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@YosemiteNPS/Twitter(MARIPOSA COUNTY, Calif.) -- Firefighters are struggling to contain a deadly wildfire that more than doubled in size on Monday, charring nearly 9,300 acres of land near Yosemite National Park in California's Sierra Nevada Mountains.

The so-called Ferguson Fire, burning in Mariposa County about 70 miles northwest of Fresno, increased to 9,266 acres by Monday evening, up from about 4,000 acres on the previous day, fire officials said.

The fire, which ignited Friday, was only about 2 percent contained by Monday at 7 p.m. local time as crews grappled with the area’s steep mountain terrain and extreme temperatures that made it difficult to slow the fire’s spread.

“Due to continued hot and dry conditions over the next five days we urge you to be vigilant with your safety,” Cal Fire said in a statement Monday. “With decreased visibility due to the smoke please stay cautious and be aware while driving in and around the fire area.”

At least 1,486 fire personnel were deployed in an effort to stop the flames from reaching more than 100 homes and other structures that are threatened, fire officials said.

Braden Varney, a bulldozer operator with Cal Fire’s Madera-Mariposa-Merced Uni, died while battling the fire on Saturday when his bulldozer reportedly rolled over. Crews retrieved his body on Monday as intense flames had hampered workers from getting to the scene earlier.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

The Ferguson Fire is one of at least 34 large wildfires burning across the American West, where temperatures have reached triple digits in some areas this week.

Nearby Yosemite National Park, a go-to tourist destination for camping and hiking, remains open to visitors, but officials said poor air conditions could force visitors to limit strenuous outdoor activities.

“Visibility and air quality in Yosemite continue to be affected by smoke from the #FergusonFire,” park officials said in a tweet late Monday. “Smoke may be heavy at times; be prepared to limit any strenuous outdoor activity during the periods of high concentration.”

State Route 140, a key route into the park, was partially shut down over weekend, forcing motorist to find alternate ways inside.

Several nearby areas were placed under mandatory evacuation, including Clearing House, Mariposa Pines, Cedar Lodge/Savage’s Trading Post and Sweetwater Ridge, officials said Monday, adding that other nearby residents should be prepared to evacuate at anytime.

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Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WATERBURY, Conn.) -- In some cases, courage is contagious.

That was the case for Jahana Hayes, a longtime teacher who decided to make her first foray into professional politics.

Hayes told ABC News that the wave of new candidates running for office across the country without formal political experience “gave me the courage to say, ‘You know what, maybe I will say yes this time.’”

Hayes, who gained country-wide attention in 2016 when she was named National Teacher of the Year and awarded the associated crystal apple statuette by then-President Obama, said that the flood of people running for office this year, in spite of a lack of political experience, helped motivate her to run.

She said that she had been approached “by folks in my community” to run for other positions in the past, including state senator and various executive offices in the state. But this time, when Rep. Elizabeth Etsy announced that she wouldn’t be seeking re-election, “it was just different.”

She said she saw so many candidates across the country “bucking the trend that you have to check off all these boxes before you’re even considered to be viable” and it helped give her “the courage for me to stand up this time.”

One of the people who gave her encouragement to throw her hat in the ring was Sen. Chris Murphy, who Hayes called “a tremendous advocate.” Murphy hasn’t issued a formal endorsement in the 5th District’s race – and because of the state’s Democratic Party rules based on delegate counts from the party's nominating convention, Hayes’ opponent Mary Glassman got the party’s endorsement – but his office confirmed to ABC News that he did encourage Hayes to run for Congress.

Hayes and Glassman are running for an open seat, but Glassman has decades of experience in Connecticut politics, having served as a selectman and nominee for the lieutenant governor twice.

“There's an appetite for change,” Hayes said.

Hayes, 45, is one of a growing number of teachers now running for office, including some in states where drops in teacher funding prompted frustrated teachers into political action.

The mom-of-four, who is married to a detective, said that she is “concerned” by the current administration, pointing to the country’s immigration policy (which she said “is really one that tears me apart”), healthcare, and foreign relations as areas of change that have been particularly troubling.

“I think that everything is about timing and I think that I probably would not have seriously considered this four years ago,” she said.

Like so many others who have decided to turn to politics, her personal narrative is a big part of how she feels a connection with voters. Hayes’ campaign website notes that she grew up in a Connecticut housing project, her family struggled with poverty and addiction, and after she got pregnant as a teen, "all hopes for any upward mobility seemed beyond her grasp."

Hayes’ work as a high school social studies teacher first brought her to the White House for the National Teaching Award presentation in 2016, but then brought her across the country. She said she visited 30 different states in the year after the award, as is custom for all recipients, and that helped expose her to the universal problems facing communities across the country.

“The things that I’m struggling with and the things that my students are struggling with and the things that we're struggling with in Waterbury [Connecticut] are not that different from the things that they're struggling with in Wisconsin or California,” she said.

After finishing her year-long stint as a national teachers ambassador of sorts, Hayes returned to her school district, working on teacher recruitment instead of in the classroom, and it’s a position she still holds.

“It’s difficult” working full time and running a campaign, she said, “and I could have probably taken a leave of absence... but the whole point of me doing this is to stress that everyone should get involved” in the political process.

She now has until the state’s Democratic primary is held on Aug. 14 to get enough support to beat out Glassman for a spot in the general election.

“I really have to get out there… to have face-to-face voter contact,” she said.

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ABC News(DETROIT) -- Four Michigan teenagers charged with murder in a highway rock-throwing incident agreed to plea deals on Monday, angering members of the victim’s family who feared the boys might get off easy under the agreement.

The teens, ages 15 to 17, agreed to plead guilty to one count of manslaughter in the October death of Kenneth White, 32, who was ridding in a van on Interstate 75 when a large rock came crashing down from an overpass.

The four teens, along with a fifth suspect, 18-year-old Kyle Anger, were originally charged as adults with second-degree murder, conspiracy to commit second-degree murder, six felony counts of malicious destruction of property and two misdemeanor counts of malicious destruction of property. It’s unclear if the manslaughter charge would be filed as adult or juvenile, which would impact the sentencing.

Anger, who allegedly threw the rock that stuck White, did not appear in court on Monday.

The victim’s mother, Theresa Simpson, said she was angry after the court hearing.

"I have a lot of anger towards all of them right now, still. But one day it will, one day I know I will have that resolved,” Simpson told reporters outside the court on Monday. “But right now, it's just, it's real hard for me to let go of those emotions.

She said she wants her son's death to be a reminder for children everywhere to "think before you do something" that could cause harm to someone.

"I mean, no matter what time they get, it's never going to bring back my son, you know,” Simpson said. "I want all kids out there to understand everything has consequences."

The four boys could have faced up to life in prison if convicted of murder, but that charge was dropped, as were the 10 other felony charges.

"I hope they see what they've done," White's aunt, Annette Safran, told reporters on Monday. "I just hope these children learn from this. Something good comes out of this for all children -- not just the five that did it, but for all children. I really do."

Another aunt, Nancy Jobe, had much harsher words for the suspects in the case.

"I don't agree with this. I think it's wrong," Jobe said. "These kids are old enough to know what the hell they did. They will never understand the pain and anguish they've caused."

The four teens are expected to return to court in 30 to 60 days, an attorney said. Anger is scheduled to appear in court next week.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Growing up on a cattle ranch in northern Arizona, Ethan Lane recalls the Mexican gray wolves that would regularly prey on his livestock.

“These wolves are very threatening. The cattle would sense their presence and change their behaviors in response to the pressure,” Lane said, adding that the wolves, listed as an endangered species by federal law, were hard to distinguish from the muscular coyotes that also roamed the area.

Tension over whether the Mexican gray wolf should still be classified as an endangered species is just one example in an ongoing battle between federal and state interests to reform the Endangered Species Act -- the subject of a Senate committee hearing Tuesday.

Conservation groups say that giving states more input means that more species that need protection will not be listed as endangered and would block the ability of advocacy groups to sue to protect species.

Lane now serves as the executive director of the Public Lands Council and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Federal Lands, two groups that represent the interests of U.S. cattle and sheep producers.

Lane said that while the Mexican gray wolf is listed as endangered, federal law also establishes the creation of an experimental wolf population that disturbs livestock and threatens ranchers’ livelihoods.

“Under the current Endangered Species Act, the federal government is in the driver’s seat, and their obligation to consult with state and local governments is a tangential one,” he told ABC News.

Meanwhile, wolf advocates are pushing for the release of the wolves into Arizona and New Mexico to limit inbreeding and promote genetic diversity, which they say will aid in the wolves’ recovery.

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee is set to discuss a draft of a bill released by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., earlier this month. The bill would shift some of the responsibilities under the Endangered Species Act from the Interior Department and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and give state governments more input in decisions about endangered species and how to restore populations. The bill is supported by the Western Governors Association, which represents the governors of 19 Western states and three U.S. territories.

The same committee, and its counterpart in the House, considered similar proposals to change the Endangered Species Act last year but conservation groups lobbied against, even bringing television personality Jeff Corwin to testify against them in part because of a provision they said would hurt wolf conservation efforts.

In 2015, Mead launched the Species Conservation and Endangered Species Act Initiative to “create a mechanism for states and stakeholders to share best practices in species management; promote the role of states in species conservation; and explore options for improving the efficacy of the Endangered Species Act.”

Lane, who said the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association has been working with this initiative “since the very first meeting,” said Barrasso’s proposed legislation is “absolutely a step in the right direction.”

“It’s one of our top priorities to modernize the Endangered Species Act,” he said. “But we can’t do it along partisan lines. We have to engage in a bipartisan manner and focus on recovery, which is what this bill is doing.”

Gov. Doug Burgum, R-N.D., the vice chair of the Western Governors Association, told ABC News he’s “appreciative” of Barrasso’s bipartisan efforts to engage with state leaders.

“This discussion draft would allow more flexibility to implement solutions that enhance the role of state governments in recovering species, while also providing a greater voice to those at the local level who are closest to these issues. By allowing states to innovate, we can make meaningful progress to help these threatened and endangered species recovery,” he said in a statement.

Under the current law, scientists from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service evaluate petitions to list species as endangered and write plans on how to recover the population, but the process is underfunded and has a backlog of petitions waiting for a decision.

Barrasso's proposed bill would create a "recovery team" for a listed species including representatives from the Fish and Wildlife Service, state and local wildlife management officials, and scientists. This group would develop a plan to increase the population of the endangered species and make recommendations on whether a species should no longer be listed as endangered.

“We must do more than just keep listed species on life support -- we need to see them recovered. This draft legislation will increase state and local input and improve transparency in the listing process. It will promote the recovery of species and allow local economies to flourish," Barrasso said in a statement.

But Noah Greenwald, endangered species director for the Center for Biological Diversity, said the Endangered Species Act was originally put in place because states weren't doing enough to protect species and that under Barrasso's plan the states would essentially be allowed to veto protections for species.

"These bills would just absolutely make [the backlog] worse. And that's the point of these bills is to deny species protection, that's why I call them extinction bills," said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director for the Center for Biological Diversity.

Lane believes under the current Endangered Species Act, environmental groups take advantage of the federal government’s Judgment Fund and the Equal Access to Justice Act to threaten lawsuits against the Fish and Wildlife Service that pressure the agency to act in certain ways.

“They’ll file suits against the government on a timeline, say, pressuring the government to list a species as endangered, which creates a backlog. This reinforces a model of payment to these [environmental] groups, which they benefit from,” he said.

Greenwald said some of those arguments are not because there's a problem with the Endangered Species Act but because protecting a species conflicts with an economic interest for the state.

Earlier this year, more than 100 members of Congress asked for more funding for endangered species protections after the White House's proposed budget included a significant cut to the Fish and Wildlife Service budget.

The bipartisan Congressional Western Caucus has also introduced nine bills to reform the Endangered Species Act, including a bill sponsored by Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Ark., that would change the process of petitioning for a species to be protected.

That bill says that if too many petitions are pending the Interior Secretary could declare a backlog and dismiss petitions seen as unwarranted. Environmental groups say that change would take away an opportunity for public input in the process of deciding which species are listed as endangered.

The Sierra Club said that the House package of bills shows that lawmakers are trying to get rid of the Endangered Species Act instead of fully funding it.

“We know the Endangered Species Act already allows for flexibility in protecting endangered wildlife. The law requires federal agencies to work together with state, tribal and local officials to prevent extinction. We do not need to change or undo a law that clearly works," Jordan Giaconia, a Sierra Club federal policy associate said in a statement.

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Cumberland County Sheriff's Department (CUMBERLAND COUNTY, N.C.) -- A husband in North Carolina tried to kill his wife with a scheme straight out of ancient Rome: by surreptitiously slipping poison into her food.

Police in Cumberland County have charged Eugene Pittman with first-degree attempted murder after he put ant poison in his wife's meal, according to Durham ABC station WTVD.

According to the arrest warrant, Pittman's wife noticed a strange, sweet taste in her food. The warrant states his wife, Carmen Jackson-Pittman, even jokingly asked while she was eating if he was trying to poison her.

Jackson-Pittman ended up falling asleep and when she awoke, the warrant states, her hands and mouth were duct taped and Pittman was attempting to suffocate her.

His wife told police that he removed his hand from covering her nose and told her, "You have two choices: You can leave, or you can die."

The incident happened May 12, but Pittman was arrested on Monday.

The warrant says Pittman put Terro ant poison in her meal. The main ingredient in the poison is borax, which can cause unconsciousness, renal failure and respiratory depression in "severe poisonings," according to the Pesticide Action Network, a nonprofit that tracks pesticides in food and the environment.

Court records show the 52-year-old man is being held at Cumberland Detention Center on $50,000 bond.

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- FBI counter-intelligence agents have arrested a 29-year-old Russian woman on charges she acted as a Kremlin agent while working over the past three years to build relationships in the upper ranks of the National Rifle Association.

Maria Butina, the cofounder of the mysterious Russian gun-rights group called “Right to Bear Arms” who recently graduated with a master’s degree from American University, “took steps to develop relationships with American politicians in order to establish private, or as she called them, ‘back channel’ lines of communication,” according to an affidavit attached to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Washington on Saturday.

“These lines could be used by the Russian Federation to penetrate the U.S. national decision-making apparatus to advance the agenda of the Russian Federation,” the affidavit reads, using Russia’s official country name.

She is being held pending a hearing set for later this week, according to a Department of Justice press release. The case brought against her was not brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team, and it is not known whether it has any connection to the broader investigation into Russian meddling in the presidential campaign.

Butina denied the charges through an attorney, who called the complaint against her “overblown” and said she “intends to defend her rights vigorously and looks forward to clearing her name.”

According to Butina’s attorney, the FBI executed a search warrant at her Washington, D.C., apartment in April, and the affidavit states that agents searched her electronic devices, including her laptop and iPhone.

“While styled as some sort of conspiracy, in actuality it describes a conspiracy to have a ‘friendship dinner’ … with a group of Americans and Russians to discuss foreign relations between the two countries – hardly a shocking development for a Russian International Relations student living in Washington,” Driscoll said. “There is simply no indication of Butina seeking to influence or undermine any specific policy or law in the United States – only to promote a better relationship between the two nations.”

In the affidavit, however, the FBI alleges that Butina came to the U.S. under the direction of an unnamed Russian official, who based on the description, appears to be her longtime mentor, Alexander Torshin. A former member of the Russian parliament, Torshin is one of President Vladimir Putin’s closest allies and is now deputy governor of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation.

Torshin is a lifetime member of the NRA and -- until this past April, when he was included in a round of U.S. sanctions against Russian oligarchs – a frequent attendee of both NRA events and the annual National Prayer Breakfast in Washington.

Torshin and Butina accompanied several NRA board members on a December 2015 visit to Moscow, and Torshin sat at a dinner table with Donald Trump Jr. at the the May 2016 National Rifle Association convention. He and Butina also attended the 2017 National Prayer Breakfast in Washington D.C., where President Donald Trump was the keynote speaker.

A White House spokesperson and a spokesperson for Donald Trump Jr. both did not respond to a request for comment.

The affidavit quotes from several private message exchanges shortly before the 2016 presidential election between not only Butina and the Russian Official but Butina and an unnamed U.S. person, both of whom, the affidavit notes, she met and communicated with regularly as they developed an “influence operation.”

In one early exchange, Butina emailed the U.S. person in 2015 describing what she called the “central place and influence” the NRA enjoys in an unnamed political party as the “largest sponsor of the elections to the US congress, as well as a sponsor of The CPAC conference and other events.”

The following year, the U.S. person emailed an acquaintance, saying “I’ve been involved in securing a VERY private line of communication between the Kremlin” and leaders of an unnamed political party through an unnamed gun rights organization.

Shortly after, Butina exchanged messages with the Russian official on Twitter, in which they discussed strategy and impressed upon each other the importance of their work.

“Time will tell,” Butina wrote. “We made our bet. I am following our game.”

“No doubt,” the Russian official responded. “Of course we will win … And it is not about winning today’s fight (although we are striving for it) but to win the entire battle. This is the battle for the future, it cannot be lost! Or everyone will lose.”

Butina actually crossed paths with both President Trump and his son, Donald Trump Jr., during the 2016 campaign, including a moment at the FreedomFest conference in Las Vegas in July 2015 when she asked the Republican candidate directly about his views on U.S. sanctions against Russia.

In recent months, Butina’s close ties to senior officials with the NRA have prompted criticism of the gun rights organization. Sen. Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, led an effort to determine whether Russian nationals donated money to any offshoots of the NRA as part of any effort to influence American politics.

The National Rifle Association has denied receiving money “from foreign persons or entities in connection with United States elections.” An NRA spokesperson did not respond to multiple requests from ABC News for comment regarding the charges against Butina.

Critics of the controversial gun-rights group pounced on the fresh allegations.

“The NRA has avoided explaining its ties to Putin for more than a year now,” John Feinblatt, President of Everytown for Gun Safety, told ABC News Monday. “That should end now that DOJ has charged a Russian national with deep ties to NRA leadership” with trying to infiltrate organizations to advance the interests of Russia.

The recent arrest represents a sudden reversal of fortune for Butina. On May 12, Butina she was celebrating, Donning a royal blue cap and gown as she accepted her diploma from American University, earning a degree in International Relations.

According to her student profile, Butina focused on “Global Security” for the past two years. A webpage on American University’s website offered several details about the program, including developing a student’s ability to “analyze how different understandings of peace and security inform policy choices and ways of thinking about patterns of conflict.”

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Harris County Sheriff's Office(HOUSTON) -- A parolee who cut off his ankle monitor is now wanted in connection to a series of murders in the Houston area, police said.

Jose Gilberto Rodriguez, 46, is a suspect in at least three slayings in the last week, with police calling him a "possible serial killer" at a press conference Monday night.

Rodriguez may be responsible for at least five attacks in the area, three of which resulted in shooting deaths, police said.

The first attack, on July 9, was a home-invasion robbery where the victim survived.

Four days later, Pamela Johnson, 62, was found dead inside her home in northwest Harris County, police said in a news release. Her car, a 2004 Chrysler PT Cruiser, was stolen from her home and found abandoned the next day at nearby Willowbrook Mall.

When investigators reviewed surveillance video from the mall, they observed the suspect, later identified as Rodriguez, park the car and leave the scene.

On Saturday, a second murder occurred at a mattress store in Houston, police said. The third murder was at another mattress store in the area on Sunday.

On Monday morning, a transit driver was robbed and shot but is expected to survive, police said.

Rodriguez should be considered armed and dangerous, said police, who warned the public not to approach him.

"The sooner we can get him into custody, the sooner we can all breath better," Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said at the press conference.

Rodriguez is about 5-foot-7, 135 pounds with a thin build, black hair and tattoos on both forearms. He was last seen in a 2017 dark gray Nissan Sentra with Texas license plate K-P-D-2-8-0-5.

Rodriguez was last spotted in the Houston area, and may be going into neighborhoods and knocking on doors, pretending he’s looking for somebody, police said.

Anyone with information should call the Harris County Sheriff's Office Homicide Unit at 713-274-9100.

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USGS(HONOLULU) -- A lava bomb punctured the roof of a tour boat in Hawaii Monday injuring 23 near where lava from the Kilauea volcano continues to spill into the ocean, the Hawaii Civil Defense said.

A lava bomb is a large rock tossed through the area in a volcanic explosion, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). In this case, the rock that slammed into the tour boat was the size of a basketball.

Four passengers onboard the boat were taken by ambulance to Hilo Medical Center, according to the Hawaii County Fire Department.

Two of those passengers are in stable condition, but the third, a woman in her 20s, was listed in serious condition with a fractured femur. Nine other passengers who were onboard the boat drove themselves to the hospital, and, according to the fire department, their injuries were superficial. It's unclear the total number of people on the boat.

This comes as lava continues to spill into the ocean, which USGS said has created a new lava “island” just offshore.

A collapse explosion event, which is measured in earthquake magnitude, caused an increase of activity from fissure 8 resulting in some channel overflows, USGS said.

Last week, the lava flow destroyed the Kua O Ka La Charter School and Ahalanui Count Beach Park, and the latest number of homes destroyed by the lava flows since the eruption began May 3 is 706, according to Hawaii Civil Defense.

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The Mother Emanuel Nine Memorial/Handel Architects(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Plans for a new memorial honoring the nine victims of the 2015 church shooting tragedy in Charleston, South Carolina, have been unveiled to the church community.

Michael Arad, the architect who helped design the National September 11 Memorial in New York, will design the “Emanuel Nine Memorial” and unveiled the plans after a 200th anniversary ceremony for the Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, where the attack took place, according to a news release.

“The memorial honors the nine victims and five survivors of the June 17, 2015, tragedy, the largest racially-motivated mass murder in recent American history,” the release reads.

Arad reflected on the church’s 200-year history and all that the Mother Emanuel A.M.E. Church stood for in this time span.

The “Emanuel Nine tragedy marks another dark moment for the church, though faith helped to heal and bring light into the darkness,” he added.

Plans for the Emanuel Nine Memorial, unveiled on Sunday, will include a courtyard with two benches “facing each other with high backs that arc up and around like sheltering wings,” according to the release.

Additionally, there will be a survivors’ garden, six stone benches, and five trees, “symbolizing the five survivors -- the sixth signifying that the church is also a survivor,” the release said. A marble fountain will be placed at the center of the memorial’s courtyard with the names of the victims carved on the edges.

“The design reminds me of so many different things," Charleston City Council and Mother Emanuel A.M.E. church member Dudley Gregorie said in the release on Sunday. "It reminds me sometimes of a ship for enslaved people who were going to freedom. Sometimes it reminds me of the wings of angels. Sometimes it reminds me just of the arms of God.”

Mother Emanuel's pastor, Rev. Eric S.C. Manning said the memorial is a “spirit of resiliency” and “celebrate[s] the grace in forgiveness.”

Additionally, he hopes the memorial will allow the world “to rise above racism and overcome hate with love.”

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ABC News(WEYMOUTH, Mass.) --  A Massachusetts police officer, Army veteran and father of two who died this weekend after being shot by his own weapon would have marked his six-year anniversary on the force Monday, authorities said.

Weymouth police officer Michael Chesna and a local resident died in the incident Sunday.

The alleged gunman, 20-year-old Emanuel "Manny" Lopes, is in police custody but has not appeared in court.

The deadly shootings just outside Boston took place after Weymouth police responded to a report of an erratic driver and found a crashed BMW, the Norfolk District Attorney's office said. The BMW driver had fled on foot, prosecutors said.

Officers, including Chesna, were searching for the driver when they found Lopes vandalizing a home, according to prosecutors.

Chesna drew his gun and issued commands to Lopes before Lopes then allegedly hit Chesna in the head with a rock, prosecutors said.

When Chesna fell to the ground, Lopes allegedly took his gun and repeatedly shot the officer in the head and body, prosecutors said.

Another officer arrived and shot Lopes in the leg, prosecutors said.

Lopes then fled with Chesna’s gun to a nearby home where he allegedly killed a woman, prosecutors said.

Authorities did not release the slain resident's name, but The Boston Globe identified her as Vera Adams, 77.

"She was just a wonderful, wonderful person. Do anything for you,” Sandra Boucher, a sister of Adams' late husband, told the Globe.

Chesna, 42, an Army veteran, leaves behind a wife and two children ages 9 and 4, Weymouth Police Chief Richard Grimes said Sunday.

Monday would have marked is six-year anniversary with the department, Grimes said.

Chesna was a native of Weymouth but, according to ABC Boston affiliate WCVB-TV, had no concerns about enforcing the law among old acquaintances.

"I have a job to do," the slain officer had said, according to WCVB-TV.

The on-duty officer's death has left the community in mourning, with an outpouring of support from the governor, FBI, state police and local district attorney.

"This is an awful day for Weymouth and for Massachusetts," District Attorney Michael Morrissey said in a statement Sunday. "Our hearts are very much with the surviving families of these victims."

Col. Kerry Gilpin, superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police, said in a statement, said, "I offer our deepest condolences to the family of Officer Chesna, the family of the Weymouth woman who was also killed, and the Weymouth Police Department.”

She added: "The State Police Detective Unit for Norfolk County, the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, and the State Police Ballistics Section, and our State Police Crime Lab will work tirelessly alongside District Attorney Morrissey and the Weymouth Police Department to speak for these two victims by holding the defendant accountable for these horrific crimes.”

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker said, "I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Officer Chesna and an innocent bystander today and my thoughts and prayers are with their families, loved ones and the Weymouth [Police Department] after this tragic loss."

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iStock/Thinkstock(SAN ANTONIO) -- An instrument used to calibrate nuclear material containing a small amount of plutonium and cesium in the possession of federal experts went missing last year, according to a San Antonio police report.

According to the police report, the device and material were stolen from a car in San Antonio. The story was first reported by the Center of Public Integrity which found that the missing nuclear material was to be retrieved from a research lab in San Antonio, Texas, by two Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory security experts.

Plutonium and cesium are both radioactive materials that could be used in nuclear weapons. The amount of nuclear material that went missing, however, was insufficient to pose a threat, according to local authorities.

The Department of Energy could not immediately be reached for comment.

Officer Carlos Ortiz who was at the original scene in San Antonio told ABC News that the case was a typical "smash-and-grab" with no fingerprint left, surveillance recorded or witnesses available to help find the suspect.

There have been no additional reports related to the incident since.

Federal watchdogs have previously flagged troubles tracking lost nuclear material overseas.

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Dave Faherty/WSOC9(LENOIR, N.C.) -- A manhunt is underway in North Carolina for a suspect accused of shooting a sheriff's deputy during a traffic stop, Caldwell County officials said Monday.

The deputy, whose name and condition have not been released, was shot around 11:30 p.m. Sunday, officials said in a press release.

The Caldwell County Sheriff's Office has released images they say are of the suspect's car as they work to track down the shooter and determine a motive.

The car is described by authorities as a blue, four-door Toyota Corolla from the early 1990s with North Carolina license plate AFJ-5570.

A man was driving the car and a woman was in the passenger seat, the sheriff's office said.

Following the shooting Sunday, the injured deputy was flown by helicopter to Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte for treatment, the county said.

The deputy had been working with the sheriff’s office for just over a year and was wearing a protective vest during the incident, but was struck below the vest, the county said.

Crimestoppers has offered up to $1,000 for information leading to an arrest in the case, the sheriff's office said.

Anyone who sees the car is urged to call the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office at 828-758-2324.

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ABC(NEW YORK) -- Hot weather moving into California and parts of western Rockies on Monday and the next several days -- with temperatures soaring into the 100s -- will has authorities fearing more fires could start.

There are 35 large uncontained wildfires burning across the western U.S. on Monday morning.

Temperatures soared yesterday to 100 degrees in Portland, Oregon, for the first time this year. The temperature was just a few degrees shy of a record.

With the heat, dry weather, gusty winds and dry lightning, numerous fire and heat warnings have been issued for the West.

Heat is shifting south into central California and parts of Nevada over the next few days.

It's also very hot in the East and the South, with temperatures in the 90s, but with humidity making it feel like it's near or over 100 degrees from Texas to the nation’s capital.

A heat advisory was issued for five states from Oklahoma to New York.

Flooding problems

Over the weekend, very heavy rain fell in a short period of time in parts of the Southwest and into the Midwest causing flash flooding.

Just east of Las Vegas Saturday night almost half an inch of rain fell in just five minutes.

Record rainfall of over 2 inches fell in part of Utah on Saturday.

Flash flood watches continue Monday morning from New Mexico into Colorado for more locally heavy rain as monsoon season continues.

A cold front stretches from the Great Lakes into the Southwest on Monday morning adding to the lift in the atmosphere -- and creating more storms with heavy rainfall.

The cold front will eventually move east and bring storms and very heavy rain to the East Coast from Boston to Washington, D.C. on Tuesday.

Flash flooding, lightning and gusty winds are possible for the East Coast.

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Portland Police Department(PORTLAND, Ore.) -- A poorly driving alleged drug dealer's escape from police lasted just minutes on Sunday when he crashed into a Drug and Vice Division car with $45,000 in ecstasy in his possession.

Police in Portland, Oregon, said they were conducting a narcotics investigation when they spotted a suspect's vehicle at a Jack in the Box fast-food restaurant.

After pulling into the parking lot, the suspect tried to flee -- only to plow his car into a K9 officer's car bringing an end to the chase immediately after it started.

Toren Paul Flom, 25, was taken into custody by Portland police after he was found with 458 grams (just over a pound) of MDMA, better known as ecstasy or molly, in his crashed car, police said. A subsequent search of his home found an additional 115 grams of the drug.

In total, police said the haul amounted to 2,865 "street doses" worth about $45,000.

Toren Paul Flom, 25, was taken into custody by Portland police after he was found with 458 grams (just over a pound) of MDMA, better known as ecstasy or molly, in his crashed car, police said. A subsequent search of his home found an additional 115 grams of the drug.

In total, police said the haul amounted to 2,865 "street doses" worth about $45,000.

Flom was charged Sunday with delivery of MDMA, possession of MDMA, attempt to elude by vehicle and reckless driving.

No police officers, including the police dog, were injured in the car accident.



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ABC(STANISLAUS COUNTY, Calif.) -- Police credited a "quick-thinking" gas station clerk in California for helping a woman escape a group of men who allegedly kidnapped and sexually assaulted her.

Police in Stanislaus County, California, called the clerk, Savannah Pritchett, “a true hero” on Saturday after she helped a panicked customer a few days earlier when the woman said she had convinced her kidnappers to stop so she could use the restroom.

Surveillance footage from the scene on Wednesday showed Pritchett sneaking the victim a cellphone to call the police and locking her inside the store’s bathroom -- just moments before the alleged kidnappers walked in.

Police arrived with their guns drawn shortly after and arrested Anthony Sandoval, 18, and another suspect. It was unclear if Sandoval had obtained an attorney.

“Her bravery and quick-thinking saved a woman who was kidnapped and sexually assaulted,” the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department said in a Facebook post Saturday night. “The clerk stepped up, locked the doors, hid the woman and called our deputies. ... When we work together, we can do great things in our community.”

Two of the suspects were taken into custody at the scene and two other suspects were arrested later on, the department said.

It referred to Pritchett as a “hero,” but she said she’s anything but a hero.

“No, I don't want to be called a hero, because I would just hope that if anyone came up to you talking about the need help and they've been kidnapped, I really hope that they would have helped her too,” Pritchett told “Good Morning America” on Sunday. “The girl told me she tried to get help from two different guys in Fresno and I think in Bakersfield or something and both the guys drove right off from her.”

Police said the victim was abducted about 90 miles away in from the store in Fresno on Tuesday and had been sexually assaulted. The suspects appeared to have ties to local gangs and face various charges, including armed robbery, sexual assault and kidnapping.

They're scheduled to appear in court within the next few days, police said.

Pritchett said she was overjoyed when she heard news that the woman was OK.

“I’m very thankful that I got to help that girl and I am very thankful that she’s home safe with her family and now I'm happy that they got those guys off the street,” Pritchett said.

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