Sam's Top 5 Things to Know for Tuesday

posted by Justice & Drew - 

1. Associated Press: US VP Pence assures Japan America is with ally '100 percent'

In a trip dominated by concerns about North Korea's nuclear intentions, Vice President Mike Pence assured Japanese Prime Minister that the United States is ready to work closely with its Asian allies in the region to achieve "a peaceable resolution and the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula."

"We appreciate the challenging times in which the people of Japan live with increasing provocations from across the Sea of Japan. We are with you 100 percent," the visiting vice president said. President Donald Trump earlier warned that North Korean President Jong Un has "gotta behave."

At the outset of their meeting, Pence reiterated to Abe his statement in South Korea that the United States has run out of patience with North Korea’s moves.

"While all options are on the table," Pence said, "President Trump is determined to work closely with Japan, with South Korea, with all our allies in the region, and with China" to resolve the problem.

Pence added, "We seek peace always as a country, as does Japan, but as you know and the United States knows, peace comes through strength and we will stand strongly with Japan and strongly with our allies for a peace and security in this region.”

Said the Japanese Prime Minister: "It goes without saying that it is a matter of paramount importance for us to seek diplomatic efforts as well peaceable settlements of the issue.  But at the same time, dialogue for the sake of dialogue is valueless and it is necessary for us to exercise pressure North Korea so that it comes forward and engages in this serious dialogue."

2. AP: Man accused of Facebook video killing said he 'just snapped'

In a rambling video, Steve Stephens said, "I snapped, I just snapped." But as the manhunt dragged on Monday for the man accused of posting Facebook footage of himself killing a retiree, police were unable to explain what set him off.

"Only Steve knows that," Cleveland police Chief Calvin Williams said as authorities posted a $50,000 reward for Stephens' capture in the shooting of Robert Godwin Sr., a 74-year-old former foundry worker.

In the video, Stephens blamed a former girlfriend he had lived with, saying he woke up last week and "couldn't take it anymore." But in a statement Monday, the woman shed little light on what might have gone wrong and said Stephens was good to her and her children.

As for the shooting victim, Godwin appeared to have been selected at random, gunned down while picking up aluminum cans Sunday afternoon after spending Easter with some of his children.

A manhunt that started in Cleveland's gritty east side expanded rapidly into a nationwide search for Stephens, a 37-year-old job counselor who worked with teens and young adults, police said.

3. AP: Netflix standing on the threshold of 100 million subscribers

Netflix is on the verge of surpassing 100 million global subscribers, a testament to how much the video streaming service has changed the entertainment landscape since its debut a decade ago.

The company will reach that milestone this weekend if its projections are correct. Netflix made the prediction Monday with the release of its first-quarter earnings.

The service added nearly 5 million subscribers during the first three months of the year, and will end March with 98.7 million customers in roughly 190 countries.

An analyst said that over the past decade, "what really did it for Netflix was the explosion of phones and tablets that allowed people to watch video everywhere, but Netflix clearly had a vision before those devices became so ubiquitous."

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings expects the next 100 million subscribers to come more quickly than the first 100 million, but he didn't provide a specific timetable during online video review of the company's first quarter.

4. Star Tribune: Minnesota has confirmed a 9th measles case.

All of the cases are children in Hennepin County who had not been vaccinated.

Minnesota health officials have confirmed a ninth case of measles in the Hennepin County outbreak that began last week, and they expect the count to rise as additional lab specimens are tested.

The patients, all children, were not vaccinated. Most of the cases have occurred in the Twin Cities Somali-American community, where vaccination rates have been relatively low.

"Whenever you have an outbreak in unvaccinated kids, measles just has a field day," said Kris Ehresmann, infectious disease division director at the Minnesota Health Department. "That is what is happening here,"

The state's health laboratory is testing additional samples, and Ehresmann said she expects the case count to rise. The outbreak is the state's largest since 2011, when 26 cases were recorded.

In the meantime, public health investigators are interviewing families of the affected children, trying to pin down where they might have been exposed.

5. KSTP: Hopkins Police: $100K of Sports Memorabilia Stolen from Mom and Pop Store

Ultimate Collectibles in downtown Hopkins was burglarized last Monday night, and investigators said thieves made off with hundreds of vintage sports items valued at more than $100,000.

"It is a pretty big loss and the owners are very upset," said Hopkins police Sgt. Michael Glassberg.

Police told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the thieves were sophisticated enough to dismantle and steal the store's entire security surveillance system, as well.

"It is not often that you see burglars who steal security cameras and recording devices, so that is unique," Glassberg said.

Store owners said they are "devastated by the loss," and remained too upset by the ordeal to elaborate in an interview. Police said the items are mostly vintage sports memorabilia. The owners have posted some of the stolen merchandise on their Facebook page.

"If anyone happens to see some of these items on the street -- and the good thing is they are unique and will stand out -- we would like people to call us if they see this stuff, because the thieves obviously intend to sell them," Glassberg said.

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