live video


Man gets 20 years for possession of child porn after police get national tip 

Published: Wednesday, June 21, 2017 @ 1:11 PM

Florida resident Michael Celentano Jr., who pleaded no contest  to charges of possession and transmission of child pornography, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Collier County Sheriff’s Office
Florida resident Michael Celentano Jr., who pleaded no contest  to charges of possession and transmission of child pornography, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.(Collier County Sheriff’s Office)

A 48-year-old Florida man was sentenced to 20 years in prison after authorities said they found over a 100 images of children engaged in sex acts on his computer.

>> Read more trending news

Michael Celentano Jr., of Golden Gate, pleaded no contest to the charges, the Naples Daily News reported.

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children tipped off Collier County Sheriff’s investigators to the crimes after it discovered pornographic images of children uploaded from the website Tumblr. 

>> Related: Hotel bar ‘furious’ after man steals its severed human toe

Sheriff’s investigators then connected Celentano to the images by the computer’s unique IP address. Celentano was later discovered to have child pornography on two computers inside his home, as well as on DVDs, the Naples Daily News reported.

He was sentenced on Monday.

Read more here.   

Trending - Most Read Stories

Teen girls abducted: Arrest made in 19-year-old cold case

Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 6:40 PM

Warren Phllip Welch (deceased), Ronnie Busick and David Pennington (deceased), are suspected in the 1999 disappearance of two Oklahoma girls. (Kansas Department of Corrections)
Warren Phllip Welch (deceased), Ronnie Busick and David Pennington (deceased), are suspected in the 1999 disappearance of two Oklahoma girls. (Kansas Department of Corrections)

Investigators made a break in the 1999 disappearance of two Welch, Oklahoma, girls.

Officials charged Ronnie Busick in connection with their disappearance, according to KOKI

>> Read more trending news

Ashley Freeman and Lauria Bible were 16 years old in 1999, when they planned a sleepover to celebrate Freeman's birthday. 

The day after the sleepover, firefighters found Freeman's parents, Danny and Kathy Freeman, shot to death in their burned-out home. The girls, however, had disappeared. 

For years, investigators searched for answers, interviewed several potential suspects and pleaded for information surrounding the girls' disappearance. 

KOKI reported in 2017 that "extremely valuable" information was turned over by Craig County Sheriff Heath Winfrey. 

Officials said they charged Busick Sunday in connection with the case. He faces four charges of first-degree murder, two counts of kidnapping and a final count of arson.

Busick is currently in custody in Newston, Kansas, according to investigators.

At least two other people were involved in the case, they said. Those two, identified as Warren Phillip Welch and David Pennington, have since died. 

Members of the victim’s families learned Lauria and Ashley were likely kept alive some time after their disappearance, but they have since died. Their bodies have not been recovered.

An affidavit claimed Welch kept photographs in a leather briefcase that showed the girls bound and gagged at his Picher home during their last days. According to the affidavit, multiple people said they had seen the pictures, but the suspects reportedly threatened them.

The affidavit claimed the girls were tied up, drugged and raped before they were killed. It said the girls were strangled and their bodies were dumped into a pit, which may have been a mine shaft near Picher.

Multiple people told investigators that both Welch and Pennington dealt methamphetamine, according to the affidavit. One person reportedly told investigators that Pennington had said the girls had entered a room where Freeman’s parents were buying drugs on the night of the crime.

Another witness reportedly said that a conversation between Welch, Pennington and Busick had implied that the Freeman parents had been murdered over a debt. That witness said the suspects had also hinted that they had taken the two girls and eventually killed them, according to the affidavit.

The affidavit said an insurance card found near the scene connected to a car that investigators believed to be connected to a vehicle in Welch's possession helped them in the case.

It said that the suspects had threatened the lives of people who may have had information about the crimes.

Investigators said they still need people to come forward about where the girls' bodies may be. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation at 1-800-522-8017 or via email at tips@osbi.ok.gov.

Officials said a private reward of $50,000 still stands for information related to the location of the girls.

Trending - Most Read Stories

Man with DUI history charged after running over 21-month-old son

Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 6:11 PM

Richard Louis Hamilton
Maricopa County Sheriff's Office
Richard Louis Hamilton(Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)

An Arizona man who accidentally ran over his toddler son last week faces a charge of negligent homicide in the boy’s death, and prison records show that it isn’t the first time he’s been charged with killing or injuring someone in a drunken driving collision.

Richard Louis Hamilton, 49, of Phoenix, was moving his truck Thursday evening in the yard of his family’s home when he felt a bump under the tire, according to the Arizona Republic. He stopped the truck and discovered that he had struck his son, Samuel. 

Samuel was rushed to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead a couple of hours later, the Republic reported

Hamilton was granted $50,000 bail on the felony charge at an initial court appearance on Friday, but is being held in the Maricopa County Jail on a probation violation. The violation stems from a conviction in a January 2007 hit-and-run crash in which a 5-year-old girl was seriously injured. 

He was released from prison in November 2013 after serving more than six years in that case, according to Arizona Department of Corrections records.

Hamilton’s wife, identified on a GoFundMe page set up for the family as Chelsea Hamilton, pleaded for his release Friday as he stood before a judge and appeared to weep. 

“I wish that he would be released so we could mourn the death of our son together,” Chelsea Hamilton said. “This was a total accident.”

The family’s fundraising page, which sought help with paying for Samuel’s funeral, described the toddler as a “beautiful, vibrant, happy” child. 

“In his short little life, he impacted the lives of all that knew him and loved him,” the page read

Richard Hamilton told officers who responded to the family’s home Thursday evening that he did not realize his son, who was playing in the yard before the accident, had gotten so close to the vehicle he was moving. 

A neighbor told police he had seen Hamilton and his son playing together in the yard before the collision. A probable cause statement obtained by KTVK in Phoenix stated that the neighbor also saw Hamilton behind the wheel of the truck when Samuel was struck.

Hamilton admitted to investigators that he had been driving the truck, but denied that he had been drinking prior to the incident. He claimed he had not had a drink since the night before, when he drank a half pint of vodka, the court document said.

>> Read more trending news

He refused both a field sobriety test and a blood test, but officers obtained his blood after securing a search warrant. 

“The defendant had bloodshot, watery eyes and a moderate odor of alcohol coming from him,” the probable cause statement said

Investigators also found a broken beer bottle a few feet away from the back of the truck, in the path that the truck would have taken when Hamilton moved it. 

“There was a liquid on the driver side rear tire that is believed to be some of the contents of the beer bottle,” the statement said. “Glass fragments from the beer bottle were located in the grass near the bottle, and there were also fragments located in a trash can approximately 30 feet from the area of the collision.

“It appeared someone tried to clean up the broken beer bottle fragments afterward.”

See Hamilton’s first court appearance below.

Hamilton was processed for driving under the influence and booked into the Maricopa County Jail, where he remained Monday for the alleged probation violation in the 2006 case. 

According to a Republic story written at the time of his sentencing in the previous case, Hamilton’s 5-year-old victim was crossing a street with her mother and two siblings when Hamilton struck her with his minivan. He fled the scene, but turned himself in to police later that day. 

Hamilton also served a four-month prison sentence in 2001 following his first conviction for aggravated DUI, prison records show. Details of that incident were not immediately available. 

Trending - Most Read Stories

Toronto van attack: 9 dead, injuries reported

Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 5:21 PM

Emergency services close Yonge Street in Toronto after a van mounted a sidewalk crashing into a crowd  of pedestrians on Monday, April 23, 2018. The van apparently jumped a curb Monday in the intersection in Toronto and struck the pedestrians and fled the scene before it was found and the driver was taken into custody, Canadian police said. (Aaron Vincent Elkaim/The Canadian Press via AP)
Aaron Vincent Elkaim/AP
Emergency services close Yonge Street in Toronto after a van mounted a sidewalk crashing into a crowd of pedestrians on Monday, April 23, 2018. The van apparently jumped a curb Monday in the intersection in Toronto and struck the pedestrians and fled the scene before it was found and the driver was taken into custody, Canadian police said. (Aaron Vincent Elkaim/The Canadian Press via AP)(Aaron Vincent Elkaim/AP)

A van apparently jumped onto a sidewalk Monday at a busy intersection in Toronto and struck down pedestrians before the vehicle was found and the driver taken into custody, Canadian police said.

>> Read more trending news

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Trending - Most Read Stories

HURRICANE HARVEY: Bait shop owner’s insurance payout thwarted by a typo

Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 9:49 AM

Mary Ann Heiman purchased windstorm insurance for her property along the causeway between Aransas Pass and Port Aransas, believing her business was covered when Hurricane Harvey destroyed the property. However, later, when she placed a claim with the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA), she was denied citing an inverted address number. Heiman stands on the concrete platform where the business once stood, on Thursday April 20, 2018, in Port Aransas, TX.
AMANDA VOISARD / AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Mary Ann Heiman purchased windstorm insurance for her property along the causeway between Aransas Pass and Port Aransas, believing her business was covered when Hurricane Harvey destroyed the property. However, later, when she placed a claim with the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA), she was denied citing an inverted address number. Heiman stands on the concrete platform where the business once stood, on Thursday April 20, 2018, in Port Aransas, TX.(AMANDA VOISARD / AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

Mary Ann Heiman opened her bait shop on the the causeway that crosses Redfish Bay to Port Aransas in 2011. From the outside, 1950 Hwy 361 was nothing fancy.

“The building was just an old metal building that had sat here since the 1980s,” she said. “It was basically held together with nails and glue and love and duct tape.” The real value of Offshore Adventures was the equipment inside, the tanks and freezers Heiman needed to hold the crabs, shrimp, mud minnows and mullet that anglers bought in their pursuit of the Texas coast’s rich lode of redfish, trout and drum.

A resident of the area on and off since her 1950s childhood there, Heiman knew the wild weather that occasionally swept in from the Gulf and the havoc it could leave behind. Last July she purchased a policy from the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association to cover $60,000-worth of business personal property inside 1590 Hwy. 361 from high wind damage. It cost $679.

>> Read more trending news 

Heiman’s timing couldn’t have been better. Hurricane Harvey barreled into Port Aransas a month later, on the evening of August 25, packing 130 mph winds and driving rain.

When Heiman was allowed back into the area a few days later, her bait shop had disappeared, the splintered debris of her livelihood hurled inland by the Category 4 winds. A group of wooden pylons roughly representing the outline of the shop poked out of the sand like a mouthful of broken teeth.

PHOTOS: Port Aransas recovery, seven months later

It was only after the adjuster for the windstorm insurance association went out to the site and agreed the record winds had destroyed her bait shop that it was discovered Heiman’s insurance agent had accidentally transposed two of the numbers in Offshore Adventures’ street address. In letters and phone calls, he asked TWIA to correct the typo so Heiman could collect her due and rebuild the business.

The association refused. Heiman’s policy for 1590 Hwy 361 did not cover 1950 Hwy 361, representatives explained. Her claim for the money she needed to restart her bait shop was stamped “denied.”

For more on Heiman’s dilemma, and how the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association has served consumers since Hurricane Harvey, visit MyStatesman.com

Related video:

Who Pays for Cleanup if Your Neighbor’s Tree Falls in Your Yard?

Trending - Most Read Stories