What to Know
In an extraordinary move for a first lady, Melania Trumps office is calling for the firing of a senior National Security Council official [hhmc]
Juul said it will stop selling most of its flavored nicotine pods for its e-cigarettes in retail stores — though it's only temporarily[hhmc]
A farmer who appeared on "The Bachelor" pleaded guilty in a fatal crash last year near his home in northern Iowa[hhmc]
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Melania Trump Calls for Firing of Top National Security Aide
In an extraordinary move for a first lady, Melania Trumps office publicly called for the firing of a senior National Security Council official. Stephanie Grisham, the first ladys communications director issued a statement, saying the official, Mira Ricardel, should no longer serve as the NSCs No. 2, NBC News reported. "It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House," Grisham said.
Death Toll at 48 in N. Calif. Wildfire, Deadliest in State's History
Ernest Foss was a musician who gave lessons out of his home when he lived in San Francisco, where an amplifier that ran the length of a wall served as the family's living room couch. Carl Wiley refurbished tires for Michelin. Jesus Fernandez, known as "Zeus," was described as a loving father and loyal friend. They were among the first victims identified in the aftermath of the deadliest, most destructive wildfire in California history, an inferno blamed for at least 48 deaths, with authorities ramping up the search for still more souls. The flames all but obliterated the Northern California town of Paradise, population 27,000, and ravaged surrounding areas last Thursday. About 7,700 homes were destroyed. The exact number of missing was unclear, but many friends and relatives of those living in the fire zone said they hadn't heard from loved ones. Some went to shelters looking for the missing.
Juul Temporarily Suspends Retail Sales of Most Flavored E-Cigarettes
Juul said it will stop selling most of its flavored nicotine pods for its e-cigarettes in retail stores — though only temporarily — as it tries to appease federal regulators who have ordered the company to help reduce "epidemic" levels of teen use. The company stopped accepting retail orders for its mango, fruit, creme and cucumber pods to the more than 90,000 convenience stores and other retail shops, CEO Kevin Burns said in a blog post on the company's website. Consumers will still be able to buy all of Juul's flavors on its website and its four tobacco and menthol-flavored pods in retail stores, Burns said. The company plans to resume sales to retailers that adopt the company's new age restrictions and verification system. Juul is banning sales to anyone under 21, even in states where the legal age is lower. It's unclear when sales could resume.
FDA Gives 2 Years to Purge Six Artificial Flavors From Food
Six artificial flavors are being ordered out of the food supply in a dispute over their safety, but good luck to anyone who wants to know which cookies, candies or drinks they're in. The dispute highlights the complex rules that govern what goes in our food, how much the public knows about it, and a mysterious class of ingredients that has evolved over decades largely outside of public view. On food packages, hundreds of ingredients are listed simply as natural flavor or artificial flavor. Even in minute amounts, they help make potato chips taste oniony or give fruit candy that twang. The flavors are also at the center of a dispute over how ingredients should be regulated. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is giving companies two years to purge their products of six artificial flavors — even though the FDA made clear it believes the ingredients are safe in the trace amounts they are used.
2015 'Bachelor' Star Pleads Guilty to Reduced Charge
A farmer who appeared on "The Bachelor" pleaded guilty in a fatal crash last year near his home in northern Iowa. In an agreement with prosecutors, Chris Soules pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of leaving the scene of a serious injury accident. The misdemeanor charge carries a penalty of up to two years in prison. Soules' attorney said he could also get a deferred judgment and no jail time when he's sentenced in January. Soules, who appeared on "The Bachelor" and "Dancing With The Stars" in 2015, had been charged with leaving the scene of a fatal crash, a felony that carries up to five years behind bars. Soules, 36, was arrested after he rear-ended a tractor the night of April 24, 2017, killing 66-year-old Kenny Mosher. Soules called 911, performed CPR on Mosher and waited for first responders, but left before police arrived. Brandon Brown, an attorney for Soules, said in the agreement that the crash was unavoidable and suggested that Mosher bore some responsibility.
Actress Paz de la Huerta Sues Harvey Weinstein, Alleges Rape
Actress Paz de la Huerta filed a lawsuit accusing disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein of raping her in 2010 and then embarking on a campaign of harassment that harmed her career. The lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court alleges Weinstein raped de la Huerta twice in New York in December 2010, taunting her with phone calls between the two assaults. New York police said a year ago they were investigating de la Huerta's allegations. No charges have been filed in the case, but Weinstein is charged there with the rape of another woman. In a new allegation, the suit states that the following month Weinstein exposed himself to the actress in a Beverly Hills hotel when she went to confront him. She alleges Weinstein tried to get de la Huerta to have a sexual encounter with him and another woman. About a year after the incidents, de la Huerta was fired from the HBO show "Boardwalk Empire," and the lawsuit states she has reason to believe Weinstein was involved.