Associated Press

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Authorities searching for a missing 5-year-old Illinois boy who had lived in deplorable conditions dug up his body Wednesday and charged his parents with murder, sadly declaring that the youngster would “no longer have to suffer.”

The body, believed to be that of Andrew “AJ” Freund, was covered in plastic buried in a shallow grave in a rural area of Woodstock in McHenry County, Crystal Lake police Chief James Black said.

Black said investigators went to the site after they interviewed the boy’s parents overnight and presented them with cellphone evidence. Woodstock is about 50 miles (80 kilometers) northwest of Chicago and a few miles from the family’s home in Crystal Lake.

“This is not the outcome that we want to talk about … but it is the unfortunate result,” said Jeffrey Sallet, who runs the FBI in northern Illinois.

The parents, Andrew Freund Sr. and JoAnn Cunningham, each face charges of first-degree murder and other crimes. An email seeking comment was sent to Cunningham’s lawyer. It wasn’t immediately known if Freund has a lawyer.

The couple reported AJ missing last Thursday, telling officers they had last seen him at bedtime the previous night. Freund told a dispatcher that they’d checked “closets, the basement, the garage, everywhere,” but investigators quickly knocked down the possibility of a kidnapping.

Speaking to reporters, Black had a message for AJ’s relatives: “It is my hope that you may have some solace in knowing that AJ is no longer suffering and his killers have been brought to justice.”

Crystal Lake police had visited the house at different times over the years, according to records released by the department. One report described the home as littered with dog feces and urine, including a child’s bedroom where the “smell of feces was overwhelming.” Another report said the house was “cluttered, dirty and in disrepair,” and sometimes without electricity.

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, known as DCFS, had contact with the family since AJ was born with opiates in his body in 2013. The Northwest Herald said he was in foster care for two years before being returned to his parents. A younger brother was removed from the home last week.

Black said the cause of AJ’s death remains under investigation. Investigators removed several items from the home, including a shovel, mattress, paper bags and a plastic storage tub.

“We know you are at peace playing in heaven’s playground and are happy you no longer have to suffer,” the police chief said in a public message intended for the boy.

DCFS acting director Marc Smith said AJ’s death was “heartbreaking.”

“The department is committed to conducting a comprehensive review of the entirety of our work with Andrew’s family to understand our shortcomings and to be fully transparent with the public on any steps we are taking to address the issues,” Smith said in a written statement.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker in March ordered an independent review of DCFS after the deaths of a 2-year-old girl in Decatur and a 2-year-old boy in Chicago. Child welfare workers had contacts with both families.

Source: Fox News National

The Latest on eight people injured in Northern California after a car plows into them (all times local):

1:55 p.m.

Police in Northern California have identified the man arrested after he allegedly deliberately plowed into a group of people, injuring eight.

The Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety says 34-year-old Isaiah Joel Peoples, of Sunnyvale, was arrested Tuesday.

Sunnyvale Police Capt. Jim Choi says investigators are still trying to determine a motive in the crash Tuesday evening. The FBI says it is assisting with the probe.

Choi says some of the eight people injured, including a 13-year-old girl, were at a corner or on the crosswalk when the car hit them before smashing into a tree. The victims’ conditions have not been released.

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12:05 p.m.

A man who witnessed a California crash that injured eight people says when he approached the driver’s side of the car, the man was repeatedly saying, “thank you Jesus.”

Don Draper, of San Jose, says he was enraged after seeing the Toyota Corolla slam into pedestrians at high speed, then crash into a tree. He says he marched up to the car ready to confront the driver.

Draper says the driver was crouched over the steering wheel, unhurt. The car was hissing steam and the airbag had deployed.

Draper said the driver’s speech was not slurred and he did not look at him.

Later, he saw the driver had climbed out of his car and was lying face down on the grass outside.

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11:35 a.m.

Police officers are at the apartment in Northern California of a man that authorities say appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight.

Authorities have not identified the man who was driving the Toyota Corolla but officers on Wednesday were at an apartment associated with the car’s owner in Sunnyvale, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of San Francisco.

Sunnyvale Police Capt. Jim Choi says investigators are still trying to determine a motive in the crash Tuesday evening. The FBI says it is assisting with the probe.

Choi says some of the eight people injured, including a 13-year-old girl, were at a corner or on the crosswalk when the car hit them before smashing into a tree.

The crosswalk reopened Wednesday morning.

___

7:30 a.m.

The FBI says it’s assisting California officials in the investigation of a motorist who appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight.

Prentice Danner, a spokesman for the FBI’s field office in San Francisco, says the Sunnyvale Police Department is the lead agency in the investigation. But Danner says that if it is determined a federal crime was committed, the bureau will become more involved.

Sunnyvale Police Cpt. Jim Choi says the driver of the car was arrested and has been identified but that his name is not being made public to avoid compromising the investigation.

___

6:30 a.m.

Authorities in Northern California say a man was arrested after he appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight, but that a motive is still under investigation.

Sunnyvale Police Cpt. Jim Choi tells KPIX-TV that witnesses told investigators the motorists was speeding and drove directly toward the pedestrians without trying to veer away or stop the car before striking the pedestrians Tuesday night.

Choi says some of the eight people injured were at a corner or on the crosswalk and that officials have to indication the motorists tried to avoid them. The department says the crosswalk remains closed Wednesday as officials investigate.

He says officials are looking into whether the driver was having a medical emergency or purposely hit the pedestrians.

___

12:00 a.m.

Authorities say eight people have been injured after a motorist appeared to deliberately plow into them in Sunnyvale.

The Bay Area city’s Department of Public Safety says it happened Tuesday evening.

Eight people were taken to the hospital, including a 13-year-old boy.

There’s no word on their condition or a motive for the apparent attack.

The driver was taken into custody after the car smashed into a tree.

KGO-TV reports that witnesses say the man apparently made no effort to stop before hitting the pedestrians.

Source: Fox News National

Authorities say the leader of a civilian group that has detained asylum-speaking migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border was injured while he was jailed in New Mexico, after being arrested on federal weapons charges.

The Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday in a statement that 69-year-old Larry Hopkins was transferred Tuesday out of the county jail after suffering non-life threatening injuries Monday night.

The statement did not provide specifics on the “alleged battery” in which Hopkins was injured in Las Cruces, but Hopkins’ lawyer, Kelly O’Connell, told the Albuquerque Journal that his client was hospitalized for rib injuries following an altercation.

The FBI arrested Hopkins on a federal complaint accusing him of being a felon in illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.

O’Connell has said Hopkins will plead not guilty.

Source: Fox News National

The Latest on the search for a missing 5-year-old Illinois boy (all times local):

3 p.m.

Police say the body of a 5-year-old Illinois boy whose parents reported him missing last week was found buried in a shallow grave and wrapped in plastic in a rural area a few miles from the family’s home.

Crystal Lake police Chief James Black said during a news conference that investigators found what they believe to be the remains of Andrew “AJ” Freund early Wednesday in the neighboring city of Woodstock. Efforts are underway to confirm it is AJ’s body.

He says they were led to the body after interviewing AJ’s parents overnight and presenting them with cellphone evidence.

The parents, Andrew Freund Sr. and JoAnn Cunningham, each face five counts of first-degree murder and other charges.

Authorities say they reported him missing last Thursday and told officers they last saw him at bedtime the night before.

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2 p.m.

Authorities say they have found what they believe is the body of a 5-year-old Illinois boy who went missing last week, and that his parents have been charged with murder in his death.

Crystal Lake police Chief James Black said at a news conference Wednesday that police dug up what they believe is Andrew “AJ” Freund’s body in a field and that it was wrapped in plastic.

He says AJ’s parents, Andrew Freund Sr. and JoAnn Cunningham, face murder and other charges in the boy’s death.

Authorities say the boys’ parents reported him missing last Thursday and told officers they last saw him at bedtime the night before.

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12:30 p.m.

Officers have removed several items from the home of an Illinois couple whose 5-year-old son has been missing for nearly a week.

Photos and video show the officers leaving the Crystal Lake home of Andrew Freund Sr. and JoAnn Cunningham on Wednesday with a shovel, mattress, brown paper bags and plastic storage tub.

Searchers have been scouring the area for the couple’s missing son, Andrew “AJ” Freund. Authorities say the boys’ parents reported him missing last Thursday and told officers they last saw him at bedtime the night before.

Police say Cunningham has been refusing to cooperate with detectives. They say they don’t believe the boy was abducted and that he didn’t leave the home on foot. State child welfare officials have taken custody of the couple’s 4-year-old son, Parker.

Authorities plan to give an update on the investigation at a 1 p.m. news conference.

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9:25 a.m.

The FBI and police in the Chicago suburb of Crystal Lake are planning a news conference as they search for a 5-year-old boy who has been missing for nearly a week.

The Crystal Lake Police Department says the news conference will take place at noon on Wednesday at City Hall. The agencies have been searching for Andrew “AJ” Freund since his parents reported him missing last Thursday. The couple said they saw him at bedtime the night before and couldn’t find him in the morning.

Police searched for AJ in a park on Tuesday and said they planned to use sonar to search ponds in the community, which is about 50 miles (80 kilometers) northwest of Chicago.

Authorities say they don’t believe the boy was abducted or wandered away.

Source: Fox News National

The Latest on eight people injured in Northern California after a car plows into them (all times local):

12:05 p.m.

A man who witnessed a California crash that injured eight people says when he approached the driver’s side of the car, the man was repeatedly saying, “thank you Jesus.”

Don Draper, of San Jose, says he was enraged after seeing the Toyota Corolla slam into pedestrians at high speed, then crash into a tree. He says he marched up to the car ready to confront the driver.

Draper says the driver was crouched over the steering wheel, unhurt. The car was hissing steam and the airbag had deployed.

Draper said the driver’s speech was not slurred and he did not look at him.

Later, he saw the driver had climbed out of his car and was lying face down on the grass outside.

___

11:35 a.m.

Police officers are at the apartment in Northern California of a man that authorities say appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight.

Authorities have not identified the man who was driving the Toyota Corolla but officers on Wednesday were at an apartment associated with the car’s owner in Sunnyvale, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of San Francisco.

Sunnyvale Police Capt. Jim Choi says investigators are still trying to determine a motive in the crash Tuesday evening. The FBI says it is assisting with the probe.

Choi says some of the eight people injured, including a 13-year-old girl, were at a corner or on the crosswalk when the car hit them before smashing into a tree.

The crosswalk reopened Wednesday morning.

___

7:30 a.m.

The FBI says it’s assisting California officials in the investigation of a motorist who appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight.

Prentice Danner, a spokesman for the FBI’s field office in San Francisco, says the Sunnyvale Police Department is the lead agency in the investigation. But Danner says that if it is determined a federal crime was committed, the bureau will become more involved.

Sunnyvale Police Cpt. Jim Choi says the driver of the car was arrested and has been identified but that his name is not being made public to avoid compromising the investigation.

___

6:30 a.m.

Authorities in Northern California say a man was arrested after he appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight, but that a motive is still under investigation.

Sunnyvale Police Cpt. Jim Choi tells KPIX-TV that witnesses told investigators the motorists was speeding and drove directly toward the pedestrians without trying to veer away or stop the car before striking the pedestrians Tuesday night.

Choi says some of the eight people injured were at a corner or on the crosswalk and that officials have to indication the motorists tried to avoid them. The department says the crosswalk remains closed Wednesday as officials investigate.

He says officials are looking into whether the driver was having a medical emergency or purposely hit the pedestrians.

___

12:00 a.m.

Authorities say eight people have been injured after a motorist appeared to deliberately plow into them in Sunnyvale.

The Bay Area city’s Department of Public Safety says it happened Tuesday evening.

Eight people were taken to the hospital, including a 13-year-old boy.

There’s no word on their condition or a motive for the apparent attack.

The driver was taken into custody after the car smashed into a tree.

KGO-TV reports that witnesses say the man apparently made no effort to stop before hitting the pedestrians.

Source: Fox News National

The Latest on eight people injured in Northern California after a car plows into them (all times local):

11:35 a.m.

Police officers are at the apartment in Northern California of a man that authorities say appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight.

Authorities have not identified the man who was driving the Toyota Corolla but officers on Wednesday were at an apartment associated with the car’s owner in Sunnyvale, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of San Francisco.

Sunnyvale Police Capt. Jim Choi says investigators are still trying to determine a motive in the crash Tuesday evening. The FBI says it is assisting with the probe.

Choi says some of the eight people injured, including a 13-year-old girl, were at a corner or on the crosswalk when the car hit them before smashing into a tree.

The crosswalk reopened Wednesday morning.

___

7:30 a.m.

The FBI says it’s assisting California officials in the investigation of a motorist who appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight.

Prentice Danner, a spokesman for the FBI’s field office in San Francisco, says the Sunnyvale Police Department is the lead agency in the investigation. But Danner says that if it is determined a federal crime was committed, the bureau will become more involved.

Sunnyvale Police Cpt. Jim Choi says the driver of the car was arrested and has been identified but that his name is not being made public to avoid compromising the investigation.

___

6:30 a.m.

Authorities in Northern California say a man was arrested after he appeared to deliberately plow into a group of people, injuring eight, but that a motive is still under investigation.

Sunnyvale Police Cpt. Jim Choi tells KPIX-TV that witnesses told investigators the motorists was speeding and drove directly toward the pedestrians without trying to veer away or stop the car before striking the pedestrians Tuesday night.

Choi says some of the eight people injured were at a corner or on the crosswalk and that officials have to indication the motorists tried to avoid them. The department says the crosswalk remains closed Wednesday as officials investigate.

He says officials are looking into whether the driver was having a medical emergency or purposely hit the pedestrians.

___

12:00 a.m.

Authorities say eight people have been injured after a motorist appeared to deliberately plow into them in Sunnyvale.

The Bay Area city’s Department of Public Safety says it happened Tuesday evening.

Eight people were taken to the hospital, including a 13-year-old boy.

There’s no word on their condition or a motive for the apparent attack.

The driver was taken into custody after the car smashed into a tree.

KGO-TV reports that witnesses say the man apparently made no effort to stop before hitting the pedestrians.

Source: Fox News National

Spain’s Civil Guard says the bodies of a German woman and her 10-year-old son have been found in a cave in the Canary island of Tenerife and that the boy’s father, who was also German, has been arrested.

The search began Tuesday, when residents found a 5-year-old boy near the town of Adeje. The Europa Press news agency reported that, speaking through a translator, the boy said his father had taken the family to a cave and attacked them but he had escaped.

Police arrested the father in his apartment in Adeje but he refused to say where the rest of his family was.

The Civil Guards say the missing mother and son were found Wednesday afternoon.

The volcanic Tenerife island in the Atlantic Ocean is a popular holiday destination.

Source: Fox News World

More than 1,000 indigenous Brazilians gathered outside Congress Wednesday for an annual three-day campout to protest what they see as rollbacks of indigenous rights under President Jair Bolsonaro.

Tents dotted the lawn in front of the National Congress, where indigenous leaders sang, danced and sold crafts while wearing traditional feathered headdresses with their faces painted red and black.

The event, known as the Free Land Encampment, began its 15th edition with a sense of animosity toward Bolsonaro, whose policies indigenous leaders are calling the biggest setbacks to their peoples’ rights in recent history.

“This government came in immediately attacking us and our rights in a way we haven’t seen before,” said Paulo Tupiniquim, executive coordinator of the Articulation of Indigenous People of Brazil, which organized the event. “We are here to show that we will resist and will not accept our rights being taken away.”

The government has called in National Guard forces for security at the encampment as a “preventative measure.”

At the same event in 2017, police shot tear gas at the indigenous protesters who retaliated by shooting at them with bows and arrows.

“We are not violent. Violent are those who attack the sacred right to free demonstration with armed troops,” the organizers wrote in a statement protesting the National Guard presence. “They’re trying to take the right to come and go from Brazilians who have walked these lands since long before 1500” the statement read, referencing when European colonizers first came to Brazil.

Before becoming president, Bolsonaro promised that if he were elected, “not one more centimeter” of land would be given to indigenous groups and likened indigenous people living in reserves to caged animals in zoos.

On his first day as president, Bolsonaro transferred the authority to designate indigenous land and to grant environmental licenses for businesses on indigenous reserves from the government’s indigenous affairs agency to the agriculture ministry. Activists say the move will practically paralyze land allocations and facilitate operations for agribusiness and mining.

Bolsonaro’s health minister sparked protests across the country last month when he proposed eliminating the federal indigenous health care program and putting indigenous health care needs in the hands of municipalities. Indigenous groups say that the current program is designed to attend to their specific needs in indigenous languages.

“The government is completely anti-indigenous,” Joenia Wapichana, an indigenous congresswoman, told The Associated Press at the protest. “The government is not open to us. He is open to those who defend mining and land grabbing, which is his intention.”

Source: Fox News World

Italy’s government has written to the European Union asking it to prepare a plan of action to address the risk of a new wave of migrants escaping from the armed conflict in Libya.

Italy’s Foreign Minister Enzo Moavero spoke on Wednesday at a joint news conference in Rome after meeting with the United Nation envoy to Libya, Ghassan Salame. Moavero didn’t provide additional details on Italy’s request.

Italy’s anti-immigration Interior Minister Matteo Salvini has ordered that migrant rescue boats cannot enter Italian ports.

Salame downplayed Italy’s fears that a huge number of African refugees could leave Libya trying to reach Europe.

“We know that about 700,000 migrants are in our country now, but not even a minority of them wants to cross the Mediterranean,” Salame told journalists.

Source: Fox News World

Climate change protesters who have brought parts of central London to a standstill for days say they will lift their blockades.

The group Extinction Rebellion says it will end its remaining demonstrations at Marble Arch and Parliament Square on Thursday.

Last week, the protesters blocked Waterloo Bridge and major intersections including Marble Arch and Oxford Circus, snarling traffic and disrupting bus routes.

The civil disobedience movement saw tented protest sites sprouting around the capital. More than 1,000 people were arrested as police tried to clear the sites, though only about 70 have been charged.

Extinction Rebellion thanked Londoners in a statement Wednesday, saying: “We know we have disrupted your lives. We do not do this lightly. We only do this because this is an emergency.”

Source: Fox News World


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