Prius car chase ends in terrifying crash

Published: Friday, September 27, 2013 @ 8:35 AM
Updated: Friday, September 27, 2013 @ 8:35 AM

Dash cam video reveals new details in a Central Florida road crash caused by a driver who fled from officers during a traffic stop Wednesday morning, officials said.

Authorities said the driver, James Maddux, was fleeing officers in his Toyota Prius when he drove across the median and over a signpost before crashing into another car that was driving in the other direction on Orange Blossom Trail near Orlando.

Florida Highway Patrol said Maddux had given the trooper a bogus identification during the traffic stop. They said the trooper suspected a possible DUI situation and asked Maddux to get out of the car, but the man drove off and crashed before the trooper could get back to his vehicle.

"He stopped the vehicle, the driver stopped right in the middle of the road," said FHP's Sgt. Kim Montes. "(The) trooper obtained his ID (and) learned that it was a fake ID card. The trooper went up to the car to initiate a DUI investigation, and that's when the driver took off in the Prius, southbound on OBT (Orange Blossom Trail)."

Investigators said Maddux ran a red light and was struck by the other car, causing his vehicle to burst into flames. The suspect was hospitalized in critical condition, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Maddux can be seen weaving through traffic, blowing through a red light and T-boning another vehicle from the dash cam footage.

The Prius Maddux drove blew past another trooper backwards before it finally stopped.

"Yeah, it was on fire for about two minutes before the ambulance got here. It looked very severe, I'd say from 1 to 10 it's a 20," said witness Calvin Perez.

A passenger in the vehicle, Zachary Poirrier, 18, was hospitalized in serious condition, authorities said.

Investigators said the driver and the passenger of the other car were also hospitalized; one in serious condition and the other with minor injuries, FHP said.

Some of the victims had to be cut out of their cars.

Maddux is a registered sex offender and has had a similar crash in the past.

Authorities said the scene was similar to when a dash cam caught Maddux fleeing another trooper and crashing into a retention pond, nearly killing a 15-year-old passenger.

That passenger ended up being the victim in a sex abuse case that landed Maddux on the Florida Department of Law Enforcement's sex offender list.

Tennessee mother heartbroken after finding 6-month-old son’s casket floating in water

Published: Monday, May 29, 2017 @ 11:55 PM

A family in Tennesse had to bury a 6-month-old boy, (Ashton Mackey, pictured) again after they said his casket was floating in water above his burial plot.
Alicia Mackey

A Memphis family was left in complete disbelief when they visited the grave of their loved one, a 6-month-old who was buried May 20. 

The family of Ashton Mackey wanted to spend Memorial Day remembering the child whose life was abruptly ended after becoming extremely ill.

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When they arrived at New Park Cemetery Monday, what the family found was something a parent never wants to see after laying their child to rest. 

Ashton's mother, Alicia Mackey, said she found her son's casket floating in water, out of the ground. 

“I get (to the cemetery) and (the casket is) floating on top of what he’s supposed to be buried in. I couldn't believe it," she said. 

Related: PHOTOS: Mom heartbroken after finding 6-month-old son's casket floating in water 

Mackey said she has no idea how or why the casket ended up above ground. She tried to get answers from the cemetery, but a sign on the front door said they would be closed in observance of the holiday.

 “I'm not going to be able to sleep. I already have nightmares. I don't sleep. This is sad. I need to see him back like he was, up under there,” Mackey said.  

Nine days ago, the family said their goodbyes when they buried Ashton.

On Monday, the family ended up burying him again, taking dry dirt from a nearby field to cover the casket.

“I do not want to see this happen to no one else. Not even my enemy,” Mackey said. 

The cemetery also could not be reached as it was closed for Memorial Day.

Shelby Country Health Department, which is in control of the cemeteries in the area, could not be reached because of the Memorial Day holiday.

Denver sportswriter fired after tweet about Indy 500 winner

Published: Monday, May 29, 2017 @ 3:14 AM
Updated: Monday, May 29, 2017 @ 5:23 PM

Takuma Sato of Japan celebrates after winning the 101st Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on  Sunday. He  became the first Japanese driver to win the race at the iconic Brickyard.
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

A Denver sportswriter has been fired from his job for an insensitive tweet about the winner of the Indianapolis 500 being from Japan.

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Terry Frei of the Denver Post tweeted that he was “very uncomfortable with a Japanese driver winning the Indianapolis 500 during Memorial Day weekend,” the New York Post reported.

Frei’s tweet came shortly after former Formula One driver Takuma Sato captured Sunday’s race at the Brickyard, becoming the first Japanese winner in the race’s history. 

 The tweet caused an immediate backlash on social media, with some Twitter users criticizing his post as insensitive.

Frei later deleted his tweet and apologized.

“I fouled up. I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said what I said when I said it. I should have known better and I regret it,” he tweeted.

The apology may have came too late, however. The Denver Post issued a statement on Frei Monday saying that he had been fired:

We apologize for the disrespectful and unacceptable tweet that was sent by one of our reporters. Terry Frei is no longer an employee of The Denver Post. It’s our policy not to comment further on personnel issues.

The tweet doesn’t represent what we believe nor what we stand for. We hope you will accept our profound apologies.

Congress already squeezed by its 2017 calendar

Published: Monday, May 29, 2017 @ 9:02 PM
Updated: Monday, May 29, 2017 @ 9:02 PM

While the calendar says we are days away from the month of June, Republicans in Congress are already feeling pressure over their legislative agenda for 2017, as time is already growing short for GOP efforts to overhaul the Obama health law, which also puts a time squeeze on other major initiatives on Capitol Hill.

There are no votes scheduled this week in the Congress; the Senate returns to legislative session on June 5, while the House is back in Washington, D.C. on June 6.

Here’s some of what faces Republicans in the Congress:

1. Everything keys off of the GOP health care bill. Because the GOP is trying to use the expedited “budget reconciliation” process, which allows them to avoid a filibuster in the Senate, nothing involved with next year’s budget – or with tax reform – can move until health care is settled. GOP Senators have been meeting regularly in recent weeks to decide what to do on health care – but they don’t have a deal as yet, and no one is quiet sure when they might have a vote. “We’re a long ways from that,” said Sen. Mike Rounds (R-ND) told reporters this week. “Damned if I know,” Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) said about when a deal might be reached. Writing their own bill takes time.

2. Why do you keep saying there isn’t much time? Two things are at work here – the Congressional calendar, and the limits on the “budget reconciliation” process. The authorization to use reconciliation for a health care bill expires on September 30 – the end of the 2017 Fiscal Year. So, the GOP has four months to figure out a bill, and get it approved and sent to the President. But, lawmakers won’t be here much of that four month period. In fact, between now and the end of the fiscal year – there are 43 scheduled legislative work days in the House, which mirrors the Senate schedule. That’s 43 legislative days in session spread out over 18 weeks. You could always get extra time by scrapping the August recess, or working some weekends.

3. The budget is way behind schedule – more than usual. This past week, President Trump delivered his 2018 budget to the Congress. Normally that is done in February. The House and Senate only started having hearings on spending bills this past week. Lawmakers were supposed to approve the blueprint known as the “budget resolution” by April 15. As of now, that plan doesn’t even exist. Congress is supposed to pass all spending bills by October 1, the start of the new fiscal year, but that has not happened since 1996. With the schedule still showing five weeks off during the summer, there is no way that lawmakers are going to meet that spending deadline, which will pave the way for stop gap budgets, and then most likely a year-end omnibus spending deal. Sound familiar?

4. Tax reform still hasn’t taken shape. Despite the Sunday tweet by President Trump about his tax plans, it was obvious in budget hearings last week involving Secretary of Treasury Stephen Mnuchin that a Trump tax plan is not ready to be rolled out any time soon. Remember – all we have right now is a one page document with some bullet points. Even if the White House put out the details this next week, Republicans couldn’t take it up under budget reconciliation rules until they get finished with health care legislation. And, as stated above, the GOP does not seem to be near a deal. Senate Republicans probably cannot let June go by without some kind of agreement on health care.

5. You can’t pass bills when you aren’t in DC. Whenever I point out how the Congress is going to be home for an extended break, I always hear from people who say, “If they’re not in DC, they can’t screw things up.” Yes, that’s true. On the other hand, it’s also true that when they aren’t working on Capitol Hill, they can’t pass any bills to fix things, either. And for Republicans right now, if you aren’t at work on the floors of the House and Senate, you aren’t passing any of President Trump’s agenda. Those Republican lawmakers having town hall meetings this week will get a lot of attention.

It’s not even the end of May. But time is already running short for Republicans in 2017.


Navy SEAL falls to death in Hudson River after parachute failure

Published: Monday, May 29, 2017 @ 5:51 PM

In this Sunday, May 28, 2017 photo, the U.S. Coast Guard rescues a U.S. Navy SEAL who fell into the Hudson River after his parachute failed to open during a Fleet Week demonstration over the river in Jersey City, N.J. The Navy said the parachutist was pronounced dead at Jersey City Medical Center. 
Joe Shine/AP


An investigation is underway into the tragic death of a Navy SEAL in a parachuting accident Sunday during a demonstration for Fleet Week in Jersey City, New Jersey, across the Hudson River from Manhattan.

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The SEAL, part of the Navy’s elite skydiving team, the Leap Frogs, plunged to his death in the river when his chute failed to open, according to a Navy spokesperson.

The SEAL was immediately rescued from the water, but later pronounced dead at Jersey City Medical Center, the Navy said in a statement.

The parachutist was not identified pending notification of his family.

“Our hearts and prayers go out to his family, and I ask for all your prayers for the Navy SEAL community who lost a true patriot today,” Navy Rear Adm. Jack Scorby said, according to The Associated Press

The Leap Frogs have numerous performances scheduled throughout the rest of the year, according to their website.