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The Inquisitr offers a constantly updated mix of the latest stories to hit the web, covering news, entertainment, technology, news, sport, health and everything else.

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    A representative image of a beagle mix walking.

    While the internet is replete with human beings having a wonderful time with their pets, once in a while we hear of such heartlessness from people towards their pets that it simply breaks our hearts. This is one of those occasions when a pair of beagle mixes were thrown out of a moving car on a snowy New York highway, authorities say.

    Fortunately, however, this story has a silver lining. Just as the pet owner who threw the dogs showed us the cruelty that humans can sometimes mete out to their pets, the actions of one passing trucker reaffirmed our faith in humanity. When the trucker found the dogs all mangled, bleeding and severely injured on the highway, he decided to take them in and alerted the authorities.

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    HQ Trivia CEO and co-founder Colin Kroll.

    Colin Kroll, founder and CEO of HQ Trivia, has been found dead of an apparent drug overdose, TMZ has reported. He was 35.

    Citing law enforcement sources, TMZ wrote that Kroll’s girlfriend notified police early on Sunday morning after she was not able to get in touch with him. Upon arriving at Kroll’s Manhattan apartment for a welfare check, police reportedly found his dead body in the bedroom next to some drug paraphernalia. Per TMZ’s sources, Kroll is believed to have taken cocaine and heroin in the lead-up to his death.

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    Two frogs sitting on a tree branch & a collage of birds

    On Saturday morning, a fire broke out at the Monsoon Forest Habitat of the Chester Zoo near Liverpool, England. Shortly afterwards, the zoo made a heart wrenching statement about the result of that blaze, confirming that there were animals that lost their lives.

    The message was shared on the zoo’s website, saying that all mammals were successfully led away from the flames after the fire started.

    “Keepers were able to encourage all mammal species away from the fire and to safety,” the statement read, adding, “We are though, devastated to say that we were unable to save some of our insects, frogs, fish, and small birds who were located near to the outbreak of the fire. It’s absolutely heart-breaking to lose any animal, especially when conservationists have worked so hard to breed these wonderful species.”

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    Sign hung on a Sears store announcing its closure

    Sears, Roebuck and Company, collectively known as Sears, received permission from bankruptcy court Friday to reward $25.3 million worth of bonuses to its upper echelon employees, reports CBS News. The mass retailer convinced the court that it needs the funds to give executives and other high-ranking personnel financial incentive to stay with the company.

    Sears had proposed two bonus structures for its company executives. In the first, 18 of them would get around $2.1 million per quarter if Sears reached performance targets. The second one was organized to retain 322 additional execs by giving them cash incentives to stay around during restructuring.

    The final structure that was approved this past Friday gives bonuses equaling $8.4 million to 19 executives if the company meets agreed-upon financial targets in the following six months. Also, per CBS News, an attorney for Sears told the Chicago Tribune that those same executives would receive extra cash “if Sears is positioned to reach those targets when sold.”

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    President Trump appears with VP Mike Pence in formalwear.

    President Donald Trump took to Twitter earlier today to share a series of messages, one of which contained a few harsh words for both Michael Cohen and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

    In a tweet made approximately two hours ago as of the writing of this article, Trump referred to Michael Cohen — his former legal counsel — as a “rat,” and also excoriated the FBI for — what he sees as — the double standards they continue to employ in regards to their investigations. Calling the unannounced raid on Cohen’s office “unthinkable” and “unheard of” in addition to claiming that it was entirely illegal in the first place, it appears that the president is altogether unhappy with the conduct of the FBI as of late.

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    Gavel in a courtroom

    It’s been over a year since the horrifying death of Kenneka Jenkins. The 19-year-old was found dead in the walk-in freezer of The Crowne Plaza Chicago-O’Hare hotel. Kenneka’s mother, Teresa Martin, is now suing the hotel for negligence in the amount of $50 million according to TMZ. Teresa claims the company and its staff could have prevented Kenneka’s death, which still remains somewhat a mystery.

    TMZ is reporting that documents claim the hotel knew of Kenneka’s disappearance from a party in one of the rooms. Crowne Plaza staff said they would check surveillance and try to track Kenneka after she left the party, but Teresa is saying that’s not what happened.

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    A statue of a bear remains in front of a restaurant that was destroyed by the Camp Fire on November 21, 2018 in Paradise, California.

    Three employees were fired after posting insensitive photos taken while cleaning up the devastation left in the wake of the Camp Fire in California. The images show things like a dead cat with a beer bottle in its mouth, a pair of men pretending to drive a charred motor home and a man jumping on a burned trampoline. NBC says that the men were working for a construction company tasked with removing debris left by the fire when they posted the images to Facebook, resulting in an outcry from the community.

    The Camp Fire broke out on November 8 and until it was contained on November 25, it burned through 153,000 acres, killing 86 and destroying 14,000 structures. It is the most destructive and deadly wildfire in California’s history.

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    Democratic Representative Adam Schiff speaks during The 2018 New Yorker Festival in New York City.

    Democratic House Representative Adam Schiff is taking his responsibilities seriously.

    Schiff, who is likely to become the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, was speaking with NBC News Chuck Todd on Meet the Press when he said that Donald Trump’s Deutsche Bank records must be exposed because they are most likely to be compromised. Saying that the Deutsche Bank had an infamous record of “laundering Russian money,” Schiff maintained that if Mueller fails to look more closely at Trump’s business deals with other countries, and Russia in particular, it is Congress’ responsibility to do so.

    “Well, the concern about Deutsche Bank is that they have a history of laundering Russian money. And this, apparently, was the one bank that was willing to do business with the Trump Organization. If this is a form of compromise, it needs to be exposed.”

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    Close-up snap of blooming marijuana plants

    It was almost three years ago that Pennsylvania joined the growing list of states in the U.S. that have legalized medical marijuana. Unfortunately, conflicting state and federal laws still make things a little dicey despite being legal.

    According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pennsylvania school districts are struggling to figure out a way to administer medical marijuana to students in need of it while working around the conflicting laws.

    Even though medical marijuana is legal in the state of Pennsylvania, as well as 33 other states (including Washington D.C.), that doesn’t change the fact that there is a strict ban at a federal level. While the U.S. federal government still views it as a controlled substance, doctors in states where it is legal prescribe it to individuals who suffer from several chronic conditions and neurological disorders.

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    An immigrant boy relaxes in the room he and his father were staying in as they are cared for in an Annunciation House facility after they were reunited on July 25, 2018 in El Paso, Texas

    A group of Democrats who visited a Texas immigrant detention center called it “a child prison” and demanded that the Trump administration release nearly 2,700 young immigrants who have been languishing in the center for months, according to Common Dreams.

    A group of Democrats including new Texas star Beto O’Rourke was joined by Judy Chu, Veronica Escobar, Senators Jeff Merkley, Tina Smith, and Mazie Hirono. O’Rourke said that none of the Democrats could really engage with the young people at the center because they appeared scared. Separated from their families already and now having to spend months in the detention center was something the children were having difficulty coping with, the Democrats said.

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    Yael Stone attends the Australian LGBTI Awards at The Star on March 2, 2018 in Sydney, Australia

    The star of Netflix’s Orange is the New Black, Yael Stone, has come forth with allegations regarding inappropriate behavior towards her by fellow actor, Geoffrey Rush.

    According to an interview Yael did with the New York Times, accusations have been made of inappropriate behavior. The interview was published on Sunday and in it, Stone stated that she has struggled with coming forward for some time now since, at the time, she didn’t speak out and tell Rush that his behavior towards her was inappropriate. She also felt that she had, at times, encouraged the behavior. In addition, Stone has stated that in the past she was fearful of “offending a mentor and friend.”

    Initially, as Heavy points out, Stone had tried to contact Rush regarding his behavior via an email. When she didn’t receive a response from the actor, she decided to go public with her allegations.

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    Black bear in the Rocky Mountains

    Earlier this week, Melinda Lebarron was attacked outside of her home after officials believe she went to retrieve her dog which had started running toward a black bear.

    According to Fox 17 News, the Pennsylvania Game Commission now believes the bear may have had cubs with it and felt compelled to attack in order to protect its young when it noticed the dog and woman running in its direction.

    A team of tracking dogs have combed the surrounding area in an attempt to find the black bear that attacked and dragged the 51-year-old more than 80 yards away from her home. The Game Commission has also set several live traps in place near her home in case the bear returns.

    Local authorities went door to door in the area following the attack to let neighbors know what had happened and to provide them with important information on how they could keep bears from coming onto their property.

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    Mom and Dad hold baby's hand.

    Forty-eight-year-old Nicole Alles, a foster mom, got a phone call in December of 2014 that changed her life. She was told about a sick baby boy named Sebastian in need of a loving home. The child had a medical condition that caused his birth parents to be unable to give him the proper care he needed. At only 7-weeks-old, Sebastian had already been through tremendous suffering after being born with two collapsed lungs and a variety of other medical ailments, according to Today.

    In addition to the collapsed lungs, the baby also had a non-functioning bladder and left kidney. Meanwhile, his right kidney was already beginning to fail. As soon as she heard Sebastian’s story, Nicole said her heart broke for the child and she knew that she and her husband would take him in. “The first thing they said was they couldn’t find a home for him and, of course, that broke our hearts so we decided to take him,” she said.

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    U.S. First Lady Melania Trump attend the Congressional Ball at White House in Washington on December 15, 2018.

    Despite Melania Trump impressing at the Congressional Ball at the end of this week, it has been a difficult week for the First Lady, who has found herself at the wrong end of scathing criticism for an interview in which she attacked critics of the Trump family. But while her husband’s popularity has suffered over the last year, many believed that the First Lady remains much more secure in her approval by the people. It appears, however, that the recent events have had an effect on her popularity as well, with a nearly 11 percent drop in her favorability rating over the course of the last two months, according to CNN.

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    Police tape is seen outside of a crime scene.

    Ronald Seay allegedly stalked a librarian who banned him from a Sacramento library and fatally shot the woman as she sat in her car, an act police say was a targeted hit.

    As FOX 40 Sacramento reported, 41-year-old Amber Clark was shot several times in the face and head as she sat in her car outside the North Natomas Public Library. She was declared dead at the scene.

    The following day, police apprehended the 56-year-old Seay after a brief car chase, charging him with murder. Police said they believe that Seay hunted down the library supervisor, with the Sacramento Bee reporting that he wore a mask and teal clothing and fled the scene of the shooting in a gray sedan.

    Clark had banned Seay from the library in October for an unspecified incident in which he reportedly caused a disturbance.

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    Child Looking Out Window.

    Horrific stories of accidental child strangulation from window blinds have circulated the news lately, frightening parents around the nation. Due to the safety concerns that these fixtures pose, laws now require window blinds to be designed differently. Companies will no longer be allowed to sell blinds with long cords, as a young child could easily get them wrapped around their neck. Manufacturers may only sell cordless blinds or blinds with very short cords, according to Today.

    This new requirement is long overdue, as statistics show that these types of appliances have been hazardous to children for years. A report published in the medical journal Pediatrics, stated that from 1990 to 2016, 17,000 children have been rushed to the hospital due to an accident involving window blinds. In many cases, the child had slipped away from their parent’s view for only a minute or two. That was all it took for them to become entangled in the cord and strangled.

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    a stock photo of a crying girl

    A 9-year-old Utah girl told police that her father and stepmother subjected her to “waterboarding,” a form of interrogating prisoners of war that is widely considered torture, as a form of punishment, KUTV (Salt Lake City) is reporting.

    Authorities were called to the family’s Provo home in early December after reports of possible abuse in the home. According to KTRK-TV (Houston), the alleged abuse came to light when the girl’s father took her to a hospital to be seen for an unspecified reason.

    Nevertheless, the girl told authorities that her father, 29-year-old Joseph Mitchell, and her stepmother, 28-year-old Ilaria Mitchell, on at least three occasions punished her by “waterboarding” her – that is, tying her hands behind her back, restraining her in a chair, positioning her horizontally in the bathtub, and pouring water over her.

    The girl said the process hurt her, scared her, and made it difficult for her to breathe.

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    Trump speaks

    President Trump has, on numerous occasions, referred to special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, and other government and journalistic investigations of him, as a “witch hunt.” Even as various former associates of the president have been arrested, convicted, and sentenced, Trump has stuck with the “witch hunt” line.

    The “witch hunt” talking point has a long lineage in American history, with different politicians and other prominent people comparing their plight to that faced by the women in the Salem Witch Trials. A famed work of literature, Arthur Miller’s 1953 play The Crucible, drew a specific allegory between the witch trials and the Red Scare of the time.

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    Chris Watts court hearing

    Nichol Kessinger, the mistress of Chris Watts — who brutally murdered his pregnant wife and two children — will reportedly be placed in a witness protection program, Radar Online reported. Following public threats and shaming due to her relationship with Watts, Kessinger wants a new identity and the chance to start over.

    “She has received several threats, public shaming and could be considered one of the ‘most hated women’ in America. She plans to start fresh with a new name, new town and ultimately a new identity,” the source revealed.

    Watts and Kessinger met at work and began an affair a month before the murders took place. Watts led Kessinger to believe that he and his wife were separated, with plans to divorce, opening the door for the two to have a fresh start together. According to People Magazine, Watts showered Kessinger with love notes and affection and told her that they would have a future together.

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    Child with an empty bowl begs for food

    Every now and again, all those stories of wicked stepmothers from children’s fairy tales come true, and the results of their cruelty are even more horrific than the things Cinderella and Snow White were subjected to. One such instance took place in Castlemont, Texas, with Tammi Bleimeyer and her 5-year-old stepson Jordan.

    On Monday, Bleimeyer was sentenced to 28 years in prison for starving the little boy and forcing him to sleep in a locked crawl space under the stairs, which prosecutors in the case compared to the closet in which the fictional Harry Potter was forced to live by his aunt and uncle. As AOL reported, doctors who examined the boy after he was rescued compared his condition to that of a Holocaust survivor.

    The 37-year-old mother of seven was found guilty of injury to a child by omission for her actions against her stepson. The crawl space under the stairs was littered with loose nails and exposed wires.

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