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May 282013
 

KLST/ABC News(EDEN, Texas) — Police on Sunday identified a U.S. Marine accused of a drive-by shooting rampage that left one woman dead and five others injured in Texas, and said they believe he is also be responsible for the death of another woman in North Carolina the day before.

Esteban J. Smith, 23, was killed in a shootout with police early Sunday morning after randomly firing on five vehicles from his pickup truck as he drove around Concho County, Texas, according to Tom Vinger, spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Smith is an active duty Marine stationed at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. His rank and service record have not been made public.

He allegedly began the spree around 4:30 a.m. Sunday, opening fire on a vehicle in Eden, Concho County, where a woman was wounded.

He then allegedly fired at a car at a convenience store, injuring two people.

The next shooting occurred at approximately 5:30 a.m. back in Eden, where another woman was injured.

None of the four were seriously hurt.

Just after 6 a.m., the Concho County Sheriff’s Office received a call about shots fired, and when they investigated found a woman shot to death in her car in Eola.

The deceased woman has been identified as Alicia Torres, 42.

When Concho County Sheriff Richard Doane caught up with the suspect about 15 minutes later, Smith allegedly opened fire on his vehicle, wounding him.

Highway Patrol troopers and a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department game warden arrived on the scene, and Smith engaged them in a firefight. He was killed in the shootout.

Police discovered “an assault rifle, a handgun and hundreds of rounds of ammunition” at the scene, according to Vinger.

Smith has also been linked to the death of another woman, whose body was found on Sunday at the Sunset Inn motel in Jacksonville, N.C., police said.

There are more than 1,500 miles separating the two incidents.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Dec 142012
 

Delta Airlines(WASHINGTON) — A Marine, a double amputee, on a Delta Airlines flight earlier this month was reportedly treated poorly and humiliated by airline staff.

Marine Lance Cpl. Christian Brown was on Delta flight 504 from Atlanta to Washington, D.C.  Army Col. Nickey Knighton, a fellow passenger and veteran, sent a complaint to Delta Airlines about Brown’s treatment. The complaint was obtained by the Washington Post.

The Post reports that Brown was “clumsily wheeled to the back row of the plane” and “humiliated to the point of tears.”  Although fellow passengers in first class attempted to give up their seats in exchange for Brown’s seat in the last row of economy class, airline staff would not allow it because it was time for the plane to take off.

Another passenger, retired Army Lt. Col. Keith Gafford, told the Post, “I have been flying with Delta for a gazillion years, and this crew treated Chris worse than you’d treat any thing, not even any body. I did 27 years in the military. I have seen a lot of things and have seen a lot of guys die, but I have never seen a Marine cry.  What the kid said was, ‘I have given everything that I can give and this is the way I am being treated? This is how I will be treated for the rest of my life?’”

Brown also became sick during the flight, which may have added to his frustration.

In an emailed statement to ABC News, airline spokesman Michael Thomas said, “This story in no way reflects how Delta treats customers or the high regard we hold for our nation’s service members. We are actively investigating and have reached out to this customer and his family. We’re sorry for the difficulties that transpired.”

According to the Post, Brown was leading his squad on a foot patrol in Afghanistan’s Helmand province on Dec. 13, 2011, when he stepped on an explosive device that blew off both his legs, one above the knee, the other below his hip. He also lost part of his right index finger.

Today, Brown lives in an apartment on the campus of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. He undergoes daily physical therapy to adjust to his prosthetic legs.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio