(KUTV) A University of Utah "Special Review Committee" has completed its investigation into the sperm switch at a long closed lab, which had links to the university.
"The committee does not recommend contacting couples that received fertility services at Community Lab/RMTI...in order to warn them of a possible sample switch," wrote a panel of three medical doctors. "The justification for this recommendation is that the risk of having been victimized...might be very low."
The report, still not officially released by University Health Sciences---but obtained by 2News---said reviewers could not determine if the sperm switch went beyond one family, or whether it was an accident or intentional.
The swap, which was uncovered by one couple after DNA tests, showed the sperm of late RMTI worker Tom Lippert was used to conceive their now adult daughter, rather than a sample from the girl's father.
Lippert, who had a criminal past, was employed by in the 1990s by RMTI---which counted U faculty members among its leadership.
The report noted Lippert was a "frequent (sperm) donor between 1983 and 1993," which was within the time that the couple who uncovered the switch had been patients at the Community Lab.
"The university clinic served an estimated 1500 couples during the five years that Mr. Lippert worked at the University of Utah," the report stated. Besides the possibly low risk of other lab sample switches, the review committee said if the "U" were to try to contact all those families, "the burdens of this information are likely to outweigh the benefits." Further, it said "the challenges of accurately identifying and informing hundreds of couples after two or three decades are enormous."
Meantime, a former secretary in the university Andrology Department said university reviewers did not reach out to her during their investigation.
"I'm very surprised they didn't contact me," said Jane Jeremenko, who described herself as an office manager in the Andrology program. "I worked there 14 years, and the patient files were primarily in my control."
She said an outside entity should have conducted the review, rather than the university.
Asked if she thought reviewers might overlook, or sweep some things "under the rug," Jeremenko replied, "I do."
A "U" health spokesman said copies of the report would be officially released later this week, and that the university would make a person available to answer questions about the findings.
(KUTV) In the wake of the Lippert case different problems have come to light concerning the now closed andrology lab and clinic at the center of a fertility fiasco.
A South Jordan family called University of Utah Healthcare when the Lippert story broke. Diane MacAfee says she believed there to be a resemblance between her son and Lippert, what they found was he had no connection to Lippert.
Diane is not completely convinced that Lippert is not her son's biological father and she wonders if the sperm sample the University has on file is Lippert.
Given all the problems that appear to have been happening back then, Sean Mulvihill who appointed the committee to look at the Lippert issue, says the committee appears to be comfortable with the sample they used during the process.
Update: The paraglider, who has been identified as Eric Hill, 32, has passed away. According to a spokeswoman from the hospital, Hill passed away Wednesday morning.
(KUTV) A 32-year-old paraglider suffered critical injuries after his parachute collapsed near Point of the Mountain in Draper on Sunday afternoon, according to Unified Fire Authority.
The man was paragliding with friends at the flight park about 3 p.m., when the canopy collapsed 15 to 20 feet from land, sending him crashing into the mountainside, said UFA Battalion Chief Brian Anderton.
"He experienced a partial parachute collapse, which swung him into the mountainside with some velocity," Anderton said. "It doesn't seem like he fell an extremely long distance, but the velocity that he went into the hillside was enough to cause some trauma."
Crews found him unconscious but breathing 100 to 150 feet up the mountain. Unified Fire Authority called in a technical rescue team to scale the steep terrain and, by setting up ropes, carry him down to AirMed paramedics. The medical helicopter transported him to the University of Utah Hospital in critical condition with possible head trauma.
The victim's friend, Derek Mazur, had been paragliding with him earlier in the day and was on the ground watching when his friend crashed. Mazur said his friend, who was wearing a helmet, was gliding too low.
"He just came down the mountain a little bit. He was getting super low over here and just took a little turbulence and collapsed part of his wing, and it kind of spun him up," Mazur said. "He's well experienced. He knows what he's doing. Just kind of that time of year. Spring, the air is really rough and a lot of turbulence."
Anderton reminded paragliders to take extra precautions, especially when the weather is rough or the location is unfamiliar.
"Our crews respond to these incidents far too often. We go to several of these every year," Anderton said. "I would just recommend to people that they make sure that they're wearing the appropriate safety gear. Pay attention to the weather conditions and be familiar with what they're getting into."
Officials did not release the name of the victim, saying only that he is originally from California. Mazur said he travels around a lot but is often in Utah.
(KUTV) The small town of Opal, Wyoming was evacuated on Wednesday after a fiery explosion at the Williams natural gas processing plant. "It was huge," said Opal resident Bill Whiteford of the fireball which he described as 500-600 feet high.
George Angerbauer, spokesperson for the Williams Company, said all 30 workers got out of the plant alive and hit the emergency shut off switches as they evacuated the plant. Residue gases kept the fire burning Wednesday night.
Angerbauer said the company is using scopes to keep an eye on the fire from a distance to see when it has burned down. Once that happens, they can get into the plant to investigate the cause of the explosion. Angerbauer said there has never been such an incident at the plant which has been in operation since the late 50's.
The company offered town evacuees and workers rooms at local hotels.
(KUTV) Sun on their faces, wind at their back and the thrill of competing in a race was nearly impossible for many children with special needs. But Andrews and Michelle McMahon changed that when they created 'Push To The Finish.'
This non-profit teams-up disabled children and people from Utah’s running community. Hundreds of children have now felt the thrill of races and marathons. Push To The Finish is this week’s Pay It Forward recipient. You can help their great cause or get involved at http://www.pushtothefinish.org.
KIEV, Ukraine (CNN) -- Ukrainian forces killed five militants during operations to take down pro-Russians' roadblocks in Slavyansk on Thursday, the Ukrainian Interior Ministry said, in what appeared to be a significant escalation of violence in the country.
At the same time, Russia and the West continued their war of words over the handling of the crisis.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that if the Kiev government "has started to use the army against the population inside the country, it, beyond any doubt, is a very serious crime."
This would "have consequences" for those making the decisions, and for relations between the two governments, Putin said at a media forum Thursday, according to Russian state TV channel Russia 24.
Conflicting accounts have emerged about the number of casualties in eastern Ukraine.
The government in Kiev confirmed operations to destroy three checkpoints around the city and said its forces killed five pro-Russian militants. A police officer was also injured, the Interior Ministry said.
Meanwhile, Stella Horosheva, a spokeswoman for the self-appointed pro-Russian mayor of Slavyansk, Vyacheslav Ponomaryov, said an attack at an impromptu roadway checkpoint outside the city had taken the life of one pro-Russian militiaman and wounded another.
The pro-Russian unit at the checkpoint told a CNN team that armored vehicles had come to the roadblock but had refused to shoot at people, and that locals had set fire to tires to prevent them from passing.
The unit said two members of the "self-defense" group were on their way home after an overnight stint at the barricade when a sniper killed one and injured another.
Ponomaryov, visiting the site, also said a sniper had killed one of the pro-Russian activists.
The Interior Ministry said leaflets had been distributed "which called on people to keep the peace, not leave their residences, to keep children inside, to not react to provocation and to not obey illegal orders issued by the self-proclaimed illegal authorities."
The government accused Ponomaryov of threatening to kill anyone possessing the leaflet.
Reports of threats against Slavyansk residents have not been independently confirmed by CNN.
Elsewhere in the eastern Donetsk region, where some pro-Russian protesters have tried to declare independence from Ukraine, gunmen opened fire on a Ukrainian military unit overnight.
One Ukrainian soldier was injured in the assault in the town of Artemivsk, Ukraine's Defense Ministry said Thursday.
But security forces fought off the attack and retained control of the facility, the ministry said.
Interior Minister Arsen Avakov on his Facebook page accused the group of roughly 70 attackers of trying to take weapons from the unit.
Crossed claims in Mariupol
Both the government and pro-Russian protesters claimed victory in the eastern city of Mariupol on Thursday.
Acting President Oleksandr Turchynov opened a meeting of parliament with the announcement that the city hall, which pro-Russian protesters had occupied, had been freed.
Avakov said on his Facebook page that there were no casualties in the operation and that the Interior Ministry was preparing the premises for employees to return to work.
But pro-Russian protester Irina Voropayeva, who is in Mariupol, contradicted them both.
An assault on the city hall failed to dislodge the protesters, she said. Some of the occupiers were injured while they fought off the attackers, whom she said were extreme-right Ukrainian toughs.
The Ukrainian Interior Ministry later revised its version of events in a post to its website.
A group of 30 people armed with baseball bats entered city hall early Thursday and demanded the occupiers leave, it said. As the two groups clashed, police tried to separate them. Five people were injured.
Obama: U.S. 'teed up' to impose more sanctions
A week ago, the United States, Russia, the European Union and Ukraine sat down in Geneva, Switzerland, to hammer out an agreement calling for illegal groups to disarm and vacate occupied buildings, in return for an amnesty.
It has seemingly gone ignored, as the rift between the parties involved grows and Russia and the West accuse each other of foiling the agreement by meddling in Ukraine's affairs.
On Thursday, U.S. and Russian leaders exchanged new barbs.
Speaking alongside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo, U.S. President Barack Obama again ruled out any military solution in Ukraine but warned that the United States is "teed up" to impose further sanctions on Russia if it does not abide by the April 17 deal.
"There was some possibility that Russia could take the wiser course after the meetings in Geneva," he said. "Instead, we continue to see militias and armed men taking over buildings, harassing folks who are disagreeing with them, and destabilizing the region, and we haven't seen Russia step up and discourage that.
"On the other side, you've seen the government in Kiev take very concrete steps, in introducing an amnesty law and offering a whole range of reforms with respect to the constitution, that are consistent with what was discussed in Geneva."
But Russia sees things very differently, saying that according to the Geneva deal, Kiev must act to disarm the right-wing ultranationalists that Moscow blames for violence in Ukraine.
"We don't have any doubts that the first step must be done by the Kiev authorities," Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a news conference Thursday.
He accused the West of treating leaders in Kiev like "angels" who did nothing wrong while blaming Russia for the unrest in eastern Ukraine.
Lavrov also charged the European Union and the United States with supporting an "anti-constitutional coup" in Ukraine.
Putin, speaking on Russia 24, said the events unfolding in eastern Ukraine demonstrate that Moscow's decision to support the Crimean people, who voted to join Russia last month in a referendum condemned by the West, was right.
"Otherwise they would have witnessed the same events as eastern Ukraine and surely even worse," he said. "So, this is another proof that we have acted correctly and on time."
Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reproached Putin over Ukraine while speaking at the University of Connecticut on Wednesday.
She accused him of "trying to turn the clock back to the Soviet Union days."
"I think Russia will pay a big price for this," she said.
The West has alleged that Moscow sent members of its armed forces into the country, providing other support for pro-Russian militants or generally contributing to an atmosphere of distrust and instability.
Some in the West fear that Russia will try to repeat its annexation of Crimea elsewhere in Ukraine and perhaps in other countries in which ethnic Russians live or where Russia or the former Soviet Union historically has had significant influence.
Clinton called for keeping Ukraine's territory intact and allowing it to have a relationship with the West.
Lavrov threw the allegation back at the United States this week.
"(Americans) have, I think, overwhelming influence," he said. "They act in a much more open way, without any scruples, compared to the Europeans. ... You cannot avoid the impression that they are running the show very much, very much."
As proof, Lavrov pointed to the timing of the Ukrainian government's relaunch of its security operation just after a two-day visit from U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.
He claimed Turchynov has "ordered the army to shoot at ... people if they are engaged in peaceful protests," yet hasn't disarmed extremists.
On the other hand, pro-Russian protesters have not left government buildings they have seized or disarmed, as was mandated by the Geneva agreement.
Meanwhile, NATO estimates that Russia has amassed 40,000 troops near its border with Ukraine. This has fueled speculation the conflict could only get bigger and more violent, with Russia possibly taking over some, if not all, of Ukraine and possibly neighboring nations.
Lavrov didn't say on Wednesday that any military intervention was imminent, but he didn't rule it out, either.
"Russian citizens being attacked is an attack against the Russian Federation," he said.
A company-size contingent of U.S. Army paratroopers arrived Wednesday in Poland for training exercises, at Warsaw's request.
The contingent is part of "a persistent rotational presence," said Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby.
The United States and its allies have accused Russia of fomenting unrest in Ukraine since massive demonstrations helped push out pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych, who came under fire for shifting Ukraine away from the European Union and closer to Moscow.
CNN's Victoria Butenko reported from Kiev; CNN's Ben Brumfield wrote and reported from Atlanta and Laura Smith-Spark from London. CNN's Alla Eshchenko and Tim Lister reported from near Slavyansk and Gul Tuysuz from Kiev. CNN's Arkady Irshenko, Boriana Milanova and Gabe LaMonica contributed to this report.
Layer by layer, 3-D printers are beginning to make valves, arteries and blood vessels. Researchers at the University of Louisville want to print, piece by piece, a functioning human heart; and ultimately, provide a healthier version of a sick or dying patient's own heart. The material used to print each heart piece would, in part, come from a patient's fat cells. This would help prevent the patient's body from rejecting what Dr. Stuart Williams is calling a 'bioficial' heart.
Researchers say the toughest challenge once the pieces are put together, will be getting them to work in concert to beat and pump blood like a real heart. 3-D printing has taken off in manufacturing and electronics, but its uses in medicine are still being explored. The first bioficial heart could be ready to implant in less than a decade.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
(KUTV) The howling winds Tuesday night uprooted trees and sent a power line crashing down into traffic on a busy Murray street.
A senior couple out running errands found themselves trapped inside their car with a live wire dangling across the roof. Looking back the couple knows they are lucky to be alive. This evening Lloyd Davis walked around his brand new car he purchased just this year as he says, "it must have been a hot wire here, it's burned all the way down to here."
The burn marks are nothing compared to what could have happened and any day you're alive to tell your story is a good one. Davis says last night he looked up and saw the pole coming down. He stopped in his tracks on 5600 South near 900 East. Davis recalls hearing the "cables hit the car and the big bang," and as soon as the scare began it was all over, or so he thought.
Good Samaritans started running for his car yelling "don't get out, don't get out." The car was insulating Davis and his wife from electrocution. Murray police say the wires had electricity pulsing through them. Emergency responders asked the couple to stay put until they could guarantee the power was dead. The couple sat for what had to have been a very long 45 minutes in what became an almost black out with heavy dirty air swirling around them.
Davis knows he was lucky, if his car was even a few feet further down the road the window may have shattered and the wire may have come inside. Davis laughs uncomfortably as he says, "I think we'd be holding funeral services in three days." Police agree that this time around they were lucky. Davis believes he had a little more than luck on his side saying, "I figured the Lord was looking out after us, taking care of us."
(KUTV) The grading system for Utah schools could soon be replaced by a more detailed report card. The Governor's Education Advisor, Tami Pyfer, unveiled the new proposal this week.
"The idea of having a school report card that can provide additional information, more information has been well received," says Pyfer, who met with Utah PTA leaders Wednesday afternoon, detailing what could become the new grading system for Utah grade schools, high schools and even colleges. "It would provide parents more information for choice, as well as lawmakers and policymakers."
The current system awards schools a letter grade, A-F, for their performance based on various test results.
"The letter grades didn't really tell you much about the school," says Utah PTA President, Liz Zentner, who would like to see the Governor's plan replace the existing letter grade system. "This is much more visual and has a lot more information, so I think parents are going to really like this new one."
The new proposal would include a report card detailing proficiency in reading and math, comparing it to the average.
"Maybe your reading is fine and your math is not," says Pyfer. "As a principal, I would then want to direct my resources towards math."
The Governor's office says the comprehensive school report card would help further a state initiative, to have 66% of the Utah population college-educated by 2020.
"We all have the same goal, so let's come up with something that meets everyone's desire and goal to improve education," says Pyfer.
For now, the new report card is just a proposal. It could move forward as a Governor's initiative, to run alongside the letter-grade system; or it could become an issue for state lawmakers to take up replacing the current grading system.
(KUTV) More than a week after federal land managers ceased a controversial cattle round-up, armed militia members continue to guard the property of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy.
The militia members originally traveled to the remote property near Mesquite, Nevada, earlier this month to join Bundy supporters who were protesting the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.
The week-long showdown between Bundy's supporters and the BLM turned violent at times. Citing safety concerns, the BLM abruptly retreated on April 12 and released Bundy's cattle.
The militia members say their goal now is to guard Bundy's family and property. The men are perched on hillsides and use binoculars to survey the land as they stand guard 24 hours a day.
"When you pledge your life and your fortune, you're prepared to give it up," Oathkeeper member Bobby Bridgewater told 2News' sister station KLAS-TV in Las Vegas.
Militia members also told KLAS that they suspect federal agents may be posing as militia members in order to gather information about the group and possibly conduct a raid.
"The people that are up there, they have a certain look about them. These are military; my belief is federal agents," said Frank Lindysth, a former Bundy guard. "They're dirty. They're dirty."
Bundy's decades-long dispute with the federal government started in 1993 when the BLM limited the number of animals he could graze on public land. Bundy refused to remove his cattle, asserting that the BLM did not have the authority to trump his family's historic grazing rights.
The BLM says Bundy owes $1 million in fees and taxes and is ignoring federal court orders.
Meantime, the Nevada Cattlemen's Association released a statement this week saying the organization would not interfere in the matter but also "sympathize" with Bundy's situation.
"Ranchers such as Mr. Bundy have found themselves with their backs against the wall as, increasingly, federal regulations have infringed on their public land grazing rights and the multiple use management principle," the statement said. "This is not only devastating to individual ranching families; it is also causing rural communities in the west to whither on the vine."
(KUTV) The mayor of Provo joined fire and police officials as well as an agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to ask the public Wednesday for help catching a serial arsonist.
"We have formed an internal task force both within the city and within the police department. This task force is working to engage every aspect of every department within our city to pull together the necessary resources that we need to deal with this problem," said Provo Mayor John Curtis at a press conference on Wednesday morning. "Last night… there was a brush truck staffed by the fire department driving throughout our city all night looking for potential problems and for areas that could be vulnerable."
On March 13, firefighters found an abandoned single-family house on fire at 262 East 700 North. Crews put the flames out, but the house was damaged.
Eight days later, two vacant duplexes near 163 West 4800 North were damaged by a suspicious fire.
Then, on April 11 and April 19, four abandoned duplexes in that same area were destroyed by fire.
Finally, on Tuesday, Provo fire crews found a vacant single-family house, a car and a pile of debris burning. The house and vehicle were destroyed.
Although the state is aiding Provo, the city's resources are stretching thin. No one has yet been hurt, but officials fear that could change.
"My concern and our task force's concern is at some point, somebody's going to get hurt," said Provo Fire Marshal Lynn Schofield.
Schofield said the fires have occurred between 1 a.m. and 5 p.m., and there are trends across all of the fires.
"They've all been vacant. All have been boarded up. None of them have had utilities," Schofield said. "And in each case there have been at least indications from the tools that we use - which is the state K-9 - that some kind of an ignitable liquid is being used in the fires."
Investigators have received tips and are following up interviewing persons of interest. Any motive is possible, Schofield said.
"You have the traditional pyromaniac, which is a very small, small percentage of fire-setters," Schofield said. "You have arson for hire, where there's a monetary incentive to burn a property or properties. You have the hero fire-setter. Those are fire-setters who set fires, discover them and then assist either evacuating people or directing traffic away from the incident."
Officers are seeking any surveillance video nearby residents and businesses may have.
The city set up a hotline for tips about the fires at (801) 852-7400. They are offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest.
"How we'll solve this case undoubtedly is by people coming forward with observations that they made," said Provo Police Chief John King.
(KUTV) The defense attorney for the man that was shot and killed in a federal courtroom says his client was a nice man, and that it's a tragedy he was killed.
Defense Attorney Mike Langford worked with Siale Angilau for years and says Angilau was always a nice man to him.
Langford won't talk about the shooting in court, but it is clear that questions remain. The FBI says Angilau was armed with a pen or pencil when he attempted to attack a witness.
Perry Cardwell, who saw the shooting, says there was no pen or pencil, but admits he can't be certain.
Cardwell says he was disturbed by how the incident played out, saying that the U.S. Marshal, "shot him on the stand, shot him falling, shot him on the ground."
Cardwell went on to say the U.S. Marshal shot Angilau after he was lying on the ground wounded.
Cardwell's details conflict with a juror who wouldn't appear on camera, but told 2News she saw the shooting, and that the U.S. Marshal pointed his gun at Angilau wounded on the ground, but didn't shoot.
Langford said Angelau had already pleaded guilty to every crime he was charged with and that the racketeering charges meant he was being tried twice for the same crimes.
(KUTV) Todd Shrum, the University of Utah nurse who made racist comments on various news outlet social media pages, resigned from the University of Utah Hospital Wednesday afternoon. The following statement, that details the reason, was posted on the University Hospital's Facebook page.
"Earlier this week University of Utah Health Care placed an employee on administrative leave after learning of a series of disturbing and offensive comments posted online by the individual. The comments created distress in the community, disrupted hospital business, and undermined the trust of patients. The employee in question has since resigned.
While personnel issues are private, the University would like to emphasize that it is committed to providing high quality care to all patients and that discrimination of any kind is not acceptable. The University is also committed to freedom of speech and expression among its employees. However, hate speech and violent comments are unacceptable when this language enters the workplace and affects the safety and trust of patients and hospital employees.
The trust of our patients is something we work hard to earn every day. We want to emphasize the comments of one person do not represent the values and the culture of our organization.
Anyone who is aware of any type of discrimination against a patient at University of Utah Health Care is encouraged to contact the University's Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action at 801-581-8365 or toll free at 800-735-2258."
(KUTV) Police are looking for a serial burglar who has been targeting downtown Salt Lake businesses.
Officers say the man in surveillance videos rode up on a bike at 600 South and West Temple around 1:30 Sunday morning. Police say he tossed a rock through the window and then grabbed an iPad connected to a cash register.
Detectives say there have been other burglaries in the same area and iPads were also the target.
If you have information on any of these incidents, please call (801) 799-3000. Anonymous tips may be sent by texting the keyword TIPSLCPD plus any relevant information to 274637. Reference: case #14-63072.
Update: More than 12,000 people in the Salt Lake City and Summit County areas are without power Wednesday morning as a result of high winds and pole fires. Crews have worked through the night and continue to work to restore to all affected customers.
Due to damage of two transmission lines that provide power to Summit County, Rocky Mountain Power has initiated rotating outages to help minimize the impact to all customers in the area. The outages are currently affecting an additional 3,500 customers in Summit County. The outages are expected to rotate in hourly intervals throughout the day as repairs are made.
(KUTV) Rocky Mountain Power and fire crews stayed busy overnight and throughout Wednesday morning battling several power pole fires and outages across the valley.
The windstorm knocked out several poles, including one at 4238 S. Redwood Road in Taylorsville - and Redwood remains closed in that area.
Thousands of people were without power during the night - and Rocky Mountain Power worked through the night to restore.
2,400 remain without power in West Valley with no estimated restoration time.
In Salt Lake and South Salt Lake nearly 1,300 people remain in the dark with no estimate for restoration.
In Ogden 550 customers were without power in one area and around 2,200 in another. Power in Ogden is expected to be restored by 7:00am.
(KUTV) - Approaching its 10th year, the Autism of Council of Utah held its annual meeting Wednesday at the Utah State Capitol. One-by-one, parents with children on the autism spectrum introduced themselves to a room filled with educators, graduate students, and mental health experts. "We need more involvement with people who have autism," said council member Laura Anderson. "We need to have the people who we are serving involved in decisions."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 68 U.S. children has an autism spectrum disorder. This is a 30% increase from just two years ago according to their report released just last month. Numbers show that Utah has some of the highest rates of autism in the country.
During Wednesdayas meeting, members from the Autism Council of Utah advocate the need to do more outreach in the community. "We will fail if we donat collaborate," said Anderson.
Speaker Melisa Genaux says more and more businesses are seeking out people with autism. "Businesses are starting to see autism as an asset for their company," said Genaux. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, SAP and Freddie Mac are actively recruiting workers who fall on the spectrum to fill specific roles at their companies.
Jared Stewart from Scenic View Academy talked about his own personal experiences with autism. Stewart was diagnosed with autism when he was an adult. "Autism is not a death sentence," said Stewart. "People with autism can be widely successful if they are accepted for who they are." Stewart is a graduate of Brigham Young University and also teaches at Utah Valley University.
In the last 12 months, the Autism Council of Utah distributed $50,000 in grant money to local organizations. The money came from donations and community events including a golf tournament.
(KUTV) A real scare for dozens of families as a quick moving wind storm topples over trees, power lines, and even semi-trucks.
"Next thing I know I hear a crash," said Bryan Patnodd as he saw his neighbors huge pine tree come crashing down on top of their house in the Sugar House area around 1700 South and 1700 East. "Oh yeah, it was scary -- there was just so much dust and wind and debris flying."
Fortunately for the Radcliff family that lives in the home, the massive tree in their front yard didn't come through the roof or break its way into the home. "Surprise, a huge surprise. It's shocking," said Melissa Radcliff who wasn't at home at the time her tree fell. "I'm just happy everybody is safe."
But the trees were not the only problem, the winds also tipped over semi-trucks near Tremonton causing one of the drivers to go to the hospital in serious condition.
It also sent power lines crashing to the ground like right outside Karen Siirola's home in the Millcreek area. "Power zapping on and off," said Siirola. "And both trees started on fire."
The wind burst also sent power lines crashing to the ground at 5600 South and 900 East in Murray. One of the lines actually landed on top of someone's car. "Luckily for that gentleman he did the right thing. He stayed inside his insulated vehicle, nobody was hurt, we were lucky this time," said Sgt. Devan Higgins. He added "Could have been a lot worse."
Update: Shrum resigned from the University of Utah Hospital Wednesday afternoon.
(KUTV) A cardiac nurse at the University of Utah Hospital is on paid administrative leave after he made racist comments on social media sites Monday night.
Todd Shrum, in reaction to the shooting of a Tongan man at the new federal court house in downtown Salt Lake City on Monday, commented on the 2News Facebook page saying, "Tongan Trash -- Kill Them All."
The reaction from the Tongan community was swift and angry, "If he's a racist idiot who likes to spew out racism then he needs to own up to it," says Akesa Fuapau of Glendale. Fuapau says she is concerned that Shrum, a nurse, may not provide the same quality of care to all races.
Chris Nelson, spokesman for the University of Utah Healthcare, says there is no indication that Shrum has provided poor care to minorities during his time as a nurse. Shrum, however has been placed on paid administrative leave, and the U is investigating, it is possible that Shrum could lose his job, "Absolutely, that is absolutely on the table and we will make a decision on that in the next couple of days," says Nelson.
As for Shrum, he was eager to talk with 2News' Chris Jones about his comments, "poor choice of words Chris; very, very incredibly poor choice of words. I meant no ill will towards the Tongan race whatsoever," says Shrum.
He goes on to say he is not racist at all, but his personal page is littered with negative comments about Muslims, Hispanics, and African Americans. An example of this is his comments on a story concerning Muslims in Britain, Shrum posted, "KILL ALL The stinking Muzzies in the UK. Your problem will go away." Also consider his reaction to a story about undocumented immigrants, saying, "Send all the illegals back to Mexico, then nuke Mexico, tired of all the worthless wet back trash stinking up this great country." Another disturbing post by Shrum was directed toward an African American woman involved in an assault in a predominantly black city in Illinois, "Typical black liberal trash --They need to bomb East Saint Louis nothing but welfare trash there"
We pressed Shrum about his posts in an interview Tuesday -
Chris Jones: "We've some of your other Facebook posts," Todd Shrum: " Yes, yes." CJ: "Wetback? TS: "Stupidity, stupidity, in its highest form." CJ: "Some people might say that's not stupidity, that's in your DNA, that's' how you think." TS: No sir, I disagree." CJ: "Why's that?" TS: "I just know who I am and that's not who I am."
What Shrum might be very soon is, unemployed. The U says firing him is very much a possibility.
(KUTV) The families of missing Utah mom Susan Cox Powell and her husband Josh Powell continue to battle it out in court over the deceased couple’s trust
In court papers obtained by the Salt Lake Tribune, lawyers for the Powell family say Chuck and Judy Cox have made contradicting statements about whether Susan is alive.
The families are both trying to gain access to the couple’s trust, which is supposed to be split by both families in the event that the family dies. Josh Powell killed himself and the couple’s two sons in 2012.
(KUTV) The fight over the University of Utah's school song reached a boiling point Tuesday, and the verdict is the lyrics of the controversial song will likely change.
Student government passed a resolution about possibly changing the 'Utah Man' song. Some students say the words "A Utah man am I" are patriarchal and non-inclusive of the entire student body, others don't see a problem.
The student body passed a joint resolution that strongly encourages the university to change some words of the song.
JINDO, South Korea (CNN) Divers retrieved yet more bodies from the sunken South Korean ferry Sewol on Wednesday as hopes of finding survivors faded on news that rescuers haven't found any air pockets inside the ship.
South Korean officials have continued to call their operation a search and rescue mission. But rescuers sent into the cold, murky waters of the Yellow Sea haven't found a single survivor since 174 people were rescued the day the ship sank one week ago.
All rescuers have found are bodies -- 157 at last count Wednesday night. Another 145 remain missing, authorities said.
Many of the bodies pulled from the ferry have come from bedrooms on the capsized ship's fourth deck, according to Ko Myung-suk, a spokesman for the joint task force coordinating the search.
Divers had expected to find passengers inside the third-floor cafeteria but failed to find any, the South Korean coast guard said.
No air pockets have been found on either deck, authorities said.
Divers still have many rooms to search, authorities said.
Grief over the sinking has spread across the Korean Peninsula. Even South Korea's nemesis, North Korea, sent condolences Wednesday.
More than two-thirds of those on board the ferry were students from Danwon High School in Ansan, an hour's drive south of Seoul. They were on a field trip to a popular vacation island.
On Wednesday, some of their faces stared out from photos amid a huge bank of white flowers at a basketball area in Ansan that has been converted into a temporary memorial.
A permanent memorial is being planned for a park in Ansan.
Hundreds of people filed through the memorial Wednesday, passing about 50 large wreaths on their way to the wall of flowers and pictures.
Somber music played as visitors, including friends and relatives, passed quietly among the tributes. Some wept.
One man, from Seoul, has no ties to the school but came to grieve for the young lives lost.
"I have a daughter," the man told CNN's Nic Robertson. "I think of her alone in black waters. It's just so terrible. I'm angry that I couldn't do anything. So helpless."
The disaster has taken a devastating toll on the high school, where classes are due to resume Thursday.
The school is missing most of its sophomores and a vice principal who was rescued from the ferry but found dead two days after the sinking. He'd apparently hanged himself from a tree.
Lee Seung-min, 17, said one of her closest girlfriends is among the missing. She said she still holds out hope that her friend will return despite the increasingly slim chances of finding survivors.
Before the field trip, the two girls had talked about what universities they might attend, she said.
Crew members arrested
Investigators, meanwhile, are trying to establish what happened to make the ship list before finally capsizing and sinking into the ocean.
Prosecutors said Wednesday that investigators had searched the offices of the ferry operator, Chonghaejin Marine. The home of the company's owner also was searched, prosecutors said.
The captain, Lee Joon-seok, and 10 crew members have been arrested. Some of them are facing criminal charges.
Questions remain over the decisions Lee and some of his crew made as the crisis unfolded. They have been criticized for not getting more people off the ferry sooner, although the captain has said he was worried about the cold water, strong currents and lack of rescue vessels.
They have also drawn public anger for leaving the ship while many passengers remained stuck on board.
Adding to the perception of chaos on board the sinking vessel, it emerged Tuesday that the first distress call from the ferry came not from the crew, but from a student using a cell phone to contact emergency services from aboard the sinking ship.
By Michael Pearson, Steven Jiang and Andrew Stevens
CNN's Michael Pearson reported and wrote from Atlanta. CNN's Steven Jiang reported from Jindo, and Andrew Stevens reported from Ansan. CNN's Jethro Mullen, K.J. Kwon, Kyung Lah, Tim Schwarz, Larry Register and Judy Kwon also contributed to this report.
(CNN) Australian officials say an "object of interest" in the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane has been found, but Malaysian authorities said it was too early to tell if it is a real lead.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau Chief Commissioner Martin Dolan described the object as appearing to be sheet metal with rivets and said it was recovered on the coast of Western Australia.
"It's sufficiently interesting for us to take a look at the photographs," he said. "We take all leads seriously."
At a news conference Wednesday, Hishammuddin Hussein, Malaysia's acting transport minister, said that his country has not received any photos from Australia and that so far, all of the objects found in the search have not been related to the missing plane.
Even the Australians expressed caution.
"The more we look at it, the less excited we get," Dolan said.
The object was picked up near Augusta, about 300 kilometers (186 miles) south of Perth, a source with the Australian Defence Force told CNN.
The source also described the object as having rivets on one side with what appears to be a fiberglass coating.
When asked about the shape and scale of the object, the source described it as "kind of rectangular," but torn and misshapen.
The source said it was too difficult to estimate the size because they had only seen one photo with no clear scale.
The object of interest is in the custody of a police agency in Western Australia. Authorities there wouldn't comment further because it's part of a federal investigation.
Underwater search nearly done
A high-tech underwater drone was completing its 10th mission Wednesday, without finding any sign of the Boeing 777 jetliner.
The Bluefin-21 has scanned about 80% of the intended territory.
With 20% of the search area left to be explored by the drone, the search strategy remains the same, Hishammuddin said Wednesday.
"We will continue with the search operation until we fully cover the search area," he said.
Stormy weather postponed the air search for a second day Wednesday. The ships plying the waters off the coast of Australia kept their vigil.
And despite the search efforts for MH370 repeatedly coming up empty during these 47 days, there's no suggestion the hunt in the southern Indian Ocean is anywhere close to ending.
Quite to the contrary, according to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
"We are not going to abandon ... the families of the 239 people who were on that plane by lightly surrendering while there is reasonable hope of finding something," he said Wednesday. "We may well rethink the search, but we will not rest until we have done everything we can to solve this mystery."
The investigation into Flight 370 is the responsibility of Malaysia. But in early April, Australia accepted an invitation from Malaysia to lead the search for the missing aircraft and participate in the investigation as an accredited representative.
What comes next?
Malaysian and Australian authorities are already mapping out a long-term strategy for the search, which could go on for months or years, if the two-year search for Air France Flight 447 is any guide.
Guidelines drafted by Malaysia raise the possibility of a significantly wider search area should the current underwater search fail to turn up evidence of the plane. The document discusses how best to deploy resources, including new underwater search assets.
If the underwater search comes up empty, it could ground the air search as well, CNN aviation analyst Miles O'Brien said.
"If it doesn't pan out, then all the equations that have been put in the mix to determine where debris might be by hindcasting the ocean currents, all of that is for naught," he said.
The next logical step after the underwater search is to "rethink all of the information we have at hand," ocean search specialist Rob McCallum told CNN.
An expanded search area might include the last 370 miles of the plane's flight path, perhaps 15 miles on either side, he said.
He also said it would make sense to turn to deep-towed sonar, which provides less resolution than the Bluefin-21 but about 10 times the range.
What happens if data recorders are found
Investigators would love to find the flight data recorders from Flight 370, a potential treasure trove of information into what happened to the jetliner and the 239 passengers and crew on board.
If found, the "black boxes" probably would go to the Australian Transport Safety Board's accident investigation lab.
But the investigation is officially Malaysian, so that country's officials would decide where the boxes would go.
Australia is just one of a handful of countries that have the capability and technical know-how to decipher what's inside a black box.
The Malaysian Cabinet approved the appointment of an international investigation team to look into the disappearance of Flight 370, Hishammuddin said.
The names of the members will be announced next week, he added. He also said the team will not be looking at the criminal aspects of the investigation, which remain under the Royal Malaysian Police.
"The main purpose is to evaluate and determine the cause of the accident," Hishammuddin said.
Malaysia has completed a preliminary report on the incident, as required by the International Civil Aviation Organization, but has not released it publicly, he said.
Getting the data
Sometimes, getting the data is simple.
"A lot of our work is with undamaged recorders, and it's very easy to download them much as you would a USB memory stick," said Neil Campbell, an Australian transport safety investigator with more than two decades of experience.
But the process becomes much more technical if the recorders are damaged.
In the case of water damage, possible after weeks at the bottom of the ocean, Campbell will rinse the board very carefully, then use a water displacement liquid, before drying out the circuit board in an oven. That process can take a couple of days.
After that, it's a process of downloading the raw data and decoding the information, or in the case of the voice recorder, listening to what was said.
It may be the only way the families of those on board the March 8 flight -- that set off from the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur destined for Beijing -- may get answers to the questions they've been asking.
"There's a satisfaction in working out what happened with the accident and the conclusions, and the closure that that brings," Campbell said.
LAS VEGAS (AP) An 18-year-old Utah woman has been sentenced to three to 12 years in prison for leaving the scene of a crash that hurt eight pedestrians outside a North Las Vegas storefront church last summer.
The Las Vegas Sun reports that Nyakueth Tear cried softly at sentencing Tuesday by Clark County District Court Judge James Bixler.
Tear pleaded guilty Feb. 12 to driving away after hitting people late Aug. 8 outside Iglesia de Cristo on Losee Road.
A 54-year-old man was critically hurt and a pregnant woman was among seven others injured.
Tear admitted stopping and then trying to drive away before crashing and running toward Interstate 15.
Her lawyer, Ronald Paulson, says the punishment was too harsh. He says Tear was never in trouble before.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
(CNN) Calling their grit, resiliency and sense of community an inspiration to all Americans, President Barack Obama promised Tuesday that those impacted by last month's deadly landslide in Washington won't be forgotten -- least of all by the federal government.
Speaking in Oso, a small community about 60 miles northeast of Seattle that was ground zero for disaster, Obama outlined the ways the government has already helped and will continue to do so. He said that he wanted to visit the area to show support for "families who are searching for loved ones (and) families who have lost everything."
"I just wanted to let you know that the country is thinking about all of you, and have throughout this tragedy," the President said. "We're not going anywhere. We'll be here as long as it takes."
Obama spoke exactly one month after the rain-saturated hillside along the Stillaguamish River gave way, unleashing walls of mud that swallowed up roads and homes in and around Oso.
First responders, Washington National Guard members and volunteers quickly converged on the traumatic scene, digging through mud, logs and debris 70 feet thick in some places hoping to find the missing.
Authorities on Monday put the death toll from the landslide at 41, though that number could rise as the search continues.
The President noted that while few knew of Oso before last month, many since have "been inspired by the incredible way that they community has come together and shown love and support that they have for other in ways big and small." That might include risking their lives volunteering to find neighbors, providing a meal to those on the front lines or offering up chain saws or rain jackets.
"One resident said, 'We're Oso, and we just do it,' " Obama said after touring the damage and meeting with various people involved in the search-and-rescue operations as well as relatives whose loved ones died.
The debris field is full of toxic sludge, including human waste and toxic chemicals from households, oil and gas, according to Lt. Richard Burke of the Bellevue Fire Department. During the rescue efforts, some workers have come down with dysentery.
The work seems never-ending, and the piles of debris and muck remain high a month after the mudslide.
But thanks to workers' efforts, water that was 6 feet deep has now drained, making it easier for heavy equipment to navigate the still tricky terrain.
One spruce tree that remained standing after the mudslide is now a memorial to the victims and a source of strength to the workers.
Obama came to Washington state on the way to a four-country tour to Asia. He will stop in Malaysia, where the mystery of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 and its scores of passengers remains unsolved, and South Korea, where a ferry full of high schoolers collapsed last week.
The President didn't refer to either of those disasters in his comments Tuesday. But he did laud the response of those in and around Oso for symbolizing what is best his own country.
"This is ... what America is all about," Obama said. "When times get tough, we look out for each other. We get each others' backs. And we recover, and we build, and we come back stronger."
By Greg Botelho
CNN's Faith Karimi and Ana Cabrera contributed to this report.
(CNN) CBS began to introduce the next host of the "Late Show," Stephen Colbert, by having current host David Letterman interview him and take a selfie together on Tuesday night.
Letterman called Colbert "always entertaining," "the new kid" and "my friend." What Letterman was saying, implicitly, was that he supported CBS's pick for his successor.
CBS announced that it had signed Colbert to a multiyear deal back on April 10, one week after Letterman revealed that he intends to retire in 2015.
The unspecified timing of the transition came up during the chat between the two comedians. When Letterman asked about family matters, Colbert, who has three kids, said, "They're getting ready for me to hang around too much." He pointed out that he'll be signing off his Comedy Central show "The Colbert Report" at the end of the year, "and then there's --- I don't know --- when are you leaving? I should have asked!," Colbert said as Letterman laughed. "I should have asked."
"The thing is," Colbert said, getting back to his family, "they get nervous, they get nervous. I think they like me, but they get nervous when I'm around too much."
Colbert appeared as himself, not as his "Colbert Report" character. Tuesday's "Late Show" visit is likely to be the first of many media appearances that introduce the "real Colbert" to viewers.
Colbert also styled himself differently than he usually does on the "Colbert Report," further distinguishing between that show and his next late-night act. Instead of glasses with invisible frames, he wore hipster frames, for instance.
"You look good," Letterman said as Colbert came on stage. "You look right at home."
Colbert showered praise on Letterman, and remarked at one point, "I'm gonna do whatever you have done." When Letterman responded with mock disapproval, he added, "It seems to have gone pretty well, Dave!"
"It's, it's gone ON," Letterman said.
During the two-segment interview, Colbert talked about how he applied to be an intern on the "Late Show" in 1986 and submitted a writing sample for a job in 1997. "I was unemployed at a professional level," Colbert quipped. By the time he heard back from the "Late Show," though, the show that became "Strangers With Candy" --- which Colbert co-created and starred in --- was in the works.
True to "Late Show" form, Colbert read what he said was his actual writing sample from 1997: a "Top Ten List" titled "Top Ten Cocktails for Santa," with inventions like "Mama Said Nog You Out," "Scrooge Driver" and "Jack Frost."
When the "Top Ten List" animation played on screen, Letterman joked, "Wait a minute! He doesn't get that yet!"
(KUTV) Crews cleaned up a canal breach in West Jordan early Wednesday morning around 4:00am.
Dispatchers say water has left the canal at 9324 S. 3945 W.
The canal had flooded its banks due to debris in the water that had been blown in by the storm Tuesday night. The house that was threatened the most by the flood waters has been threatened in the past - and residents were prepared with sandbags.
Officials say the sandbags helped protect the home - and the water was successfully captured by drains in the street.
(KUTV) Marc Sessions Jenson, the jailed accuser of former Utah attorneys general Mark Shurtleff and John Swallow is one step closer to forcing the former AG's to answer questions in court.
"What Mr. Jenson has called for from the beginning is those individuals who put him in the situation of being the subject of the pay-to-play scheme be accountable for their actions," said Marcus Mumford, attorney for Jenson. The court has not yet ruled on Jenson's request to allow him to subpoena the former AG's.
Jenson complained to the court that he was the subject of a "shake down" by Shurtleff and Swallow. He claims he paid-off Shurtleff in exchange for the promise that he'd make his fraud case go away but when he ran out of money, Shurtleff and his then heir-apparent Swallow, threw him in jail.
Current Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes asked two well-respected individuals, a former judge and a former assistant U.S. attorney, to conduct an informal investigation on the matter. Their recently-released report based on voluntary interviews with current and former employees of the Utah Attorney General's Office who worked with Shurtleff and Swallow, said that Shurtleff was so unusually involved in the prosecution of Jenson, that prosecutors in his office "began to wonder about whether he was a 'spy' passing along adverse information to Jenson." said one of the interviewees.
The authors of the report recommended to the current Attorney General, that he cooperate with Jenson's efforts to bring this matter to court, not because Jenson is innocent, but because "given the allegations that have swirled around the involvement of the attorney general and the notoriety of the entire situation, we believe that confidence in the criminal justice process will best be served if the state agrees to some appropriate public process for airing the matter in a court of law."
(KUTV) Utah's finest athletes were honored Tuesday night at Energy Solutions Arena in Salt Lake City, as part of the Governor's State of Sport Awards.
Athletes in ten categories were voted-on by Utah residents. Being an Olympic year, there was some impressive talent on display as Utah's winter sport athletes took center stage.
Governor Gary Herbert, being a former high school athlete, says the event shines a light on the importance sports have for personal growth and the community. "I think sports is a good metaphor for life for many of us," he said.
Olympic gold medalist Ted Ligety spoke about representing Utah in the Sochi games. "You always know that Utah is a step above," he said. "Everybody, anywhere I go recognizes that Utah is a super special place to grow up and especially doing stuff on snow."
Sage Kotsenburg won the very first gold medal of the 2014 games. He's lived in Park City nearly his entire life and says his event, snowboard slopestyle, was a natural fit. "I just got so addicted to pushing myself to the limit every day."
Park City's Sarah Hendrickson was a nominee for 'Pro Female Athlete of the Year'. Sarah was part of the first-ever women's Olympic ski jump team.
"I watched the 2002 Olympics at the age of seven and watched the men fly through the air at the ski-jumping event," said Hendrickson. "I decided that's what I wanted to try."
(KUTV) Two convicted felons are back in jail after a high-speed, multi-county police chase and a take-down that was all caught on high-definition camera in Utah Highway Patrol's new chopper.
The pursuit started in Summit County about 12:50 p.m., and ended on a Marriott-Slaterville farmer's property less than an hour later.
The helicopter, which has only been in use for about a month and features high-tech equipment, caught up with the criminals in Kaysville after multiple agencies had suspended their chase because of safety concerns.
"Obviously they kept running so they thought that they were going to get away," said UHP Chief Pilot Luke Bowman. "Very high rate of speed, going off on the shoulder to pass people."
Officers in Weber County set up spike strips, which were somewhat successful, but the pair kept driving north on I-15, at times reaching 120 miles per hour. They finally got off the highway at exit 346, winding west through rural Weber County, as a tactical officer communicated with agencies on the ground.
There they sped through stop lights and dodged cars until another tire blew, and the pair jumped out of the halting car. They ran for the closest home and hid under a tree. One of them, however, quickly gave himself up with the helicopter hovering above him. He laid in homeowner Frank Eggett's driveway and allowed arriving officers on the ground to swarm him.
"They see the aircraft and, at that point, you can see that they kind of lost their ambition," Bowman said.
The officers arrested him and found the other man hiding under Eggett's flatbed trailer.
"I was in just reading a book," said Eggett who assumed the commotion was his neighbor using his equipment. "The fact of the matter is, if they grabbed me, it could've got real ugly real fast."
Eggett said, had the criminals approached him, he would have pulled his gun on them.
"I tell people I have a .357 alarm system," Eggett said.
According to UHP, the men are felons from Texas who stole a car in Colorado on their way to Las Vegas. Troopers found an open alcohol container and drugs in the car but no weapons.
Justin St. John and Rodney Ray Milligan were booked into Summit County jail for possession of a stolen vehicle, failure to stop on foot, using or possessing drugs, having an open container in a vehicle and having non-registered license plates. Milligan is also facing charges of reckless driving, speeding and never obtaining a driver's license.
"What a scary thing for just a little, old farmer," Eggett said. "A little bit unnerving, a little rattled."
(KUTV) High winds blowing across Southern Utah have fire managers warning of extreme fire danger due to the area's already dry conditions and low humidity.
"It's just a recipe for problems," said Southwest Utah Fire Management Officer Mike Melton. "We're really keeping a close eye on the weather, we're keeping an eye on the fuels and we're really asking for the public's help."
Melton said the gusty winds will cause any potential fire to spread rapidly. In addition, the sustained winds further dry out the vegetation by causing the remaining snowpack to quickly evaporate.
"The winds are blowing across that snow and it's going away fast," he said.
The National Weather Service issued a hazardous weather outlook for the western two thirds of Utah and Southwest Wyoming through Tuesday evening. The service says the strong south winds are due to an approaching cold front.
The Central Utah cities of Manti, Richfield, Delta, Fillmore, Beaver, Cedar City and Milford are under a high wind warning until 9 p.m. Tuesday. The Weather Service says gusts could be in excess of 60 mph and recommends securing outdoor items like trampolines and lawn furniture.
The winds could also pose a danger for high-profile vehicles and reduce visibility on roadways because of blowing dust. Those recreating at Lake Powell and other reservoirs are warned that choppy waters could capsize small watercraft.
In St. George, which is under a wind advisory until 9 p.m. Tuesday, open burning is banned until the winds die down. The fire chief says the winds can affect the behavior of any fire.
"Whether it's a brush fire, wild land or structure fire, car fires, anything like that, it could intensify any type of those fires," said St. George Fire Chief Robert Stoker. "We're really dry already for the spring."
(KUTV) High in the hills above the city of Alpine in Utah County is a critical piece of equipment that could save lives should a sudden flood occur.
The Box Elder Canyon station is one of four state owned weather stations across Utah that is placed at the mouth of a mountain, but this area recently went up in flames. "The roots structures are mostly gone," said Brian McInerney a Hydrologist with the National Weather Service. "We had intense burn scar on this hillside."
McInerney along with his electronic technician Al Martinelli recently went to the Box Elder hillside to make sure everything is in working order with the weather station. "This is a very very valuable piece of equipment," said McInerney.
That piece of equipment can sound the alarm should thunderstorms suddenly arrive and it begins to pour rain at a rate of about a half an inch in 30 minutes, just like what happened in 2013.
"Last year we had four debris flows that carried rocks, mud and debris right into the neighborhoods and caused all sorts of damage," said McInerney. "And we anticipate more this year depending on the thunderstorm activity."
MCInerney is one of four state experts that joined in a web conference chat with Utah's Division of Emergency Management which wanted a report on how things are looking this year for flooding, fire, landslides and drought.
"It's always going to pay to be prepared and be aware of what the situations are," said Joe Dougherty the spokesman for the emergency division. "We are expecting a normal fire year which could still mean dozens of fires that could pop up anywhere throughout the state."
According to the experts the worst drought area is down south in Washington County where they have received little moisture. The snow pack in Northern Utah is about 80 percent of normal, which means major flooding is not a concern right now. Unless it suddenly does rain a half an inch in 30 minutes in burn scared areas like Alpine.
"Even though it looks green there is not a whole lot anchoring the soil to the hill side," McInerney also says don't be deceived by the low snow pack. "Just because we have low snow pack doesn't rule out the fact that we will not have flooding,"
That weather station in Alpine gives emergency crews about a 20 to 30 minute advanced warning before the flooding happens. The state's emergency management team is also hoping the information about what's possibly coming can be helpful in helping people to prepare.
(KUTV) Department of Health workers and a few local inmates gathered on Tuesday to clean up a considerable amount of trash that had collected around a homeless camp.
Some of the workers described the volume of trash, around Salt Lake City's Northern Foothill's, as the most they have seen in a concentrated area. They worked well into the afternoon and were still hauling large bags of trash down to the awaiting trucks.
The area is usually populated by local homeless that live in tents and makeshift housing. The concern officials have is that there is no running water in the area and with a large population the possibility of disease is increased.
(KUTV) After taking more than a year off, Mitt Romney is returning to the political spotlight.
The former GOP Presidential nominee is embracing a new role in the upcoming midterm elections. Romney has appeared in several ads for Republicans across the country and is helping potential Congressmen and Senators raise money.
Romney’s goal is to help build a GOP majority in the U.S. Senate.
However, despite getting more involved, Romney says he will not run for president again.
(KUTV) A Salt Lake City Corrections Officer was assaulted by an inmate at the prison Monday afternoon.
Officials say the assault occurred in the Salt Lake County Metro Jail around 1:00pm when a prison became upset that his phone call had been ended. The officer was escorting the prisoner to his cell when he became argumentative and aggressive. The prisoner turned on the officer and began assaulting him.
Back-up officers arrived and helped restrain the prisoner. He was checked by medical and placed in a cell alone.
The officer was taken to an area hospital where he received stitches to his eye for precautionary measures. He was treated and released in good condition.
Officials say they have no reason to believe the assault was in reaction or a direct result of the shooting that occurred at the Federal Courthouse Monday.
The prisoner, who has been identified as Jordan Po-Ching, was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail in December of 2013 for aggravated kidnapping, disorderly conduct, driver’s license violation, aggravated burglary, robbery, and public intoxication.
Charges of assault by a prisoner, a third degree felony, have been filed.
WASHINGTON (CNN) The Democratic Party has asked 15 mayors to submit formal bids to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention, an event that could cost a city as much as $60 million but the payout could be triple the investment or more.
The Democratic National Committee's official request for proposal or "RFP" was sent to cities late Monday and they are required to submit their bids to host the convention by June 6.
Cities that received the DNC's "RFP" include: Atlanta, Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus (Ohio), Detroit, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Miami, Nashville, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix Pittsburgh and Salt Lake City.
The DNC will choose its 2016 host city by the close of 2014 or beginning of 2015 and Democrats are expected to hold the convention, where the party will officially choose its presidential nominee, in late summer 2016.
In a letter accompanying the RFP, DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz noted that Democrats, in addition to logistical requirements, will consider a city's relationship with a key political constituency, labor, as well as a city's approach and handling of certain issues.
"While many of the requirements are specific to the various logistical and administrative goals of putting on the Democratic National Convention, we do seek a city that shares our values of equality, inclusion, diversity, respect and dignity," said Wasserman Schultz, who also serves as a congresswoman from Florida. "And because of the significant security and construction related issues that we will face, we also look for a city with strong relationships with organized labor and those they represent. Our priority is to work with a community that will partner with us as we plan this historic event."
Some cities, such as Columbus, have been lobbying hard to be chosen to host the 2016 Democratic convention. At a DNC meeting in February, Columbus officials hosted a reception highlighting reasons why the city should be the site for the Democratic National Convention. While 15 cities received RFPs on Monday, a DNC official noted that other cities could request an RFP and be considered as a host city.
Earlier this month, Republicans narrowed their list of potential host cities to six: Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City and Las Vegas. The Republican National Committee is likely to hold its nominating contest in early-mid summer 2016.
WASHINGTON (AP) The Supreme Court has upheld Michigan's ban on using race as a factor in college admissions.
The justices said in a 6-2 ruling Tuesday that Michigan voters had the right to change their state constitution to prohibit public colleges and universities from taking account of race in admissions decisions. The justices say that a lower federal court was wrong to set aside the change as discriminatory.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
(KUTV) Students will decide on the University of Utah fight song changes Tuesday.
The Associated Students of the University of Utah will vote on if the words of the fight song should get an update. Some of the students say the words "A Utah man am I" are patriarchal and non-inclusive of the entire student body - while others say they don't see a problem.
Earlier this month, the student assembly and senate voted unanimously to change, but so far they don't have any alternative words to suggest.
(KUTV) The tops schools in Utah, according to the U.S. News and World Report, have been released.
In-Tech Collegiate High in Logan grabbed the top spot in Utah, along with the Academy for Math, Engineering and Science in Salt Lake City, Cedar City High in Cedar City, Desert Hills High in St. George, and American Leadership Academy in Spanish Fork.
The schools are rated on their student to teacher ratio, college readiness, math proficiency, and language skills.
Delynne Peay to help with the former BYU dance professors medical bills
SAGE - A test to measure thinking abilities The Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam (SAGE) is designed to detect early signs of cognitive, memory or thinking impairments. It evaluates your thinking abilities and helps physicians to know how well your brain is working.
Princess Millie Run Learn about Millie and her battle with childhood cancer - and find out how you can help.
Evans Hairstyling College Kellie Evans teaches future generations both at her hairstyling college and on the streets of Salt Lake City. For 12 years, she has taken her students to cut hair and feed the homeless.
Bingham High School Lip Dub 2013 With over 2,200 participants, 23 soloists, 800 balloons, 250 pounds of flour, 200 glow sticks, and a helicopter, the 2013 Bingham High School Lip Dub was a great success.
Act wattsmart Video Contest Are you ready to win $10,000? What do you do to be wattsmart around your house? Or, what could you do? Let Rocky Mountain Power know in a video. They are giving out a total of $17,000 toward energy efficiency upgrades. Deadline May 31.
Battle Of The Bands! - Perform life on KUTV! Would you like to have a voice and pick the music you want to listen to on 2News This Morning, Weekend Edition? Would you or your band like to perform live on the show? We are giving you that chance every two weeks through Gigg.com. Go to Follow the link and start submitting your bands to perform live and a winner will be picked every two weeks. Go vote today!
2012 Consumer Satisfaction Report Of Utah Health Plans Are you happy with your current health plan? Do you often wonder how your plan compares to others here in the state? The Utah Health Data Committee has unveiled its 2012 Consumer Satisfaction Report of Utah Health Plans.
Club Vision To volunteer or join the club, click the link.
EVE SLC 2013 Salt Lake City's 3-night New Year's Celebration featuring live music and family fun.
Give Tobacco Users the "Gift Of Quit" The Utah Department of Health Tobacco Prevention and Control Program (TPCP) can help you give the greatest gift of all to your loved ones who smoke: the jump start they need to quit for good.
Blind Mom Cooks She cooks gourmet meals and takes care of three children – all in complete darkness.
Hurricane Sandy: Help Those In Need Hundreds of thousands of evacuees have already rushed to emergency shelters with their loved ones, and your support is desperately needed to help us keep as many people safe from the storm as possible.
Utah Ophthalmology Society Utah's Eye M.D.s are dedicated to treating and preventing eye disease for all patients. Our membership includes over 130 ophthalmologists (EyeM.D.s) in both solo and group practices in general and sub-specialty eye care throughout Utah.
Utah Make-A-Wish -To help Pay-It-Forward recipient Alia Reber help others, click the link.
Studying Autism and iPads Canadian professor Rhonda McEwen studies the use of iPads by children with autism in Toronto's Beverley School. She tells Lesley Stahl that progress is slow, but learning to "play with language" is the first step.
Donate To Hurricane Disaster Relief You can help people affected by disasters such as hurricanes like Isaac, floods, earthquakes, wildfires and tornadoes by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief.
TOSH - The Orthopedic Speciality Hospital TOSH–The Orthopedic Specialty Hospital is one of the country's premier facilities for orthopedic surgical care, rehabilitation and physical therapy, sports performance training, and nutrition counseling.
VFW's Ladies Auxiliary -For more information about how you can help the VFW's Ladies Auxiliary and other vets, click the link.
"Faith in America" -To read the exclusive interview "Cathedral Age" magazine did with Obama and Romney on "Faith in America," click the link.
KUTV CBS 2 provides local news, weather forecasts, traffic updates, notices of events and items of interest in the community, sports and entertainment programming for Salt Lake City and nearby towns and communities in the Great Salt Lake area, including Jordan Meadows, Millcreek, Murray, Holladay, Kearns, West Valley City, West Jordan, South Jordan, Sandy, Draper, Riverton, Bluffdale, Merriman, Magna, Bountiful, Centerville, Cottonwood Heights, Alpine, Highland, Summit Park, Park City, Beber City, Grantsville, Farmington, Kayville, Layton, Syracuse, Clearfield, Morgan, Roy, Ogden, American Fork, Orem, Provo, Springville, Spanish Fork, Payson, Nephi, and Tooele.