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Tensions high after rumored KKK march in North Carolina

Tensions were high in a North Carolina city Friday as hundreds of people descended on downtown Durham to oppose a rumored march by the Ku Klux Klan, the Herald-Sun reported.

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When the white supremacist group did not show up, a smaller group of people marched through the streets of Durham and encountered police wearing helmets and armed with batons, the Herald-Sun reported.

“Similar to a tornado watch that indicates conditions are favorable for a weather event, the highest levels of Sheriff’s Office notified the appropriate leaders of the community of the potential for a critical incident as it continued to verify information,” sheriff’s spokeswoman Tamara Gibbs said Friday afternoon. “This was done proactively to allow for planning in the event the Agency received verified information.”

As of Friday evening, there was no march.

Friday, a group of 50 to 75 people engaged police in a standoff in the street outside the Durham Police Department headquarters. Some of the people were carry anti-KKK and anti-racism signs, the Herald-Sun reported. Police blocked the protesters and threatened to arrest anyone who did not leave the street. Most of the protesters moved to the sidewalks, the Herald-Sun reported.

Police made one arrest. 

Eva Panjwani called the opposition to the KKK a “people’s victory.”

“This is all part of a KKK strategy: a strategy to divide us like ants, scurrying away in fear,” she told the Herald-Sun.

“There’s been a lot of misinformation today, but there’s one thing that’s become even more clear than it ever has been before, that the community and the people of Durham must stand together,” she said.

2 Pennsylvania troopers shot, suspect dead

Two Pennsylvania State Police troopers were shot and a suspect is dead Friday night in Fairchance.

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The incident was reported about 9 p.m. near a convenience store in the southwestern Pennsylvania town, police said.

>> Central Florida officer shot, killed

One of the troopers was life-flighted from the scene to a hospital in Morgantown, West Virginia, officials said. The other trooper was taken to a hospital via ambulance. Both were stable and alert.

Witnesses who said they were in their car in the Shop ’n Save parking lot in Fairchance said they heard 10 to 15 gunshots.

>> Jacksonville officer critical after shooting

In a statement, Shop ’n Save officials said they were “deeply saddened” by the shootings.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families,” the statement said. “Providing a safe environment for our employees and guests is our number one concern.”

Jacksonville officer in critical condition after shooting 

One Florida officer is in critical condition and another is stable after being shot Friday, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said.

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The officers were responding to an attempted suicide call, Sheriff’s Office Director Mike Bruno said.

The suspect was shot by police and later died, deputies said.

The injured officers were taken to UF Health Jacksonville after the shooting.

When officers arrived at the house, they encountered a man armed with a high-powered rifle, Bruno said. Three people were barricaded in a bedroom inside the home.

>> Central Florida policeman shot, killed

The shooter shot through the front door at the responding officers, then exited the house and exchanged gunfire with police, Bruno said. One officer was shot in the hands and another was shot in the stomach, Bruno said.

The three people who were inside the home are safe, Bruno said.

Earlier Friday night in central Florida, one officer was killed and another was gravely wounded in a shooting in Kissimmee.

Central Florida police officer shot and killed, another gravely wounded

One central Florida police officer was shot and killed Friday night and one is in grave condition, Kissimmee Police Chief Jeffrey O’Dell said.

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O’Dell said that Officer Matthew Baxter was killed and Sgt. Sam Howard was shot and is in grave condition. The uniformed officers were responding to a call at 9:30 p.m. in Kissimmee.

It appears that there was only one shooter, O'Dell said at a news conference early Saturday.  One person believed to have been involved in injuring the officers is in custody and two of the three people they originally responded to check out are in custody, O'Dell said.

>> Jacksonville officer critical after shooting

Howard was a 10-year veteran of the department and Baxter had been with the Kissimmee department for three years, O’Dell said.

President Donald Trump tweeted that his “thoughts and prayers” are with the Kissimmee Police Department. 

“We are with you!” the president wrote.

“This is a tough time in law enforcement,” O’Dell said. “I would ask that you pray for the men and women of law enforcement.”

“Tonight we lost a brave officer,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott tweeted. “Praying for @kissimmeepolice.”

Former Yankees star Derek Jeter, wife welcome first child 

Former New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter was called “The Captain” during his major-league career.

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Now he can be called a dad.

Jeter’s wife Hannah gave birth to a girl, Bella Raine Jeter, on Thursday, according to the verified Twitter account of The Players’ Tribune, which was founded by Jeter in 2014.

The Jeters were married in July 2016, and Hannah Jeter announced her pregnancy via a February essay in The Players’ Tribune, Newsday reported.

Jeter, 43, retired from the Yankees in 2014 after a 20-year career. He finished with a franchise-record 3,465 hits and a .310 batting average while leading the Yankees to seven World Series and five titles.

Confederate-like designs to be removed from NYC subway wall

Metropolitan Transit Authority officials said they will modify wall tiles in a Manhattan subway station that create designs that look like Confederate flags, WNYW reported.

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The patterns, located at the Times Square station, have been on the walls for nearly 100 years. MTA officials said the tiles represent Times Square’s nickname as the “Crossroads of the World” and are not Confederate flags, WNYW reported.

"These are not Confederate flags, it is a design based on geometric forms that represent the "Crossroads of the World" and to avoid absolutely any confusion we will modify them to make that absolutely crystal clear,” MTA officials said in a statement.

Times Square did not exist during the Civil War, the MTA said.

Private investigator in Natalee Holloway case finds human remains

A private investigator working for the the father of Natalee Holloway said remains have been discovered in the case.

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Holloway, who is from Alabama, disappeared in 2005 while on a post-high school trip to Aruba. Her disappearance has remained a mystery for 12 years as no one has been charged.

Speculation has swirled around Joran van der Sloot, a Dutch man who Holloway was last seen with at a bar. Van der Sloot is currently serving a 28-year sentence in Peru for killing a student in 2010.

Private investigator T.J. Ward said he and Holloway's father, Dave, were contacted by an informant named Gabriel who helped lead them to human remains. Gabriel is an associate of Van der Sloot.

"Dave was approached in 2015 by a guy named Gabriel who claimed there was an individual who was rooming with him and claimed he had a relationship with Joran Van der Sloot," Ward said. "He started telling me things that aren't public."

Ward said Gabriel told them Van der Sloot may have stashed Natalee Holloway's body after allegedly killing her.

WSB-TV asked Ward if he could say where the remains were found.

"I can tell you they were found in an area we had under investigation," he said.

Ward said the discovery was the result of an 18-month investigation, but it's not the only information the informant provided.

"He told us Joran Van der Sloot's father went out there on the night Natalee went missing in 2005 and removed the body and helped dispose of it," he said.

The remains are being tested for DNA to determine if they are Natalee's. It could take two to four weeks for the results to come back.

Deputy's quick action saves K-9 partner

Quick action by a Martin County deputy likely saved the life of his partner, a 5-year-old K-9 officer named Kaspar, according to the sheriff's office.

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When Deputy Ron Manganiello noticed that Kaspar was suffering from serious internal distress today, he rushed the dog to a veterinarian. Kaspar underwent immediate surgery, which revealed a large tumor on his liver.

>> RELATED: Port St. Lucie K-9s help take firearms off streets 

The tumor had ruptured, causing internal bleeding, the sheriff's office reported in a Facebook post. 

Doctors said Kaspar would not have survived if the internal bleeding was not immediately treated.

"Fortunately, Deputy Manganiello recognized that his partner was in distress in enough time to save him," the sheriff's office reported.

The surgery was successful, doctors said, and Kaspar is recovering. He will remain at the animal hospital for a few days, but he faces a long recovery, the sheriff's office said.

How to photograph the solar eclipse with your smartphone

Many who hope to capture the eclipse Monday using their professional digital cameras have been warned to protect their camera lenses with proper solar filters.

But what about smartphones?

Here are some general guidelines for taking successful smartphone photos of the solar eclipse.

Tips for taking a successful photograph with a smartphone

  • Use a tripod or rest your smartphone on a stable surface to avoid shaking.
  • Make manual adjustments. Focus on the eclipse by tapping the image on the screen and darkening or lightening the exposure. Do not rely on your smartphone’s autofocus.
  • On iOS cameras, a sun icon will appear after you tap an object. This is the exposure slider. On Android cameras, the exposure setting can be found after tapping the gear icon.
  • NASA says zooming in with your smartphone will not alter the resolution of your shot. For a higher resolution shot, you will need telephoto lenses to clip directly over the existing smartphone lens.


Safety issues

  • NASA suggests using a pair of ISO-Certified sun-viewing glasses to cover the camera lens of your smartphone.
  • Smartphones were not meant for sun and moon photography because the camera lenses are very small.
  • Using optical filters to photograph the eclipse when you are not on the path of totality is risky.
  • Without a filter, the sun will appear like a blob of light with pixelated edges in your photograph.
  • According to NASA, the best way to protect your camera while pointing it at the sun is to cover the lens with a solar filter. If you photograph the solar disk without a filter, you will see nothing but sensor blooming.
  • Blooming happens when a large amount of light gets focused to a single point on your camera’s image sensor. For example, when you take a photo of a supermoon with your smartphone, it will come out as a bright glowing orb floating against a black sky.

NFL coach says he will not stop his players from protesting national anthem

New York Jets coach Todd Bowles will not stand in the way of any of his players protesting during the national anthem.

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No Jets players have indicated that they would opt to not stand during the performance of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” as then-San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick did last season. But Bowles made it clear that those actions would be each player’s prerogative.

“It’s their individual right,” the coach said after practice Wednesday. “We don’t have a rule book on what’s right to protest and not protest. You don’t know those things until the course of time, whether it’s sitting for the anthem, whether it’s raising your fist, whether it’s speaking out, whether it’s the Walk to Washington who is to say whose protest is good or bad?”

Kaepernick, who is currently a free agent, staged a silent protest last season as he decided to kneel on the sideline during the playing of the anthem before games.

Other NFL players joined Kaepernick last season in a show of support, and at least three have protested during the anthem in the first week of preseason games.

>> RELATED: Philadelphia Eagles’ Malcolm Jenkins vows to continue his national anthem protest this season

Seattle defensive end Michael Bennett and Oakland running back Marshawn Lynch both sat, while Los Angeles Rams defensive end Robert Quinn raised his right fist.

“As a football team, politics and people are human — they’re part of it — so you can’t say what’s good or bad,” Bowles said. “I’m sure mostly everybody — I know I’m against racism, segregation and all that other stuff — but how do we come to an answer? I don’t have that answer. How do we come to a common ground? I don’t have that answer.

“It’s a hell of a debate and a hell of a topic. It needs to stop. I don’t have the answers to that, but who is to say whose protest is good or bad? That’s just the way they feel and that’s their right to express it.”

Bowles said he and his players regularly discuss current events, but hadn’t yet talked about last weekend’s violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

“It’s more than football with us,” Bowles said. “We talk about a lot of things. It’s a different topic, everybody has their own feelings about it. You can’t sway anybody one way or the other. We’re all grown men here, so that’s how people feel. That has nothing to do with what they do in practice and what they do on the field, but separately off the field, they are going to feel the way they feel.”

Jets defensive lineman Leonard Williams said he would “obviously support” any teammate who chose to stage a protest.

“Everybody has a freedom of speech and the right to do what they want to do,” he said. “At the same time, I would try to tell them to stay focused on us.”

Shannen Doherty shares heartfelt message about doctor who saved her life

Shannen Doherty continues to be an inspiration to us all as she looks on the bright side of her cancer battle.

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This week, the actress took to Instagram to point out one good thing that came out of her breast cancer diagnosis: meeting Dr. Lawrence Piro. Doherty shared a touching message about the man she never would have met if she hadn’t developed the disease and wished him the happiest of birthdays.

>> RELATED: Shannen Doherty shares an emotional message to fans as she gets back on set for the first time in years

“Dr Lawrence Piro. Not just my doctor. My friend. This man saved my life,” she wrote alongside a photo of the two of them. “I’ve since referred many of my friends to him. He’s helped every single one. Selfless, intelligent, kind, classy, stylish, funny… I could go on. It’s his birthday. I’m honored to be sharing it with him. Cancer brought this man into my life. For that, thank you cancer.”

Doherty has kept fans updated during every step of her battle. In April, she happily announced that she was in remission after undergoing many months of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. This month, she headed back to work acting in the upcoming 2018 TV series “Heather.”

Golden retriever digs up $85,000 worth of hard drugs in the backyard

A family in Yamhill County, Oregon, has discovered that their pet golden retriever is actually an amateur drug-sniffing dog with a pretty incredible nose. When 18-month-old Kenyon started digging in the backyard, they thought he’d found a time capsule but the pup was on to something much nastier — black tar heroin.

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Kenyon discovered a gold mine of the drugs — around $85,000 worth, according to KATU. The family even filmed themselves opening it but when they discovered what was inside, they immediately contacted authorities.

>> RELATED: This teacher must be highly disappointed that a random drug search led a police dog to her bag

Police say Kenyon discovered 15 ounces of the drug. Sheriff Tim Svenson even awarded the dog with a Yamhill County K9 Citation ribbon and named him an “honorary narcotics K9” for life.

While most of us might be accustomed to seeing German Shepherds as drug-sniffing dogs, Psychology Today reports that beagles, basset hounds and bloodhounds are actually the best at sniffing out something funky.

Man warns ‘don’t take a chance with your eyes’ after eclipse-watching burned a hole in his retina

If you’re thinking of watching the solar eclipse without the necessary eye gear, think again. One 71-year-old man is issuing a warning after burning one of his eyes more than 50 years ago.

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In 1962, Lou Tomososki was excited to witness the eclipse after learning about it from his science teacher. 

That afternoon, he stood outside, and looked up with just his right eye. As the moon moved over the sun, he was fascinated. But he didn’t fully realize his eyes were suffering. 

>> RELATED: Your eyes will fry under normal sunglasses during 2017 eclipse, here’s why

"There's no sign," he told InsideEdition.com. "You just squint. You don't feel anything."

On the walk home, he remembered a “little bit of a blurry spot.” But it wasn’t until months later that he found out he’d burned a hole in his retina during an eye doctor appointment. He now has a pinpoint of blindness in one eye.>> RELATED: What time does the solar eclipse start; how long does it last; glasses; how to view it

"The damage was done right then and there,” he said. “The sun is 93 million miles away and look what it can do.”

That’s why he’s doing all he can to spread the message about eye safety for the upcoming celestial event, which will occur on Monday.

According to NASA, during a solar eclipse, you should not look directly at the sun without protection except during the brief totality time.

 The only safe way to view the partially eclipsed (or un-eclipsed) sun directly is to wear NASA-approved eclipse glasses or handheld solar viewers. Only select manufacturers have certified that their products meet the ISO 12312-2 international standard for eye and face protection.>> RELATED: Can’t find eclipse glasses anywhere? Make these DIY pinhole cameras, projectors instead

You can snag some online or for free at a few businesses around the area. After all, Tomososki said, "Why would you take a chance with your eyes?"

Florida hunters capture 12-foot gator days after 11-foot catch

Four Florida hunters struggled to take down an 11-foot, 375-pound gator after a three-hour fight.

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Nick Naylor, John Booker, Kenny Way and Casey Shields began battling the massive gator beginning late Tuesday night and ended up with it under their control by Wednesday morning, according to the Pensacola News Journal.

They used a 40-pound test from a spinning reel to capture the animal, which was hanging out in the waters of Blackwater Bay below Interstate 10.

Then Thursday, the hunters snared a 12-foot 6-inch alligator in the same waters. This time it took them two hours to reel it in, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Hunters are prohibited from using baited hooks, firearms or bang sticks when hunting gators. Each hunter is allowed to take two non-hatchling alligators.

Alligator hunting season in Florida began Tuesday. It was established in 1988 partially to help control the state’s 1.3 million alligator population, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

The state’s guide reads: “These special night hunts provide a thrilling, hands-on hunting adventure. Also, alligator meat is a delicious and healthy choice and the hide can be tanned and made into leather products.” 

Mother flees with child after carjacker tries to pull her from her car

A mother, fearing for her and her daughter’s life, jumped a curb while fleeing from a carjacker.

The victim said she was getting gas from a Texaco station when a small red Toyota pulled onto the parking lot.

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Officers said the man in the red Toyota approached her truck and asked for a ride down the street.

The victim said no, because she had her child in the car. So, the suspect walked away.

The suspect then walked back to the car and asked for a cigarette. Once the victim rolled her window down, the man reached through the widow and grabbed her arm.

Officers said he then attempted to pull her out of the truck through the driver’s window and screamed, “Get out the motherf****g car b****.”

Fearing for her life, she accelerated her car down Watkins heading northbound.

The victim said she noticed the red Toyota chasing her down the street. He then pulled to the left of her truck and said, “Pull the car over and get out, white b****.”

Officers said the victim got way from the criminal by jumping a curb, even though the maneuver caused her passenger side tire to go flat.

Police do not have any suspects in custody at this time. 

Man fatally shoots AAA worker over long response time, police say

Surveillance video recently released by police captures the moment a Miami man shot and killed a AAA contract worker in July

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Jesus Esquivel, 63, confessed to fatally shooting the man over the amount of time it took for AAA to get him assistance, the Miami Herald reports. 

In a video taken across the street from his Kendall home, a man, believed to be Esquivel, is seen walking up to the AAA contract worker, who is wearing a dark baseball cap and standing behind a white pick up truck. After the two men appear to have a brief argument, the man who approached the worker shoots the worker several times, stands over his body and walks away. 

Police said on July 11, Esquivel called a AAA 24-hour roadside technician to help replace his dead car battery, but when told AAA did not have a battery available, he made threats over the phone. 

The technician then requested AAA dispatch to remove him from Esquivel’s service call, and an employee of a company contracted by AAA came to assist him instead, police said.

Police said the 38-year-old victim died at the scene, according to the Miami Herald. 

Officers took Esquivel to the Miami-Dade County Jail on charges of second-degree murder with a deadly weapon.

Video from the incident can be found here:[Video contains graphic content]

Man pours coffee on controversial 'InfoWars' host Alex Jones

Alex Jones, a radio host of “InfoWars” and conspiracy theorist who has alleged the Sandy Hook school shooting was a hoax, took to the streets of Seattle this week.

Videos on Facebook and Twitter show Jones walking around downtown and talking to people on the sidewalk about recent events surrounding President Donald Trump.

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Some people ignored Jones’ provocative questions while others engaged, many condemning his program and website that’s considered as fake news.

But one encounter -- streamed on Periscope Friday morning -- ended with coffee thrown onto Jones. Some people on Twitter have questioned whether the incident was staged. 

The video shows, while in downtown, Jones was walking along sidewalks on Third Avenue near Pine Street talking about the terrorist attacks in Spain.

Jones became irritated when a man near the Macy’s building started giving him obscene hand gestures. Jones chased the man, called him a coward, and then turned the other way. 

A few minutes later -- just after Jones had mumbled “trendy cowards” -- a man yelled, “You’re trash.”

Jones and the man got into each other’s faces and exchanged heated words. As Jones turned to the camera and said, “This is what they’ve turned people into. A literal slave of system,” the man unscrewed his mug and threw coffee on him.

The man then held his coffee mug out as if he was going to hit Jones, but then he turned and walked away toward South Lake Union.

“I have to get back to work, where they’ll have more coffee,” the man said.

KIRO 7 News learned Jones is possibly in Seattle for a family getaway and that his wife went to school in the area.

Recently, Jones was repeatedly asked by reporter Megyn Kelly to admit he was wrong to call the massacre at Newtown, Connecticut, a hoax. Kelly was criticized intensely for giving a platform to Jones, who has also called the Sept. 11 attacks an inside job and promoted the false story that a pizza place in Washington, D.C., was the site of a child sex ring.

She has defended her decision by noting that his influence has grown with the rise of Trump, who has praised Jones and appeared on his radio program.

There’s been some grumblings on social media about whether Jones would talk about the renewed calls to take down the Vladimir Lenin statue in Fremont.

On Thursday, Mayor Ed Murray said he wants the statue removed, and also wants a Confederate monument removed from grave sites at Lake View Cemetery; even though both are on private property.

Boy, 2, chokes to death on grape at grocery store

A toddler choked to death on a grape at a grocery store after his mother was unable to perform CPR.

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Mother Emma Carver did not notice her son Ayyan Umar, 2, had eaten some grapes until she heard him making choking sounds last week.

“I started banging on him,” mother Emma Carver told WXYZ. “But it wasn't getting it out, so it had to be lodged.”

One shopper called 911 while another tried CPR. Emergency responders were on scene about five to seven minutes later and were able to remove one grape. Another grape was removed at the hospital.

Carver and the father, Mohammad Umar, have signed up for a first aid class. They encourage other parents to learn the life-saving skills, too.

“I was feeling like maybe it was a bad dream, maybe somebody gonna wake me up,” Umar said. “He sleeps on my chest. I see him everywhere.”

Six Flags will now only fly American flag, report says

From now on, only one flag will fly over Six Flags amusement parks.

Six Flags Over Texas park officials confirmed that the six different flags that had previously flown over the park, including the Confederate States of America flag, will be replaced by six American flags, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports

>> Read more trending news

“We always choose to focus on celebrating the things that unite us versus those that divide us,” a Six Flags spokeswoman told the paper. “As such, we have changed the flag displays in our parks to feature American flags.”

The decision was made after the park received criticism for reportedly saying that it had no plans to remove the Confederate flag in light of the recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia.

TMZ reported Wednesday that it had spoken with park officials at Arlington’s Six Flags Over Texas and been told that there were “no plans” to remove the Confederate States of America flag that flies over the entrance of the park.

The six different flags that fly at the park are the six different flags that have flown over Texas throughout history. 

While speaking with TMZ, officials reportedly differentiated between the Confederate battle flag and the “Stars and Bars” flag, which is the one flown at the amusement park. 

Officials said that park visitors are “astute enough to know the difference.”

According to the Star-Telegram, flags are only flown at the Arlington, San Antonio and Georgia locations of the park. They will all only fly American flags from now on.

76-year-old woman thanks police officers for mowing her lawn when her mower was stolen

A 76-year-old woman is thanking her local Police Department for taking care of her lawn after someone stole her mower.

>> Read more trending news

Officer Garrett Fontanez was patrolling a Knoxville, Tennessee neighborhood when 76-year-old Betty Brown flagged down his patrol car. She explained to the officer that someone stole her push mower, and she was wondering where she could find someone to help her mow her lawn, WBIR reports.

Without hesitation, Fontanez told her he’d do it for free. And sure enough, he spent his whole day Tuesday mowing Brown’s lawn.

“You don’t find much of that anymore, not anymore,” said Brown. “People will laugh, they’ll walk on, they’ll ask ‘Why don’t you?’ But not, ‘I will.’ ‘I’ll assist you’ So I thought that was very very well done on him,” Brown added.

Knoxville Police Chief David Rausch expects his officers to go the extra mile.

“The reality is, what Garrett did is what officers do throughout this country,” said Rausch. “We have a heart for service. [It’s] why we get into this profession in the first place.”

Fontanez has promised to continue mowing Brown’s lawn and keep an eye out for the thief.

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