A mentally disabled woman charged with shoplifting a candy bar asked to be jailed because three people "had been mean to her" -- then went on to tell authorities about her time spent in unfathomably cruel servitude, along with her young daughter, at the hands of three people, authorities said Tuesday.
On several occasions, according to an FBI affidavit, the suspects injured her and ordered her to go to an emergency room for pain medication they would then take for themselves.
The 29-year-old woman was forced to do housework under the threat of harm to her and her child by her captors' pet python or pit bulls, authorities allege, and a menagerie of snakes was put in the terrified 5-year-old's face until she cried.
Authorities announced federal charges Tuesday against three people they say invited the woman and her child to live with them in their blue-collar Ashland neighborhood of older two-story houses. Beginning in early 2011, they forced the mother to cooperate with them by threats and physical abuse, authorities said.
The woman and her daughter were freed in October after police investigated an abuse allegation one of the suspects made against her, authorities said, and they are doing well.
"The victim in this case is slowly recovering," U.S. Attorney Steve Dettelbach said.
Jordie Callahan, 26, Jessica Hunt, 31, and Daniel J. "DJ" Brown, 33, were charged with forced labor. Callahan also was charged with tampering with a witness in the investigation.
The suspects had an initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Cleveland and were ordered jailed until a bond hearing on Monday.
Callahan's mother, Becky Callahan of Ashland, said in a phone interview that the allegations were "all lies." She said that the alleged victim was friends with her son and Hunt, her son's girlfriend, and that they tried to help the woman out by offering her a place to live because she didn't have a home.
Andrew Hyde, who represented Callahan on related state kidnapping charges dismissed Tuesday as the federal case was announced, called the charges ludicrous and said the woman at the center of the alleged forced-labor plot moved in and out as she pleased.
"There was never any forced labor, any forced co-habitation. She was never forced to do anything. She used this story to get out of trouble she was in" with regard to a child-abuse allegation, Hyde said.
Hyde said county social service workers placed the girl with her mother when the woman was living with the three suspects.
A federal court lawyer for Callahan declined comment. A second defense attorney, Ed Bryan, said Hunt will plead not guilty and said there are credibility issues with the mother.
There was no immediate response to phone and email messages left for the attorney representing Brown.
According to an FBI affidavit, the mother and child were denied food at times or given leftovers; on one occasion when they hadn't eaten all day, the mother was given a plate of food and ordered to feed a pet dog.
The trio looted the woman's bank account and public assistance and on several occasions injured her and ordered her to go to the emergency room for pain medication, according to the affidavit.
The woman told investigators the trio learned of her plan to try to escape and punished her by shaving her hair into a Mohawk and using a marker to write "slut," "tramp" and "whore" on her face and chest. She was forced to clean up the hair without a broom or dust pan, according to the affidavit.
The woman was forced to do house work and shop for her captors and clean up after pets, authorities said.
The trio kept the mother and daughter under surveillance with a baby monitor, according to the affidavit, and at one point, the woman was lured back with ice cream.
"They treated her with such cruelty that it is hard to comprehend," Dettelbach said. "They tried to take away her human dignity."
Police first got involved when the woman was charged with shoplifting a candy bar and asked to be jailed because the three suspects "had been mean to her," said Ashland police Lt. Joel Icenhour.
It wasn't clear whether she had staged the candy bar theft to get police help.
Police checking into her "mean" claim went to the apartment after one of the suspects said it was the woman who was abusive. Authorities said the allegation was a ruse complete with a video staged by the suspects. They said the suspects forced the woman to act as if she were mistreating her child.
Defense attorney Hyde said police told the woman they would help if she felt she had been framed with an incriminating video. According to Hyde, she bought that argument and made up the enslavement allegation.
"I think the feds just failed to fully investigate this before they jumped to some conclusions," Hyde said.
A woman in the Ashland neighborhood said Tuesday she was surprised by the allegations, saying that Callahan sometimes helped her husband with yard work and other chores and that she never saw signs someone was being held captive in the house.
Tara Williams, 51, said she occasionally saw Callahan walking down an alley with a large yellow-and-white snake draped around his neck but never saw him threaten anyone with it. She said three pit bulls also lived in the apartment, along with a pot-bellied pig that once got loose.
The white, two-story house of three apartments, including the defendants' apartment, is set back from the road with a "no trespassing" sign near the front.
Williams said she occasionally saw the presumed victim walking by quickly and sometimes underdressed for cold weather. The woman never spoke or looked at others, Williams said. Williams never saw a child, she said.
Like many in Ashland and around Ohio, Williams said she couldn't help but think of the parallels to the case in Cleveland a little more than a month ago, in which three women were freed from a house where a man allegedly imprisoned them for a decade, raping them during that time and fathering a child with one of them.
Ariel Castro has pleaded not guilty to more than 300 counts against him, which include kidnapping, rape and felonious assault.
Two stranded teenage boys were plucked off a peak at an elevation of more than 8,000 feet by a California Highway Patrol helicopter amid gusty winds.
The boys had been climbing along a steep ridge before becoming stuck on a tiny plateau in the Sierra Nevada.
Austin Deschler, 16, said he and a 17-year-old friend had climbed to the spot to take a picture Saturday without realizing there was a sheer drop on the other side.
"As we went up there we made decisions to get up that made it so we couldn't get back," Deschler told Sacramento television station KXTV-TV. "We thought we could walk across the ridge, when we got up there and saw the other side it was heartbreaking — we actually almost cried ... That's when we realized, we're in trouble," Deschler said.
Hikers spotted the pair and called 911. The helicopter arrived as night was falling, but rescuers had nowhere to land near the boys.
In a dramatic rescue captured on video (on.news10.net/1aqMN8I), a harness was lowered to the boys from the helicopter, but it proved difficult with winds gusting over 20 mph.
"We had to make several attempts to get to them," said CHP Flight Officer David White, who led the rescue mission. "We lowered the hook a couple of times but the wind would blow us out of our position and we'd have to go back around and try it again."
Nearly four hours after they were first stuck, and with frightened parents watching, the boys were able to grab the hook from the helicopter and were hoisted to safety.
White said the rescue "was the most challenging that I've ever done in my 12 years in air operations."
Deschler called the experience "terrifying," and said he learned a key lesson.
"Stay on the trail," he said, "definitely stay on the trail."
Information from: KXTV-TV.
Oklahoma executed a 36-year-old man on Tuesday for taking part in the brutal killing of a ranching couple 13 years ago.
James Lewis DeRosa was killed by lethal injection at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester, becoming the state's second inmate executed this year.
At a clemency hearing last month, DeRosa took responsibility for his role in the Oct. 2, 2000, stabbing deaths of Curtis and Gloria Plummer, for whom he had previously done some ranch work. He also apologized to their family.
Strapped to the gurney in the penitentiary's death chamber, though, he had nothing to say before the fatal mixture of drugs was pumped into his veins.
"Mr. DeRosa, would you like to make a last statement?" Warden Anita Trammell asked.
"No, ma'am," DeRosa replied.
DeRosa took three heavy breaths before his face turned ashen and he stopped breathing.
According to prosecutors, DeRosa had worked on the Plummers' ranch in the Le Flore County community of Poteau, and on the day of the killings, he and accomplice John Eric Castleberry went there under the pretense of looking for work.
DeRosa and Castleberry persuaded the couple to let them into their home and then attacked them, stabbing the couple over and over and slashing both their necks, prosecutors said. They made off with $73 and the couple's pickup truck, which was found abandoned at a nearby lake.
Castleberry, 33, testified against DeRosa as part of a deal with prosecutors in which he received a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.
At his clemency hearing before the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board last month, DeRosa spoke via a video link from prison about how he had found religion and turned his life around behind bars. He urged the board to recommend to Gov. Mary Fallin that she commute his sentence to life in prison so that he could be a positive influence on his fellow inmates. He also apologized to the victims' loved ones and owned up to what he had done.
"I can't express how truly sorry I am for the pain I've caused the Plummer family," DeRosa said. "I take full responsibility for their deaths. If not for me, they wouldn't have died that night."
The family wasn't swayed, and the board voted 3-2 to not recommend he be pulled off of death row.
After the execution, the Plummers' daughter, Janet Tolbert, said the execution wasn't about DeRosa.
"This is about Curtis and Gloria Plummer. The family of Curtis and Gloria are pleased that justice has been served," said Tolbert, who was wearing a T-shirt emblazoned with a picture of her parents' faces.
Tolbert said she wasn't surprised that DeRosa didn't express remorse in the death chamber, because she said he didn't do so in court. She said the clinical and peaceful way DeRosa died belies the horrifically violent manner in which her parents were killed.
"It was horrible," she said. "They suffered a horrendous death. They missed out on so much."
In a letter to the parole board, Tolbert wrote that she still has nightmares about finding her parents dead.
"I saw my 70- and 73-year-old parents laying in pools of blood that went through the carpet to the cement foundation, with both of their throats slashed from ear-to-ear and stab wounds all over their 70-year-old bodies," Tolbert said.
Following DeRosa's execution, his defense attorney, Tom Hird of the Federal Public Defender's Office released a statement from his mother, brother and sister expressing regret over his death.
"He accepted responsibility for Curtis and Gloria Plummer's deaths and was genuinely sorrowful," the statement said. "The man who was executed today is not the same man who killed Mr. and Mrs. Plummer."
The statement said DeRosa had grown deeply religious on death row. DeRosa told Pardon and Parole Board members he practiced Messianic Judaism, which combines elements of Christian and Jewish theologies and practices.
"He lived a life of disciplined study, contemplation and prayer, giving what little he had to those less fortunate and inspiring others to do what is right," the statement said.
DeRosa was the second Oklahoma inmate executed this year. Another inmate, 39-year-old Brian Darrell Davis, is scheduled to die next Tuesday, after Fallin rejected the parole board's recommendation to commute his sentence to life. Another inmate, Anthony Rozelle Banks, 60, is slated for execution in September.
Follow Tim Talley on Twitter at http://twitter.com/APTimTalley
Award-winning journalist and war correspondent Michael Hastings died early Tuesday in a car accident in Los Angeles, his employer and family said.
Hastings, who was 33, was described by many of his colleagues as an unfailingly bright and hard-charging reporter who wrote stories that mattered. Most recently, he wrote about politics for the news website BuzzFeed, where the top editor said colleagues were devastated by the loss.
"Michael was a great, fearless journalist with an incredible instinct for the story, and a gift for finding ways to make his readers care about anything he covered from wars to politicians," said Ben Smith, BuzzFeed's editor-in-chief.
Smith said he learned of the death from a family member.
Authorities said there was a car crash early Tuesday in the Hancock Park neighborhood of Los Angeles that killed a man, but coroner's officials could not confirm whether Hastings was the victim.
Hastings won a 2010 George Polk Award for magazine reporting for his Rolling Stone cover story "The Runaway General."
His story was credited with ending Gen. Stanley McChrystal's career after it revealed the military's candid criticisms of the Obama administration.
Hastings quoted McChrystal and his aides mocking Obama administration officials, including Vice President Joe Biden, over their war policies.
At a Pentagon ceremony for his subsequent retirement in 2010, McChrystal made light of the episode in his farewell address. The four-star general warned his comrades in arms, "I have stories on all of you, photos of many, and I know a Rolling Stone reporter."
When he died, Hastings was also a contributing editor at Rolling Stone, where Managing Editor Will Dana was quoted Tuesday saying Hastings exuded "a certain kind of electricity" that exists in great reporters whose stories burn to be told.
"I'm sad that I'll never get to publish all the great stories that he was going to write, and sad that he won't be stopping by my office for any more short visits which would stretch for two or three completely engrossing hours," Dana said.
Hastings was also an author of books about the wars. "The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America's War in Afghanistan" was published late last year and details shocking exploits of the military overseas.
In 2010, with the publication of "I Lost My Love in Baghdad," Hastings told the story of being a young war correspondent whose girlfriend dies in Iraq.
An indication of an oil filter problem prompted the crew of a Boeing 787 flying from Denver to Tokyo to divert to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport on Tuesday afternoon, a United Airlines spokeswoman said.
Flight 139 landed normally and an airline maintenance team was inspecting it, United spokeswoman Mary Ryan said in an email statement.
The plane touched down in Seattle shortly after 4 p.m., a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said.
United just put its 787s back in the air May 20 after smoldering batteries on two 787s owned by other airlines prompted authorities to ground the planes in January.
In her statement, the United spokeswoman said the crew decided to land in Seattle because of "an indication of a problem with an oil filter."
The airline was providing customers with motel rooms and planned to fly them to Tokyo on Wednesday, Ryan said.
The plane carried about 200 passengers.
Asked whether the latest 787 issue raised any concerns with United after the recent battery issue, the spokeswoman said she did not immediately have any additional information.
When it returned the 787s to service last month, Chicago-based United said it planned to use the jets on shorter domestic flights before resuming international flying June 10 with Denver-to-Tokyo service as well as temporary Houston-to-London flights. It's adding flights to Tokyo, Shanghai, and Lagos, Nigeria, in August.
Those long international flights are the main reason the 787 exists. Its medium size and fuel efficiency are a good fit for long routes.
At the Paris Air Show on Tuesday, Boeing Co. won major orders from five customers, including United, for a stretched-out version of the 787.
Boeing announced the formal launch of its 787-10 program at the air show and said it already has commitments for 102 jets from the five customers. The new 787-10 lists at $290 million, making the deal worth nearly $30 billion at full price, although customers often negotiate deep discounts.
United remains the only U.S.-based airline to fly the 787, which is steadily winning customers after being beset with problems concerning lithium-ion batteries on two Japanese carriers. The plane, like its newest rival the Airbus A350, uses lightweight materials and new engine technology to cut down on fuel consumption at a time of rapidly increasing jet fuel prices.
The two battery incidents in January included an emergency landing of one plane, and a fire on another. Federal authorities lifted the grounding order on April 19.
The incidents never caused any serious injuries. But the grounding embarrassed Boeing and disrupted schedules at the affected airlines.
The 787 uses more electricity than any other jet. And it makes more use of lithium-ion batteries than other jets to provide power for things like flight controls and a backup generator when its engines are shut down. Each 787 has two of the batteries.
Boeing never did figure out the root cause of the battery incidents. Instead, it redesigned the battery and its charger. The idea was to eliminate all of the possible causes, 787 chief engineer Mike Sinnett has said.
Defense officials say four U.S. troops were killed Tuesday at or near Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan.
Officials say the four were killed by indirect fire, likely a mortar or rocket, but they had no other details.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to provide details on the deaths.
The attack comes as U.S. and allied forces formally handed over control of the country's security to the Afghan army and police in a ceremony in Kabul. The transition to Afghan-led security means U.S. and other foreign combat troops will not be directly carrying the fight to the insurgency, but will advise and back up the Afghan forces as needed with air support and medical evacuations.
For the second time in as many months, a Muslim civil rights group is pursuing criminal charges on behalf of a taxicab driver who was subjected to an anti-Islamic rant caught on tape.
In the most recent case, an Ashburn, Va., woman unleashed a string of expletives and called 911 to report she was afraid for her life because she said her cabbie, Abdikar Aden of Alexandria, was "very Muslim."
Aden says the woman also poked him repeatedly in the back.
The Council on American Islamic Relations, which is representing Aden, wrote to the Fairfax County commonwealth's attorney on Tuesday asking him to prosecute the case as a hate crime.
The woman, identified in a police report as Jennifer Crabbe, did not return calls seeking comment.
The endangered Lakota language has lost one of its greatest supporters.
Albert White Hat, who was instrumental in teaching and preserving the American Indian language and translated the Hollywood film "Dances with Wolves" into Lakota for its actors, died last week surrounded by loved ones at a South Dakota hospital. The 74-year-old had been battling prostate cancer and other health issues, according to family and friends.
White Hat, a member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, authored several books on writing and reading Lakota, a language fluently spoken by fewer than 6,000 people. The average age of those speakers is 60, and less than 14 percent of the Lakota population in South Dakota and North Dakota — where the vast majority of Lakota speakers live — speak their native tongue.
The first native Lakota speaker to publish a Lakota textbook and glossary, White Hat was considered an activist for traditional ways of living, according to his daughter, Emily White Hat. He even created an orthography for the language, which he had taught since 1975, and was head of the Lakota Studies Department at Sinte Gleska University on the Rosebud Indian Reservation.
She said her father believed in sharing the Lakota way of life with both tribal members and non-Native Americans.
He believed "there was always an opportunity to educate," Emily White Hat said. "Even though some questions may be off the wall, he believed it was better to take the opportunity than to be misled about who we are."
One of those opportunities came with White Hat provided the translation for the Lakota dialogue in the 1990 film "Dances with Wolves."
Wilhelm Meya, executive director of the Lakota Language Consortium, a nonprofit seeking to revitalize the Lakota language, called White Hat a "warrior" for the language. Meya said he hopes White Hat's legacy lives on, and that more young people will decide to study the language and work to retain its importance.
"Anytime someone who cares so deeply about the language passes, it's a blow to the language and the revitalization efforts," Meya said.
"We are, after all, losing speakers every year," he added. "Over 100 Lakota speakers pass on (each year). Those speakers are not being replaced by young speakers. Until we can reverse that trend, the language will continue to be very much in danger."
White Hat was born on the outskirts of St. Francis, S.D., on the Rosebud reservation. He spoke only Lakota until his teens, when he started learning English in school. His grandfather, Chief Hollow Horn Bear, was a leading chief in many of the Plains Indians Wars against settlers in the 1800s, and was also involved in treaty negotiations with the U.S.
Rosebud Sioux Tribal President Cyril Scott called White Hat a great teacher, spiritual leader and friend. He noted that White Hat was known all over the powwow circuit and was awarded numerous awards in honor of his dedication to preserving the Lakota language and culture.
"He did so much research and knowledge of the Lakota language itself that those of who are young, who are learning to teach the Lakota language, he encouraged all of us," added Tina Martinez, co-chair of the Lakota Studies Department at Sinte Gleska University. "And yet his loss is all our loss. We don't have that source to go to anymore."
White Hat is survived by his wife, seven children and many grandchildren.
Follow Kristi Eaton on Twitter at http://twitter.com/kristieaton.
A California couple is facing prison time after juries convicted them of luring an acquaintance to their home and strangling her to kidnap her 2-month-old boy.
The Merced Sun-Star reports (http://bit.ly/ZZfjd6 ) that two juries deliberated the murder case against 34-year-old Maria Robles and 38-year-old Augustine Velarde.
Velarde's jury convicted him late Monday of second-degree murder in the December 2010 slaying of 26-year-old Ana DeCeja.
Robles is facing life without parole after her jury found her guilty of first-degree murder Friday.
Authorities say the couple confessed to luring DeCeja and her baby to the couple's home and then strangling the mother. They panicked and abandoned the baby after media reported the incident.
The baby was reunited with his father after the child was found on a doorstep.
A woman from a ritzy New York suburb has been indicted on charges that she grew thousands of marijuana plants in a city warehouse.
The U.S. attorney in Brooklyn says Andrea Sanderlin of Scarsdale had a sophisticated pot-raising operation in the Maspeth section of Queens.
A call to Sanderlin's attorney, Joel Winograd, was not immediately returned.
Sanderlin, mother of two daughters, pleaded not guilty in May when she was arrested on a federal complaint. She has since been held without bail.
The complaint said she drove back and forth between her big house Scarsdale and the grow house in a Mercedes. Investigators discovered nearly 3,000 marijuana plants in the warehouse.
U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch said Tuesday the 45-year-old Sanderlin used drug money to maintain her upper-middle-class lifestyle.
A portion of the McNamara Terminal at Detroit's Metropolitan Airport was evacuated Tuesday morning due to a suspicious situation on a cargo ramp, MyFoxDetroit.com reported.
Passengers and staff in the area between gates A20 and A38 have been moved to a different part of the terminal while crews investigate, the station reported.
Civil rights lawyers say they plan to ask a federal judge to declare the New York Police Department's spying programs directed at Muslims to be unconstitutional, and to order police to stop their surveillance and destroy any records in police files.
In a lawsuit being filed Tuesday, the lawyers say the spying has hindered residents from freely practicing their religion. It is the third significant legal action filed against the NYPD Muslim surveillance program since details of the spy program were revealed in a series of Associated Press reports in 2011 and 2012.
The lawsuit says Muslim religious leaders in New York have modified their sermons and other behavior to not draw additional police attention.
The NYPD did not immediately respond to a phone call and email asking for comment.
More than five years after a mysterious bicyclist pedaled up to a Times Square military recruiting station and detonated a bomb, the FBI and NYPD are offering a $65,000 reward for information on the suspect, who may be linked to two earlier attacks.
Investigators released previously unseen videos of the suspect, who rode up on a blue bike in the early morning of March 6, 2008, and ignited the bomb's fuse before fleeing. An FBI spokesman said the bomb was made with an ammunition can commonly found on the battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sources said it was more powerful than the ones used at the Boston Marathon attack earlier this year, though not packed with deadly shrapnel. No one was hurt, a fact authorities attributed to pure luck.
"While published reports have repeatedly cited the early morning time of the attack and the lack of casualties, the fact is the bomber narrowly missed killing or injuring passers-by who can be seen clearly in the vicinity, moments before the blast," said NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly. "The distance between polemics by bombing and the murdering of innocents is short, indeed."
Investigators believe the suspect and possible accomplices may be connected to two other unsolved bombings in New York, one at the British Consulate in 2005 and the other at the Mexican Consulate in 2007.
After placing the bomb and igniting the fuse, the suspect rode the bike south on Broadway before turning left on 38th Street. The bike was later recovered in a Dumpster near Madison Avenue and 38th Street. The suspect on the bicycle was last seen wearing a gray sweatshirt and pants of an unknown color. The height, weight, age, sex, and race of the suspect are unknown.
"Someone, somewhere, knows something about a bomber who's still on the run," said FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge George Venizelos. "Today we're asking for the public's assistance in finding those responsible and encouraging the public to look closely at these photos and video, which could be the key to breaking the case."
Anyone with information on any of the three bombings is asked to call FBI officials at (212) 384-1000.
The Alaska man who was mauled last weekend at a church barbecue may be charged with illegally feeding wildlife.
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game Spokesman Ken Marsh told the Anchorage Daily News the bear was "pretty much goaded" into the attack Saturday near Eklutna Lake Campground because the man fed it meat from a church barbecue.
Alaska State Troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen says the man had been drinking and went for a bike ride, taking some of the food along. He came across the bear and threw it a piece of meat. When he offered the bear another piece, it attacked.
Park rangers later found the bloodied man washing himself off at the campground, Marsh said.
"He wasn't terribly coherent," he said. "He was unsure of where the attack actually happened."
The man was treated for punctures wounds and scratches at an Anchorage hospital.
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game thinks the black bear won't threaten other people.
The Associated Press contributed to this report
A California grand jury has indicted a Florida man on charges he strangled his ex-wife and tossed her off a cruise ship in Italy.
The Orange County Register (http://bit.ly/1bP1wIl ) says 55-year-old Lonnie Kocontes, of Safety Harbor, Fla., didn't enter a plea at his arraignment Monday. He was indicted Friday on a charge of murder for financial gain.
He'll try to have the case dismissed at a June 26 hearing, arguing that local authorities lack jurisdiction to prosecute.
Kocontes and 52-year-old Micki Kanesaki were divorced but had lived together on and off in Mission Viejo. They were sharing a cabin on a 2006 cruise when she went overboard. Her body later washed ashore.
An investigation began after Lonnie Kocontes began taking money from her accounts. He was arrested earlier this year.
Information from: The Orange County Register, http://www.ocregister.com
A rare white buffalo calf was born Saturday inside Royal Gore Park, which has just seen wildfires destroy 3,218 acres and 52 commercial structures.
The calf was named Smokey and was seen by some as a positive sign, KDVR.com reported. In numerous Native American cultures white buffaloes are viewed as spiritually meaningful, the station reported.
"The mother had come through a tremendous amount of stress, a lot of heat a lot smoke," siad Mike Bandera, Royal Gorge Park general manager, told 9News.com. "The fact that she came through all of that so nicely [and] had a big healthy calf was somewhat of a miracle."
Michigan diver hopes to find descendants of the writers of a 100-year-old message in a bottle, report says
A Michigan diver who last year found an unread message in a bottle hopes to locate the authors' descendants before a historical celebration on an island near Detroit that the writers would have likely attended, The Detroit Free Press reported.
Dave Leander found the bottle buried under about six inches of dirt in the waters of the St. Clair River, the report said. The message's authors, identified in the report as Selina Pramstaller and Tillie Esper, apparently tossed the bottle into the river and it sunk straight down.
The note was penned on June 30, 1915, the report said. The note was simple and mentioned the good time the women had at Tashmoo, a favorite summer escape for residents of the city, the report said. The bottle was discovered 97 years later, almost to the day, the report said.
Another diver has done research on the genealogy of the message's authors and has made some progress. His hope is to invite these family members to an event called Tashmoo Days, which is organized by the Harsens Island St. Clair Flats Historical Society. It is about the same time Selina and Tillie would have visited the park, the report said.
A Brown University spokesman says a Virginia antiques collector has turned over a Civil War-era sword that was stolen from the Ivy League school in the 1970s.
Last week, a federal judge in Virginia ordered Williamsburg collector Donald Tharpe to surrender the Tiffany silver sword to Brown. Tharpe bought it for $35,000 in 1992 after it had passed among dealers for years.
A Brown spokesman told The Providence Journal on Monday that Tharpe has given the sword to a Virginia attorney who represented the university, and it's being shipped to Providence.
Brown officials say the sword was stolen from the Annmary Brown Memorial at the school. The sword was given to her husband, Col. Rush Hawkins, in 1863 for his service to the Union during the Civil War.
The wife of a missing photographer is "disappointed" that Connecticut authorities have scaled back their search for the father of two who disappeared after returning to a state park to retrieve a mountain bike he'd lost a day earlier.
Eric Langlois, 33, of New Milford, was reported missing by his wife Amber on June 11, a day after he fell off his bike, landing in Lake Lillinonah in Lovers Leap State Park. Langlois' wife told authorities that the father of two was able to safely reach shore after the fall, but did not return home the following day after an attempt to retrieve the bike from the water. Officials at the state's Department of Energy and Environmental Protection — which mounted an extensive search for Langlois on land, water and by air — will now make periodic sweeps of the lake and the surrounding area on foot and by boat.
"Honestly, it's heartbreaking news to hear, but I was kind of preparing myself for that," Amber Westlake Langlois told FoxNews.com on Tuesday. "I'm disappointed."
Langlois said her father has hired an independent dive team to continue searching Lake Lillinonah and the Housatonic River on Tuesday. After hearing of Langlois' story on social media sites, the team of divers first volunteered their services on Friday and conducted unsuccessful searches on Monday. While Langlois was a "pretty good swimmer," he may have suffered an asthma attack while trying to retrieve the bike amid fast-moving currents in the area, his wife said.
"It looks very peaceful, but it's extremely dangerous," she said of the 50-foot-deep waters where Langlois was last seen. "There's all kinds of weird currents and every day we've been there, the body of water looks different."
The swift water was so treacherous that large rocks were seen rolling on the lake's bed, she said.
"And we know he was sore and may have had a concussion, so he might not have been swimming as his normal, healthy self," Westlake Langlois said.
State officials, in a statement released Sunday, announced that the search for Langlois would be scaled back.
"Everyone at DEEP understands that this is an emotional and sad time for friends, family and colleagues of Eric Langlois," DEEP's Environmental Conservation Police unit said in a statement. "Our hearts go out to them."
Authorities had previously searched shoreline areas near where Langlois was last spotted. Boat search operations, however, were hampered due to potentially dangerous currents and flood conditions. A separate search was also suspended on Wednesday due to darkness following reports on Tuesday that a man was struggling in the water.
"Everything possible has been done to find Eric or recover his body, unfortunately without the success we all hoped for," the statement continued. "After carefully evaluating the situation, and conferring with State Police and other local and regional search partners, EnCon Police have determined that they will now scale back the intensity of the search for Eric Langlois."
A Facebook page has been created in connection to Langlois' appearance. As of early Tuesday, it had nearly 3,000 members.
Langlois' uncle, Peter Poulin, of Danbury, said his nephew "hit his head pretty hard'' during the accident last week.
"We don't know where he is, if he is wandering around or if he fell in the water," Poulin said, according to the Facebook page.
A candlelight vigil was held late Monday on a bridge in the 160-acre Lovers Leap State Park near where Langlois was last seen.
"Just before we left we took all the candles in the bags and threw them into the river and watched them float downstream," Nicole Taylor wrote. "Despite working tirelessly and endlessly to bring him home, I can't tell you how surreal it still is."
At least two fundraising sites have been created for Langlois' wife and two children and more than $25,000 has been raised as of early Tuesday. Amber Westlake Langlois is also expecting the couple's third child in December, according to one of the websites.
"Our hearts are breaking with each day that passes without their dad at home," organizer Eileen Straiton wrote. "As we all feel so helpless right now, we are hoping this is another way for us to reach out and help. As many of you know, Amber and Eric are self-employed together. Every single penny donated will go to the Langlois family to help them in any way they need."
Langlois' wife, meanwhile, said she will not continue searching until her husband is found. They have worked together as photographers since 2008, two years after Langlois launched RAW Photo Design. She said she started tagging along with Langlois to weddings on weekends because she never saw him during the week, adding that "it was a dream" to work together as a team.
"I have to [remain optimistic] for my kids, but I am also being realistic but hopeful," she said. "But we need him to come home, even if it's not good news. Not knowing is complete torture. We need closure."
Hutchinson police say a man lost part of his arm in an industrial accident at the Tyson Foods plant in Hutchinson.
Lt. John Moore says the man's arm was caught in a conveyor belt and he was pulled in the machine on Monday afternoon. He lost his arm from about the elbow down.
The Hutchinson News reports the man was taken by medical helicopter to Via Christi's St. Francis in Wichita.
The man's identity has not been released.