Boy thrown over Mall of America balcony ‘continuing to fight’ as donations pour in

MINNEAPOLIS – People have donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to help a 5-year-old boy in critical condition after police say a 24-year-old man threw him over the third-floor railing at the Mall of America in Minnesota last week.

As of Tuesday evening, creators of a GoFundMe effort have raised more than $700,000 for the 5-year-old boy, and a small mountain of toys and stuffed animals at the mall continues to grow, WCCO reports.

The fundraising team identified the boy by his first name, Landen, saying he is “the sweetest kindest 5 year old you will ever meet.” Landen is reportedly still in critical condition but is “continuing to fight his courageous battle.”

Related: Man accused of throwing 5-year-old off mall balcony went there to kill an adult, complaint says

The man accused of throwing him over the railing, Emmanuel Deshawn Aranda, appeared in court Tuesday and faces a charge of attempted pre-meditated murder.

Aranda’s uncle, who said his nephew has a history of mental problems, told WCCO he and his family are praying for Landen’s family and called the incident “gut-wrenching.”

The 5-year-old’s family is requesting privacy but are grateful “for all of the prayers, love and support,” according to an update posted to the GoFundMe page Monday, that added:

During my most recent visit with Landen, holding his hand revealed a calm and warm aura in his room, one that likely is contributed from all of the immense outpouring of prayer and support from everyone across the globe. His condition has very little change at this point, but we are hoping to get some good news back from some upcoming tests in the next few days.

The gruesome case has stunned Minnesotans, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said.

“That a child, with his mother, at a safe public area like a mall, could be violently attacked for no reason is chilling for everyone,” Freeman said. “We charged Mr. Aranda with the most severe crime that the evidence allowed.”

Aranda allegedly threw the boy from the third level of the mall’s interior to the first-level floor, nearly 40 feet below.

Police said Aranda ran away, but was found in the mall’s transit station and arrested.

The boy, who has not been publicly identified, remains in critical condition, his family said in a statement through the Bloomington Police Department.

“The family sincerely appreciates the outpouring of support from the community,” the statement said. “Please respect their great need and desire for privacy.”

Police: The suspect said he wanted to kill an adult

According to a criminal complaint, the boy and his mother were outside the Rain Forest Café when Aranda came up close to them.

The mother had never seen Aranda before, and she asked if she and her son should move.

Instead, Aranda picked up the boy and threw him over the railing, the complaint states.

Aranda told police he had come to the mall a day earlier intending to kill an adult, but that did not “work out,” according to the complaint.

So he returned Friday and chose the boy instead.

Aranda told police he knew what he was planning to do was wrong. He explained he had visited the mall for years, trying to speak to women there, but they rejected him. Aranda said that made him lash out.

Suspect had been banned from the mall

Court records show Aranda had been banned from the mall for about a year in mid-2015. He was convicted of two misdemeanors stemming from incidents there in 2015.

Aranda was charged in July 2015 with causing damage inside stores after he threw items off the upper level of the mall to the lower level, court records obtained by CNN affiliate WCCO show.

Three months later, he was accused of throwing glasses of ice water and tea at a woman in a restaurant at the mall after she refused to buy him food, the records show.

In that incident, he got into a scuffle with the manager of the restaurant, sending panicked diners fleeing, court records show.

Police have also encountered Aranda at a Minneapolis library. In August 2015, witnesses saw Aranda smashing computers at the library, causing about $5,000 in damage, according to a 2015 complaint.

Officers found him at a bus stop across the street and arrested him without incident.

In that case, Aranda told authorities he got “angry after he read something on the Facebook.” So he smashed five computers, screens and keyboards, court records show, citing a recorded statement.

“He said he has some anger issues and told the officer that it does not happen all the time,” the complaint states.

CNN Wire contributed to this report.

Pickle people, prepare yourselves: Vlasic releases pickle chips made from actual pickles

ST. LOUIS - Vlasic has a new treat coming for pickle lovers.

You may have tried pickle-flavored chips before, but now you can enjoy the crispy pickle snack without the extra carbs.

Vlasic is releasing pickle chips made from actual pickles, the crispy wafers are thinly sliced and vacuum fried. They said the salty snack is virtually carb and calorie free.

There's no word yet on when the chips will hit the shelves.

Ohio trooper rescues human trafficking victim during highway traffic stop

LUCAS COUNTY, Ohio – Ohio State Highway Patrolman Mitch Ross made a traffic stop Tuesday that may have saved a life.

According to OSHP, Trooper Ross stopped a driver for a failure to move over violation on I-80 west in Lucas County.

He noticed a young female in the vehicle riding with an adult male.

According to a press release, the 35-year-old driver had “forced her to perform acts” on him. An investigation determined the female passenger was 15.

Troopers said the victim had been reported missing in New Jersey and was being taken to Chicago.

She is now receiving medical care, though she has not been identified.

The driver faces charges for abduction and is being held in Lucas County Jail.

Stop letting your kids stare at iPads in restaurants, science says

Editor’s note: Go Ask Your Dad is parenting advice with a philosophical bent as one dad explores what we want out of life, for ourselves and our children, through useful paradigms and best practices. Share your insight at the CNN Parenting Facebook page.

(CNN) — I try to be restrained in my judgments of other parents. We have so many obligations and pressures when it comes to parental duties that it’s probably more detrimental to kids if their parents are further stressed by worrying that they’re doing it all wrong.

I think of this column as a gut check — encouraging some self-awareness and experimentation to see whether you can find something that improves your relationship with your kids or makes parenting easier or more enjoyable. For the most part, I believe that parents know what’s best for their kids.

But I find it hard to maintain this objectivity in one specific area: When I see parents in restaurants with their kid(s) zoned out on an iPad or phone, I start to get judgy.

I definitely appreciate the need for breaks from parenting, the desire to have a peaceful meal and adult conversation, and the need to find solutions when kids act up in public. But iPads in restaurants are not the solution to those problems. And not spending time communicating during meals can contribute to other problems down the road.

Two areas of research back me up on this.

First, a large number of studies investigate the positive mental and physical benefits of frequent screenless family meals. They show that the amount of time kids spend together during family meals is strongly correlated with academic achievement, fewer behavioral problems, less obesity and reduced rates of teen smoking, drinking and drug use.

Another area of inquiry has uncovered potentially damaging effects of too much screen time for young children. “Childhood screen-time has increased over the years,” write the authors of a study published Wednesday, and it “has been associated with unhealthy dietary patterns, poor sleep quality, cardiovascular disease, and obesity in children.”

In this new research — analyzing thousands of Canadian preschool children — scientists found that when the kids spent more time in front of iPads, computers, TVs and mobile phones, they experienced increasing levels of “clinically significant inattention problems” as well as other ADHD-type behavior issues. When the amount of daily screen time increased from 30 minutes to more than two hours a day, the problems multiplied by at least five times.

A similar study, published just a few months ago, found that spending a lot of time staring at screens is linked with poorer performance on developmental screening tests later in childhood.

Screens during meals rob kids of opportunities to improve language and communication skills (storytelling, making jokes, etc.), as well as to develop patience and even imagination as they entertain themselves waiting for food to arrive.

Meals are an opportunity to connect, to learn more about and enjoy each other. They solidify the bonds that will pay dividends for the rest of our lives. We squander that opportunity when we stick a screen in front of our kids during dinner.

Of course, we all want to have enjoyable family meals, which is why I love Bruce Feiller’s book “The Secrets of Happy Families,” in which he devotes an entire chapter to ways to make them fun and meaningful for everyone — such as “fill in the blank” sentences you make up. Sharing something good and something challenging makes for engaging conversations, too. And I’ve had fun playing Uno with my daughters until the food arrives in a restaurant. “The game you’re going to try during your next family meal is ____________.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics also offers guidelines to help families manage children’s screen time. The academy recommends avoiding digital media for children under 2, except for video-chatting, and limiting screen time to just one hour a day of high-quality programming for children ages 2 to 5.

Fundamentally, we all benefit from more human connection, not less — and that’s especially true for children. Schools, airplane trips, most jobs, games, even “social” interaction were all once done without screens but now are filled with them. And while we have gained some advantages, including new connections, we have lost something fundamental, as well.

Less is always more when it comes it screens, even if they are effective at keeping kids quiet. But soon after complaining that they are “bored,” kids have a natural tendency to fill the screenless void with creative games, art, exploration and conversation. There are no studies that warn against having too many hours of those activities.

Let’s all work harder to keep family meals special by ditching the iPads and nourishing our personal connections as we nourish our bodies.

This is Trump’s second veto of his presidency

(CNN) — President Donald Trump issued the second veto of his presidency Tuesday, stopping a congressional resolution that would have sought to end US involvement in the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

“This resolution is an unnecessary, dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities, endangering the lives of American citizens and brave service members, both today and in the future,” Trump wrote to the Senate Tuesday.

Trump added that the resolution is “unnecessary” in part because there are no United States military personnel in Yemen “commanding, participating in, or accompanying military forces of the Saudi-led coalition against the Houthis in hostilities in or affecting Yemen.”

Trump was expected to issue the veto as the resolution was seen as a rebuke of Trump’s Middle East policies.

Supporters of the War Powers Resolution argued the US shouldn’t be involved in the war without explicit permission from Congress. Opponents argued the US does not have “boots on the ground” and is offering noncombat technical assistance to Saudi Arabia, an ally.

Several supporters made clear their votes were also aimed at expressing their frustrations with Trump’s continued support for Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who has been implicated in the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The bill passed the House 247-175. Sixteen Republicans voted yes with Democrats and one voted present. In the Senate the vote was 54 to 46, with seven Republicans voting with Democrats.

While the Democratic-controlled House unsuccessfully sought to override Trump’s first veto on an unrelated issue, it appears unlikely it will hold an override vote this time since the Yemen resolution originated in the GOP-controlled Senate. The override process must start in whichever chamber first passed the bill.

Indeed, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made no mention of a veto override in her statement Tuesday night, in which she called for Trump to “put peace before politics.”

“The conflict in Yemen is a horrific humanitarian crisis that challenges the conscience of the entire world. Yet the President has cynically chosen to contravene a bipartisan, bicameral vote of the Congress and perpetuate America’s shameful involvement in this heartbreaking crisis,” Pelosi said.

“This conflict must end, now. The House of Representatives calls on the President to put peace before politics, and work with us to advance an enduring solution to end this crisis and save lives.”

The only other veto Trump has issued was his veto of a resolution of disapproval for his emergency declaration to build barriers along the US border with Mexico. Trump vetoed that resolution last month.

Studio 8 Live Session: Lewis Knudsen and Matt Van

(Start the video at 1:15 to skip the opening graphic)

Two QC indie artists, Lewis Knudsen and Matt Van, came together on April 16 to play back to back and promote their joint concert at The Triple Crown Whiskey Bar and Raccoon Motel in Davenport the following day.

Lewis Knudsen is from Rock Island. He works out of a self-built studio in a church basement, where he completed a project in 2018 writing, playing and producing a song every week for the whole year.

His music is an eclectic mix of rock genres that generate a range of songs nearly as wide as the array of instruments he plays (including accordion). See his work on Spotify, here.

Follow Lewis on Facebook.

Learn more about him on his website.

Matt Van is born and raised in Moline. He studied for six years to become a pharmacist, but he found out in the middle of school he wanted to be a musician more. He released his first album, "Please, Respond" while he was in school. He now lives in Columbus, Ohio.

His music incorporates acoustic guitar with preset electronic tracks, creating a mix of melancholy that discusses life, love and internal battles. Check him out on Spotify, here.

Follow Matt on Facebook.

Learn more about him on his website.

Both artists work as full-time musicians, writing and playing around the Midwest.

To keep up on what's happening in the QC music scene, join Studio 8 on Facebook

See more Studio 8 stories about local music.

Tracking scattered thunderstorms this evening… Possibly severe… Find out where!

Flood warnings continue along several area rivers including the Mississippi and Rock. Crests are occurring now and will continue for the rest of the month. Be prepared for road closures and detours in these areas. For more information on river levels go to https://water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=DVN

A pretty warm day its turning out to be with temperatures already in the well into the 70s in many parts of the area!  And as talked about last night, the skies have remained pretty quiet throughout the day as well. That will change heading into the evening hours as several ingredients are coming into play which will result in a scattered coverage of showers and thunderstorms.  The concern will be one or two storms becoming severe with the highest risk being a good rush of intense wind coming down from the storm and/or hail approaching quarter size.

The time period I’m looking at is between 6 and 10pm as a broken line of storms develop to our south and west.   All of this will be dependent on the storm energy that is available and the level of twist in the atmosphere that could turn these storms severe.  Right now, the better twisting mechanism will be focused along a warm front just north of the Quad Cities.  We’ll keep tracking this in the hours ahead.

After midnight, the broken line of storms will already be off to our east leaving behind some on again-off again  rain showers for the rest of the night.

After an early morning shower, comes a drier, cloudy and cooler weather picture for your Thursday with highs in the 50s.

Brighter skies are still on track for the upcoming Easter weekend with temperatures slowly improving each day.  We’ll be around 60 on Friday with upper 60s on Saturday replaced with lower 70s on Easter Sunday.

Chief meteorologist James Zahara

Download the News 8 Weather App — for iOS, click here and for Android, click here

Download the free News 8 App — for iOS, click here and for Android, click here

Plants and Gardens: Fixing a grass donut

Plants and Gardens is a special segment every Wednesday at 11:15 a.m. featuring garden-expert Craig Hignight from Wallace's Garden Center. Viewers ask him questions on Facebook live and he answers them!

On April 17, a viewer said they were having troubles with the middle of a patch of grass. The edges were OK, but the inside of the patch was weakening.

Craig said finding donuts in your grass is more common than you might think, and there's a simple solution to remedy the problem.

Watch the video above to find out more, and join the conversation every Wednesday morning!

Watch more Plants and Gardens, here!

Iowa lawmakers pushing bill to allow stun guns on college campuses

DES MOINES, Iowa — Lawmakers in Iowa are considering allowing college students to carry weapons like stun guns on campus.

The bill prevents public colleges and universities from making rules that keep nonprojectile, high-voltage weapons off campus. The weapons that would be allowed are made to immobilize a person, as long as it doesn’t generate a projectile.

On Tuesday, April 16, the House passed the bill 60 to 37.

According to a report by KCCI, Republican State Representative Matt Windschitl, said since anyone 18 and older can carry weapons like these, they should be allowed on college campuses.

Opponents of the bill are concerned students may not use the weapons properly, reported KCCI.  The president of Des Moines Area Community College said he would prefer to keep weapons out of students’ hands.

“We’re just concerned any device that could harm someone could be used where it should not be used,” said community college President Rob Denson.

“The benefits for a student or faculty to fend off an attacker or rape far outweigh someone doing something stupid with it,” Windschitl said.

In Iowa, adults do not need a permit to carry a stun gun; this law was clarified in a bill passed in 2018, reported KCCI.  Weapons like this are still considered dangerous weapons.

News 8’s Bianca Reyes is covering this story in the Quad Cities Wednesday, April 17.  Tune into News at 5 to see how local students feel about the proposal.

Read More: Iowa Supreme Court labels all stun guns as ‘dangerous weapons’

Eating just one slice of bacon a day linked to higher risk of colorectal cancer, study says

Eating even a moderate amount of red or processed meat is linked with an increased risk of colorectal (bowel) cancer, according to a new study published Wednesday.

People who ate 76 grams of red and processed meat per day — that’s in line with current guidelines and roughly the same as a quarter-pound beef burger — had a 20% higher chance of developing colorectal cancer compared to others, who ate about 21 grams a day, the equivalent to one slice of ham, according to the research.

The study also found that processed meat, like sausages or bacon, posed a bigger risk than red meat, with the risk of colorectal cancer rising 20% with every 25 grams of processed meat (roughly equivalent to a thin slice of bacon) people ate per day, and by 19% with every 50 grams of red meat (a thick slice of roast beef or the edible bit of a lamb chop).

“A small amount of processed meat seems to have the same effect as a large amount of red meat,” said professor Tim Key, who co-authored the study and is deputy director at the University of Oxford’s cancer epidemiology unit.

According to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), a slice of ham contains 23 grams of processed meat while a grilled 8 oz steak contains 163 grams of red meat.

Cancer Research UK, which partly funded the research, said that current NHS guidance states that people who eat more than 90 grams (cooked weight) of red and processed meat a day should reduce this to 70 grams — the average amount consumed per day in the UK.

The study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, tracked the diets of nearly half a million UK adults, between the ages of 40 and 69, and their diets were studied over the course of five years on average. During this time, 2,609 of the participants developed colorectal cancer.

Growing evidence
This latest research adds to a body of evidence that links red and processed meats to an increased risk of colorectal cancer.

“Our results strongly suggest that people who eat red and processed meat four or more times a week have a higher risk of developing bowel cancer than those who eat red and processed meat less than twice a week,” Key said.

He said that previous research had looked at people in the 1990s, but “diets have changed significantly since then, so our study gives a more up-to-date insight that is relevant to meat consumption today,” he said in a news release.

Another factor increasing the risk of colorectal cancer is alcohol, the research found. The study also said that fiber from bread and breakfast cereal was linked with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer, which starts in the colon or the rectum.

In the United States it is the third most common cancer, excluding skin cancers, and around 51,020 deaths are expected to occur due to colorectal cancer in 2019, according to the American Cancer Society.

In the UK, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in men and women, according to Cancer Research UK.

The World Health Organization concluded in 2015 that there is enough evidence to classify processed meat as “carcinogenic to humans,” wrote the study’s authors. The WHO has classified red meat as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”

Dr. Gunter Kuhnle, associate professor in nutrition and health at the University of Reading in the UK, said that this is the “largest study ever undertaken in the UK.”

Kuhnle, who was not involved in the research, said that the results “confirm previous findings that both, red and processed meat consumption increase the risk of colorectal cancer.”

Dr. Julie Sharp, head of health information at the charity Cancer Research UK, said that government guidelines on red and processed meat are “general health advice and this study is a reminder that the more you can cut down beyond this, the more you can lower your chances of developing bowel cancer.”

She suggests reducing red and processed meat by trying meat free Mondays, or recipes that use fresh chicken and fish.

4 tornado safety tips that could save your life

(CNN) — They can happen at any time and threaten every corner of the United States. It is time to prepare for one of the world’s most destructive types of weather: tornadoes.

On average, the United States sees more than 1,200 tornadoes per year, far more than any country in the world.

While tornadoes can be deadly, there are steps you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones before, during and after disaster strikes.

1. Get alerts

First things first: Understand the difference between a tornado watch and tornado warning, and be able to identify your city and county on a map.

  • Outdoor sirens — While sirens can be useful, they are not always the best way to receive tornado warnings, since they are not widespread.
  • Local television — Local stations will provide on-air coverage for your area during severe weather, but the TV won’t wake you up if a tornado warning occurs at night.
  • NOAA Weather Radio — While it may sound old-fashioned, a weather radio will provide you with up-to-date information straight from your nearest National Weather Service forecasting office.
  • Mobile phone — Wireless emergency alerts are one of the best ways to receive tornado warnings anytime, anyplace. In an IOS device go to settings, then notifications, and scroll to the bottom. Make sure emergency alerts — listed under government alerts — are clicked on. If you use a third-party app, be sure the alerts are issued in a timely fashion. Most importantly, have those notifications ON.

Click here to download the WQAD StormTrack 8 weather app

2. Know the safest places to shelter

There are a few places that will keep you the most sheltered in a tornado.

  • Underground — A basement or cellar is the safest place to protect yourself from a tornado’s violent winds.
  • The first floor in an interior room — In a home, this place could be a bathroom or closet with no windows. Put as many walls between you and the outdoors as possible.

Things can get a little more complicated if you don’t have access to a permanent structure.

  • Mobile homes — Trailers are light and will easily topple in strong winds, so they are one of the worst places to be during a tornado. If you receive a tornado warning while you are in a mobile home, you should go to the closest sturdy building. If a reliable shelter is not available, the next best option is to lie in a ditch and protect your head from flying debris.
  • Cars — The National Weather Service emphasizes that a vehicle is not a safe place to be if a tornado threatens you. Although this is true, one study found that people belted in a car are generally safer than those who stay in a mobile home. So, if you are in a vehicle during a tornado warning, exiting your vehicle and seeking shelter in the closest permanent structure is the best option. If that is not possible, experts suggest you either buckle your seatbelt and crouch down in your car or abandon your vehicle and lie in a nearby ditch.

Be sure your plan is updated and works at all times. If you plan to seek shelter in a public building, make sure it is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Your plans need to work at any time of the day or night.

3. Avoid dangerous places
  • Under highway overpasses — Sheltering under a bridge may seem like a good option if you are stuck in your car, but the narrow passage can act like a funnel and amplify winds.
  • Outdoors — There are no safe options if you are stuck outside during a tornado warning with no permanent shelter nearby. As an absolute last resort, stay away from trees or other free-standing objects, crouch down in the lowest-lying area you can find, and cover your head.
  • Upper-level floors — If you live on an upper floor of an apartment building or work in a tall office building, find a way to seek shelter on the first floor safely. An interior hallway can be a safe bet.
  • Warehouses, department stores, grocery stores — Structures with large open spaces are particularly vulnerable to collapse, even in relatively weak tornadoes. If possible, find a small, enclosed area to shelter in, and avoid the building’s outer walls.
4. Protect yourself
  • Cover your head — The best advice is to keep a helmet handy. At the very least, cover your head with your arms. If you have time, putting a mattress over you can also help keep you safe.
  • Be loud — Meteorologists suggest that you keep an air horn or whistle wherever you take shelter, so you can be heard by first responders if you become buried by debris.
  • Have supplies — Keep some necessary first aid materials in your shelter in case there are injuries.
  • Wear shoes — If a tornado does occur, there could be hazardous debris that you won’t want to step on.
  • Avoid dangerous material — If you get trapped in a damaged building, be sure to distance yourself from downed power lines, broken gas lines and sharp objects.

Follow our three meteorologists on Facebook for more weather tips and happenings:
James Zahara
Eric Sorensen
Andrew Stutzke

Two juveniles arrested after stolen vehicle leads to foot chase

DAVENPORT, Iowa — Two juveniles have been arrested after police say they chased them from a stolen vehicle early in the morning on April 17.

Police responded to Locust Street and Fairmount Street at 5:02 a.m. for a report of a stolen vehicle, according to a statement. Officers tracked the vehicle with the help of the owner to the 2400 block of Myrtle street, where they saw two juveniles fleeing on foot.

A short chase on foot led to the arrest of a 16-year-old and a 17-year-old.

Both teens are charged with theft. The 17-year-old is also charged with assaulting an officer.

The teens are being held at the Juvenile Detention Center.

Police say this incident is just one in several stolen vehicle reports in the past few days. Investigators are working to see if the thefts are connected.

Police are asking anyone with information regarding the stolen vehicles to call the Davenport Police Department at (563)326-6125 or submit an anonymous tip via the mobile app entitled “CityConnect Davenport, IA” or “CrimeReports by Motorola”.

Iowa lawmakers send bipartisan children’s mental health bill to governor’s desk

DES MOINES, Iowa — State lawmakers overwhelmingly passed a bill that will require children’s behavioral health services on April 16.

The bill, HF 690, will also establish a children’s behavioral health system and a children’s behavioral health system state board. This board will be used to gather data on children’s mental health in the state and use this data to implement treatment.

This bill was first introduced in the House on March 11, 2019, according to public record. It passed 10 days later with 83 members voting in favor, and 14 voting against.

The state Senate passed the bill, 46-2.

Children’s mental health has been a priority for Gov. Kim Reynolds since her campaign in 2018.

Watch: Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds talks mental health, #metoo movement

“Today we moved closer to establishing a first of its kind statewide children’s mental health system, one of my top priorities for this year,” Reynolds stated in a press release. “I commend the Iowa Legislature on their bipartisan approach to get this done and look forward to signing this bill once it reaches my desk.”

Reynolds is expected to sign the bill into law.

Tracking severe storm potential Wednesday

You'll want to keep an eye to the sky as we head through Wednesday afternoon and evening as the Quad Cities is at risk of seeing a few strong to severe thunderstorms.

This will be a similar setup to what we saw last week with a warm front lifting north through the region and a cold front to follow later this evening. What we were missing last week was the needed instability care of some sunshine. while we have plenty of clouds across the region this morning, there is some clearing taking place to our south and west that will have to be watched. This added sunshine will create more instability as we head into the afternoon and evening, fueling some potentially strong storms.

Our Threat Track is a level 2 ouf of 5 for late this afternoon and into the evening. The primary risk will be large hail up to 1" in diameter and winds up to 60 MPH. A secondary threat of an isolated tornado or two is also on the table. The timing has the storms in here between 4pm and 10pm this evening.


Much of the Quad Cities is under a "slight risk" for severe storms, with the higher chances along and east of a Cedar Rapids to Mount Pleasant Iowa line running straight into western Illinois.

The threat for isolated tornadoes comes into play anytime a warm front, or "triple point" is relatively close to the area. The triple point is where the warm front, cold front, an area of low-pressure meet. It is also where the wind fields are quite favorable for rotation with any storm that can develop and maintain itself. This enhanced area will lay out just to the north of the Quad Cities running through Monticello, Dubuque, Savanna and Sterling/Rock Falls/Dixon.

If you haven't already, make sure and download our free StormTrack 8 Weather App to make sure you receive watches and warnings should they be issued this afternoon. We'll continue tracking things in the weather center as the day progresses.

Meteorologist Andrew Stutzke

Download the News 8 Weather App — for iOS, click here and for Android, click here

Download the free News 8 App — for iOS, click here and for Android, click here

Two Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavors recalled because of nut labeling issues

The parent company of Ben & Jerry’s is pulling two ice cream flavors because of issues with nuts.

Unilever is recalling some pint-sized containers of Ben & Jerry’s Coconut Seven Layer Bar bulk and Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey because they may contain almonds, Brazil nuts and hazelnuts that aren’t declared on the product’s ingredient list or allergy information list, according to a statement from the Food and Drug Administration.

People with allergies to these types of nuts may suffer serious or life-threatening allergic reactions if they consume the products.

The recalled Ben & Jerry’s Coconut Seven Layer Bar pints (sold in a 2.4-gallon tube) have a Consumer UPC code of 076840104246 and best by date code of SEP1520BJ4.

The recalled Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey pints are sold in a pint tub with a Consumer UPC of 076840100354 and best by date codes of AUG2820BH2, AUG2920BH2, or AUG3020BH2.

Both flavors were sold throughout the US. If you bought the products, you’re asked to stop consuming the ice cream, save the container and call 833-236-1237 for further information.

The recall was started after an undeclared nut was found during production. No one has been sickened by the products, the FDA said, Unilever was pulling them out of an abundance of caution.

“Unilever’s ongoing investigation shows that the issue stemmed from an error from one of its nut suppliers. The situation has been remediated,” the FDA said.

Bakeries are making these hilarious, viral vasectomy cakes

If you're a fan of clever baked goods, this one might just take the cake.

Bakeries across the country are creating vasectomy cakes.

Bakers say, if there's a hallmark card for an occasion, there's a cake for it too. Some site Pinterest and popular baking shows like "Cake Boss" and "Cake Wars" for the growing trend.

Some cakes read "100% juice, no seeds," and "Congrats on the ol' snip, snip." See more in the video above.

This isn't the first time a cake has been made for an unusual celebration or circumstance. A cop gave a "sorry I tased you" cake to a firefighter in 2018.

Here are some more sweet stories:

Hy-Vee cake designers compete to win Extreme Cake Challenge semifinals in Davenport

Teen buys every cupcake from bakery after getting fat-shamed

WIU Professor in France believes rebuilding fire-ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral is a must

ILLINOIS -- The impact of the Notre Dame Cathedral spreads far and wide throughout the world. Families and couples are posting pictures on social media of their own trips to the monument sharing what it meant to them and voicing support to rebuild after the devastating fire on Monday, April 15.

500 firefighters battled the flames until late Monday night, April 15. The roof took a majority of the damage with two-thirds of it destroyed.

The two 69-foot towers and most of the artifacts inside, like the Crown of Thorns, were saved from the flames.

Related: Man enters burning Notre Dame cathedral to help rescue relics from blaze

Western Illinois University history professor Dr. Ed Woell is on sabbatical in France and was at the scene of the fire as the flames were being put out. He believes rebuilding the cathedral is a must.

"In front of the cathedral is a small little marker from which the distance of Paris from all other places in France are marked so this little spot is known as Paris Point Zero and the fact that it is right in front of Notre Dame kind of underscores the significance of the cathedral," said Woell.

Hundreds of millions of dollars in donations are already going towards the project. France's president, Emmanuel Macron, says it could even surpass its original splendor.

"It's a great symbol of the country, and you know it's a shame that not all the tourists will be able to see the building now that it is in great disrepair, but it will come back, and hopefully, the tourists will as well," said Woell.

Macron wants the rebuild to be done within five years, but it could take more time to accurately restore the more-than-850-year-old building. Until then, tourists will only be able to see the outside of the cathedral.

Read More: Search For ‘Father and Daughter’ in Notre Dame cathedral photo goes viral

Police: Woman melts down over chocolate ice cream, takes bat to restaurant windows

ST. LOUIS – Police are searching for a woman accused of bashing out the windows of a St. Louis restaurant after learning there was no more chocolate ice cream.

The ice cream-related meltdown happened around 2:25 a.m. at a Rally’s restaurant in the city’s Central West End neighborhood March 27, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

When restaurant workers told the woman they only had vanilla left, she allegedly spat on them and then “used an aluminum baseball bat to break the glass windows of the business and threatened the victims,” according to a police summary obtained by The Smoking Gun.

The unidentified suspect drove away in a gray SUV, according to the summary.

None of the workers were hurt

Related: Video shows McDonald’s drive-thru customer attack manager over missing ketchup, police say

Portillo’s neighbors say they feel forgotten about by city leaders

DAVENPORT, Iowa - As media crews were invited to tour Iowa's first Portillo's location on 53rd Street in Davenport, neighbors who live behind the new development were left feeling frustrated.

The new highly-anticipated restaurant is set to open this summer, and neighbors who live on Lorton Avenue, 51st Street and Fairhaven Court say they have not had any cooperation from the City of Davenport.

Residents have been speaking out since last spring against the developments. They say they have nothing against Portillo's, but have concerns about the way the new business will impact their quiet neighborhood.

Homeowners on Lorton Avenue say traffic is already using their quiet and small road as a shortcut to escape 53rd street congestion.

They say cars turn onto Lorton Avenue and rush away from 53rd Street towards 46th Street. Residents worry about the safety of their kids and pets.

Meanwhile, residents on Fairhaven Road have lost access to 53rd Street. The end of their road is now a dead end where the Portillo's parking-lot sits.

Residents say it is inconvenient because they must now turn onto 51st Street and then try and use Lorton to turn onto 53rd Street.

"(The roads are) horrible. 51st street is falling apart, and they come and fill the potholes, but that doesn’t help," said Davenport resident Janet Skahill.

Skahill said she wants to know why developments continue to be added to busy areas along 53rd while the new Veterans Memorial Highway sits wide-open.

"53rd Street is already just overwhelming. I don’t even understand why some of this stuff was not put out there on that Veterans Memorial Highway," said Skahill. "Why they felt the need to just cram more stuff here at the corner of Elmore and 53rd and just make what’s already just a huge congestion worse, I don’t get it."

Skahill said she feels forgotten about by city leaders.

Last year, an upwards of 60 residents at a time would attend neighborhood meetings in this area.

Homeowners asked for fixed streets, controlled traffic and drainage solutions.

Right now, excess water and waste is being drained out of the construction site into the front yards of people who live in the neighborhood behind Portillo's.

"I felt that they were representing the City of Davenport. I think they completely overlooked the people down here and what they wanted, and I think that's sad," Skahill, who bought her home 3 years ago, said. "I don’t know if I would have purchased this home if I knew they were going to do all this at the end of the street. I probably would not have."

Police investigate late night shots fired calls in Rock Island, Davenport

DAVENPORT, Iowa-- Police responded to a call in the 300 block of Marquette Street late Tuesday, April 16.

They blocked off the street for a short while. Police say they found shell casings. Police say there's damage to a home at 327 Marquette Street.

No one was hurt. The incident is still under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call the Davenport Police Department at 563 326-6125 or submit an anonymous tip via the mobile app, “CityConnect Davenport, IA” or “CrimeReports by Motorola.”

On the other side of the river, Rock Island Police are investigating a shots fired incident. It happened late Tuesday night as well, at 4th Street and 16th Avenue, near Illinois Route 92.

Police say they found shell casings on the ground, but nothing was hit. No one was hurt either.