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Arizona couple allegedly locked adopted children in rooms without food, water
Pima County Sheriff's Office (TUCSON, Ariz.) -- An Arizona couple was arrested for child abuse after allegedly locking their adopted children in rooms without food, water or a bathroom, officials said.The investigation began Saturday when a boy in "disheveled condition" asked to use the phone at a Family Dollar store in Tucson, and the store clerk called 911 to report the suspicious activity, the Pima County Sheriff's Office said in a news release Tuesday.When deputies responded to the boy's home, they found four children -- ages 6 to 12 -- and learned they were kept in separate bedrooms that were...
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Comfort dogs descend on Florida community after deadly school shooting
iStock/Thinkstock (PARKLAND, Fla.) -- The handlers behind the comfort dogs making their way through the Florida community where 17 students and teachers were killed in a school shooting last week have a saying."We like to say, 'Comfort walks in on four paws,'" Brenda Burden told ABC News today.Burden and her husband, Phil, of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, have been in Parkland, Florida, this week with their dog Sasha and others with Lutheran Church Charities' K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry.The ministry was started in August 2008 and dispatches golden retrievers around the U.S. to help those grieving after tragedy. One dog...
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Flu vaccine: Will it work better next season?
iStock/Thinkstock (NEW YORK) -- Flu season isn’t over yet, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced that in less than two weeks they will be putting together a panel of experts to help select strains for next season’s flu vaccine.The influenza virus changes or mutates every year, which makes it very difficult to create a vaccine. It also takes several months to produce the influenza vaccine, which is why health officials are getting started even before this season ends.While the flu vaccine remains the best method to prevent illness and death during the flu season, a new...
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This city is equipping its first responders with active shooter kits
iStock/Thinkstock (NASHUA, N.H.) -- First responders in Nashua, New Hampshire, completed the final phase of a yearlong project last Tuesday, equipping their vehicles with active shooter kits.The idea, Chris Stawasz, the regional director for American Medical Response in New Hampshire, told ABC affiliate WMUR, is for EMT, fire and police units to be able to deploy the necessary tools as quickly as possible in the event of a mass casualty shooting incident."The most important piece of these active shooter events, which are generally over very quickly, is to get inside and rescue anybody who still has an opportunity to be...
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Tiny house on wheels takes minimalist living to the next level
ABC News (PESARO, Italy) -- Having grown up in a tiny room in his family’s home in Pesaro, Italy, 27-year-old architect Leonardo Di Chiara is used to living a minimalist lifestyle.His latest project, the aVOID tiny house, currently on display -- and inhabited -- by the architect in Berlin, takes the concept of reductionist living to the next level.Measuring just 96 square feet and equipped with all one needs to live, the home seeks to challenge the concept of traditional housing.“It’s a tiny house and it’s on wheels, so you can move it wherever you want. You can live wherever...
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'Black Panther' and mental health in the Black community
IMDB (NEW YORK) -- Black Panther signals a revolutionary moment –- not only in its implications for Black culture, but also for Black mental health.“At a very basic level, representation affects people's identity,” said Dr. Ruth Shim, Director of Cultural Psychiatry and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at University of California, Davis. “Having positive representations and people reflecting the diversity of what they can be and experience can be protective against depression and anxiety stemming from negative images.”Indeed, Black representation in pop culture has expanded in recent years. Television shows such as "Insecure," "Empire" and "Black-ish" feature predominantly...
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Identical twin brothers propose to identical twin sisters: 'It was amazing'
Courtesy Brittany Deane (NEW YORK) -- Two sets of identical twins are now planning a joint wedding after twin brothers proposed to twin sisters on February 2, or 2-2.Brittany and Briana Deane met Josh and Jeremy Salyers last August at The Twins Days Festival in Twinsburg, Ohio, which bills itself as the "largest annual gathering of twins (and other multiples) in the world," according to its website.Although the 31-year-old Deane twins have been trekking to the festival from their home in Virginia since 2011, for the 34-year-old Salyers' twins, it was their first time."When we got there it turned out...
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Baby abductors, like Gloria Williams, often fit a similar profile
iStock/Thinkstock (NEW YORK) -- After a South Carolina woman stood in court this week and pleaded guilty to abducting an infant from a hospital nearly two decades ago and raising the girl as her own daughter, many were left asking this: Who would steal a baby? And why?Gloria Williams admitted she acted alone in 1998 when she walked into a Florida hospital dressed as a nurse and walked out with the newborn, whose name was Kamiyah Mobley. Williams raised Mobley for 18 years as her own daughter in South Carolina, renaming her Alexis Kelli Manigo.It turns out that dressing as...
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Here's why performance anxiety before an Olympic event may not be a bad thing
Stockbyte/Thinkstock (PYEONGCHANG, South Korea) -- Just moments before Mikaela Shiffrin, the world’s top-ranked women’s skier, clipped into her bindings on Friday for the first run in her attempt to defend her Olympic gold medal in the slalom, she vomited.It was a dramatic physical reaction to the nerves that plague athletes at all levels of competition, but not so rare for Shiffrin. She has been open about the battle she is waging against those nerves with the help of sports psychologists.In a TV interview between races on Friday, Shiffrin suggested she might have caught a virus, but later acknowledged it was...
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Once bullied, 11-year-old girl now inspires girls to love the skin they're in
Nakia Bowling (NEW YORK) -- Meet the 11-year-old philanthropist and entrepreneur who is collecting and donating dolls of color to little girls in need, telling ABC News that she wanted to "let little brown girls know that their image is beautiful."Zoe Terry, 11, and her mother, Nakia Bowling, launched the nonprofit "Zoe's Dolls" in 2011 when Zoe was just 5 years old. The group gives out dolls of color to young girls whose families may not otherwise be able to afford them."I started Zoe’s Dolls when I was 5 years old because at that time, I was bullied because the...
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DNA kit could give parents a 'glimpse' into their potential baby's characteristics
iStock/Thinkstock (NEW YORK) -- DNA kits, such as those from Ancestry.com, give millions of people a peek into their genetic makeup. Now, a product called BabyGlimpse is using some of that DNA scanning technology to give you a possible preview of what your baby could be like.BabyGlimpse reveals "the brighter side of personal genomics," according to its website. It claims to allow two potential parents to see the chances that their future child might have, say, light or dark hair, a sweet tooth or certain allergies.Like other companies' kits, BabyGlimpse has customers supply their saliva for scanning. After the kit...
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Florida shooting raises awareness of stigma attached to mental illness
Mark Wilson/Getty Images (NEW YORK) -- Following Wednesday's shooting rampage at a South Florida high school by a 19-year-old suspect that left 17 dead -- the deadliest school shooting in five years -- Americans are scrambling for answers to make sense of the tragedy.Interviews after the massacre cast alleged shooter Nikolas Cruz as a troubled loner who made disturbing comments on social media. He told investigators that he heard voices in his head, giving him instructions on what to do to conduct the attack, law enforcement sources told ABC News. The voices were described as "demons" by law enforcement sources....
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