- - Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Tornado leaves mile-long trail of damage

SUNRISE — Three tornados touched down in Florida as a storm system drenched the state’s Atlantic coast, including one tornado that left a trail of damage more than a mile long in a suburban neighborhood, officials said Wednesday.

The storm system soaked an already-soggy region late Tuesday, leaving behind damaged property, blocked roads and fallen trees.

A tornado with top winds of 120 mph struck Broward County, according to the National Weather Service in Miami.

Up to 50 homes were damaged in Plantation and Sunrise, though no serious injuries were reported. About a dozen homes were severely damaged, and two trailer homes were destroyed, according to the Weather Service.

The debris field was strewn with twisted trees and misplaced cars, Plantation Fire Battalion Chief Joel Gordon said.


CDC: 1 in 25 teens take drugs for depression

ATLANTA — Health officials say roughly 1 in 25 adolescents in the United States is taking antidepressants.

A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is the first to offer statistics on how many children ages 12 to 17 take antidepressants. It’s based on surveys and depression screenings of about 12,000 Americans.

The study found about 1 in 10 adults takes antidepressants. And perhaps more should - the researchers said only one third of people with depression symptoms in the study were taking medication.

The CDC report was released Wednesday. It also found that women take the drugs more than men, and whites use them more than blacks or Mexican-Americans.


Planned Parenthood urged to split up

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana officials who want to cut funding to Planned Parenthood say the organization could solve the issue by simply splitting its abortion business into a separate affiliate.

But officials in states where Planned Parenthood has done that say it isn’t an answer and that the organization could quickly find itself under new pressures as social conservatives target abortion providers across the nation.

Indiana and Planned Parenthood have been locked in a legal battle since Gov. Mitch Daniels in May signed a law cutting off funding to the group.

Planned Parenthood won a temporary injunction in June allowing it to continue receiving Medicaid money. On Thursday, the case goes before the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago.


Police comb home, yard of missing baby

KANSAS CITY — Investigators with shovels, rakes and bomb-detection equipment on Wednesday scoured the Kansas City home and yard of family members who say their baby was abducted from her crib as they slept.

Shortly after sunrise, FBI crime scene trucks and trailers pulled up outside the house and a phalanx of FBI agents and Kansas City police officers gathered at the property. Officers used yellow tape to cordon off about a half block perimeter around the house, pushing back the ever-present abundance of reporters and media trucks packing the street.

Officers could be seen digging behind a shed in the yard. No law enforcement officials would comment on the nature of the latest search.

Just before noon, three investigators left the house carrying brown paper bags and clear plastic bags and took them to the vehicles parked outside. Kansas City police spokesman Capt. Steve Young said he could not comment on the contents.

Capt. Young said investigators were bringing in a bomb and arson truck to assist in the search. He said there were no indications of explosives in the house. Some bomb detection devices use X-ray technology to scan solid objects to reveal items concealed within.


Official: Court break-in work of bar hoppers

saN ANTONIO — Authorities are defending a heavy tactical response after five foreign nationals with French visas broke into a county courthouse, though they were later described as harmless bar hoppers just goofing around.

Bexar County Sheriff Amadeo Ortiz said Wednesday the five men had been out drinking and appeared to pose no security threat. The men were in their 20s and had French addresses, but their nationalities were unclear.

Authorities released a surveillance photo of two of them wearing sombreros while running down a hallway. A beer bottle was found in one courtroom.

The men were arrested at about 1:30 a.m. Police closed several downtown blocks and brought in bomb-sniffing dogs.

Sheriff Ortiz says heightened national security justified the response after the men were identified as foreign nationals traveling in an RV.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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