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MUSIC NEWS

New Johnny Cash documentary to center around Folsom Prison concerts

Hulton Archive/Getty ImagesJohnny Cash‘s famous 1968 concerts at Folsom State Prison in California will serve as the centerpiece for a new documentary, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The film will be produced by Imperative Entertainment and executive producer Frank Marshall (Jurassic World), with the full support of Johnny Cash’s estate. It will be directed by filmmaker Thom Zimny, who has helmed a number of Bruce Springsteen documentaries, as well as the upcoming HBO movie Elvis Presley: The Searcher.

Cash performed two shows at Folsom State Prison on January 13, 1968, and the performances were recorded for his triple-platinum live album At Folsom Prison.

“While the linear narrative of the Folsom Prison performances will anchor our film, each song in the set list will open a door into a nonlinear presentation of Cash’s emotional, musical and personal development,” reveals Zimny of the upcoming documentary.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Kinks guitarist Dave Davies: Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan recently “seemed happy and well”

Bobby Bank/Getty ImagesFollowing the tragic news that Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan suddenly passed away at the age of 46 on Monday, Kinks guitarist Dave Davies reveals that she “seemed happy and well” during a recent encounter.

“I’m really shocked that #DoloresORiordan has passed so suddenly,” Davies wrote in an Instagram post, which also featured a photo of the two of them. “I was talking to her a couple weeks before Christmas she seemed happy and well.”

Davies also revealed that the two musicians discussed collaborating, adding, “We even spoke about maybe writing some songs together – unbelievable god bless her.”

No cause of death for O’Riordan has been revealed as of yet, but a statement from O’Riordan’s publicist read, “Irish and international singer Dolores O’Riordan has died suddenly in London today. She was 46 years old. The lead singer with the Irish band The Cranberries, was in London for a short recording session.”

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Dickey Betts returning to stage for 2018 Peach Music Festival

Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Webster PRThe initial lineup for the 2018 Peach Music Festival has been revealed, and a who’s who of favorite jam bands will be headlining the bill. Of particular note, legendary guitarist Dickey Betts will make his return to the stage three years after saying he was retiring from performing.

Betts, a longtime member of the Allman Brothers Band until his ouster in 2000, last played a show with his own band, Dickey Betts & Great Southern, in 2014. He announced that he was retiring from performing in 2015.

The lineup poster for the four-day 2018 Peach Music Festival lists the guitarist’s appearance as “The Return of Dickey Betts and His Band.” The live music extravaganza takes place July 19-22 at Montage Mountain in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and will also feature sets by Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band, Gov’t Mule, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Moe., Warren Haynes, Chris Robinson Brotherhood and dozens more acts.

Tickets for the 2018 Peach Music Festival are currently available at PeachMusicFest.com, with an option to purchase camping passes, as well.

ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

Jimmy Fallon channels James Taylor in “Fire and Rain” parody called “Fire and Fury”

NBC/Andrew Lipovsky(NEW YORK) — James Taylor made a surprise appearance on Monday’s Tonight Show — or at least spot-on impersonation of the legendary singer/songwriter.

Fallon opened the show with his imitation of Taylor singing “Fire and Fury,” a parody of Taylor’s classic 1970 hit, “Fire and Rain.” In the song, Fallon pokes fun at the fallout between President Donald Trump and his former chief strategist and Breitbart News head Steve Bannon over comments Bannon made in Michael Wolff’s controversial new book, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.

“Just yesterday morning, Breitbart announced you were gone. Bannon the tell-all book put an end to you,” sings Fallon, dressed as a ’70s version of Taylor, seated with a guitar.

“I thought you were besties, but I guess I was wrong. Shouldn’t have dissed Trumps a** in those interviews,” he continues.

“I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen fury,” Fallon sings in the chorus. “Seen White House staff that’ll have to face a jury. I’ve seen him drink a cup of water with tiny hands, while he’s lying in bed watching Fox & Friends.”

Other verses touch on Bannon calling meetings between the president’s son, Don, Jr. and Russians “treasonous,” as well as President Trump’s eating habits; his penchant for early morning tweetstorms and for decrying negative news stories as “fake news.”

“He’s turned the White House into a total s***hole,” sings Fallon, referring to the president’s recent remarks on immigration.

He ends by noting that “in 2020 Oprah’s gonna win” — a reference to rumors of Oprah Winfrey considering a run for the presidency.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

“The Bachelor” recap: hard goodbyes for Lauren S., Annaliese and Bibiana

ABC/Heidi Gutman(LOS ANGELES) — After last week’s tense confrontation between Latina dynamo Bibiana and real-life Fitness Barbie, Krystal, Bibiana was determined to make a connection with the Bachelor, Arie Luyendyk Jr., in week three. But by the end of the show, Bibiana went home.

Maquel, Jacqueline, Lauren B., Tia, Marikh, Bekah M., Bibiana and Krystal went on a group date in which the group trained to be wrestlers, with some guidance from original wrestlers from the 1980s hit television series Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, Ursula Hayden, a.k.a. “Babe, the Farmers Daughter” and Angelina Altishin, a.k.a. “Little Egypt.” 

Arie was surprised to learn he was being made to wrestle against surprise guest Kenny, a bachelor from Rachel’s season on The Bachelorette, who is a professional wrestler. Arie got body slammed a lot. Later, each girl was dressed in their “character” – “the Gorgeous Ladies of the Bachelor” — and paired off against one another. Surprisingly, Bibiana and Krystal did not fight.

The group went out to a cool RV park with Arie for the after-party that night and Krystal got to spend time with him first, which irritated Bibiana. Later, she, Tia and Bekah M. all got some time with the Kissing Bandit, but his time with Bekah straddling him and the camera panning away. When the group gathered, Arie gave Bekah a rose while Krystal had to sit there and watch.

Lauren S. got a date card for a one-on-one and flew with Arie on a private jet to the Hall Winery in Napa, California. They spent the afternoon drinking red wine, strolling along the grape vines and getting to know each other. That night they had dinner and talked some more but in the shock of the night, Arie decided not to give Lauren S. a rose and said goodbye to her. 

Back at the mansion, Ashley, Becca K., Brittany, Jenna, Caroline, Chelsea and Annaliese got a group date card that read, “Love is Ruff.” The girls were excited because they believed it had something to do with dogs, but the excitement turned cold when a porter arrived to retrieve Lauren S.’s belongings. Krystal started yammering about how to best manage time with Arie, and Caroline said she was ready to kill her. 

The group date allowed the girls to play with dogs and challenged them to teach the dogs tricks. Afterwards, the group went to the Grove in Los Angeles and put on a dog show, which was hosted by Chris Harrison and special guest Fred Willard, from the movie Best in Show. Annaliese, who last week admitted she was traumatized by bumper cars as a child, this week confessed that she also was traumatized by a dog that bit her when she was a child and she almost lost an eye. 

That night, the group date took place at a lounge where the girls had a chance to talk to Arie but it was Chelsea who got the rose. 

Annaliese really started to worry about being the only girl who hadn’t kissed Arie and confronted him about it. Arie wasn’t ready and didn’t feel the chemistry was there and sent Annaliese home. Bibiana tried to get some alone time with Arie but he turned her away. 

At the rose ceremony, Arie gave roses to Caroline, Kendall, Ashley, Lauren, Brittany, Becca K., Seinne, Krystal, Tia, Maquel, Jenna, Jacqueline and Marikh. Bibiana, in spite of her pluck and determination, was sent home. She said she was broken, but added, “You can’t force something that’s not there.” 

Next week the gang heads to Lake Tahoe and it looks like Krystal gets on a lot of people’s nerves. 

The Bachelor airs Monday nights at 8 p.m. on ABC.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

50 Cent admits he refused to take his 84-year-old grandfather to a strip club

ABC/Paula Lobo(NEW YORK) — Believe it or not, 50 Cent has morals. On Monday, the rapper told talk show hosts Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest on Live with Kelly and Ryan that his 84-year-old grandfather wanted to accompany his famous grandson to the strip club for one of their annual outings…but he refused.  

“He…was asking me, like, take me to one of those clubs, like where them girls at,” he said. “I just didn’t know how that would go over. Like in the media,” he added. When Kelly incredulously said, “You didn’t take him?” 50 said, “If I had my 84-year-old grandfather in the strip club? They’d go, ‘OK, 50’s finally lost it.'” 

It also appears that the Power executive producer and star is not only a cautious grandson, but also a a doting parent to 5-year-old son Sire, telling Kelly and Ryan about the latest gift he bought for his Star Wars-loving child.  

“He likes Star Wars. He really likes Star Wars… I got him the Star Wars, the special edition Lego set.” However, 50 also revealed that the Star Wars Lego set opened his eyes to a lesson in gift-giving for one’s own kids. “It’s so big that it was like something for me to do. You get toys for the kids that are really for you. Like that’s what you do, that’s when you’re being a good parent,” he explained. 

“You give stuff for they kids and then you start putting it together and you’re looking at the instructions and you’re going, ‘This is not for kids.'”

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

NATIONAL NEWS

‘A nightmare’: Family bids goodbye as undocumented father of 2 is deported to Mexico

iStock/Thinkstock(DETROIT) — A tearful scene unfolded at Detroit Metropolitan Airport on Monday morning, where Jorge Garcia, a father of two and 30-year resident of Detroit, was deported to Mexico amid cries from his family.

Garcia, 39, was brought to the U.S. by his aunt when he was 10 years old, according to his wife and Michigan United, an immigrant advocacy organization that is working with Garcia. His parents had already immigrated to the country, said Michigan United spokesperson Erik Shelley, who was at the airport this morning as Garcia bid his emotional goodbyes to his wife, Cindy Garcia, and children, ages 15 and 12.

For his family, the parting was devastating. Cindy Garcia told ABC News she is “very sad, very depressed, emotional.”

“It’s like a nightmare,” she said.

Cindy and Jorge Garcia met in Detroit and have been married for 15 years, she said. He worked in the landscaping industry and she is retired from Ford Motor Company.

In 2005, they tried to “fix his paperwork,” Cindy Garcia told ABC News, but instead he ended up in deportation proceedings. Throughout the Obama administration, Jorge Garcia was able to receive multiple stays of deportation, though he had to check in with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) routinely.

But on Nov. 20, ICE told the couple that Jorge Garcia had to leave the U.S. He was going to be detained, but ICE allowed him to stay with his family, first through Thanksgiving and then through the holidays, Cindy Garcia said. However, he was told he had to leave the country by no later than Jan. 15 — today.

“I am a U.S. citizen and it is affecting me. We tried to do things the right way,” said Cindy Garcia. “We tried and he got sent back to a country he does not know.”

Jorge Garcia’s deportation comes amid a yearlong effort by the Trump administration to ramp up immigration arrests and deportations.

In fiscal year 2017, ICE arrested 143,470 people on immigration violations — the highest number of these type of arrests over the past three years.

“If you choose to violate the laws of this country, you should be concerned,” said acting ICE director Thomas Homan in December — a sentiment he has repeated in public testimony and interviews.

There were 30 percent more immigration-related arrests in 2017 compared to the previous year, according to ICE’s end-of-year report.

“It was touch-and-go throughout the Obama administration,” but Jorge Garcia had no chance when President Donald Trump started going for the “low-hanging fruit,” said Shelley.

Garcia was two years too old to qualify for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program — the Obama-era program that allowed some undocumented immigrants who brought the U.S. illegally to work and live in the U.S. without fear of deportation.

In September, Trump announced he was winding down the program, but the phase-out is facing a number of legal challenges. Meanwhile, Congress is debating a possible permanent solution for DACA recipients — a debate that could lead to a government shutdown.

ICE did not immediately respond to requests for more information on Jorge Garcia’s case.

While politicians fight over a DACA solution, Cindy Garcia remains in limbo, unsure of when her husband will be allowed to return to the U.S.

“It’s like any minute now he’s going to walk through the door, but he’s not, he’s in Mexico,” said Cindy Garcia.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Probe shows Florida woman was heading home when mistakenly targeted for murder

Osceola County Corrections(KISSIMMEE, Fla.) — During her lunch break on Jan. 7, Janice Marie Zengotita-Torres phoned her Kissimmee, Florida, home to check on her young son and tell her mother she would be home as soon as she finished her shift in a shopping mall store, according to police records obtained by ABC News.

But by 4:30 the next morning, the 42-year-old woman had not come home, prompting her husband to make a desperate call to the sheriff’s office to report her missing.

What unraveled next was described by the local sheriff as a “senseless act of violence in which she was robbed of her life.”

Authorities said Zengotita-Torres was abducted, beaten and suffocated to death by suspects hired to kill someone else. Osceola County Sheriff Russ Gibson said she was mistakenly targeted in the murder-for-hire plot that stemmed from a love triangle.

A missing-person report taken by a sheriff’s deputy indicates that Zengotita-Torres nearly made it to the front door of her apartment when she was kidnapped by her killers, who apparently carried out the murder even though they realized they had snatched the wrong person, Gibson said.

The manager at the Ross Dress for Less at The Loop shopping mall where Zengotita-Torres worked told sheriff’s deputies the woman left work as planned when she finished her shift, according to a narrative of the missing person report.

“He advised that he reviewed the video and observed Janice and another employee…leave and walk to their cars,” according to the report. “He advised Janice and (the other employee) talked for approximately 1 minute and then got into their cars and drove off.”

The security video showed Zengotita-Torres, wearing black pants and a navy blue shirt, driving out of the mall parking lot in her 2016 Nissan Rogue at 12:33 a.m. on Jan. 8.

Her family would never see her alive again.

Once her husband reported her missing, a sheriff’s deputy called her cell phone, but got no answer, the report says. The deputy soon began to suspect foul play when he was informed that two transactions were made from her Chase Bank account at 1:30 a.m., about an hour after she left work. One of the transactions was a withdrawal of $200, and the second was for $500 made at a CVS store on South Orange Blossom Trail in Kissimmee.

Investigators suspect Zenegotita-Torres’ killers followed her from the shopping mall to her apartment complex. Once there, they kidnapped her, driving her off in her own car, initially believing she was the woman they were hired to kill by a jealous lover out to eliminate a rival for her boyfriend.

Zengotita-Torres’ body was found on Jan. 8 in Florida’s Ormond Beach. Detectives say she had been badly beaten and suffocated with garbage bags.

They said Ishnar Lopez-Ramos, 35, allegedly hired Alexis Ramos-Rivera and his girlfriend, Glorianmarie Quinones-Montes, both 22, to kill a woman who was in a relationship with a man she loved. But Ramos-Rivera and Quinones-Montes apparently mistook Zengotita-Torres for the intended target, the sheriff’s office said.

“I get emotional because it touches me so deeply that one of our citizens was killed in such a manner over a mistaken identification and in the end, it appears to be a lover’s triangle,” Gibson said at a press conference Friday.

He said the suspects carried out the killing even after they realized Zengotita-Torres was not their intended mark.

“She was the target of a senseless act of violence in which she was robbed of her life,” an emotional Gibson said at the news conference.

Lopez-Ramos was arrested on Friday after she attempted to use Zengotita-Torres’ ATM card, Gibson said. Ramos-Rivera and Quinones-Montes were taken into custody the same day at an Orange County, Florida, hotel.

They were all booked into the Osceola County Jail on murder charges.

Gibson said detectives have made contact with the intended target of the murder plot and offered her protection, which she refused.

Gibson said Zengotita-Torres moved from Puerto Rico to Florida about a year ago with her family, hoping for a better life.

“The family members, what they are [going through] right now, they shouldn’t have to go through,” Gibson said.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

13 siblings ages 2 to 29 ‘held captive’ by parents, some shackled, officials say

Riverside County Sheriff’s Department(PERRIS, Calif.) — An investigation is underway in California after 13 siblings ages 2 to 29 were allegedly held captive in a home, some “shackled to their beds with chains and padlocks,” the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department said in a press release.

Two parents, 57-year-old David Allen Turpin and 49-year-old Louise Anna Turpin, were arrested in the torture and child engagement case in Perris, about 27 miles south of San Bernardino.

The investigation began early Sunday morning when a 17-year-old girl allegedly escaped from the home and called 911, claiming that her 12 brothers and sisters were being held captive there, the sheriff’s office said.

Responding officers said the teen “appeared to be only 10 years old and slightly emaciated.”

Inside the home was a shocking scene.

Several children were “shackled to their beds with chains and padlocks in dark and foul-smelling surroundings,” the sheriff’s office said. “The victims appeared to be malnourished and very dirty.”

Seven of the victims were adults, ranging in age from 18 to 29, the sheriff’s office said. The others were children as young as 2. The victims — who authorities say claimed to be starving — were given food and drinks and interviewed, the sheriff’s office said. They were then hospitalized for treatment, the authorities said.

The parents were interviewed and later booked on charges of torture and child endangerment, the sheriff’s office said. Bail was set at $9 million each.

David Turpin’s parents, James and Betty Turpin of West Virginia, told ABC News they are “surprised and shocked” by the allegations against their son and daughter-in-law.

James and Betty Turpin said they hadn’t seen their son and daughter-in-law since visiting them in California some four to five years ago. However, they said they have kept in touch with them by phone since. They told ABC News they had not spoken to their grandchildren, saying David Turpin or his wife would often call when they were without the children, who are homeschooled.

The distraught grandparents added that David and Louise Turpin are considered a good Christian family in their community, saying they can’t understand “any of this.”

The sheriff’s office said it’s believed that all of the victims were their biological children.

It’s unclear how long the victims were held inside the home, the authorities said.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

SPORTS NEWS

How this 13-year-old skateboarder became the youngest X Games gold medalist in history

ABC News(ENCINITAS, Calif.) — They say never meet your heroes.

At 13 years old, Brighton Zeuner beat them.

Just one day after her birthday, Brighton took home gold during the women’s skateboard park event at the 2017 X Games in Minneapolis. She beat out her fellow competitors and became the youngest X Games medalist in the competition’s history.

“There’s little kids saying, ‘Oh, I saw you on YouTube.’ It’s kind of crazy for me,” Brighton told ABC News’ “Nightline.” “I don’t know. I’m 13, and it’s kind of weird.”

Brighton’s list of firsts is long. When she was 11 years old, she became the youngest X Games competitor ever. And in 2015, she became the youngest winner at the Vans U.S. Open.

Brighton is also the only female winner of California State Games Athlete of the Year.

At home in Encinitas, California, Brighton appears like most 13-year-old girls, keeping makeup and diaries in her bedroom. But in her backyard stands a half-pipe for Brighton to practice her moves.

Brighton says she skates in her backyard every day. Local skaters have used the half-pipe, as well as legends like Tony Hawk.

“She got to meet and skate with the best,” Brighton’s mother, Bridget Zeuner, told “Nightline.”

Brighton’s older brother, Jack Zeuner, is the reason she got into the sport. When Jack became interested in skateboarding, she was dragged along to the park, too. It didn’t take long before she was beating him in competitions.

“She’s kind of a natural. I wasn’t,” Jack told “Nightline.” “I didn’t really care.”

“He’s better than me at some stuff in street stuff. I kind of own the whole contest thing,” Brighton said.

These days, Jack has also become the cameraperson for his sister.

Brighton skates for hours every day. She said she loves the sport because of “the freedom you get, and, I know it sounds cheesy, but escape.”

She now travels the world with her skateboard and will soon head to Shanghai, China, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

“It’s cool getting all those stamps on my passport. It’s going to fill up at the end of the year,” said Brighton.

“We go with her. Keeps them grounded, keeps them out of trouble,” said Bridget Zeuner.

“As a family, we’re very close because of that,” Brighton’s father, Brandon Zeuner, told “Nightline.” “The school they attend now is very open to a schedule that allows kids to travel the world or just not be present all the time in school.”

In an extreme sport historically dominated by grown boys and men, Brighton is blazing a trail. She is the first female skateboarder ever sponsored by Red Bull.

“There’s stereotypes that only boys can do it, and it’s a manly sport. Honestly, the girls have proven that we can share the sport,” Brighton said.

She hopes to make it to the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, where skateboarding will make its debut as an Olympic sport.

“Fingers crossed. That’s going to push skateboarding,” Brighton said.

She added, “I just want to make a living off skateboarding and see where it takes me.”

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Olympic gymnast Simone Biles says she was ‘sexually abused by Larry Nassar’

Joe Faraoni / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — Four-time Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles said Monday that she was “sexually abused” by disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar.

“I too am one of the many survivors that was sexually abused by Larry Nassar,” Biles, 20, said in a statement released on her Twitter.

“I’ve felt a bit broken and the more I try to shut off the voice in my head the louder it screams,” she added. “I am not afraid to tell my story anymore.”

Biles is the latest high-profile athlete to accuse the former USA Gymnastics team doctor of sexual misconduct. Olympic gymnasts Aly Raisman, McKayla Maroney and Gabby Douglas have also publicly said they were abused by Nassar.

Nassar was sentenced to 60 years in prison last December after pleading guilty to federal child pornography charges. Nassar also pleaded guilty in November 2017 to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct involving girls who were 15 years old or younger in Ingham County, Michigan, as well as three other counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in Eaton County, Michigan.

In addition, he has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than 125 women and girls in civil lawsuits.

Nassar’s victims will address an Ingham County court beginning Tuesday as part of his sentencing for the seven counts of criminal sexual conduct. Up to 125 victims may speak over the course of several days.

He is due to be sentenced for the three additional counts in Eaton County on Jan. 31.

In her statement Monday, Biles lauded the other accusers who have come forward and spoken out against Nassar.

“After hearing the brave stories of my friends and other survivors, I know that this horrific experience does not define me,” she wrote. “I am much more than this.”

She slammed the physician’s behavior as “completely unacceptable, disgusting, and abusive.”

Biles also called for more accountability, saying, “We need to know why this was able to take place for so long and to so many of us.

“We need to make sure something like this never happens again,” she added.

Biles also said that she refuses to let Nassar’s actions stop her from pursuing her gymnastics goals, including her “dream of competing in Tokyo 2020.”

“I love this sport too much and I have never been a quitter,” she said. “I won’t let one man, and the others that enabled him, to steal my love and joy.”

Shortly after Maroney came forward with her allegations of assault, USA Gymnastics issued a statement saying, “We are strengthening and enhancing our policies and procedures regarding abuse, as well as expanding our educational efforts to increase awareness of signs to watch for and reporting suspicions of abuse, including the obligation to immediately report. USA Gymnastics, its members and community are committed to working together to keep our athletes as safe as possible.”

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Miracle in Minneapolis: Vikings fans celebrate stunning victory

Jamie Squire/Getty Images(MINNEAPOLIS) — When New Orleans Saints kicker Wil Lutz drilled a 43-yard field goal with 25 seconds to go to give the Saints a 24-23 lead over the Minnesota Vikings in Sunday’s divisional playoff game, long-suffering Vikings fans began to feel a little déjà vu. Another loss. Another playoff disappointment. Another cold winter devoid of a Super Bowl championship that has long eluded the snake-bitten team.

But then everything changed.

The Vikings’ second-year quarterback, Case Keenum, launched a last-second bomb down the sideline to Stefon Diggs, who scampered 61 yards to the end zone as time expired, sending all 66,612 fans at US Bank Stadium into a state of delirium.

A franchise known for coming up short in the postseason had just pulled off one of the most miraculous plays in NFL history. “If there was a curse, we probably would have lost today,” Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said.

From Minnesota to New York and all the way to Hawaii, Vikings fans celebrated the “Miracle in Minneapolis.” Most could only scream or jump up and down. They were at a loss for words.

Fans like Millie Wall, a 99-year-old Minnesota native who witnessed her first Vikings playoff game in person after the team sent her tickets, never lost hope. After the game, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell gave Wall tickets to the Super Bowl. And if the Vikings beat the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, they will become the first team in play in and host a Super Bowl.

Sunday’s game showed how sports can produce the most raw and unpredictable moments and the Vikings were finally on the winning side.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

WORLD NEWS

Top dignitaries set to convene, with a focus on North Korea

Alex Wong/Getty Images(VANCOUVER) — Top dignitaries ranging from foreign ministers to ambassadors will convene in Vancouver, Canada, Tuesday to discuss the ongoing diplomatic efforts to contain North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

The summit, known as the “Vancouver Group,” is being held as North Korea and South Korea continue historic talks at their border about how North Korea will participate in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in South Korea in February.

The Vancouver Group was announced last month, prior to the development of North and South Korea’s Olympic talks. It is being co-hosted by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and his Canadian counterpart, Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland.

Attendees include the foreign ministers for the United Nations Command Sending States –- the countries that provided troops and supplies to UN forces to defend South Korea –- as well as allies like South Korea, Japan, Sweden and India.

“The meeting will bring together nations from across the globe to demonstrate international solidarity against North Korea’s dangerous and illegal nuclear and ballistic missile programs,” U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a press release last week. “Discussions will focus on advancing and strengthening diplomatic efforts toward a secure, prosperous and denuclearized Korean Peninsula.”

U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis was scheduled to attend a so-called welcome dinner with Tillerson, but is not expected to attend Tuesday’s summit. The Pentagon said Thursday that Mattis was attending the dinner “in support of Secretary Tillerson,” demonstrating a “comprehensive approach” to North Korea.

Noticeably absent from the summit will be representatives from China and Russia. According to U.S. Under Secretary of State Steve Goldstein, Canada and the U.S. jointly agreed to not invite those nations.

Brian Hook, the U.S. State Department’s policy planning staff director, said the U.S. has been “in discussions” with China and Russia leading up to the Vancouver Group and will provide them a “readout” at the summit’s conclusion.

China’s foreign ministry spokesman criticized the summit last week, saying, “It will only create divisions within the international community and harm joint efforts to appropriately resolve the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue,” according to Reuters.

But Hook defended their absence, saying the two countries weren’t UN Command Sending States during the Korean War. He also pushed back on the charge that not including them would hinder global efforts to curb North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

“This is not an alternative to everything that we are doing,” Hook said of the summit, adding that China is “working with us” and “has the same policy goal.”

Just last week, the White House released a statement saying China was “sharply reducing its trade with North Korea” –- an action that supported “the United States-led global effort to apply maximum pressure until the North Korean regime ends its illicit programs, changes its behavior, and moves toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”

The Trump administration has only recently been more complimentary toward China. In late December, President Trump slammed Beijing over reports that Chinese ships had been caught secretly selling oil to North Korea.

As for the Vancouver Group, Hook said it would focus in part on how to increase pressure on North Korea, especially maritime interdiction to cut off resources and disrupt financing streams. This would include pushing the UN to name ships trading with North Korea to ban them from entering ports.

Tillerson told reporters in December the global pressure campaign “is intended to lead to talks,” but “we can’t talk unless North Korea is ready to talk, and I think, as we’ve indicated, we’re waiting for them to indicate a readiness to talk.”

In a statement about Trump’s call with South Korean President Moon Jae-In last Wednesday, the White House said the president “expressed his openness to holding talks between the United States and North Korea at the appropriate time, under the right circumstances.”

The U.S. has also expressed support for the bilateral discussions between North Korea and South Korea regarding the Winter Olympics.

In a continuation of those conversations this week, the two countries agreed that the North would send a 140-member orchestra, according to the head of South Korea’s delegation Lee Woo-sung.

North and South Korea will meet with the International Olympic Committee in Switzerland on Saturday.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Hijab-cutting incident did not happen, Canadian police say

iStock/Thinkstock(TORONTO) — Police are now disputing a report by an 11-year-old girl that a man cut her hijab while she was walking to school.

On Friday, Toronto Police Service officials said in a press release that the girl, later identified as Khawlah Norman in a press conference, reported that she was en route to school when a man came up behind her and cut her hijab with a pair of scissors.

“We collected a lot of evidence including security camera video and interviews,” Mark Pugash, the director of corporate communications with the Toronto Police, said to ABC News. “It led to the only possible conclusion that what was claimed on Friday did not happen.”

When asked if the department would file charges in the case, Pugash said, “Our view is the investigation is concluded and nothing more will come of it.”

In a press conference last week, Noman said she was “scared and confused” after the alleged incident, saying the man tried to cut her hijab twice. The girl’s mother said she “was very sad” and thanked the community for their support. She called upon police to treat the incident as a hate crime.

Reports of the alleged incident reached Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who tweeted Friday, “My heart goes out to Khawlah Noman following this morning’s cowardly attack on her in Toronto. Canada is an open and welcoming country, and incidents like this cannot be tolerated.”

Ryan Bird, a spokesperson for the Toronto District School Board, said, “We are very thankful that this assault did not in fact happen. We won’t be commenting further.”

The Noman family could not immediately be reached for comment.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Twin suicide bombings in Baghdad leave at least 27 dead

iStock/Thinkstock(BAGHDAD) — A pair of suicide bombers shattered three months of relative calm in Baghdad, Iraq, on Monday, killing more than two dozen people and apparently signaling that the Islamic State has not been completely uprooted from Iraq.

The twin bombings erupted around sunrise in busy Tayran Square, in the heart of the country’s capital. Witnesses said the bombers, wearing explosive belts, appeared to target day laborers and shopkeepers gathered in the square to begin work.

Brig. Gen. Saad Maan of the Interior Ministry released a statement confirming that at least 27 people were killed in the attack. He said another 90 people were wounded, but a Health Ministry spokesman put the number of injured at 102.

While no group immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks, they bore the hallmarks of Islamic State terrorism.

One witness, Jawad Al-Zaidi of Nasiriyah, about 110 miles south of Baghdad, told ABC News that two of his cousins were killed in the bombings, the first coming about 6 a.m., followed a short time later by the second deadly blast.

Al-Zaidi said his cousins, both 25-year-old married fathers, were also from the Nasiriyah area. He said his cousins were day laborers.

“Who is going to look after those poor children?” Al-Zaidi said of his cousins’ offspring.

He said the two suicide bombers simply walked into the crowd of people and detonated their explosive belts without warning. Within minutes, sirens sounded across the city as ambulances raced to the area from all directions and medics began treating bloodied and maimed victims strewn throughout the open-air market.

The attack came about a month after Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, the leader of Iraq’s Shiite majority, declared victory over the Islamic State, which overran the country in 2014 and took over large territories.

“Our battle was with the enemy that wanted to kill our civilization, but we have won with our unity and determination,” al-Abadi said at the time.

Following the suicide bombings, al-Abadi met with security officials overseeing Baghdad. His office issued a statement saying the prime minister ordered security to be boosted and for military forces to focus on hunting down and eliminating militant sleeper cells in the country.

On Saturday, a suicide bomber blew himself up at a security checkpoint near the northern edge of Baghdad, injuring at least 10 people. The last surprise attack within Baghdad was a car bombing on Sept. 27 that killed two people and injured four. Two other car bombings on May 5, one at a central Baghdad ice cream shop, killed 26 people.

There was no immediate word if Monday’s bombing will delay national elections scheduled for May. The attacks occurred just two days after al-Abadi said he plans to lead a “cross-sectarian” list in national elections.

Sunni leaders have called for the elections to be postponed to allow the more than 3 million people displaced by fighting to return to their homes.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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