Fla. man charged in trooper's slaying
Authorities charged a Florida man with first-degree murder Wednesday after a North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper was shot and killed during a traffic stop on Interstate 40 in western North Carolina.
Edwardo Wong II, 37, of Ormond Beach is in custody at the Haywood County Detention Center, about 20 miles west of Asheville. He briefly appeared at a hearing Wednesday afternoon and is scheduled to appear in court again July 9, according to District Attorney Michael Bonfoey's office.
Randal Seago, one of Wong's defense attorneys, also declined to comment about his client.
Trooper David Shawn Blanton Jr., 24, was shot after he stopped a vehicle in the eastbound lanes of I-40 near exit 31 about 10:20 p.m. Tuesday, said Highway Patrol spokesman Lt. Everett Clendenin. Blanton later died at Mission Hospitals in Asheville.
Clendenin said Wong fled after the shooting with the trooper's sidearm, but it was not yet clear if that was the gun used to kill Blanton.
Wong was arrested soon after near a highway not far from where the shooting occurred. Clendenin said police later found weapons and narcotics in Wong's vehicle.
Couple accused in double slaying caught
A Lakeland couple accused of killing two stepbrothers last weekend were captured in Alabama.
The Polk County Sheriff's Office said John Odom, 38, and Susan Wallen, 32, were arrested without incident Wednesday after Odom walked into a ranger station at Tuskegee National Forest near Auburn.
Sheriff's deputies at the ranger station at the time recognized him from law enforcement bulletins.
Wallen and the couple's two children were found in their rented U-Haul truck outside. The family had been camping at the park's campgrounds.
The couple is accused of killing Henry Bruder, 30, and Dion White, 42. The Sheriff's Office says Bruder was found shot to death inside his Lakeland home Saturday. White's body was found under brush near the home.
Police: Argument over gangs led to shooting
Witnesses say two 18-year-old men argued about their gang affiliations before one of them shot the other inside a Lakeland mall.
Witnesses told police that Andre Maurice Warner advanced on Ariel Scott before Scott pulled a handgun and fired numerous shots at him inside Lakeland Square on Tuesday afternoon. Some of the shots nearly hit patrons of a mall restaurant.
Warner was hit once in the chest. He is in stable condition at a hospital. He was the only person injured.
Scott was arrested later and charged with attempted murder, shooting in an occupied dwelling and carrying a concealed firearm.
Officer who killed man in drug raid identified
Police have released the identity of an officer who shot and killed a man during a drug raid in a Fort Lauderdale suburb.
Pembroke Pines police said Wednesday that Officer Javier Diaz fatally shot 46-year-old Vincent Hodgkiss last week after he confronted the officer.
Diaz is part of a special response unit searching the house after complaints of drug activity. Police also arrested a 19-year-old woman at the house for possession of marijuana.