquake in days near Winston-Salem
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — The U.S. Geological Survey has reported another minor earthquake that took place near Winston-Salem. The Winston-Salem Journal reports that Saturday’s quake was the seventh seismic event to occur in Forsyth and Surry counties in the past six days. The National Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colorado, reported that no injuries or structural damage has resulted from any of the seven earthquakes. Saturday’s 1.9 magnitude occurred shortly before 8 a.m. about 3.1 miles southwest of Winston-Salem. USGS said that the other minor earthquakes occurred last Wednesday and last Sunday near Winston-Salem and near Mount Airy.
Panel OKs bid to demolish Wright Brothers’ 1st bike shop
DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — The Dayton Board of Zoning Appeals has approved the city’s request to demolish a 129-year-old historic building that once was the site of the Wright brothers’ first bike shop. The city wants to tear down the site because the building has deteriorated to a point where it can no longer be maintained and redeveloped. Public safety concerns have also been raised by some who fear the building could collapse. But the Dayton Landmarks Commission rejected the demolition request in September. The panel instead recommended that the city re-advertise the property and encourage its renovation in a way that preserves the historic facade.
MALL SHOOTING-NORTH CAROLINA
Police: Man shot at NC mall remains in critical condition
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina say that a man remains in critical condition following a shooting at a shopping mall that was packed with shoppers. Durham police said Saturday that investigators continue to investigate Friday’s shooting at The Streets at Southpoint. A 10-year-old child and another man were also shot but sustained non-life-threatening injuries. Police said the shooting occurred during an apparent fight between two groups. A bystander described “mass hysteria” on one of the busiest shopping days of the year as shoppers ducked into stores for cover or ran for the exits. Police said that no charges have been filed.
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