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    A local fourth-grade teacher at St. Columba Catholic School was brought to tears by the generosity of others who donated some much-needed school supplies for her class.

    A local fourth grade teacher at St. Columba Catholic School was brought to tears by the generosity of others who donated some much needed school supplies.
    Some of the donated items included yoga balls for kids to sit on to help with Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or anyone who just needs some movement throughout the day.
    Also, supplies for independent reading time. 
    Teacher Jennifer Robuck told NBC7 these items will help her kids stay focused and learn more efficiently every single day.
    "We don't go into this to become rich.  We do it because we love helping kids. But there's things that we want and we need for our classroom," she said as her eyes filled with tears.
    The donations were made possible by the non-profit organization, Help a Teacher.
    Teachers make a wish list for school supplies and then anyone can purchase the items big or small.
    They can do that by visiting https://www.facebook.com/helpateacher/
    The service is completely free for teachers.A local fourth grade teacher at St. Columba Catholic School was brought to tears by the generosity of others who donated some much needed school supplies.

    One of the items donated on Thursday included yoga balls for kids to sit on, which can help with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or for students who just need some movement throughout the day. Also, supplies for independent reading time. 

    Teacher Jennifer Robuck told NBC7 these items will help her kids stay focused and learn more efficiently every single day.

    "We don't go into this to become rich," she said as her eyes filled with tears. "We do it because we love helping kids. But there's things that we want and we need for our classroom." 

    The donations were made possible by the non-profit organization, Help a Teacher.

    Teachers make wishlists for school supplies and then anyone can purchase the items big or small. The service is completely free for teachers.

    Anyone who wishes to donate to a teacher can check out their list here


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    Two San Diegans were killed at point-blank range in Tijuana, Mexico, over the weekend, their school's superintendent confirmed to NBC 7.

    Seventeen-year-old Christopher Alexis Gomez, a high school senior at O'Farrell Charter School in Encanto, and Juan Suarez Ojeda, a graduate from Ingenuity Charter School in Skyline, were shot in the head Sunday near a housing complex in Tijuana. A third man was also killed in the attack, but officials have not released his name. 

    Superintendent Johnathan Dean confirmed the deaths and said the schools created a GoFundMe page to assist their families with funeral arrangements. 

    Tijuana police confirmed three men were found dead with apparent gunshot wounds at 5:50 a.m. on Sunday but did not provide any details about their investigation or if any suspects were identified.

    Both Ojeda and Gomez had attended the charter schools since they were in middle school. Dean said this week has been a trying time for their schools. 

    Gomez was on his school's football team and had relatives that attend the school with him, Dean said.

    Dean described him as “Real lighthearted, never a discipline problem, just a really good kid."

    Dean said Ojeda was visiting one of his parents, who lives in Tijuana, when the shooting occurred.

    He said Ojeda was never in trouble as a student and had frequent conversations with his teachers about planning his future. Dean said Ojeda's mother pushed him to earn his high school diploma, part of the reason he enrolled at Ingenuity.

    “That’s what’s so tragic. Their lives ended so young," Dean said.

    Students and friends of the two young men spent Thursday brainstorming ideas for honoring them on campus. A memorial bench and a jersey retirement ceremony for Gomez were suggested.

    Students also gathered after school and released balloons in their memory.

    Dean said he has read in news reports that Gomez and Ojeda were tortured before they were shot, but law enforcement on either side of the border have yet to confirm that.

    No other information was available.

    Please refresh this page for updates on this story. Details may change as more information becomes available.



    Photo Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images, File

    An American flag flies along a section of the U.S.-Mexico border, with the Mexican city of Tijuana in the background (L) in San Diego, Calif.An American flag flies along a section of the U.S.-Mexico border, with the Mexican city of Tijuana in the background (L) in San Diego, Calif.

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    A new museum will pop up in Los Angeles at the beginning of 2019.

    It is the first Weedmaps Marijuana Museum in California, which will show visitors the history of marijuana consumption over the years, including places, periods and manner in which it has been consumed.

    Weedmaps is a company that specializes in helping medical and recreational marijuana patients find doctors, dispensaries, stores and other services since 2008.

    The company revealed the museum's plans via a YouTube video, and on Twitter.

    "We are very proud to announce the Weedmaps Museum of Weed, which will open in Los Angeles in early 2019," the company said in a tweet. "We are taking a step back to review the crucial moments in the #marijuana world and the historical milestones in #marijuana's history that led us to where we are today."



    Photo Credit: Richard Vogel/AP

    This file photo from Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018, shows a marijuana plant at SLOgrown Genetics in the coastal mountain range of San Luis Obispo, California.This file photo from Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018, shows a marijuana plant at SLOgrown Genetics in the coastal mountain range of San Luis Obispo, California.

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    Nearly 170 pounds of methamphetamine was seized at the San Ysidro border crossing Tuesday, Customs and Border Protection announced Thursday.

    A permanent U.S. resident crossing the border from Tijuana was arrested and turned over to Homeland Security when agents found the drugs hidden in the doors, seats, quarter panels and bumper of the man’s car, according to the CBP.

    The arrest was the latest in a string of drug seizures since Friday.

    From Friday through Tuesday, Border Patrol agents seized 625 pounds of drugs worth $2.7 million along the six land Port of Entries from San Ysidro to Calexico, CBP spokesman Shalene Thomas said.

    “In addition to dealing with the arrival of a large caravan of migrants and the processing of asylum claims, CBP officers within the San Diego Field Office continue to seize narcotics and arrest wanted individuals all while performing their traditional duties of processing lawful trade and travel,” CBP San Diego director of field operations Pete Flores said.

    Agents seized nearly 580 pounds of methamphetamine, five pounds of cocaine and approximately 26 pounds of heroin and 17 pounds of fentanyl in the five-day operation. The drugs were strapped to smugglers’ bodies and hidden in various areas of the vehicles such as the gas tank, trunk, seats and quarter panels, according to the CBP.

    In total, 39 people were arrested, 10 for suspected smuggling attempts, 15 for suspected human smuggling and 14 for a variety of crimes, including auto theft, the CBP reported.


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    Marriott International’s experiential hotel brand, Moxy Hotels, has opened its first location in San Diego. Developed with San Diego-based J Street Hospitality and Azul Hospitality Group, Moxy San Diego is a nine-story, 126-room, millennial-minded boutique hotel in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter.

    “Moxy is an audacious and fresh brand that flips the conventional hotel service model on its head to pleasantly surprise travelers, without the exorbitant price tags,” Senior Global Brand Director of Moxy Hotels, Vicki Poulos, said via a press release. “What better place to grow our portfolio than in San Diego, a vibrant and playful destination within Southern California.”

    Moxy San Diego pays homage to the city’s naval history, featuring a camouflage wall, exposed electrical conduit, steel finishing and wood accents in the lobby. A shipping container lining the CrossFit-style fitness center, dungaree denim headboards in the rooms and porthole mirrors are also featured throughout.

    Upon entering the hotel, guest will check in at a custom “trike,” where they will receive digital room keys as well as Bar Moxy’s signature “Got Moxy #5” nitro-cocktail served from a tricycle. Additional signature elements include the Moxy Digital Guestbook and streamed videos and images taken within Moxy Hotels and tagged #AtTheMoxy.



    Photo Credit: Moxy San Diego
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    Photo courtesy of Moxy San Diego.Photo courtesy of Moxy San Diego.

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    Gary Brand, Jean Eisenbarth, Abraham Muñoz, Tim Joyner and Kelley Winslow — they're evacuees, survivors, and residents of Paradise. We came across them in the parking lot of The Neighborhood Church and a makeshift donation center in Chico, California where they are now living. They lost everything in the Camp Fire — California's deadliest and most destructive wildfire — but they won't give up hope.

    These are their stories.


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    More than 100 years after he was killed in action, a World War I veteran was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart on Thursday by the U.S. Coast Guard.

    The medal, which is awarded to those wounded or killed in action, was presented to the family of Fireman William James Williams Jr. at the Coast Guard headquarters near the Embarcadero.

    Williams was killed when the Coast Guard Cutter Tampa sank on Sept. 26, 1918, in the Bristol Channel off the coast of Wales. The Tampa was escorting a convoy to Wales when it was struck by a torpedo. All 130 aboard were killed.

    "You don't have to make a big deal about it," William's great-nephew Robert Miles Knight said. "Just once in a while — a little bit out of your life, our busy lives — to honor and remember these people that died before us."

    Williams joined the Coast Guard in March 1918 after reading an ad in the local newspaper in Muskegon, Michigan, where he was from, calling for people to enlist. 

    "Recognition for Fireman Williams was long overdue," San Diego Coast Guard Sector Commander Capt. Joseph R. Buzzella said. "Thankfully, due to the devoted genealogical research conducted by his family, we stand here today ready to honor his selfless sacrifice." 

    Several members of Williams' family were present at the ceremony and had actually petitioned the Coast Guard to honor him. Knight accepted the award on their behalf.

    "It kinda bittersweet, the build-up to it," Knight said. "I wanted to make sure that people remembered about that Tampa and the crew and the sacrifice."



    Photo Credit: NBC 7

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    The owners of the Coronado Tree Farm, the city's first ever Christmas tree lot, were crushed to find out that the first wave of this weekend's storm destroyed their lot before the end of its inaugural season.

    "I woke up this morning to a text from multiple people that showed some of the initial damage that happened," Steve Albert said. Steve and his wife Shanel also own the Coronado Flower Lady, a flower stand on Orange Avenue, which was recently damaged by a drunk driver.

    The Albert family had high hopes for success with their one-of-a-kind lot. There isn't a place in the county selling Christmas trees that offers views of the downtown San Diego skyline and the sweet serenade of crashing waves.

    "It looked really good and the city was really excited and it was going to be a great weekend for us," Steve said.

    The first day of the season's first storm brought pounding rain and aggressive winds that toppled the Alberts' trees and destroyed their decorations. The damage is so bad, the tree lot won't reopen.

    "It was just so far gone, the tents and everything was destroyed and we're just going to have to cut our losses on this one," he said.

    Albert says he'll be selling the decorations and the trees at a discount. If you would like to buy a tree at a discounted rate, the Alberts will be at the lot on First Street near the ferry landing Friday morning.

    Thankfully, the Alberts still have their flower stand. It has been rebuilt since it was run into and Shanel says business is back to normal there.


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    Weeks after NBC 7 Investigates found massage parlors offering sex services for sale online, the District Attorney and a city councilmember are calling for immediate action. 

    NBC7 Investigates found a website called Rubmaps that offers subscribers a detailed review of sex services for sale at local massage parlors. Of the more than 300 parlors listed on the website in the San Diego County region, our team found 173 locations offering some form of sex to potential clients. 

    To read our original investigation, click here or watch below.

    San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan and San Diego City Councilmember Chris Cate have said our investigation clearly demonstrates the need for immediate action. 

    “The story tells the truth about what we are seeing, right there,” Stephan said. 

    Both politicians are proposing different approaches to tackling the problem. Stephan has proposed increased support for a task force charged with investigating parlors offering illegal services, Cate has proposed new security checks when approving a parlor’s business license. 

    “They are everywhere, you see them everywhere,” Stephan said. “The harder issue is how you stop it.” 

    Stephan confirmed the investigation’s findings: that many of the massage parlors in San Diego County generate big profits and involve labor and sex trafficking. Stephan is calling for a different law enforcement approach to the problem because she says these businesses operate much like organized crime. 

    In her experience, Stephan has found the people behind these kinds of crimes run sophisticated organizations that can be difficult to prosecute. 

    The DA told NBC7 investigates she has been on stake-outs observing the “action” outside of massage parlors that are suspected of prostitution and sex trafficking. 

    “It’s very very clear what's happening, you see the men going in, you see the time it takes, you just see what's going on.” 

    While no official study has taken place, Stephan suspects the federal government’s passage of the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act, and the shutdown of the controversial website BackPage.com may have led to a rise in clients using RubMaps. Backpage was accused of knowingly allowing users to post ads related to prostitution and human trafficking. 

    The District Attorney says these parlors react quickly whenever they suspect law enforcement is watching them closely. 

    “We've had situations, we have come very close and the next day, the women are gone, they're on a plane, wherever,” Stephan said. 

    This is just one of the signs that Stephan said demonstrates a similarity to organized crime. 

    Other tell-tale signs Stephan said include multiple parlors operated by one organization and the organization’s use of force and fear to coerce parlor workers to stay in line. The system is also designed to recruit and move workers from overseas to the United States, specifically to work in parlor locations. 

    For years, the San Diego Police Department’s Vice Unit has responded to reported prostitution activities by wearing a “wire” and going into the parlors to see if a worker offers sex for sale. The officers would arrest the woman but the organizers insulate themselves from the women involved and often go untouched by any criminal investigation. 

    The DA says these undercover efforts are not effective anymore, as customers who come into the parlors are often checked for recording devices. 

    “We have to think of it in a new way,” Stephan said, adding that the workers are often victims, and the real target should be the business operators. 

    Stephan said federal, state and local law enforcement agencies need to team-up, in order to follow the money and identify the operators behind these businesses. To start the process, she told NBC7 investigates her office has added another investigator to the county’s Human Trafficking Task Force with a specific focus on massage parlors. 

    Other cities, like San Jose, have begun a similar process and agencies in the community are focused on cleaning up the problem. A recent story in the Mercury News details a massive crackdown on illicit massage parlors.

    Councilman Chris Cate, who is chairman of the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee, agrees with the District Attorney’s approach. To add to it, he thinks the problem could be addressed in the approval process for parlors looking to do business in San Diego. 

    Cate wants to change the current permit process for massage parlors by implementing a new system that would have SDPD closely monitoring each business’ activities. 

    “It is really imperative for us, the DA and others to look at mechanisms to reduce this activity,” Cate said. 

    Currently, a voluntary certification for workers, issued by the state of California, is required when parlors open their business. Owners can claim the workers are certified by signing a statement. 

    “It’s a big loophole,” Cate said, adding that he would like to see the permitting process go through the police department. 

    Complaints or police actions can lead to parlor’s business permit being revoked and a formal investigation by the police. 

    Cate says his office has seen parlors open and close quickly under different names and ownership groups. So under his proposed system, if a permit is revoked, a new shop owner would not be able to go into the same location under a different name for a two-year period. 

    This new permitting process proposal will be presented before the city’s Public Safety Committee for consideration in the near future. 


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    Three people were killed and eight others were injured when a truck with passengers riding in the truckbed crashed while fleeing from San Diego Border Patrol agents.

    Agents were chasing the truck on Interstate 8 near Crestwood Road in Boulevard at around 4:30 p.m. when the truck crashed and overturned.

    Border Patrol says agents patrolling an unknown stretch of the U.S.-Mexico Border in East San Diego County noticed tire tracks headed north away from the divide, as well as a piece of a vehicle, and alerted other agents.

    Another agent spotted the truck, which was missing a piece that matched the description of the piece agents found, and tried to pull it over.

    The truck refused to stop and continued eastbound on I-8 before turning around the opposite direction. The CHP said the truck reached speeds above 100 mph.

    BP agents deployed a spike strip which caused the driver to lose control and roll up an embankment, at which point the truck became airborne and multiple passengers were ejected.

    Three people suffered major injuries and five others had minor injuries. The CHP believes only two people were in the cabin of the truck at the time of the crash and the rest were lying down in the uncovered truckbed.

    Everyone except the driver was unrestrained, CHP said.

    The driver, believed to be a U.S. citizen, was taken into custody and is being treated at the hospital, CHP said.

    Of the three people killed, one was a man and one was a woman. Border Patrol did not confirm the gender of the third victim.

    Cal Fire said that due to weather -- fog, wind and rain -- none of the patients could be airlifted to area hospitals.

    A Sig Alert was issued for westbound I-8 and traffic was blocked at the site of the crash for several hours.

    CHP is handling the investigation

    No other information was available.

    Check out NBC 7's live traffic map for real-time traffic updates.

    Please refresh this page for updates on this story. Details may change as more information becomes available.


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    A man killed by a driver during a suspected road rage confrontation in Chula Vista earlier this week was stabbed six times in what a prosecutor called a "callous" act.

    Rickey Smith, 60, faces one count of first-degree murder in the stabbing death of Horace Williams, 36. Smith was arraigned in court Thursday; he pleaded not guilty to one count of first-degree murder in the disturbing case.

    San Diego County Deputy District Attorney Makenzie Harvey called the killing of Williams "callous and very vicious."

    She said Smith stabbed Williams six times including twice on the chest, puncturing his heart. Williams also suffered four defensive wounds to his hand, forearm and leg.

    “I use the words callous, vicious and violent; I believe that’s exactly how you describe this,” Harvey said. “There was some incident between these two men in their vehicles but what the defendant then did by getting out and coming up to the window, and to begin punching a man who was seated in the car, and then to begin stabbing him is certainly very callous and very vicious.”

    Smith, who is being represented by prominent San Diego defense attorney Brian Watkins, had his bail set at $2 million. Watkins asked for bail to be reduced to $100,000, plus monitoring of his client.

    Watkins argued that Smith is not a danger to the community or a flight risk.

    The defense attorney said Williams was the aggressor and allegedly threw the first punch in the roadside altercation. He said Smith suffered a brain injury a few years back and couldn't stand to take a hit.

    More than 50 people, including many members of Smith's church, showed up to support the suspect at his arraignment. His wife of 39 years also sat in the gallery.

    Watkins said there are "two sides to every story."

    Williams -- a father of five daughters, ages 1 to 9 -- was killed Tuesday morning at the intersection of Willow Street and Sweetwater Road after dropping his daughters off at school.

    The stabbing was the violent culmination of a dispute that took place between Smith and Williams as they drove in the area.

    Chula Vista Police Department (CVPD) Capt. Phil Collum said witnesses spotted the men yelling at one another as they drove in what he, at first, called a "rolling altercation."

    Smith was in a white Ford Ranger, Williams was in a silver minivan.

    Investigators said that as the dispute escalated, Smith pulled up alongside Williams and allegedly threw a soda at him.

    Moments later, Smith pulled in front of Williams' van and slammed on his brakes, causing Williams to rear-end him, according to police.

    CVPD called the collision minor but what happened next was anything but that.

    Following the fender-bender, Smith got out of his truck, approached Williams and, according to witnesses, punched him through a window. Smith then stabbed Williams with a retractable blade knife. That knife was found in Smith's belt when officers arrived, according to the CVPD.

    Watkins argued Williams was responsible for the attack because he twice threw objects at Smith. 

    Watkins said Smith approached Williams' window to ask what the problem was and was then struck by Williams who then reached under his seat for something.

    When police got to the area, Williams was lying on the ground. Remnants of blood could be seen on the roadway.

    Williams was rushed to a local hospital but ended up dying from his wounds a short time later, Collum said. The stabbing took place less than two miles away from Williams' home, his family said.

    Smith waited at the scene and cooperated with police as they began questioning him. Ultimately, he was arrested on one count of first-degree murder.

    Smith was not injured in the altercation, Collum said.

    The police captain called the incident a "tragedy" and said that, while cases of road rage do occur, the severity of this case takes it to a new level. 

    Collum said the area around the intersection is highly-trafficked and he believes there could be several witnesses who saw a portion of the events leading up to the stabbing. Any of those details could help police piece together what happened as the investigation continues.

    Collum said witnesses can call the CVPD's tip line at (619) 422-TIPS.

    NBC 7 learned that Smith is a deacon and plays the organ at St. Stephen's Church of God in San Diego where his wife is also a youth minister.

    Those who know Smith were shocked to hear of his arrest, including Bishop George McKinney, who told NBC 7 the incident is completely out of character for Smith and he has no idea what could have set him off.

    Meanwhile, Williams' family is distraught and trying to cope with the abrupt loss of their loved one. Williams' brother told NBC 7 the father of five was engaged and had planned to wed on his birthday, next March. 

    Loved ones have created an online fundraiser page to help cover funeral costs. On that GoFundMe page, Williams is described as a "funny, laid-back and amazing person."



    Photo Credit: Joe Little/NBC 7

    The scene of the possible road rage incident in Chula Vista on Nov. 27.The scene of the possible road rage incident in Chula Vista on Nov. 27.

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    Rain pouring over parts of the south county and Tijuana, Mexico is flushing a nasty mess out into the Pacific Ocean that washes up on county shorelines.

    Southern beach communities deal with the issue nearly every time it rains.

    The onset of the season's first big storm led to water contact closures at the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge and Border Field State Park, but with persistent rainfall forecasted through the weekend, those closures will likely extend north to Imperial Beach and even Silver Strand State Beach and Coronado.

    The County Department of Environmental Health (DEH) will keep closure signs posted in affected areas until testing reveals it’s safe to get back in the water.

    It’s recommended that you wait 72 hours after a storm before surfing or swimming in the ocean, but Scripps Institution of Oceanography Scientists are finding storm pollutants can stay trapped near shore longer than previously thought.

    Their study hasn’t led to new re-entry advisories, yet.

    When rain falls In Tijuana, runoff containing contaminants including sewage, animal waste, toxins and bacteria enter the Tijuana River which crosses the border just west of the Otay Mesa Port of Entry and travels northwest, through the Tijuana River Estuary and drains into the Pacific Ocean south of IB.

    NBC 7’s Joe Little was positioned at Monument Road in the Tijuana River Valley Thursday, a road almost guaranteed to flood due to a tributary that runs under it overflowing during heavy rains.

    Large debris, like tires, buckets and even a car bumper were seen flowing along the 10 to 15-foot deep ditch, but it’s those contaminants that the naked eye can’t see that are the most concerning.

    In September the San Diego Water Board sued the U.S. section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC), claiming it is violating the Clean Water Act by not monitoring or stopping untreated waste flowing to the ocean.

    In their motion to dismiss the lawsuit, government attorneys argued that the IBWC is not responsible for the millions of gallons of raw and partially treated sewage that flow into the ocean from the Tijuana area, and claimed the IBWC “has not violated any environmental law, and, in fact, has done nothing to worsen cross-border pollution. Rather, by constructing and operating a treatment plant in San Diego… IBWC has greatly reduced the problem’s scale.”

    The government also argued that the IBWC does not have “an open-ended legal obligation to capture and treat all transboundary flows,” and for that and other reasons, the judge should dismiss the lawsuit.


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    The Department of Veterans Affairs announced Thursday that it would pay veterans the full amount of benefits they are due under the Forever GI Bill, NBC News reported

    That announcement came just one day after two aides told NBC that VA officials privately told congressional staffers the department would not retroactively pay veterans whose checks were less than they were owed because of VA's ongoing computer problem. The department was sharply criticized and questioned about the potential policy during a Thursday hearing. 

    VA Secretary Robert Wilkie issued a statement in the afternoon saying that the student veterans would get their full monthly housing stipends in accordance with the Forever GI Bill.



    Photo Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto, File

    U.S. soldiers are shown in this undated file photo.U.S. soldiers are shown in this undated file photo.

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    Teachers at Cardiff Elementary put the wet weather in the lesson plan. NBC 7's Alex Presha has more.


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    Two firefighters were injured when a wrong-way driver slammed head-on into their engine on Interstate 5 near downtown San Diego Thursday morning, according to California Highway Patrol.

    A San Diego Fire-Rescue truck was responding to a pedestrian hit-and-run crash at about 2 a.m. when a Toyota Carolla, traveling the wrong way on I-5 at State Route 94, slammed into it, CHP said.

    The driver of the Toyota, only identified as a man in his 30s, was killed in the crash.

    CHP said four firefighters were taken to UC San Diego Medical Center and evaluated for their injuries. SDFD spokesperson Monica Munoz said, while two of their crew members suffered minor injuries, none required hospitalization.

    The crew would return to duty for their next shift, Munoz said. 

    At the scene, the Toyota was crumpled from impact and debris was strewn across the freeway from the grisly crash. 

    Southbound I-5 was shut down as CHP officers investigated the crash. Lanes were reopened before 5:30 a.m.

    CHP said the man may have been stopped in traffic due to the pedestrian crash on 5th Street and Imperial Avenues and decided to turn around and drive the opposite direction on the I-5. 

    CHP Sgt. Brent Lowrey said a wrong-way crash is one of the worst types of accidents they see on freeways. He cautioned drivers to always heed emergency personnel warnings and signals even if it means having to wait. 

    "Don’t be impatient. If there’s an emergency in front of you and the freeway is shut down, it’s shut down for good reason," Lowrey said. "Ultimately, slow down, stop if you have to. If the road’s blocked, the roads blocked. Just sit and wait."

    No other information was available.

    Please refresh this page for updates on this story. Details may change as more information becomes available.


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    The bulk of the region's first major storm of the fall season has passed San Diego but not before dumping inches of much-needed rain in some areas, weathercasters said.  

    The storm continued to produce heavy downpours across San Diego into early Friday as it made its way east but, by 8 a.m., few spotty showers were tracked on NBC 7's First Alert Doppler Radar. Showers would gradually decrease throughout the day, mostly affecting San Diego County's mountains through the afternoon. 

     

    It is possible that periods of heavy showers, remnants from the storm, would touch down in various parts of San Diego County, though rain would widespread, according to NBC 7's Meteorologist Sheena Parveen.

    Alerts warning of high winds and possible flooding and were no longer in effect. The only alerts that remained Friday was a high surf advisory and a small craft advisory, both set to expire Friday evening and Sunday morning respectively.

    The storm did bring pollutants to San Diego oceans, prompting the County Department of Environmental Health to issue water contact closures at the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge and Border Field State Park due to sewage-contaminated runoff from the Tijuana River.

    The agency recommended that swimmers wait 72 hours after a storm before surfing or swimming in the ocean. 

    While most parts of the county received some rain during the storm's day-and-a-half presence in San Diego, significant precipitation was recorded in the mountains.

    The highest recorded rainfall amount was on Palomar Mountain, which received more than five inches of rain. Julian received more than 3.6 inches of rain, Descanso received 2.5 inches of rain and Mount Laguna received more than 1.5 inches of rain, according to the NWS.

    Some parts of the inland valleys also received inches of rain during this period, including Escondido, Skyline Ranch and Mt. Woodson. Fallbrook, Alpine and La Mesa received just under two inches, while Poway, Ramona, Rancho Bernardo, Lakeside, Scripps Ranch and El Cajon were met with more than an inch of rain. 

    In more coastal areas like Carlsbad, Point Loma, Oceanside and Del Mar, rainfall totals were just under one inch. Encinitas, Kearny Mesa, La Jolla and Chula Vista saw more than an inch of rain. 

    But after years of drought conditions that have led to wind-fueled wildfires, and months without heavy downpours, the rain is much needed in California. 

    City of San Diego employees told NBC 7 they are hopeful that the first fall storm of the fall season is a good indication of a wet winter season that could add to the region's reservoirs.

    The storm brought fears of flash flooding in areas scarred by recent wildfires, including last December's Lilac Fire in Fallbrook and this summer's West Fire in Alpine, the NWS said. The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch that expired early Friday.

    Some light rain began falling in North County San Diego at about 10 p.m. on Wednesday but the brunt of the storm hit the region Thursday afternoon. A second wave of rainfall, not as heavy as the first, peaked at around 1 or 2 a.m. Friday.

    On San Diego's coast, strong waves slammed beaches as the storm rolled in and continued to elevate through the afternoon.

    During periods of heavy rain, California Highway Patrol saw an uptick in crashes, according to their dispatch system. 

    Before 5 a.m. on Thursday, hours after the storm reached San Diego, crashes involving three semi-trucks were reported on area freeways. In one,  a flatbed truck crashed into the center divider and a semi-truck, in an attempt to avoid the first disabled vehicle, drove off the roadway and landed in an embankment. 

    Less than 15 minutes later, a Fed-Ex delivery semi-truck crashed into the center divide, just feet from the stalled flatbed truck. 

    In National City, a third semi-truck drifted off the roadway on northbound I-805 at 47th Street just after midnight. The truck remained jack-knifed until crews could pull it off the roadway. 

    No major injuries were reported in any of the crashes. 



    Photo Credit: Rory Devine/NBC 7
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    Lake Murray in La Mesa was a very wet spot Thursday.Lake Murray in La Mesa was a very wet spot Thursday.

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    A groom encountered a surprising snag when trying to get a marriage license in D.C. last week: A clerk told him his New Mexico identification wasn't acceptable because it was from outside the United States. 

    "She was so sincere. She said, 'I'm sorry, my supervisor says we can't accept international driver's licenses,'" recounted Gavin Clarkson, who went to get a license with his now-wife, Marina, at the D.C. Marriage Bureau on Nov. 20.

    Clarkson said that when he first presented his license to the clerk, she looked at it, went to talk to the supervisor and then asked to see his "New Mexico passport," he told NBC Washington on a phone call Friday. 

    He said the clerk was embarrassed and apologetic once the matter was straightened out.

    After he informed her that New Mexico was indeed a state, she again went to speak with her supervisor, then told Clarkson, "'My supervisor and I have verified that New Mexico is a state,'" he recounted.

    "Basically, they went back and did a Google search," he said.

    At one point, the clerk also complimented him on his English, he said, noting that his now-wife, who is an immigrant, thought it was hilarious.

    Leah Gurowitz, spokeswoman for District of Columbia Courts, wrote in a statement, "We understand that a clerk in our Marriage Bureau made a mistake regarding New Mexico's 106-year history as a state. We very much regret the error and the slight delay it caused a New Mexico resident in applying for a DC marriage license."

    Clarkson said he's heard of other New Mexico residents having difficulty with people who believe the state is not part of the U.S.

    "I'd heard all those stories. It had just never happened to me," he said.

    The couple was in a bit of a time crunch that day; they had made plans to get married that same day, which was the bride-to-be's birthday.

    "We had our paperwork," he said. "We figured we'd be in there, we'd be out of there."

    While that wasn't quite what happened, Clarkson said the process only took an extra 20 minutes. "It wasn't a massive delay," he said.

    The couple was able to get married in D.C. that day as planned.

    While the newlyweds are still working out where to live, Clarkson will be commuting between New Mexico and the D.C. area for the time being.

    "But I do not have to go through customs," he joked.

    Ironically, some D.C. residents have also had trouble getting their licenses seen as valid. In 2014, Cox Media Group television reporter Justin Gray was on his way back to D.C. when, he said, a Transportation Security Administration agent at Orlando International Airport didn't recognize his license. He realized the agent was not aware of what the District of Columbia was.

    After that, security workers were shown copies of a D.C. driver's license to get them acquainted with it.

    Months earlier, D.C. resident Ashley Brandt was trying to fly home from Arizona when she also was questioned about the validity of her D.C. driver's license. "I got a little nervous," she said at the time. "I just wasn't sure if the TSA didn't think it was a valid ID or it was because D.C. wasn't a state."

    In 2017, the D.C. DMV discontinued use of "District of Columbia" at the top of its licenses and went back to using "Washington, D.C" to cut back on confusion.



    Photo Credit: Gavin Clarkson

    The couple was able to get married in D.C. that day as planned.The couple was able to get married in D.C. that day as planned.

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    A woman arrested for an outstanding warrant is in dire condition after she became ill while officers were processing her at San Diego Police Headquarters.

    The San Diego Police Department (SDPD) said Aleah Jenkins, 24, was arrested during a traffic stop Tuesday on La Jolla Village Drive for an outstanding misdemeanor warrant for possession of methamphetamine.

    During the arrest, police said Jenkins “became ill” and vomited. The SDPD said officers called for paramedics to help Jenkins but she allegedly told them her stomach was just upset, so that call to medics was canceled.

    Jenkins was taken to San Diego Police Headquarters. As officers prepared to book her into jail, she became unconscious. The SDPD said officers called for paramedics and Jenkins was taken to a local hospital.

    As of 10 a.m. Friday, she was on life support.

    The SDPD said Jenkins’ case is currently being investigated by the department’s Homicide Unit.

    “The investigators are conducting an exhaustive investigation into the facts surrounding the arrest and the events leading up to the female going into medical distress,” a statement released Friday by police read. “At this point, there is no indication any force was used on the female.”

    Police said controlled substances were found hidden in Jenkins’ clothing, leading investigators to suspect she may have experienced an overdose.

    The SDPD officer who transported Jenkins is a 6-year veteran of the department, though his name is not being released at this time. 

    Anyone with information on the case can reach out to the SDPD’s Homicide Unit at (619) 531-2293 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

    NBC 7 is in the process of trying to reach Jenkins’ family to get updates on her condition.

    A Facebook group is currently trying to raise money to help cover Jenkins' medical costs. A message posted in the group said Jenkins suffered a severe brain injury. Jenkins is a mother of two, according to the group.



    Photo Credit: Monica Garske

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    Former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger is now facing a murder charge in the shooting death of unarmed neighbor Botham Jean, court records show.

    Guyger, 30,  who is white, was charged with manslaughter Sept. 9 following an investigation by the Texas Rangers into the Sept. 6 fatal shooting that killed her black neighbor, 26-year-old accountant Botham Jean. Upon hearing the evidence, the grand jury opted Friday to indict Guyger on the more serious murder charge and took no action on the manslaughter charge filed by the Texas Rangers.

    Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson said Friday afternoon that even though the Texas Rangers were the lead investigative agency in the case, her office conducted their own investigtion and that she was confident once the grand jury heard the evidence presented by her office that they would "do the right thing."

    "Our office ... did a thorough job of presenting this case to the grand jury. Not only presenting the evidence but also explaining the law," Johnson said. "Once the grand jury heard this case, they did return an indictment for murder."

    Guyger's attorney, Robert Rogers, said he disappointed in the indictment but not suprised.

    "Although I am disappointed that the grand jury returned an indictment, in light of the political pressure and outpouring of vindictive emotion, I can’t say that I am surprised. This is a terrible tragedy that resulted from a true mistake. We are confident that a dispassionate jury in a fair forum will objectively apply the law to the facts and find Amber not guilty," said Rogers.

    Jean's family, who have filed a federal lawsuit against Guyger and the city of Dallas, stood beside Johnson Friday as she discussed the grand jury's decision.

    Jean's mother, Allison Jean, told the media she was satisfied with the murder indictment and thanked the people of Dallas for rallying around her son.

    "I'm truly grateful for that. I want to thank the DA's office, particularly DA Faith Johnson, for the work that her staff have put into gathering evidence and presenting to the grand jury in order to return such an indictment," Allison Jean said. "I look forward to the next step, which is a conviction of murder of Amber Guyger. And more so of a penalty, the proper penalty that will cause her to reflect on what she has done and the pain she has caused... So, I'm depending on you to continue to rally with us as we seek continued justice for him."

    Botham's father, Bertrum Jean, added, "It is such a hard thing to go through. We miss our boy dearly. He didn't deserve that. He was such a sweet boy, in his home. How can we move on without him? But we will try."

    Botham Jean, a native of St. Lucia who attended college in Arkansas and had been working in Dallas for PwC, was in his own apartment Sept. 6 when Guyger shot and killed him. Following the shooting she told investigators she'd left work and was returning home to her apartment at the South Side Flats when she apparently got off on the wrong floor and entered the wrong apartment -- she said she shot Jean believing he was an intruder in her apartment.

    Investigators would later confirm that Jean lived one floor directly above Guyger.

    The case sparked protests and national debate over what charges she should face.

    Dallas Chief of Police U. Renee Hall said Friday, "Every person in the Dallas Police Department continues to feel anguish about this difficult and tragic event that occurred on Sept. 6, 2018 ... Please continue to pray for the Botham Jean family, the Dallas Police Department and the city of Dallas as a whole."

    Hall also acknowledged some of the discord between communities and police and said her department supports restructuring the Citizen Review Board, pushed for more implicit bias training and continues to work with employee and community advisory boards.

    Of the indictment, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said, "Botham Jean was an incredible young man who was tragically taken from us too soon. Our city will never forget him. Today’s decision is another step on the long path toward justice for Botham. We appreciate the work of the Texas Rangers and the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office. Please continue to pray for the Jean family."

    Following the murder indictment, the Dallas chapter of the NAACP released the following statement:

    "We are pleased with the decision of the grand jury to indict Amber Guyger for murder for the killing of Mr. Botham Shem Jean. This is the next step in securing a verdict that will be favorable to the evidence that will be presented by the District Attorney’s Office. We would like to thank the District Attorney’s Office for the thorough investigation that they have conducted in gathering evidence in the pursuit of justice. We call on the community to remain calm and let the criminal proceedings take its due course. However, we ask that you join us in continued prayer and support for the family and friends of Mr. Botham Shem Jean. The Dallas NAACP will remain vigilant in monitoring the proceedings of this case and look forward to justice being rendered."

    Guyger turned herself in for a 'walk through' at the Mesquite Jail on Friday afternoon. She will not be re-arrested on the new charge and her bond of $300,000 carries over from the manslaughter charge. She faces life in prison on the murder charge; the manslaughter charge carried a sentence of up to 20 years.

    Johnson, whose term is up as Dallas County DA in January 2019, said she's hopeful the new DA can convince a jury to return a proper verdict in the case.

    NBC 5's Tim Ciesco, Scott Gordon, Ken Kalthoff and Alice Barr contributed to this report.


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    A crossing guard in Poway is a local celebrity, of sorts, to the students and parents who are greeted by her infectious dance moves in the morning. 

    Weekday mornings are busy outside of Twin Peaks Middle School on Tierra Bonita Road but Sherri Chandler wants to make sure kids get to school safely, and with a smile.

    Chandler is well-known to the community of Poway; she's been the school's crossing guard off and on for the past 20 years.

    But she told NBC 7, she serves another special purpose.

    "I’m the first person that the kids get to see in the morning that’s associated with the school," Chandler said. "I want to put a smile on their face. I want them to have a good day."

    Chandler does her duties in style, with signature dance moves matched up to her favorite songs. Some selections are for the kids, but others give her the opportunity to bust a move.

    "This is just so much fun and when you have fun at your job, that’s all that matters,” Chandler said.

    The kids love her and parents can’t get enough.

    One parent said, "The kids are dancing with her, and she takes care of us." Another added, "Every day I love seeing her dance and the kids like it, too," showing that something so little can bring so much joy to someone’s day.

    Chandler is also a noon duty supervisor at the school but told NBC 7 her passion is making sure kids get to school safely by helping out as the crossing guard.


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