A traditional weekend of merriment in a small Virginia mountain town was disrupted Saturday when a man lost control of his car and drove into a crowd of parade participants.
Several people had to be taken to hospitals by ground and air ambulance, but there were no fatalities, police officials in Damascus, Va., told the Los Angeles Times.
About 1,000 people were participating in the yearly parade when the collision took place, around 2 p.m. local time.
The parade was part of Damascus' annual “Trail Days” event. The Appalachian Trail runs through the town of about 900 people, located along the southern border in the western part of the state. Hikers who have used the trail are invited to return to town to participate in the festival, which includes the parade, hiker talent shows and music.
The driver lost control of his car because of a sudden medical emergency, police said. Damascus police and firefighters, along with first responders from throughout Washington County, were...
Federal investigators gathered Saturday at the site of the Connecticut train crash that left dozens of commuters injured Friday evening.
Eight people remained hospitalized, three in critical condition, officials said. As many as 70 people were injured in the crash.
The collision disrupted travel north of New York City, prompting state and local officials to urge passengers to make alternate transportation plans.
Amtrak suspended all rail travel indefinitely between New York and New Haven, Conn. The agency said an update on the status of the shutdown would come Sunday evening. The Metro-North railroad line suspended local train service indefinitely between its South Norwalk and New Haven stations.
The crash occurred shortly after 6 p.m. on Friday. A Metro-North train coming from New York City derailed and hit a passenger train heading in the other direction, officials said.
Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board arrived at the Fairfield, Conn., station early...
LAS VEGAS -- When people ask Carlos Lucero what he does for a living, his answer often stops them in their tracks.
“I throw people off the Stratosphere," he says jokingly.
Lucero is the man who stands between a person taking the 855-foot plunge to the second level of the Stratosphere Hotel and Casino, or turning away from the controlled fall and taking the Walk of Shame back to the gift shop.
Lucero is the Sky Master, the man who checks the harnesses and straps before thrill-seeking tourists endure the Sky Jump, a ride that opened here in April 2010 and, Lucero says, holds the Guinness World Record for highest commercial decelerator descent.
Think of him as part sky-dive instructor, counselor, bartender and priest.
Many jumpers are panic-stricken. Lucero says soothing things.
Jump masters can't physically touch any customers to help them jump off; people have to do that on their own power. Instead, he talks to them, making them feel comfortable enough to do something they might...
NEW YORK -- Five people were hospitalized in critical condition Friday and dozens more were treated for less serious injuries after a commuter train headed from New York City to suburban Connecticut derailed and hit a train headed in the opposite direction, officials said.
Gov. Dannel Malloy updated the casualty figures late Friday after he arrived at the scene near the Fairfield, Conn., station about 50 miles north of New York City. Of the five people most seriously injured, Malloy said, one was in "very critical" condition.
Malloy said he had no reason to believe that the crash, which occurred shortly after 6 p.m., was "anything other than an accident," and he noted that other trains had passed the same area without incident earlier in the evening.
"These trains at that hour are in fairly constant use, so just before these trains came into contact with one another, other trains had been through the same spot," Malloy said.
Passengers described bumps followed by a sudden stop, then...
Illinois has come within a signature of becoming the 19th state to allow marijuana use for medical purposes.
On Friday, the state Senate voted 35-21 to approve a medical marijuana measure, which now will head for Gov. Pat Quinn’s desk. The governor has not said whether he will sign it.
Democratic Sen. Bill Haine, one of the bill’s sponsors, told the Los Angeles Times that House Bill 1 has a very narrow scope and was crafted with law enforcement officials at the table to avoid the mistakes and pitfalls of medical marijuana programs in other states.
Eighteen states and Washington, D.C., have decriminalized marijuana use for medicinal purposes. California did so in 1996, when the state’s voters approved Proposition 215.
If it becomes law, the Illinois bill will prohibit patients from growing their own pot; instead, plants will be raised at “grow centers” overseen by authorities and the state Department of Agriculture.
Only doctors that have established...
NEW YORK -- A train derailment and collision during evening rush hour injured 20 to 25 people, but none of the injuries are life-threatening, police in Fairfield, Conn., said Friday as emergency workers began scouring the mangled wreckage blocking the tracks north of New York City.
Matt Panilaitis, a Fairfield Police Department spokesman, told the Los Angeles Times that one train sideswiped the other after derailing, causing some cars of the second train to also go off the tracks outside the Fairfield station.
The incident occurred shortly after 6 p.m. and involved a train coming from Manhattan's Grand Central Terminal, about 50 miles away, and a second train heading into New York City.
Photographs taken by passengers in the affected trains and posted on Twitter showed broken windows and twisted metal inside the train cars, splintered tracks, and the front left corner of one of the trains smashed in. Amtrak halted service between New York and Boston indefinitely.
A rider on one of the...
NEW YORK -- Two commuter trains collided in Connecticut during rush hour Friday after a Manhattan-bound train derailed and hit the second train, officials said.
Some cars of the second train also derailed in the incident near Fairfield, about 50 miles north of New York City.
Both trains were from the Metro-North Railroad, which did not give any information about casualties. The incident occurred shortly after 6 p.m.
The Associated Press, quoting Fairfield police, reported that 20 to 25 people were injured. No fatalities were reported.
The New Haven Register quoted Rob Oliver of New Haven, Conn., as saying that his train car filled with smoke just after the collision.
Emergency doors opened and people began leaving the train, said Oliver, who was heading home from his job in Manhattan.
“It was just a crazy scene,” he told the newspaper. “It was definitely a crash. People were thrown. The crew did a good job getting people toward the exits.”
NEW YORK -- The hatchet-wielding hitchhiker known to his legions of Internet fans as Kai craved freedom, but he also craved coffee.
That helped police catch the one-time Internet sensation, Caleb "Kai" McGillvary, 24, who is suspected of murdering a New Jersey lawyer, officials said Friday as they gave more details about the case.
McGillvary, who gained fame last February after using a hatchet to stop what he said was an attempted murder in Fresno, was being held on $3-million bail after being arrested Thursday evening in Philadelphia.
The prosecutor in Union County, N.J., Theodore J. Romankow, said McGillvary would be brought to New Jersey to face charges he murdered 73-year-old Joseph Galfy Jr. on Sunday night. Romankow said the move could be delayed if McGillvary fought extradition.
It took just a few hours for law enforcement to track McGillvary down after they publicly declared him a suspect in Galfy's murder.
"I would imagine that all the appearances on YouTube didn't help him,"...
An Arkansas law that bans most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy was temporarily blocked by a federal judge on Friday.
In a ruling from the bench, U.S. District Court Judge Susan Webber Wright in Little Rock granted a preliminary injunction preventing the Arkansas law from going into effect as scheduled, a member of the court staff said by telephone. It was scheduled to start Aug. 16.
Wright held that allowing the law to go into effect would cause “irreparable harm” to the doctors who sought the injunction and their patients. The decision means the law will be delayed until the constitutionality of the law is decided.
No date for arguments on the case has been set, according to the court staff.
The Arkansas Human Heartbeat Protection Act is among the recent efforts by states to limit the circumstances and time during which a woman can legally have an abortion as the U.S. Supreme Court held in the 1973 landmark case Roe vs. Wade. The Supreme Court ruled that a woman...
It all came down to a mother's instincts.
An Albuquerque woman on Wednesday hopped into her car and for seven miles chased the man suspected of kidnapping her daughter.
The pursuit by Melissa Torrez ended only after her car collided with the suspect's. The man, later identified as David Jesus Hernandez, escaped on foot, leading to a manhunt and eventually his arrest, authorities said.Hernandez, 31, had turned himself in to police in the suburb in Rio Rancho on Thursday after seeing his picture on television, Albuquerque Police Officer Tasia Martinez told the Los Angeles Times on Friday.
“He claimed innocence to media cameras, but refused to speak in [an] interview” with authorities, Martinez said.
The chase began about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at an apartment complex northwest of downtown Albuquerque.
The 4-year-old girl was playing in her yard when a man in a silver Buick allegedly pulled up and snatched her, Martinez said. Other children who were nearby alerted the girl&...
As an editor and reporter, Michael Muskal has covered local, national, economic and foreign issues at three newspapers, including the Los Angeles Times. @latimesmuskal
Matt Pearce, a University of Missouri graduate, has previously written for the Kansas City Star, the Los Angeles Review of Books, The New Inquiry and The Pitch. @mattdpearce