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Men busted for meth after accidentally pocket-dialing 911, deputies say

Two Iowa men will serve prison time after one of them accidentally pocket-dialed 911 while the other was making methamphetamine, deputies say.

According to KCRG, Cody Davis Brown was cooking meth in a building outside a Brandon home on Aug. 2, 2016, when guest Daniel David O'Hara's cellphone, which was in his pocket, somehow called 911, the Buchanan County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday. O'Hara then took the battery out of his phone after realizing the call had gone through, deputies said.

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Deputies responded, discovered Brown making the drug and arrested him, authorities said. O’Hara also was arrested and charged with possession of methamphetamine and zopiclone after deputies learned he was wanted in Wisconsin.

Brown was sentenced Tuesday to 20 years in prison after he was convicted of manufacturing and possessing meth. O'Hara was sentenced in October 2016 to five years in prison.

Read more here.

Man tries to buy girl from grandmother for $200 at Kroger, police say

A Georgia man tried to buy a 7-year-old girl from her grandmother at a Kroger in Cobb County for $200, police said.

Einodd Samimi of Marietta made the offer Monday night while following a woman and her grandchild around the store on Roswell Road, Cobb police spokeswoman Sarah O’Hara said.

Samimi made “inappropriate comments about the child,” the woman told police.

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“The grandmother stated during an interview with detectives that at one point the male asked to purchase the child for $200,” O’Hara said.

The grandmother had seen the man at a Walmart in the 200 block of Cobb Parkway, O’Hara said. At that time, he had requested to "have" her granddaughter for $100. 

“The grandmother confronted the male when he asked to purchase her granddaughter at the Kroger,” O’Hara said, “and a ‘large crowd’ of shoppers chased the male through the store and to his vehicle.”

Samimi was arrested Tuesday and is charged with enticing a child and criminal solicitation.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 770-801-3470.

Michael Bever trial: 2nd brother found guilty of murder in deaths of 5 family members

A jury reached a verdict in the trial of Oklahoma teen Michael Bever on Wednesday.

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>> On Jury reaches verdict in Bever trial

They found Bever guilty of five charges of first-degree murder and a count of assault and battery with intent to kill after more than five hours of deliberation.

Bever is accused of helping his brother, Robert Bever, kill their parents and three of their siblings in their Broken Arrow home in 2015, when he was 16. Robert Bever later pleaded guilty and received a life sentence without the possibility of parole.

The prosecution's closing arguments included the presentation of a jailhouse journal entry that said, "Once upon a time there were brothers named Robert and Michael. They hated their family and they killed them. The End."

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Prosecutors asked jury members not to let sympathy concerning Michael Bever's home life impact their deliberations. They said that even if jurors didn't believe that Michael had actually stabbed anyone, they believe jurors will find that he had helped his brother plan and carry out the killings.

According to prosecutors, no evidence showed that Michael Bever tried to stop the slayings.

>> RELATED: 5 found dead in Oklahoma home; 2 teens in police custody

They said Robert's testimony consisted of lies and that Michael had acted like a guilty person, never running or trying to call for help and even hanging up on a 911 call.

The defense agreed that the situation is overwhelming, but claimed there was not a lot of blood on Michael and said the murders were the result of his brother's descent into mental illness.

They said Michael was abused and showed that he was shocked when his brother carried out the slayings. They pointed out he was not wearing body armor like his brother was after the incident and claimed that the forensic evidence did not match the state's claims.

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Defense attorneys said that the only thing that would have been different if Michael Bever had tried to stop his brother was that he also would have been killed.

Jury deliberation began around 5 p.m. Wednesday afternoon.

Around 10 p.m., jurors reportedly asked the judge a question. The judge told them that they were to consider all six charges as acts committed "in concert with each other in principal to the crime."

They reached a verdict before 11 p.m. and found Michael Bever guilty of all six charges.

The jury will discuss sentencing Thursday.

Police say original ‘Iron Man’ costume has been stolen

The Los Angeles Police Department is investigating the theft of the original Iron Man costume worn by Robert Downey, Jr. in the Marvel movie franchise.

The Los Angeles Times reported that officials said Wednesday morning that the suit disappeared from a Pacoima, California, prop warehouse sometime between February and late April. It is valued at $325,000. 

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LAPD spokesman Christopher No said the suit was reported missing Tuesday. Warehouse employees discovered the item was missing when they “just happened to check” the storage area.

According to KCBS, investigators sad the head, chest, leg and arms of the crimson and gold suit are missing.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, there are currently no suspects and the case is still under investigation.

Man pretends not to speak English, robs mother in grocery store

Investigators in Florida believe thieves might be targeting women in local grocery stores by pretending they don’t speak English and asking for help. 

According to, a woman in St. Johns County told police she was shopping at Publix when she noticed that she kept running into the same woman in the shopping aisles. 

A few minutes later, she said, a man asked her for for help with tortillas.

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“He gets me to turn away from my cart. He’s pointing to it and acting like he doesn’t speak English,” said the victim, who asked not to be identified.

She told that when she went to pay for her groceries, her wallet was gone. Within 45 minutes, police said someone charged $4,000 to her card at a Best Buy store in Jacksonville. 

According to the police report, the suspects were captured on surveillance video approaching several women before targeting the victim.

“As I’m watching on camera, they’re basically following me through the store, but I didn’t know that because I’m focusing on getting the things I need,” she said. 

Ken Jefferson, a crime and safety expert told WJAX that shoppers, especially women, should strap their bags to their shopping carts to protect their valuables. 

“They’re looking at you, looking at what type of bag you have,” Jefferson said. “They’re looking to see if you have children with you, or (if you’re) alone.”

Deputies arrest 6 'tomb raiders' accused of stealing homes in Florida

Broward County Sheriff’s Office deputies have arrested six people who they are calling “tomb raiders,” saying they fraudulently took ownership of 44 homes in Weston, Lauderhill, Tamarac and other places in the county.

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Catherine Lichtman, Mircho Murdjeff, Gillian Solomon, Illya Tinker, Patricia Tinker and Darren Tinker face more than 600 felony charges that include grand theft, identity theft, organized scheme to defraud and unlawful filing of false documents, deputies said. 

Detectives started their investigation when a seventh person suspected in the alleged scheme, Compton Maycock-Beckles, was arrested in 2016 on grand theft and fraud charges after he was caught living in a foreclosed home in Weston, according to the arrest report.

The original owner of the home told detectives that he did not give permission to Maycock-Beckles either to live in or sell the home. 

Deputies said the six suspects operated under different company names such as Global Homebuyers, Prestige Home Buyers and Global Management Consulting Group. They used quit claim deeds and attorney authorizations to take ownership of homes, according to deputies.

Detectives said the suspects also would then sell, rent or live in the homes, or also sell the same home to more than one person and collect money from both people at the same time.

The suspects also used power of attorney to access deceased homeowners’ bank accounts and Social Security checks so it appeared as if the victims had given the six permission, according to the sheriff’s office. 

Solomon and Illya, Patricia and Darren Tinker remain at the Broward County Jail on $3 million bond each. Lichtman and Murdjeff are being held at the jail on $900,000 bond each, according to jail records. 

White man hires undercover FBI agent to hang black neighbor, burn cross on lawn

A South Carolina man has been charged with attempting to hire a hit man to kill his black neighbor, hang the man’s body from a tree and burn a cross on the man’s lawn. 

Brandon Cory Lecroy, 25, of Hodges, was indicted Tuesday on federal charges of solicitation to commit a crime of violence and use of interstate commerce facilities in commission of murder-for-hire, according to court documents. 

The case against Lecroy is laid out in an affidavit written by a Lexington County deputy, who also serves on the Joint Terrorism Task Force of the FBI’s Columbia Division. 

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The affidavit states that Lecroy reached out to a white supremacist organization in March seeking help killing his black neighbor. The FBI learned of Lecroy’s plea through a confidential informant. 

In a March 20 telephone conversation recorded by the task force, Lecroy made an arrangement with a man to kill the neighbor, identified in the affidavit only by his initials. Unbeknownst to Lecroy, the supposed hit man was an undercover FBI agent. 

In the call, Lecroy told the undercover agent that he wanted his neighbor dead and hanging from a tree, the document said. He also wanted a “flaming cross” left on the front yard.

“$500 and he’s a ghost,” Lecroy told the agent, according to the affidavit.

The agent told Lecroy that he was in Virginia, but Lecroy texted him photos of two intended targets, including the neighbor. He also gave the “hit man” the targets’ names, as well as the address of his neighbor. 

Two days later, Lecroy reaffirmed the agreement in another recorded phone call, the affidavit said. 

Read the affidavit laying out Lecroy’s alleged crimes below. 

“Lecroy also provides (the agent) with further intelligence on when to best commit the murder, as well as plans to take over the victim’s property,” the affidavit said. “Lecroy also expresses to (the agent) that he wishes to obtain an 9mm handgun with two ‘clips.’ Lecroy stated that he wants a ‘ghost gun’ that is untraceable and not stolen.

“Lecroy also advised (the agent) that he has more jobs for him in the future.”

According to the court document, Lecroy met with the undercover agent April 9 in Greenwood. During that meeting, Lecroy pointed out the neighbor’s home and talked about his future targets. 

He also gave the agent a $100 cash down payment on the neighbor’s murder, the affidavit said. 

Lecroy was arrested the following day, court records show. 

Ex-CIA officer accused of spying for China

A former CIA officer is facing charges after authorities said he worked to gather sensitive national security information for China.

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Authorities initially arrested Jerry Chun Shing Lee, 53, in January on suspicion of unlawfully retaining national defense information. He was arrested at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.

About six years earlier, in August 2012, authorities executed search warrants on hotel rooms used by Lee and his family as they relocated back to the U.S. from Hong Kong, Justice Department officials said. In the rooms, investigators said they found classified information written by hand in a pair of small books.

The notes included the true names of covert CIA employees and the locations of covert facilities, among other classified information, authorities said. A thumb drive containing information classified as Secret was also recovered, officials said.

Authorities believe the information was used by Beijing in its efforts to dismantle American spy operations and to identify informants in China, The New York Times reported.

Lee, who is a naturalized U.S. citizen, worked as a case officer for the CIA from 1994 to 2007. Authorities said he was approached by a pair of Chinese intelligence officers in April 2010 and offered money in exchange for information. Officials allege that Lee worked for the foreign officers, providing them with documents related to America’s national defense, until at least 2011.

“Lee’s alleged actions betrayed the American people and his former colleagues at the CIA,” Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Demers said Tuesday in a statement.

Authorities claim Lee “prepared documents responsive to the taskings (from the Chinese intelligence officers), made numerous unexplained cash deposits and repeatedly lied to the U.S. government during voluntary interviews when asked about travel to China and his actions overseas.”

Lee’s attorney, Edward MacMahon, denied after a court appearance in February that his client spied for China, NPR reported.

“Mr. Lee is not a Chinese spy,” MacMahon said. “He is a loyal American who loves his country.”

Teacher charged with attempted murder kept teaching while out on bond

An Illinois teacher charged with attempted murder last summer managed to work as a substitute in a middle school for several months before his past was found out. 

The Chicago Tribune reported that Andres R. Rodriguez, who also goes by Andrew Rodriguez, was serving as a substitute teacher and after-school detention proctor at Unity Junior High, a school in the Cicero School District 99. Cicero is a suburb of Chicago. 

At the time an eighth-grade language arts teacher in the Joliet School District 86, he was hired by the Cicero district last summer.

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Less than a month after Cicero hired him, Rodriguez was involved in a July 18 traffic skirmish with a driver after Rodriguez, who was a pedestrian, struck the other man’s car, the Tribune said. The argument devolved into a physical fight. 

Rodriguez, 39, of Tinley Park, shot the man seven times with a .380-caliber handgun, including firing multiple rounds after the victim was already on the ground, prosecutors said at the time of the shooting. Despite suffering gunshot wounds to the head, back, side and arm, the man survived. 

Rodriguez, whose attorneys argue he acted in self-defense, left the scene, but returned after police arrived. He had blood on him, the Tribune reported

The longtime teacher was booked on a charge of attempted murder and released the following day on bail of $500,000, the newspaper said. 

The Joliet school district, which was still technically his employer, placed Rodriguez on paid leave. Less than two weeks later, he began his new job in the Cicero district. 

Cicero schools Superintendent Rodolfo Hernandez said in a statement to CBS Chicago that his office took action immediately upon learning of Rodriguez’s pending charges. 

“District 99 performed all necessary due diligence and administered proper employment action within the legal limits of the law, which included immediately placing the employee on leave from the district,” Hernandez said. “This employee has been on leave and has not been on district grounds since February 16, 2018. Since such time, this employee has had no contact with any students, staff, or parents of District 99.”

Because of the ongoing criminal proceedings, no additional information was released by Cicero school officials. 

The Tribune reported that records show Rodriguez was initially slated to serve as a full-time fifth-grade teacher at Roosevelt Elementary School, but was moved to his more limited role as an internal substitute. He continued to be paid the full-time salary, however. 

The newspaper found no evidence that the Cicero school district notified state education officials of Rodriguez’s pending criminal case. There was also no evidence that parents, students or staff were notified.

Rodriguez was apparently receiving payment from both the Cicero and Joliet school districts simultaneously, the Tribune said. An agenda for the Joliet district’s board of school inspectors’ meeting this week includes a proposed resolution that, if approved, would authorize district lawyers to “pursue reimbursement of all compensation paid to Teacher during the 2017-2018 school year through any reasonably necessary means, including litigation.”

Mom hears brutal slaying of 15-year-old daughter through phone call

A 15-year-old Utah girl checking in with her mother after school on Monday was violently assaulted and killed while her mom listened helplessly on the phone. 

Salt Lake City police investigators are searching for Shaun French, 24, as a person of interest in the slaying of Baleigh Bagshaw. According to the department, officers were called to Bagshaw’s home just after 3 p.m. Monday for a welfare check, at which time they found her body. 

Sgt. Brandon Shearer, a Salt Lake City Police Department spokesman, said Tuesday that Bagshaw, a student at West High School, arrived home from school and called her mother to check in, which was her usual routine. That’s when her killer attacked. 

“While she was on the phone with her mother, she was brutally attacked while inside of her home,” Shearer said. “Her mother heard the attack going on and then the phone went dead.” 

Bagshaw’s mother called a neighbor to check on her daughter, who also called 911, Shearer said. When officers arrived, they found her dead. 

“I can’t even guess what the mother would be going through right now. Our hearts and thoughts are with her and the whole family through this horrible ordeal,” Shearer said

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The sergeant said the street around Bagshaw’s home remained cordoned off Tuesday as detectives and crime scene technicians continued to gather evidence. 

“It was a very violent attack, so there’s quite a bit of evidence and it’s widely spread throughout the home and throughout the area,” Shearer said. “We’re just making sure we’re taking our time and collecting all the necessary evidence to continue to investigate the case.” 

French, the person of interest, had an active warrant issued for his arrest on Tuesday for three counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor, charges that stem from a relationship he had with Bagshaw, Shearer said. Investigators confirmed Tuesday that French at one point lived at the Bagshaw home, but said he was not living there at the time of the homicide. 

Photos show that French is a white male with reddish-blonde facial hair and glasses. He is believed to be driving a 1991 Daihatsu Rocky with camouflage paint.

The vehicle has Wyoming tag number 19-13974.

He has ties to Ogden, Utah, as well as Wyoming, Colorado and Cleveland, police officials said. He may be traveling along Interstate 80 through Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana. 

French is considered armed and dangerous. Anyone who spots him should call the nearest law enforcement agency. 

Bagshaw was remembered Tuesday at the ice cream parlor where she worked as a hard worker who always had a smile on her face. 

“She was really sweet,” Gwendolyn Robinson, co-owner of Leatherby’s Family Creamery, told the Deseret News. “She worked very hard. She was a good girl.”

Robinson and her sister and business partner, Diana Ngyeun, said that Bagshaw’s mother called Monday to tell them Baleigh would not be in due to a “family emergency.” Only the following day did they learn what that emergency was. 

“I found out the news this morning and I’m devastated,” a teary Robinson said. “I expect her to be walking into work, still. It’s not computing.”

Scott Arnold, a bishop in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, described the slain teen as a “joy to be around” at youth activities.

“She was just a fun person and just had a great smile and a great attitude, and not a mean bone on her,” Arnold told the News

Bagshaw’s Facebook page was filled with photos of animals. She and her mother, Shawna, were also involved in the dog show community.

School friends of Bagshaw’s spent a portion of Tuesday with grief counselors as they tried to process their loss. 

“She was incredibly smart and talented and she always got along with people around her,” Talia Zamir told the newspaper. “She was really friendly and nice, and that’s what makes everything so heartbreaking, honestly.”

Another classmate, Nura Omer, wrote on Facebook that she remembers Bagshaw as the “shy new girl” at a former school. 

“Your smile was contagious and even if you didn’t know me, you were so nice to me,” Omer wrote. “I hope they catch whoever did this. Justice will be served. Rest easy, love.”

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