Powerful Category 4 Hurricane Michael Hits Florida; Updates on NY Limo Accident; Two Inmates Escape From Jail By Hiding in Trash Cans; Babysitting While Black: Cops Called On Black Man As He Babysat White Kids; USAToday’s Outlook of the 2018 Midterm Elections
Hello, welcome to the Daily Moth! It is Wednesday, October 10. Ready for news?
Powerful Category 4 Hurricane Michael Hits Florida
This afternoon, powerful Category 4 Hurricane Michael hit Florida’s panhandle with it’s eye directly making landfall in Mexico Beach, which is about 20 miles east of Panama City.
It had 155 mph winds, which made it just below Category 5 level. It is the strongest storm to hit the U.S. since Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
As I sign this news, the hurricane is still whipping Florida and going into Alabama and Georgia, downgraded to Category 3, but still dangerous with 125 mph winds.
There are pictures and videos of areas that that show serious devastation from the winds and storm surge.
Mexico Beach seems to be hit hard. There are homes that have water rising up to their roofs and some that are destroyed. I saw pictures of streets filled with debris of destroyed home, spilling all over. The storm surge is serious there, affecting many homes and businesses.
People in hotels in Panama City said the building shuddered like it was in an earthquake.
There are still warnings of storm surge on the Florida Gulf Coast, even though the hurricane has already moved into land. Some areas have seen up to 10 feet of water. The danger remains overnight.
We will know more tomorrow after the storm passes how much damage there is in other areas. The power is out for over 250,000 people and it is predicted that some areas won’t have electricity for a few weeks.
President Trump is going to a rally tonight in Pennsylvania and said he would consider visiting Florida on Sunday or Monday.
IG Post with Mexico Beach Devastation Pictures: https://www.instagram.com/talarico.tessa/
Updates on NY Limo Accident
Here are updates with the limo accident in upstate New York that killed 20 people on Saturday.
Nauman Hussain, the son of the owner of Prestige Limousines, has been arrested this morning for criminal negligence.
He ran the business while the father/owner, Shahed, was out of the country. He is currently in Pakistan.
Shahed used to work as an informant for the FBI after the September 11 attacks. He would act as a supporter of terrorism to infiltrate groups and help FBI with investigations.
During the investigation of the crash, federal documents show that Prestige Limousines was cited 22 violations in 24 months.
Three of their vehicles failed inspections in September, including the limo that crashed on Saturday. That particular limo had issues with malfunctioning brakes.
The NY Department of Transportation said Prestige Limousines had been warned not to drive the limo. The department said even if the issues had been fixed, the limo should have gone through inspection again.
A local newspaper reported that just two days before the crash, someone was trying to sell that same limo on Craigslist.
There are reports that one of the victims complained that the motor was too loud and would make the passengers deaf.
Officials found that the limo driver, Scott Lisinicchia (53), who passed away in the crash, did not have the right license to drive limousines.
In August, while driving the same limo that crashed last Saturday, a state trooper gave Scott a ticket for driving without the right license.
Prestige Limousines was notified of the ticket, Scott was not supposed to drive limos again until he got the right license. Scott had been working for Prestige part time for more than a year already, without the right license.
Scott’s wife, Kim, said even if he did have the right license, the accident could still have happened. She said Scott complained several times to Prestige about problems with their vehicles.
A deaf person who lives in the area notified me that there is a “DEAF CHILD AREA” sign at the same area where the crash happened. The sign is by the Apple Barrel Country Store. I saw pictures that confirmed this.
I contacted the store and they said they didn’t know who the deaf child/person was and referred me to the county transportation office. I contacted them twice, but got an answering machine.
People are mourning those who died. There were over 1,000 people who went to a candlelit vigil at a park in Amsterdam, New York.
Two Inmates Escape From Jail By Hiding in Trash Cans
On Saturday night in Kentucky, two inmates escaped from jail by hiding in trash cans. They were caught and back in jail by Monday night.
The two inmates, Justin Stumler (27) and Jeremy Hunt (38), were working in the jail’s kitchen.
Security footage shows another inmate putting the trash cans outside, then the two men jumping out of the trash cans. They went to a corner, where there were different clothes ready. They changed clothes and fled away.
One person on the outside saw the men escape, and called the police. The jail did a head count, and found that the two men were missing and started a search.
Police caught Justin on Monday morning, he had been planning to meet a family member at a McDonald’s.
On Monday afternoon, police chased Jeremy in a vehicle. He crashed and caused 4 other vehicles to crash too. Jeremy was injured but will survive.
Three other inmates are charged with helping organize the escape.
Officers say that there was a breakdown in security protocol, that someone was supposed to check the trash cans before putting them out.
Babysitting While Black: Cops Called On Black Man As He Babysat White Kids
In Georgia on Sunday, a woman called the cops on a black man, Corey Lewis (27), because he had two white children with him.
Corey said he was babysitting his friends’ two kids, a 10-year-old girl and a 6-year-old boy.
Corey said after lunch, the three of them were standing by his car when Corey noticed a white woman in her car nearby, staring at him.
Corey said the female drove up to them twice to ask if the kids were okay. The woman also asked if she could talk to the children. Corey told her no, she could not talk to the children.
The woman said she would write down his license plate number, and left.
Corey went to a gas station to refill his car. He saw the woman’s car again. He was concerned and drove home, and the woman followed him.
The woman had called the police, and a police car arrived at his home a few minutes later. Corey began filming on Facebook Live.
The police officer began to question Corey, who said the officer was very polite. The officer called the children out of the car and asked them to identify Corey. The police verified Corey was their after-school teacher and babysitter.
The officer called the children’s mom, Dana Mango. Dana said that she asked the cop if he was calling because an African-American male was driving her kids around. The officer, who was embarrassed and apologetic, said yes.
Dana said her children understood that the woman had followed them because of the difference in skin color. She said they were concerned that Corey wouldn’t be able to babysit them again. Dana said they love Corey like a member of the family.
Corey Lewis runs a youth mentoring program in Atlanta called Inspired By Lewis.
Activists say there needs to be consequences for white people calling the cops on black people without any good reason.
USAToday’s Outlook of the 2018 Midterm Elections
America is now a month away from the midterm elections on November 6th.
I read a nice “National Outlook” piece in USA Today that helps us to understand key battles and how the number of Senate, House, and state governors could shift either Democratic or Republican.
Let’s start our analysis with the Senate. We know there are currently 51 Republicans and 49 Democrats. For this election, there are 35 seats that will be contested.
There are 8 states with seats that are considered “tossup,” which means it’s a very close race between the Democratic and Republican candidates, with the electorate split. I will name the states.
The first state is Arizona with Republican Sen. Flake to retire at the end of his term. It means that seat is open, and there is a hot race between Republican candidate McSally and Democratic candidate Sinema.
The second tossup state is Florida with the incumbent — I will sign it as “current” — Democratic Senator Nelson campaigning against Republican Rick Scott, who is the state governor.
The third is Indiana with incumbent Democratic Senator Donnelly campaigning against Republican Braun.
The fourth state is Missouri with the incumbent Democratic Senator McCaskill campaigning against Republican Hawley.
The fifth is Montana with the incumbent Democratic Senator Tester campaigning against Republican Rosendale.
The sixth is North Dakota with the incumbent Democratic Senator Heitkamp campaigning against Republican Cramer, who is a U.S. Representative.
The seventh state is Nevada with the incumbent Republican Senator Heller campaigning against Democrat Rosen, who is a U.S. Representative.
The eighth tossup state is West Virginia with the incumbent Democratic Senator Manchin campaigning against Republican Morrisey.
So, those are the eight tossup states. You can see that there are six Democrats and one Republican fighting to keep their senate seats, with one open seat in Arizona.
One state that is getting a lot of attention is Texas, with incumbent Republican Senator Cruz trying to stop popular Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke. But national analysts don’t view this race as a tossup, because Texas leans Republican.
USA Today is predicting the senate numbers to remain almost the same, and we’ll see who gets the “at least 51 seats” edge.
Now, let’s go to races in the House. Republicans currently have a large majority of 240 to 195. But that could change, as there are 41 tossup races, with almost 200 “safe Republican” and “safe Democratic” seats on either side. There are 41 tossup races.
You can see on the map the areas in yellow — those are the tossup districts. 29 of them are Republicans looking to defend their seats, while 12 of them are open seats.
USA Today is predicting Democratic gains of 25 to 35 seats to claim majority control of the House .
Now, let’s go to the governor races. Republicans currently control 33 states, Democrats control 16, with one Independent in Alaska.
There will be 36 states with gubernatorial elections with 3 territories as well.
Out of this, 10 states are considered tossup, it could go either Democratic or Republican. Those states are Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
USA Today predicts that Democrats will win 6 to 8 governorships.
So, this is the outlook of the elections, according to USA Today. We know there are also campaigns on the state and local level. So do your research and get your voting pen or voting finger ready to make your picks.