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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 raccoon sits atop a trash can, enjoying a snack.

    Drunk raccoons are terrorizing a West Virginia town, thanks to an early winter bringing an abundance of rotting crab apples for the mammals to eat, intoxicating them.

    As KARE-TV (Minneapolis) reports, residents of Milton, West Virginia, at first thought that their town had been besieged by rabid raccoons. So alarming was the sight of the “staggering, disoriented” raccoons that residents thought, at first, that they were dealing with a rabies infestation. Many citizens called Animal Control. However, police eventually learned that the problem was something far more mundane — and far less alarming. The raccoons were simply drunk.

    The problem here is that three scientific disciplines — chemistry, climate, and animal science — all converged to create the problem. Ordinarily, the majority of North American animals have nested down for the winter by the time the trees start shedding their fruit — fruit which will rot on the ground and, in the process, undergo a fermentation process that produces alcohol.

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    The Pentagon as seen from the air

    Deputy Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan says that he isn’t surprised that the Pentagon failed its first audit. For the first time in history, the DoD’s Office of Inspector General conducted a long sought-after audit of the headquarters. But according to Reuters, the Pentagon failed the review, which looked at weapons systems, military personnel, and property.

    In a press conference with reporters at the Pentagon on Thursday, Shanahan said that the failure wasn’t a shock.

    “We never thought we were going to pass an audit, right? Everyone was betting against us that we wouldn’t even do the audit,” Shanahan said.

    But even though it wasn’t surprising, Shanahan said that some of the results of the audit are “irritating” issues.

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    Election workers are surrounded by boxes of ballots that need to be recounted by 3 p.m. Thursday to determine results in three key Florida races.

    Florida’s election recount is scheduled to finish up Thursday afternoon, but for one county it will be “nearly impossible,” according to theNew York Times, to meet the 3 p.m. deadline. Officials are saying that Palm Beach County’s tabulation equipment has come up short “a significant number” of ballots for the final Senate tally.

    The state is in the middle of an intense machine recount for three key races — those for the positions of governor, senator, and agriculture commissioner — and nearly a dozen lawsuits have been filed in efforts to extend deadlines, count rejected mail ballots, and impound equipment.

    One hearing was held in federal court Thursday morning, in an effort by the Democratic Party to get the recount deadlines extended. Tallahassee Federal District Court Judge Mark E. Walker stumped the lawyers with one question: “Would it be legal to proceed with recount results that are missing one county?”

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    Donald Trump, Michael Avenatti, robert mueller, Stormy Daniels, jacob wohl

    After Michael Avenatti, the 47-year-old California-based lawyer who emerged this year as an outspoken foe of Donald Trump, was arrested Wednesday and booked on domestic violence charge, the 20-year-old Trump supporter and Twitter “troll” Jacob Wohl — who just two weeks ago was part of an attempt to falsely accuse Special Counsel Robert Mueller of sexual assault — appeared to claim credit for engineering Avenatti’s arrest, the Inquisitr reported yesterday.

    But even as Avenatti lashed out at Wohl on his own Twitter feed, saying that he would be “coming for” the Trump mega-fan, and Wohl then denied a link to Avenatti’s arrest, the Republican Party suddenly took an interest in the case, filing formal requests for all information related to Avenatti’s arrest.

    Avenatti quickly responded to the Republican requests, saying via Twitter, “As if there was a doubt politics was involved, there can now be none.”

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    Julian Assange speaks to the media from the balcony of the Embassy Of Ecuador on May 19, 2017 in London, England. Julian Assange, founder of the Wikileaks website that published US Government secrets, has been wanted in Sweden on charges of rape since 2012. He sought asylum in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London and today police have said he will still face arrest if he leaves.

    The Department of Justice is planning to bring the founder of the pro-transparency organization WikiLeaks Julian Assange up on charges, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal on Thursday.

    The Department of Justice’s prosecutors have been in deep discussions over the past year about what charges can be brought against Assange and are currently optimistic that they will be able to get him into an American courtroom. Assange is currently seeking asylum at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

    The confidence by the United States is a result of Ecuador seeking to improve its relationship with the country, resulting in a decline in interest in Assange’s asylum.

    Assange has been under investigation by the Department of Justice since 2010, according to the Wall Street Journal report. While there is no certainty about what charges prosecutors will bring against Assange, it is likely that it will include the Espionage Act.

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    Donald Trump

    Donald Trump gave a lengthy interview to the Daily Caller recently, sharing his thoughts on a wide range of topics that include acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker and the ratings bump that he personally gave to cable TV.

    In the interview, he also shared his personal thoughts on the news. In the past, Donald Trump has referred to “the failing” New York Times, and has called out CNN as fake news more than once.

    Currently, Trump is embroiled in a battle with CNN regarding White House reporter Jim Acosta. Last week, Acosta and Trump exchanged some heated questions and responses at an official press conference. Trump attempted to move on to another reporter, but Acosta refused to relent and asked another question.

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    Image of the coastline at Eastport in Maine

    There’s nothing quite like taking a dip in the ocean. The water is warm as you float along minding your own business. This until you see what looks like pancake-batter creatures invading your space.

    It sounds like something out of a bad B-grade horror movie. However, for those who enjoy a dip in the Gulf of Maine, this is no laughing matter. These creatures do exist and they are invading the waters in Maine thanks to an increase in water temperatures this year.

    According to Fox News, the creatures are called tunicates, or “sea squirts,” and have the appearance of pancake batter. While the common name may be cute, these “jelly-like marine invertebrate” animals are actually multiplying at such a rate this year, thanks to warmer waters, that University of New Hampshire (UNH) researchers think they could lead to a “giant-sized problem.”

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    Many come together to put Sgt. Helus to rest.

    When a gunman opened fire on the Thousand Oaks country-western bar last week, Sgt. Ron Helus was one of the first to confront the shooter. According to People, 54-year-old Helus called his wife Karen when he first received the emergency call. Knowing he might not ever get to talk to his wife of 29 years again, he took the opportunity to quickly tell her he loved her. “He said had to back someone up, and he said he loved me,” Karen said. “And I’m glad that I said I loved him. That was the last time I talked to him.”

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    Donald Trump, Robert Mueller, Russia, Trump Russia collusion, Roger Stone,

    Anxiety is running high inside the Donald Trump White House as Russia investigation Special Counsel Robert Mueller prepares to end a period with almost no public activity, leading up to the 2018 midterm elections, Politico reported on Thursday. Trump and his inner circle, including his son Donald Trump, Jr., expect that now that the midterms are concluded, according to the Politico report, Mueller is getting ready to unleash a “Category Five Hurricane” of criminal indictments.

    Mueller gave a hint that his Russia collusion investigation still has a long way to go in a court filing Thursday, in which he asked for a delay in sentencing Trump’s former deputy campaign manager Rick Gates, who, earlier this year, pleaded guilty to lying to investigators and conspiracy against the United States and agreed to cooperate with the Mueller investigation, as the Inquisitr reported.

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    Barbara Lee Ray's mug shot

    An elderly woman named Barbara Lee Ray reportedly headed to her doctor’s office a little more than a week ago – on November 5 – with a rather odd request.

    According to the Miami Herald, citing the arrest affidavit, the 73-year-old woman from Polk County, Florida, headed to the Complete Care Family Medicine Associates office in Fort Meade with a small clear plastic bag containing a white substance she wanted her doctor to test. The arrest report reveals the woman told her doctor she was “scared” of the substance she was smoking and wanted to “check her well-being.”

    Once Barbara arrived at her doctor’s office, she pulled three different items out of her purse. These items included:

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    Car accident in snow

    Thursday took a lot of people by surprise. Anyone not following the weather closely woke up to a colder than expected morning. As night darkness begrudgingly gave way to morning light, it was clear that the daylight would be facing an uphill battle. The cautious commuter would have checked their $1,000 smartphone and noticed rain in the forecast starting around noon.

    What they wouldn’t have noticed was how far sideways things were about to go. Before the day was over, at least eight were dead due to the wintry conditions. A CNN report puts it succinctly. “Snowstorm slams eastern US, killing 8 and knocking out power.”

    “A strong winter storm moving over the eastern half of the country has claimed at least eight lives and knocked out power for tens of thousands of people.

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    the proud boys march in portland

    Comcast has fired an employee after a Philadelphia advocacy group “outed” him as being a member of the alt-right group The Proud Boys, Philadelphia Magazine is reporting.

    Andrew Kovalic was, until this week, an employee of the New York City-based cable giant – that is, until Philadelphia-based nonprofit Media Mobilizing Project, which seeks to hold accountable media broadcasters, news organizations, and the like, outed him as a member of the right-wing hate group.

    How Did Andrew Kovalic Get Drawn Into This?

    Kovalic was brought to the attention of the group thanks to Twitter user @AntiFashGordon.

    The Proud Boys (more on them in a few paragraphs) are planning an event in Philadelphia this Saturday, the so-called “We The People” Rally in which the Proud Boys and other alt-right groups are expected to descend upon the city to “show Philly what patriotism really is.”

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    Smoky haze obstructs the view of the Bay Area skyline

    Smoke roiling from the Camp Fire continues to travel into the San Francisco Bay Area, causing unhealthy air quality conditions to persist. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District wrote on their Facebook page that it’s expected to last through Tuesday, November 20, and has also spurred a Winter Spare the Air Alert to be enforced until that same date.

    During a Winter Spare the Air Alert, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District said the following.

    “Burning wood, including manufactured fire logs or any other solid fuel, indoors or outdoors, is banned throughout this Winter Spare the Air Alert.”

    List Of School And College Closings

    Schools and colleges responded to some of the worst levels of air quality the regions ever experienced in the area by announcing closures. According to ABC News 7, San Francisco Unified School District and Oakland Unified announced they would be closing their schools Friday, Nov. 16.

    See the link below for the listings of closures. The list continues to be updated.

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    Christopher Watts Sits In Courtroom

    The mistress of admitted murderer Chris Watts has broken her silence. Nicole Kessinger, 30, has spoken to the Denver Post in an exclusive interview about the nature of her relationship with Watts, and how she had no idea the Watts family was still a tight-knit unit at the time of the August murders.

    “He’s a liar. He lies about everything,” she told the outlet.

    Watts, who has recently plead guilty of murder to avoid the death penalty, met Kessinger at the same Anadarko oil and gas site where Watts had buried his wife and two small children. Shan’ann Watts, 15 weeks pregnant at the time of her murder, was found buried at the site. Daughters 4-year old Bella and 3-year old Celeste were found in oil tanks on the same property.

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    A wildfire evacuee sorts through donated clothing at a makeshift evacuation shelter in a Walmart parking lot on November 15, 2018.

    A makeshift wildfire evacuation shelter in a Walmart parking lot is being shut down, leaving hundreds of evacuees from California’s devastating Camp Fire frantic and homeless yet again, KPIX 5 reported.

    Donation bins and portable restrooms that have been provided for the camp will be removed by the Red Cross by 1 p.m. this Sunday according to the shelter’s co-organizer Luigi Balsamo, who said the evacuees need a “clear exit strategy.”

    The announcement has left many of the more than 1,000 wildfire victims that have established a temporary community in the parking lot panicked, including evacuee Carol Whiteburn.

    “They’re taking everything on Sunday, the bathrooms, the lights, everything,” she told KPIX 5.“I don’t know what we’re going to do.”

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    Michael Avenatti, Donald Trump, Stormy Daniels, Robert Mueller, Jacob Wohl, Fox News, TMZ

    Two days after Michael Avenatti’s arrest in Los Angeles on suspicion of domestic violence, an incident first reported in a graphic TMZ online article that contained numerous sensational and still-unconfirmed details, the lawyer and prominent Donald Trump critic issued a denial of several of the allegations contained in the article.

    On his Twitter account Friday morning, Avenatti also appears to warn TMZ that he planned to sue over what he said were the false details contained in the site’s initial account.

    “Whomever wrote and approved that TMZ article better get their checkbook ready because it was purposely malicious and false,” Avenatti wrote. “It was designed to harm Lisa, me and my family and we are going expose TMZ for what they did. No journalist should rely on or defend garbage like that.”

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    #MeToo movement founder Tarana Burke speaks onstage during the Black Girls Rock! 2018 show on August 26.

    Tarana Burke, founder of the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment and sexual assault, delivered a keynote address at the Facing Race conference on November 10. There, she put her own movement on blast for ignoring groups of women, the Detroit Free Press reported.

    Speaking to the more than 3,500 people that gathered at the event in Detroit to discuss social justice, Burke challenged her movement — which she began on MySpace in 2006, though the movement gained significant notoriety from actress Alyssa Milano in 2017 — on the subject of inclusivity.

    Burke said that members “better pay attention to the original survivors,” referring to young girls of color in urban and indigenous communities whose “poverty and powerlessness” made them easy targets — and must give them as much notoriety as it does to “actresses who wanted careers and producers who got away with murder.”

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    A woman holds an escalator rail.

    A Canadian woman refused to hold the escalator rail while walking around the Montreal public transit system, setting off a series of events that concluded in her arrest — and a $420 fine — the Star is reporting. Defendant Bela Kosoian hopes to convince Canada’s Supreme Court that such a mundane and banal violation should never have been prosecuted at all, let alone to the tune of a hefty fine.

    Way back in 2009, Kosoian was making her way through a portion of the Montreal public transit system, hoping to catch a train into the city from the suburb of Laval. Her troubles started when she approached an escalator.

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    U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos (R) speaks as President Donald Trump (L) listens during a parent-teacher conference listening session at the Roosevelt Room of the White House February 14, 2017 in Washington, DC

    New rules have been proposed by the Trump administration on Friday regarding sexual assault on college campuses, ABC News is reporting. According to a government survey, one in four female college seniors has experienced unwanted and non-consensual sexual contact since entering college. The Obama administration already had rules in place for situations such as these, but Betsy DeVos, the current United States Secretary of Education, is re-working these rules and came up with a new version that will be posted online. The rules will be up for 60 days to give time for the public to give their opinion on them, and the administration will decide whether to implement them or not depending on the response.

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    A woman holding a bouquet of white lilies lays her hand on a coffin during a funeral.

    Hundreds gathered to mourn a man they never knew as a Marine Corps veteran listed as “unclaimed” was laid to rest in Nashville last week, the Tennessean reported.

    Lee Stokley, 69, of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, passed away at a nursing home in Ashland City on November 4. He was born on June 5, 1949 in Greenville, South Carolina, and served in the U.S. Marine Corps — during which time he completed a tour of Vietnam, his obituary read. He was set to be buried with military honors at the Middle Tennessee Veteran’s Cemetery on November 9.

    While sifting through his paperwork, Bob Counter of the Cheatham County Veterans Service Office said that he and his staff learned that Stokley is considered an “unclaimed” veteran, meaning that he died with no next of kin.

    “When we found out that he was considered an unclaimed veteran, which means he has no family, we wanted to make sure that he got claimed,” Counter explained.

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