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Cruiser camera catches house explosion in Texas

A police cruiser camera caught footage of a house explosion in Texas after the driver of a car lost control and hit the house and struck a gas line on April 7.

>> Read more trending news

The newly released dash-cam footage from the Hurst Police Department captured the exact moment when the house burst into flames, sending police officers scrambling for their lives.

Officer Travis Hiser was walking toward the scene of the crash when the house exploded. The blast injured three people, one critically. Alejandro Enriquez-Castro, 35, of Hurst, the driver of the car, was arrested and charged with not having a driver’s license, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Hiser was treated at a local hospital and released, and another officer escaped with minor injuries, the Morning News reported.

A mother, father and their adult son were inside the home at the time of the crash and explosion. Officers could hear screaming in the house and breached a back door to rescue the family from the wreckage, according to the Hurst Police Department.

The woman was found severely injured and buried in rubble. The son was treated and released from the hospital, while both the mother and father are being treated for serious burn injuries, according to police.

"It happened so quick, and so fluid, and so fast," Corporal Ryan Tooker told KXAS. "It was more of just react, it was more of life-saving, than it was train on tactics or things of that nature." 

"There was definitely some divine intervention that was reaching down and slowing those vehicles down from making scene and then taking a finger and pushing me away from the house and the path that I went,” Hiser told KXAS. “Otherwise, I would have been up on the wall and it would have exploded completely into my face.”

Tortoise covered with paint, concrete discovered in Florida

A gopher tortoise covered with red spray paint and concrete was discovered near Montverde, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said Wednesday in a Facebook post.

A pair of good Samaritans spotted the tortoise, which had concrete on its shell and limbs, in the middle of County Road 455 and took it to a wildlife rehabilitation center, officials said.

"It is both illegal and very harmful to the health of a gopher tortoise to apply man-made substances, such as paint or concrete, to any part of their body or shell," the post said.

Gopher tortoises are protected because they're considered a threatened species in Florida.

Read: Lake County man dug up gopher tortoises to eat them, deputies say

Read: 65-year-old woman has had pet tortoise 56 years

"Removing paint and concrete from gopher tortoises without harming it is a challenging process that causes the animal stress," the post said. "Applying substances like paint on tortoises can inhibit their ability to absorb vitamins from the sun’s UV rays through their shells, has the potential to cause respiratory problems and can lead to harmful chemicals being absorbed into their bloodstream."

>> Read more trending news 

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call FWC at 888-404-3922 or email the agency at tip@myfwc.com.

Tipsters may remain anonymous and could be eligible for a reward.

Click here to read more information about gopher tortoises.

Read: California tortoise with cracked shell gets $4K repair

Investigators: Florida police officer met women in parks while on duty

Investigators in northeast Florida said an officer with the New Smyrna Beach Police Department was meeting women in public parks while he was on duty.

>> Read more trending news

Officer Beau Estrada resigned in January while the internal investigation into his activities was going on.

Investigators got a tip from a citizen who claimed he saw the officer having sex on the job, so they began following Estrada to different parks.

They said they discovered Estrada was meeting women at a park, which prompted the investigation. 

When investigators started following him while he was on duty, they captured photos of him meeting and kissing women. 

One day, they observed him meeting three different women at three different parks while on duty. None of them was his wife. 

One of the women told investigators she had sex with Estrada while he was on duty.

They said Estrada admitted to meeting women, but denied having sex with them while on the clock.

During another incident, investigators found Estrada neglected to take a domestic violence report on a case in which a man was seen bleeding from his left eye.

Around the same time as the call, Estrada's body camera video showed him texting two different women, investigators said. 

Estrada resigned before the investigations into the incidents were complete

A police lieutenant released a statement saying the New Smyrna Beach Police Department, “Take(s) incidents like this seriously, and Estrada's actions don't reflect the majority of great work done by others in the department every day.”

College students create app making it easier to track diabetes

When it comes to diabetes, the numbers are staggering -- 30 million Americans are estimated to be living with the disease, 1.4 million new cases are diagnosed annually in the United States and about 25 percent of those patients don’t know they have the disease.

Those numbers caught the attention of some Harvard students who came up with an easy way for people to track their blood sugar levels.

>> Read more trending news 

It’s an app called Checkmate Diabetes.

Harvard graduate student Michael Heisterkamp is part of the team developing the app and is also a diabetes patient. 

“You need to check 4-5 times a day, up to eight times a day, depending on what your doctor recommends, and that can be a bit of a grind," Heisterkamp said.

All those tests are essential for a person with diabetes because they need to make sure they’re in a safe range.

Dr. Jason Sloane, an endocrinologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, said ‘the biggest problem is, once complications hit, it’s very hard to reverse them.”

Harvard senior Emi Gonzales got the idea for the app when there was a guest speaker in a class.

“He had lost his leg and was about to lose his other leg," Gonzales said. "And I talked to some more people with diabetes and this just seemed like a situation that needed fixing.”

The app makes a game out of tracking blood sugar levels, creating competitions within a person’s network. 

“If you have a scoring system and someone is doing better than you, pushing you, you know you want to get to first right," Gonzales said.

Checkmate Diabetes also offers the ability to connect with other patients.

Soon, they’ll start adding prizes.

Sloan, who has consulted with the budding entrepreneurs, said gamification has been shown to work for health care.

He believes this approach can get people to pay attention to diabetes earlier. 

“It has the potential to change things dramatically,” Sloan said. “Convincing young people, from my experience, has been very difficult. Even from a personal perspective, one of the last things I wanted to pay attention to was my blood sugar.”

Dr. Sloan said earlier interventions can reduce serious complications like kidney failure, amputations, and heart disease later in life.

Checkmate Diabetes is free to download.

Woman chasing dog in parking lot killed by armored truck on 22nd birthday

A California woman chasing her dog in a San Diego shopping center was killed Tuesday after she was hit by an armored truck, KNSD reported. 

>> Read more trending news

Mikaela Jones was chasing her dog, who had gotten away from her, at the La Jolla Village Shopping Center when she was hit, according to the San Diego Police Department. Tuesday was Jones’ 22nd birthday, according to the San Diego County Medical Examiner.

Shortly after 5 p.m., a Garda armored truck was making a right turn when it hit Jones, dragging her a short distance, KSWB reported.

The woman's boyfriend, Hunter Chenier, said he saw the accident. "This (Garda) truck comes around the corner kind of fast and she was worried about the dog so she was waving her arms and then the truck just kind of slammed her and she went under the front and back wheels," Chenier said. "I ran up to her and was just making sure she was talking and she was talking, so that was a good sign."

Jones was taken to a hospital to be treated for major trauma, police said. She later died of her injuries, KNSD reported.

The driver of the armored truck, whose name was not released, remained at the scene and was cooperative with the investigation, KSWB reported. Alcohol was not suspected as a factor in the collision, police said.

'Dance Moms' star Abby Lee Miller diagnosed with cancer, doctors say

Former “Dance Moms” reality TV star and Pittsburgh native Abby Lee Miller has been diagnosed with cancer.

People Magazine is reporting Miller has been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma a day after undergoing emergency spinal surgery.

>> Read more trending news 

Doctor’s originally thought she had a severe infection. Miller is not out of the woods from the surgery yet and doctors said she plans to start chemotherapy and radiation soon.

Miller was recently transferred from federal prison to a reentry center in March.

She had been serving her sentence at a medium security prison in Victorville, California.

Miller was sentenced a year and a day in prison for bankruptcy fraud.

Investigators said Miller brought nearly $120,000 in Australian currency into the United States and not reporting it.

911 operator sentenced to jail, probation for hanging up on emergency calls

She was supposed to be the connection between residents and emergency services, but instead of speaking to callers to the Harris County 911 center, she hung up on them. Creshanda Williams found out this week she will be spending time in jail and on probation for not dispatching help.

Williams was found guilty of interference with emergency telephone calls, KTRK reported.

The investigation of Williams’ calls started after Jim Moten said he dialed 911 after seeing two vehicles speeding. He thought his call was dropped after 45 seconds. The call wasn’t dropped, he was hung up on. Court documents said that Williams was the person who answered Moten’s call and hung up, saying “Ain’t nobody got time for this. For real.”

>> Read more trending news 

Court documents said that Williams had an abnormally large number of what are called “short calls,” or calls that last less than 20 seconds. The documents stated that “thousands of short calls have been attributed to the defendant from October 2015 through March 2016,” KTRK reported.

Williams worked for the 911 call center for a year and a half, the Houston Chronicle reported.

The calls she received ranged from robberies to homicides in addition to speeding cars, KHOU reported. Williams allegedly told investigators that she hung up on calls because she didn’t want to talk to anyone.

Williams has been sentenced to 10 days in jail and 18 months probation, the Chronicle reported.

Her supervisor had been placed on a year of internal probation, officials said last year, the Chronicle reported.

Michigan mother puts children in suitcase, leaves them at curb with garbage 

A Michigan woman put some of her children in a suitcase and placed them next to the garbage at the road, then fled before Child Protective Services personnel arrived, WEYI reported.

>> Read more trending news

The incident took place in Flint shortly after 6 p.m. Wednesday, Flint Police said.

Police came to the residence to assist CPS officials, who were coming to take custody of the children. It was not clear whether four or five children were involved, but the youngest was 11 months old, WEYI reported.

Police said the woman stuffed at least one child on a suitcase and brought the luggage to the curb. She ran away from the scene, but police caught her, WEYI reported. She was taken to a hospital, as were all of the children.

Amazon warehouse culture like 'prison,' undercover author writes 

An undercover author said working in an Amazon fulfillment center is like "a prison," where workers were urinating in bottles because they did not have enough time to go to the bathroom. 

>> Read more trending news

James Bloodworth, as part of his book "Hired: Six Months Undercover in Low-Wage Britain," spent almost a month in 2016 working as a "picker" at a fulfillment center in Rugeley, England, where he retrieved items for delivery.

In addition to his undercover work at Amazon, Bloodworth also took jobs in social care, at a call center, at a building site and even as an Uber driver to research how people cope at their workplace. 

According to Bloodworth, Amazon fulfillment workers had to meet high productivity targets that were feasible only if they ran around the warehouse. Running around the warehouse is something Amazon does not allow for safety reasons.

"The job itself is really bad," Bloodworth told Business Insider. "I've worked in warehouses before, but this was nothing like I had experienced. You don't have proper breaks — by the time you get to the canteen, you only have 15 or 20 minutes for lunch, in a 10½-hour working day. You don't have time to eat properly to get a drink.

"You have to go through security when you leave the warehouse, and that adds five minutes. It's like an airport — belt off, watch off. The atmosphere is what I imagine a prison feels like. You felt like you were walking on eggshells."

Bloodworth's claim that workers were so busy that they had to urinate in bottles sparked widespread outrage on social media on Monday.

Bloodworth told The Sun, a news company in the UK, that "workers often didn't take a break to go to the toilet because they were too sparse to get to quickly and they feared punishment for missing productivity targets. So they peed in bottles instead."

"If you're on the top floor, you know it will take five minutes to go the toilet, and all the time you're being admonished for taking too much idle time," Bloodworth said. 

Bloodworth explained how he came across a bottle of urine while searching for items on an upper floor of the warehouse.

"One day I'm walking down the aisle, and I go to pick up an item, and there's a bottle of straw-colored water on the shelf. And at first I thought, 'Oh, what's that?'" he said. "And then it was very obvious what it was. And there was a pool of water next to it. It struck me — it was so obvious why someone would do that."

According to Business Insider, Amazon said that it doesn't time warehouse workers' toilet breaks and that it ensures they can reach the bathrooms easily.

Amazon responded in a statement to Business Insider, saying that “We don't recognize these allegations as an accurate portrayal of activities in our buildings.”

The book can be found on Amazon’s website.

'I Feel Pretty' star Amy Schumer recalls losing her confidence as 10-year-old

The guy really got into Amy Schumer’s head. Here she was full of confidence and spunk, and he had to make a deflating remark.

>> Read more trending news

“I was 10 years old, which is kind of late. That’s kind of lucky, to hang onto your confidence until you’re 10,” she said during a recent interview to discuss “I Feel Pretty,” which opens in theaters Friday. “It was a guy I was friends with. He said, ‘You have a big butt.’ I was like, ‘I do?’ It didn’t occur to me that people had different bodies. That’s a learned thing. I remember him saying that to me and me accepting it as fact.”

In “I Feel Pretty,” Schumer plays Renee Bennett, a young woman struggling with self-esteem, an empty dance card and a job going nowhere. When she’s magically transformed into a gorgeous knockout, she suddenly commands every room with confidence, finds a great boyfriend and sees her career take off.

Here’s the catch, though. Renee actually looks the same to everyone else; a conk on the head has left only her seeing herself differently. And her supposed outer beauty summons some inner ugliness.

During the interview with Schumer, she talked about relating to her character and the serious message the comedy imparts.

Q: How do you relate to Renee?

A: I’ve been there. I’m not done being there. I’ve had long periods of time, especially in college, where I didn’t understand at all where my worth came from and it seemed like it was all about being attractive. I was lucky that I realized quickly that’s not what it’s about at all. I still have those days. When I was playing her (having) really low self-esteem, that was tough, being that vulnerable. The confident stuff was really kind of fun, and good for me.

Q: One lively scene in “I Feel Pretty” involves Renee’s impromptu performance at a bikini beauty pageant, where she owns the stage and the crowd. How many takes did that involve?

A: I definitely did that dance 10 times. It’s my fault. I was supposed to just stand there and pose in a bikini and I was like, “No, this is a really empowering moment. I want a choreographer.” I think we pulled it off.

Q: What’s your message for people constantly checking their appearances to ensure they look perfect?

A: You just want to fast-forward them to their late 30s. I feel the best when I’m just hanging out with my family and friends, just laughing.

Q: Early in “I Feel Pretty,” Renee drops a coin into a fountain and wishes for beauty. If there was a magic fountain you could make a wish in, and change something about your personality or add a skill, superpower or some ability, what sort of non physical gift would you wish for?

A: Patience. I have a low threshold. I’m really efficient. I don’t even like when you call the bank and they go, “Hi, thank you for calling” and the whole run-through. I just start saying my number. To work in this business and do the jobs that I’ve been doing, you really have to be selective with your energy.

Q: Who do you look to for guidance and inspiration?

A: My sister and also people I see on the street. When I see people on the street, they say, “Keep going.” Maybe they mean I should keep walking. I’m not looking to please everyone. I wouldn’t be so outspoken about how I feel about things if I was. If I’m making a difference and these people want to encourage me to keep going, that really means a lot to me.

Q: The movie’s cast includes legendary supermodels Naomi Campbell and Lauren Hutton, who became famous when there was more distance between celebrities and the public. Talk about the difference in how things are now.

A: It’s as if you’re a politician. People want to know your feelings about everything, and it has to be the whole package. They look to burn you if you get to a certain level in the public eye. It’s like everybody wants people to get burned at the stake and taken down. It’s so out of your hands it doesn’t feel like something you can try and curate or control. That’s kind of freeing.

Q: Given how busy you are, how do you carve out time for yourself to recharge?

A: Long walks with my dog. Sex. And boxing. Boxing’s so good. You just feel so chill the rest of the day. And acupuncture. Just being physically well.

Man racks up $8,000 bill at Florida resort with fake credit card, police say

A New York man is accused of charging more than $8,000 at a Florida resort hotel with a counterfeit credit card, The Tampa Bay Times reported.

>> Read more trending news

Gavroch Muller Cadet, 27, of Brooklyn, was arrested Monday and charged with multiple counts of forgery of a credit card and a count of possession of marijuana, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said. He was released after posting $30,150 bail, the Times reported.

Cadet checked into a room at the Don CeSar resort in St. Pete Beach on Friday and gave the desk clerk a phony Connecticut driver’s license and a fake American Express card, deputies said. Cadet used the cards to buy food, drinks, clothes and movie rentals, the Times reported.

The total amount of items charged added up to $8,048.94, the Times reported.

Queen Elizabeth's last corgi dog put down

The last of Queen Elizabeth’s corgis was put to sleep after a long struggle with cancer, The Daily Mail reported. The dog, Willow, was nearly 15.

>> Read more trending news

That means that for the first time since World War II, the Queen, 91, does not have a corgi in her household.

Monty Roberts told Vanity Fair she didn’t want to have any more young dogs after 2012 because she didn’t want to “leave any behind,” Time magazine reported.

Willow also was part of the Queen’s official 90th birthday portrait in 2016, Time reported. The dog died a week before Elizabeth’s 92nd birthday

Willow is one of the Pembroke Welsh corgis that Elizabeth has owned, The New York Times reported. Her first corgi, Susan, was given to her as an 18th birthday present in 1944, the Times reported. 

According to Vanity Fair, Elizabeth, then a princess, became so enamored with Susan that she sneaked the dog with her and Prince Philip on their honeymoon in 1947.

All of the corgis Elizabeth has owned since then are descendants of Susan, the Times reported. Willow was believed to be part of the 14th generation of dogs descended from Susan.

Cincinnati councilman apologizes to family of Kyle Plush

A Cincinnati councilman apologized for comments he made to Kyle Plush’s family, and the county’s Republican Party chairman has called for his resignation.

>> Read more trending news

During Tuesday’s special meeting, Councilman Wendell Young implied Plush’s family may seek financial compensation in the 16-year-old teen’s death in a 2004 Honda Odyssey van, saying, “There’s no amount of money that’s going to make you happy.”

Plush’s family angrily left the meeting after Young’s comments.

Plush, 16, was found dead by his father on April 10, about six hours after he made the first 911 callWCPO reported. A preliminary autopsy report indicated that the teen died of asphyxia due to compression of his chest. The death has been ruled accidental.

>> Family of Kyle Plush storms out of Cincinnati special council meeting

“The choice of words I used, while not intending to cause hurt, allowed them to misinterpret what I was trying to say,” Young, a Democrat, said at Wednesday’s council meeting. “My fault entirely.”

Alex Triantafilou, chairman of the Hamilton County Republican Party, called for Young’s resignation, WCPO reported.

“I was offended and hurt for the family,” Triantafilou said. “I think our community has been so affected by this tragedy, and to have an elected leader in government make remarks that were so crass and painful — I was sad. I was saddened by the whole thing.”

Young's colleagues on the city council said the exchange was embarrassing. 

You have to be ultra-sensitive and supportive of the family, and he definitely missed the mark there," Republican Amy Murray said. "It was shocking to me." 

Democrat Tamaya Dennard also called it "shocking," while fellow Democrat Greg Landsman called it "awful." 

"I don't know how to explain it. It was a terrible, terrible thing," Landsman said. 

>> ‘Tell my mom I love her if I die’, teen pleads as van seat fatally crushes him

Tim Burke, the county's Democratic Party chairman, told WCPO that calls for Young's resignation were unjustified.

Texas high school senior takes his mom to the prom

Taking your mom to your high school prom would raise eyebrows around school, but for a Texas high school senior it was a no-brainer.

>> Read more trending news

Joe Moreno said his mother, Vanessa Moreno, missed her prom because she dropped out of high school to give birth to him. When this year’s prom was scheduled at Collegiate High School in Corpus Christi, Joe made good on a promise he made years ago, KIII reported. Mom went to the prom as Joe’s date.

"I'm trying to persuade him, 'Hey, take somebody else. Take somebody. This is your prom. Like, we can have our memories somewhere else,'” Vanessa told KIII. “And he kept on. 'No, I'm taking you.'" 

Vanessa said her son has been saying he was going to take her to the prom since he was very young, but she never thought he’d go through with it.

"I really love talking about my family,” Joe told KIII. “It's something that I'm really passionate about. I'm really passionate about who I am. I love who I am; so, when I bring my mom, everyone knows I love my mom.

“I tell them about it, and they are all really supportive and really loving of the idea.”

Joe tweeted photos from the dance, and they went viral. His tweet has been retweeted more than 31,000 times and has more than 180,000 likes.

"Twenty likes. Then 100. Then 200. It just blew up. It was crazy,” Joe said. “To 1,000! Then when I woke up the next day, 12,000! That whole day just went crazy.”

Vanessa told KIII she has received many positive responses from friends and from mothers nationwide.

"I've had so many messages (from) mothers that can relate to my story, and say that I've raised a good gentleman, and that made me feel good," she told KIII.

Joe will graduate in May and plans to go to college to become an oncologist, KIII reported.

Unauthorized field trip could cost Ohio high school teacher her job

An Ohio high school teacher is facing possible termination for taking 50 students on a college visit in March that was not approved by the school.

>> Read more trending news

The future employment of Trotwood High School teacher Khalilah Forte will be considered by the Trotwood City School Board in a special meeting Thursday. According to documents from last week’s meeting, the board plans to vote on whether or not to renew Forte’s teaching contract, effective May 24, the day after students’ last day of school. 

Community leaders and parents said Forte was helping students who don’t have the chance to experience a college visit. They also said parent and local organizations raised the money for the trip. 

The Rev. James Washington, pastor of Phillips Temple Church, said he knows Forte personally and that “she loves children, she loves the instruction of children and she loves what she does.” 

Washington also said Forte was trying to help the children. 

According to the letter, which also was posted to social media, a Trotwood principal warned Forte she could lose her job if she took students on the unsanctioned trip.

Neither school district officials nor Principal David White would comment on the situation. Forte also said she was unable to comment. 

Driver strips naked, dances in street after causing 5-car pileup, police say

A man who allegedly created a five-car crash in suburban Detroit ended with him getting out of his car, taking off his clothes and dancing in the street, police said.

>> Read more trending news

One person was injured in the pileup, which occurred Tuesday in Westland, Michigan.

Police said a pickup truck hit the other vehicles, and the man driving it got out and began dancing in the street, WDIV reported.

"He stands up and starts getting naked," Derek Waldman told WDIV. "I said, 'Wow man.'"

"He threw all his clothes off, saying, 'I'm fine, I'm fine,' to the police,” Ghazi Khalaf told WDIV. "He tried eventually running away, but the cops eventually got him, kneeled and handcuffed (him), then he got taken away."

The driver is still in custody, WDIV reported. Police did not say why the man disrobed.

Uber-style service delivers hot meals to inmates at Georgia county jail

A Georgia sheriff says that he runs the toughest jail in the area, but some residents question how tough Clayton County Sheriff Victor Hill’s jail really is.

>> Read more trending news

A company called Outside Inside Connection allows families to send inmates hot, gourmet meals to the jail. Items on the menu include jalapeno burgers, beefy nachos and Philly cheesesteaks.

"They're still human. Why do they have to eat slop," one visitor said.

But a former inmate said the service isn't always reliable.

"You pay for it (but) you don't get it. They go and tell you they're going to go get it and they never bring it back, Angel Land said.

Land said that has happened to other inmates as well and that it's a risk to use the service.

"Sometimes you get it, sometimes you don't," she said.

The meals are prepared at the jail. Inmates can receive the meals only on Fridays.

Hill did not respond to a request for a comment.

His website says the meals can be withheld for disciplinary reasons.

Southwest passengers shown wearing oxygen masks incorrectly

It’s a ritual most passengers on an airline flight either ignore or take for granted. Pre-flight demonstrations by attendants show the proper way to cover their noses and mouths with drop-down masks in the event the cabin loses pressure.

>> Read more trending news

Southwest Airlines’ attendants are particularly adept at making the presentations humorous so passengers pay attention, but the safety warnings are clear.

>> Who is Tammie Jo Shults, pilot of Southwest flight?

That came into play Tuesday during the terrifying moments when Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 had to make an emergency landing. Viral images and videos of the scene on board the plane revealed panicking passengers putting their oxygen masks on incorrectly, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Many of the photographs showed passengers wearing the drop-down masks, but only covering their mouths. The proper way to wear the masks is to cover both the nose and mouth.

Flight 1380 saw the first fatality on an American passenger airline since 2009.

According to the FAA, the masks provide “phase-sequential continuous flow” that can prevent oxygen deficiencies up to 40,000 feet, the Chronicle reported.

>> Who was Jennifer Riordan, the passenger killed on a Southwest flight?

The Southwest Airlines Boeing 373 blew an engine at about 30,000 feet, forcing an emergency landing in Philadelphia moments after the plane took off from New York.

Charlotte city councilwoman won't resign after Facebook post questioning 9/11

A Charlotte, North Carolina, city councilwoman is under fire after a Facebook post that questioned the validity of the Sept. 11, 2001, attack on the World Trade Center.

>> Read more trending news

On her personal Facebook page, LaWana Mayfield publicly shared a fake news article claiming a scientific journal determined the collapse of the Twin Towers was a controlled demolition.

Mayfield wrote on Facebook, “I am still waiting for someone to produce pieces of the alleged plane that opened the doors for US Citizens to loose (sic) all privacy rights (from the conspiracy theorist in me).”

According to The Associated Press, Mayfield told WFAE-FM that she thought the attacks were used “to not only create a way through government to spy on the American people, but also to privatize a lot of the work that is happening on the ground.”

Overnight, Mayfield edited her post. She didn't apologize but, instead, defended herself and doubled down on a conspiracy theory that has already been debunked.

After the post garnered attention on social media, and national newspapers started reporting on it, Mayfield edited her post to say she didn't want to cause controversy but didn't want to delete it. She also emphasized the rights she and others have to freedom of speech.

People around the country are calling Mayfield's post embarrassing to Charlotte, and there is now an online petition calling for her resignation.

"People lost loved ones," said Charlotte resident Brent Watkins. "Hundreds of people lost loves ones in that crash, so it's almost offensive."

A city spokesman says Mayfield is not a 9/11 truther and that she was just asking a question.

This isn’t Mayfield’s first controversial post.

Last year, the Democratic District 3 representative sparked a controversy after she sent a tweet comparing President Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler.

Mayfield later apologized for the tweet. In a statement, Mayfield does not apologize for her 9/11 comments and said she will not resign.

The online petition calling for Mayfield to resign had gained 430 signatures as of Wednesday evening.

People who were personally affected by 9/11 are calling Mayfield’s comments hurtful and offensive.

Peter Blaich, who is now a volunteer firefighter in Cornelius, was working for the New York Fire Department on 9/11 in Lower Manhattan.

“9/11 is still like it happened yesterday,” he said.

Blaich witnessed the plane hit the north tower and ran toward the chaos to save lives before being dispatched.

“I buried 43 of my closest friends,” he said. “With comments like that, you need to maybe educate yourself more. But more than that, I think the simplest thing to do is reach out to people who were actually there during the event.”

“I think it’s absolutely disgusting that someone in public office would make a comment like that,” Edmund Walker said.

Walker, who lives in Union County, lost his brother-in-law Steven, who was killed while he climbed up the Twin Towers to save lives.

Walker’s family started the Firefighter Steven Coakley Foundation, which places thousands of flags in Romare Bearden Park every September -- one for every person who died in the terrorist attack.

Walker called Mayfield’s comments incredibly offensive and thinks she should resign.

“Someone in our leadership that clearly doesn’t believe basic American history is now making decisions for a lot of Charlotteans,” Walker said.

Councilman Braxton Winston said everyone is entitled to their opinion, but there are repercussions.

Councilman Tariq Bakhari posted on Twitter: “We have a lot of critical and challenging work on our plate right now, and I don’t have a spare second to be distracted with things that don’t make sense.”

Starbucks founder Howard Schultz speaks for first time since arrest of 2 black men

Starbucks Executive Chairman Howard Schultz publicly apologized on television Wednesday morning for the arrest of two black men at one their stores.

>> Read more trending news

The arrest caused an uproar that led to the company’s decision to close its more than 8,000 U.S. stores for an afternoon of racial bias training for employees.

"I'm embarrassed, ashamed. I think what occurred is reprehensible at every level. I take it personally, and we're committed to making it right. The announcement we made yesterday to do significant training is just the beginning,” Schultz told “CBS This Morning” anchor Gayle King.

The incident happened last Thursday when a manager at a Philadelphia Starbucks called 911 on two black men who were waiting for a friend.

The manager said the men asked to use the bathroom, didn't buy anything and refused to leave.

They were arrested but later released without charges.

On “CBS This Morning,” Schultz was asked about the Starbucks manager who called police.

“I spent time yesterday with the white manager who made the call,” said Schultz.

He said though the woman is no longer with the company, he wants her to sit down with the two young men and have a conversation.

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson has already met face to face with the two men involved in the incident.

King asked Schultz about the estimated loss of revenue for the company for the planned partial closure next month.

"It will cost millions of dollars, but I’ve always viewed this not as an expense but an investment in our company,” Schultz said.

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