Now Playing
95.1 WAPE
On Air
No Program
Now Playing
95.1 WAPE

crime & law

200 items
Results 1 - 10 of 200 next >

Man gets 25 years added to sentence for stabbing ex-wife 47 times in front of daughter

A Tennessee judge added a 25-year prison term to the life sentence given last year to a man who fatally stabbed his ex-wife 47 times in front of his 2-year-old daughter, the Knoxville News-Sentinel reported.

>> Read more trending news 

Tyler Enix, 39, is serving a life sentence for the October 2015 stabbing death of his ex-wife, Kimberly McFarland Enix. The extra 25 years came in a sentencing hearing for Tyler Enix robbing his ex-wife of her money and bank card after the murder, the newspaper reported.

The man left Knox County with the child and fled before authorities captured him in Ohio, the News-Sentinel reported.

Knox County Criminal Court Judge Steve Sword ruled that Enix’s crimes after the slaying merited additional punishment.

“This was a situation where you have a brutal murder with a child there … stolen away (by Enix) from the family that loves her,” Sword said. “What is significant to me … is (he) takes this child and jeopardizes her life.”

Knox County Assistant Public Defender John Halstead said Enix would be 87 before he would be eligible for a parole hearing on the first-degree murder conviction in his ex-wife’s death.

“He’s already being punished,” Halstead said.

Sword said he was “mindful of that” but added he believes Enix is too dangerous to go free, the News-Sentinel reported.

Police: Drugs disguised as gummy bears found during South Carolina traffic stop

A South Carolina man was arrested Thursday when police found candy pieces filled with THC during a traffic stop, WYFF reported.

>> Read more trending news 

Clemson police Chief Jimmy Dixon said police found 50 bags of what appeared to be gummy bears but were actually pieces of candy laced with the drug, the television station reported. Police also found approximately five pounds of marijuana, 122 vape pens containing THC and 152 vape pen refills containing THC.

Antonio Mardequez Brown, of Greenville, was charged with unlawful carrying of a pistol and trafficking marijuana, WYFF reported.

Dixon said the candy bags were labeled, “Keep Away from Children and Pets,” the television station reported.

“The alarming part of this is how similar the bags appear to those purchased in any store for children – that in reality if picked up by a kid is not going to see or read those words,” Dixon told WYFF.

A .40 caliber pistol was found on the front driver’s floorboard of the vehicle, Dixon said.

Colorado man who pleaded for return of missing wife, daughters arrested in deaths

A Colorado man who for days pleaded publicly for the return of his pregnant wife and two young daughters has been arrested and charged with killing them, police said. 

Christopher Lee Watts, 33, of Frederick, was arrested just after 11 p.m. Wednesday night in connection with the slayings of his wife, Shanann Watts, and their two daughters, Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3. Shanann Watts, 34, was about 15 weeks pregnant.

Bella Watts was days away from starting kindergarten. 

John Camper, director of the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, said during a media briefing Thursday afternoon that investigators were “quite certain” the body of Shanann Watts has been recovered.

“We have strong reason to believe we know where the bodies of the children are, and recovery efforts are in process on that,” Camper said

“This is absolutely the worst possible outcome that any of us could imagine. I think our hearts are broken for the town of Fredrick as much as anybody’s.”

Chris Watts is being held in the Weld County Jail pending formal charges, Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke said during the briefing. 9News in Denver reported earlier Thursday that Chris Watts faces three counts of first-degree murder and three counts of tampering with physical evidence.

>> Related story: Report: Man with NC ties confesses to killing wife, 2 daughters in Colorado

Fredrick police officials said they received a call just before 2 p.m. Monday reporting Shanann, Bella and Celeste Watts missing. The report was made by a friend who went to the family’s home in the Wyndham Hill subdivision and found no sign of Shanann or the girls. 

Chris Watts said in an interview Tuesday with 9News that he saw the woman at the front door, via the home’s doorbell camera, and realized his family was missing. 

“I said, ‘Hey, what’s going on?’ And she said, ‘I can’t get ahold of Shanann,’” Watts said. “That’s when I was just, like, ‘Okay, something’s not right.’”

He said he, too, had been unable to reach his wife via phone or text message.

See Chris Watts’ entire interview with 9News below.

Shanann Watts’ vehicle, as well as her purse and medication for the children, were all still at the house, authorities said. Police on Tuesday upgraded the missing persons report to an “Endangered Missing Alert” because of the potential medical concerns with the children.  

Investigators conducted multiple interviews and officers canvassed the family’s neighborhood for witnesses and clues. News of the missing mother and daughters soon went national, and Watts did his interview with 9News on Tuesday, in which he described his family’s disappearance as “earth-shattering.” 

“I don’t feel like this is even real right now. It’s like a nightmare that I just can’t wake up from,” Watts told a reporter.

Watts spoke in loving terms of his daughters. 

“Celeste, she’s just a bottle of energy,” he said. “I call her ‘Rampage’ because she's got two speeds: go, or she’s sleeping. She’s always the troublemaker, she’s always the one, like, jumping off things. Bella, she’s the more calm, cautious, mothering type, and she’s more like me -- she’s more calm. Celeste has definitely got her mom’s personality, where she’s all gung-ho, ready to go.”

The young father also addressed those who might think he had a hand in his family’s disappearance.

“Everybody’s going to have their own opinion on anything like this,” Watts said. “I just want people to know that I want my family back. I want them safe and I want them here. This house is not the same.”

Less than 24 hours later, Watts was in custody. A law enforcement source told 9News that Watts confessed to killing his wife and children. 

No motive has been established, though The Denver Post reported the couple had serious financial problems over the years. They filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in July 2015, citing liabilities of more than $400,000. 

The Wyndham Hill Master Association filed a civil claim against the couple last month, but details of that claim were not immediately available, according to the Post

>> Read more trending news

Shanann Watts wrote on social media about the trips and vacations she had earned for her family through Le-Vel, a health and wellness company that sells nutritional products. The Post reported that Watts’ position with the company appeared to have rejuvenated the family’s finances. 

“We have qualified for so many amazing trips in two years that we never otherwise would have been able to visit,” she wrote about trips to New Orleans, Las Vegas, San Diego, Toronto, Mexico and the Dominican Republic. 

Chris Watts worked for Anadarko Petroleum Co., according to bankruptcy records. 

Le-Vel officials wrote on Facebook Thursday morning that their hearts were broken for Shanann Watts and her daughters. 

“Shanann was an amazing woman, mother, friend, and overall person,” the statement read. “She lit up every room and was a joy to be around. Our love, prayers, and support go out during this devastating time to her family, friends, and to all Thrivers who had the great fortune of knowing Shanann and her two beautiful daughters.”

Shanann Watts’ brother, Frankie Rzucek, wrote that he just wants to know why his sister and nieces died. 

“My precious family, my one and only sibling, my sister Shanann, two adorable nieces, Bella and Celeste, and her soon-to-be-found-out unborn son, Niko,” Rzucek wrote. “I just want 30 seconds alone with that heartless psychopath. May Satan have mercy on his soul.”

Some of the more poignant social media posts come from the Facebook page of Shanann Watts herself. In a post that included a photo of one of her girls playing at the beach, the young mother wrote of her fears of letting her daughter out into the world. 

“The world is a scary place,” Shanann Watts wrote on Aug. 4, just over a week before their disappearances. “I will do everything in my power to teach her right and to protect her, advocate, stand up for her and defend her. I pray every day that she never feels any less than the rest of the world. I pray that she’s protected when I’m not around to protect her. 

“Nothing or no one will stop me.”

Father of 4 killed by stray bullet while waiting for ride home

A California husband and father of four was killed early Saturday as he waited for a ride-share driver to pick him up after a night out, police said.

Chrystian Valdez Negrete, 40, of Oakland, was struck by a stray bullet around 2 a.m. Saturday in the 4400 block of International Boulevard, The East Bay Times reported. He was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Police officials told the Times that the 36-year-old man who was the intended target of the gunfire was also wounded, but survived. Investigators said Valdez Negrete and the other man did not know one another, but both had been in a nearby nightclub before the shooting.

Co-workers at Bay Area Beverage Co., in Richmond, were shocked to learn what happened to Valdez Negrete, who they described as a hardworking, beloved employee. 

“His attendance was always perfect. He was a hard worker, he was great,” said one co-worker, who the Times said asked to remain anonymous. “This is a tight community. Everyone is really close. We’re all still pretty upset.”

Valdez Negrete worked for the company for the past 16 years, according to KTVU in Oakland

Bay Area Beverage President TJ Louderback told the news station that Valdez Negrete leaves behind a wife and four children, ages 17 to 6. His oldest daughter is in Mexico, and the family had hoped to bring her to the U.S.

“He was the primary breadwinner,” Louderback told KTVU. “He was a very good father. He kind of took care of everything, it sounds like, within the family.”

>> Read more trending news

The company has set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for Valdez Negrete’s family. His wife, Maria, described him on the page as “the rock of the family.”

“He just kept us all together,” the widow said. 

She said the children would have a hard time growing up without their father. Her goal is to keep their lives as normal as she can and to help them focus on school so they can someday go to college. 

KTVU reported that Louderback and other officials are working with Crime Stoppers of Oakland to double the reward being offered for information leading to an arrest. 

“As part of his extended family we are taking it upon ourselves to show the Valdez family that Chrystian was an important part of our team and that he, and they, matter,” the GoFundMe page said. “Amongst other things, we have started this fundraiser to support Chrystian's wife and children. Bay Area Beverage will match all employee/supplier contributions up to $10,000.

“We are also contributing significant financial resources in the form of a reward to help find Chrystian's killer.” 

As of Thursday morning, the fundraising page had raised just over $2,200 of its $30,000 goal. 

The Times reported that the Crime Stoppers reward is currently $15,000. Anyone with information is asked to call Oakland police at 510-238-3821 or Crime Stoppers at 510-777-8572.

Man who shot cop released from prison by mistake; error unnoticed for 2 years

A judge sentenced a Georgia man to 15 years in prison for shooting an off-duty police officer, but the man served barely one year in prison before he was released – by mistake.

>> Watch the news report here

A representative of the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office told WSB-TV investigative reporter Mark Winne that last week, the state Department of Community Supervision notified the office that Jermarcus Jordan was not in prison, where he was supposed to be.

This week, the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office arrested Jordan on new charges of aggravated assault and cruelty to children after he had been out of prison for two years.

Chris Smith is the officer who was shot by Jordan. He told Winne that he's no longer a police officer and there are too many holes in the system of which he was once a part.

“It shows that there are a lot of loopholes and different things that really just need to be fixed,” Smith said.

Smith said he was an Atlanta police officer working an extra job in uniform at an apartment complex when a gunman cut loose in 2013 with a shotgun as Smith sat in his pickup truck.

>> Baby found dead in car after man flees traffic stop, police say

“I was shot in the head, a birdshot, and I was shot in my right calf with buckshot. Had it been reversed, I would have been dead on the scene,” Smith told Winne. “I still have six pellets in my head, anywhere from my hairline back.”

Documents and other information suggest the following timeline:

On Jan. 14, 2015, a judge sentenced Jordan to 25 years in prison, with 15 years to serve.

That same day, a probation revocation order was filed against Jordan, involving an old robbery case against him. The sentence for that case expired on May 13, 2016.

A judge this week said it appeared to him that Jordan was released by the Department of Corrections in error on May 13, 2016 -- long before he had served 15 years for the attack on Smith.

“I wish I had an answer for how that happened,” Smith said.

Joan Heath, with the Georgia Department of Corrections, said the department did not release Jordan in error and that there was a problem with the documentation the department received from the DeKalb County Clerk of Superior Court’s Office regarding the sentence for the attack on Smith.

>> Read more trending news 

The documentation was returned, but the Department of Corrections said it never received the corrected paperwork needed to legally hold Jordan past May 2016.

DeKalb County Superior Court Clerk Debra DeBerry told Winne that her office sent everything it was supposed to send.

Heath said that, because of other, similar paperwork issues with clerk's offices, last year the department initiated new follow-up procedures as an additional safeguard.

DeBerry said that a 2015 document Winne found in the records indicates a probation worker told the Department of Corrections she would take care of the problem.

A representative for the Department of Community Supervision said probation is under that department now, but wasn’t in 2015, so the department can’t comment on this case.

FBI seeks help identifying man as part of child porn investigation

FBI officials said Wednesday they want help from the public identifying and finding a man who may have critical information on the identity of a child victim in what they called an ongoing sexual exploitation investigation.

>> See the FBI’s tweet here

Above is a photograph and sketch depicting the unknown man the FBI hopes to identify

>> Middle school teacher charged with molesting student on campus

“The video depicting the unidentified male, John Doe 40, shown with a child, was first noted by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in October of 2017,” FBI officials said in a news release.

The video is believed to have been produced prior to last October.

FBI officials describe the unknown man as white, between 30 and 40 years old, and heavyset with dark-colored hair. He could be heard speaking English in the video. 

Anyone with information is asked to submit their tip online at https://tips.fbi.gov/ or call the FBI’s toll-free tip line at 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324). 

>> Read more trending news 

“The public is reminded no charges have been filed in this case and the pictured individual is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law,” FBI officials said in the news release.

The man is being sought as part of the FBI’s Operation Rescue Me and Endangered Child Alert Program, which seeks to identify child victims in child exploitation material and seeks exposure of unknown adults “who visibly display their faces and/or other distinguishing characteristics in association with child pornography images.”

Baby found dead in car after man flees traffic stop, police say

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is investigating the death of a 10-month-old child.

The Greenville Police Department in Meriwether County said one of its officers pulled over Cameron Ramon Reese, 22, for speeding Wednesday morning.

>> Woman accused of killing boyfriend's toddler daughter

Officers said Reese ran from the car. Police said that when they looked in the back seat of the vehicle, they found the body of 10-month-old Ayla Reeves.

Detectives said Reese was watching the child when he called the girl’s mother, Nikia Reeves, 19, and said the child was not breathing.

When Reeves went to the home, she said Reese was acting suspicious, police said. The three reportedly got into the car. Police said that’s when Reeves questioned Reese about what happened to the baby. 

>> Read more trending news 

Investigators said Reese then pulled a knife on Reeves, who jumped out of the car. 

Officers said they were able to track down Reese with K-9s. He has been charged with aggravated assault and concealing the death of another. 

GBI officials said they are trying to determine the child’s cause of death, pending an autopsy. 

4-year-old left inside hot day care van honks horn until neighbor comes to rescue

Police have arrested workers at an Atlanta day care who investigators say left a 4-year-old boy alone in a hot van for an hour.

>> Watch the news report here

The woman who found the child told WSB-TV’s Tyisha Fernandes that the only reason she saw the boy is because he kept honking the horn trying to get someone's attention.

>> 10 ways to prevent a hot car death

She said the boy had taken off his shirt and shoes, and she could tell his body was overheating.

She quickly called police.

Three staff members were later arrested.

>> Read more trending news 

The Rev. P.L. Redmond Jr., who runs the Evelyn Redmond Christian Academy at New Calvary Missionary Baptist Church, had no comment when Fernandes asked him about the arrests.

As she left the church, Fernandes saw staff members taking the day care sign off the building.

>> Mom warns of sunless heatstroke after toddler almost doesn't wake up from nap

State officials with the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning told Fernandes that the day care is not licensed, but there is a special exemption that allows it to have a certain number of children between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. The child was found after those hours around 3 p.m., according to police.

13-year-old girl chases off burglar while home alone

A Massachusetts 13-year-old says she was home alone when she came face-to-face with a burglar Wednesday morning.

>> Watch the news report here

Anna, who asked WFXT not to use her last name, said she was sleeping in her upstairs bedroom in Peabody when a man broke in and robbed it before 9:30 a.m. Wednesday. 

>> Girls throw hot coffee to fend off attacker, police say

"He came into my room," she said. "I heard his footsteps because he was going room-to-room. He came to my room, and I saw his face and I was like, 'Who is this? This isn't my dad, like, who is this?'"

The soon-to-be eighth-grader says he stole a bunch of jewelry, but he likely won't get much for it.

"Most of them were fake, so enjoy," she said. 

>> Read more trending news 

Peabody police, including the K-9 unit, canvassed the typically quiet neighborhood for hours looking for the suspect.

Anna says she got a good look at the burglar and then chased him out of her house and down her driveway. 

"At the moment, I wasn't much scared; I was just filled with so much anger. Now that I think about it, it's kinda terrifying how it happened because you only expect this type of stuff in the movies," Anna said. 

Police have not yet made an arrest and are going through a neighbor's surveillance video. 

Middle school teacher charged with molesting student on campus

A Georgia middle school teacher has been arrested and charged with molesting a student at a Clayton County school. 

>> Watch the news report here

Investigators said the teacher, Darriel Bailey, worked at M.D. Roberts Middle School in Jonesboro. He's accused of inappropriate sexual conduct with a 13-year-old student, according to a warrant. 

WSB-TV's Tom Jones spoke to parents, who were appalled.

"What kind of teacher would do that?" one parent said. "When did he have the opportunity to do something like this at school?"

Parents were also outraged that the school system didn't tell them about the arrest. Some parents told Jones that they received no information from the school about the arrest.

"It definitely should have been noted to every parent of a student that goes here," Veeka Harris said. 

>> Read more trending news 

Warrants say Bailey exposed himself to the boy and asked him to go to the bathroom to perform indecent acts. 

When the boy said no, the warrants say Bailey enticed the boy to participate on at least three occasions. 

Clayton County schools said they can't comment on pending legal or personnel matters.

At least one parent said she would use the incident as an opportunity to educate her sixth-grader. 

"We talk about this at home for this reason," Takisha Golden said. "Those teachers are in a position of authority over children, and they need to know that stuff like this can happen."

Bailey faces charges of child molestation, sodomy, enticing a child for indecent purposes and sexual assault. He is being held without bond. 

200 items
Results 1 - 10 of 200 next >