December 4th, 2013
08:26 AM ET

Hunt For Bear That Mauled Woman in Florida

It's not being called a bear attack yet. But authorities are setting traps and scouring parts of central Florida for the animal that mauled a woman and left her face severely injured. CNN's John Zarrella reports.

The woman, identified as 54-year-old Susan Chalfant, was walking her dogs in Longwood when she was wounded. Her face bloodied, she rushed to the house of a neighbor, who called 911.

"She thinks it was a bear," the neighbor said in the 911 call.

"How old is she?" the dispatched asked.

"I can't tell," the neighbor replied. "She's so bloodied, I can't tell."

Authorities say the woman is resting in a hospital.

Florida Fish and Wildlife spokeswoman Karen Parker said officials aren't ready to call the case a bear "attack" yet because it's not clear what led up to the incident.

"We're calling it a bear incident simply because we simply don't know what happened," Parker said.

"Bears are very, very elusive. They're pretty much more afraid of you than you are of them, and normally when they see a human and they've not been fed and have not been habituated - they're going to run away. They don't want to encounter us any more than we want to encounter them."

“Unprovoked black bear attacks in Florida are extremely rare. The first ever documented by the wildlife commission was last year,” Zarrella says.

“The problem, biologists say, is that people are now living in areas the bears once called home. And bears like to roam.”

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November 21st, 2013
10:33 AM ET

Dallas Prepares for JFK Anniversary

Tomorrow will mark 50 years since the assassination of President Kennedy in Dallas. Politicians, Kennedy friends and family members, as well as thousands of tourists will gather for a memorial ceremony at Dealey Plaza.

Some are drawn here to remember; others by the remaining questions and conspiracy theories that continue to surround Kennedy's death, CNN's Ed Lavandera reports.

To honor the 50th anniversary of President Kennedy's death, President Obama and the first lady laid a wreath at his gravesite in Arlington National Cemetery, joined by former President and Mrs. Clinton.

Meanwhile in Dallas, curious tourists still come to the place where those fatal shots were fired half a century ago. For this city, tomorrow will be a delicate balancing act of honoring Kennedy's memory without sensationalizing his murder.

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, the late president's niece and Robert F. Kennedy's daughter, spoke about her uncle's legacy on "New Day" Thursday.

She said: "What President Kennedy gave us is his great sense of spirit... He challenged, it's the spirit of youth. To take challenges, to do things that were difficult. To raise us up as a people and as individuals. "

The new JFK monument will be unveiled in Dallas during Friday's ceremony and it is located in the ground on the infamous grassy knoll.

The inscription on the monument is the final paragraph of the speech JFK intended to deliver at the Dallas trade mart on November 22nd, 1963.

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November 15th, 2013
07:37 AM ET

Sinkhole in Florida Swallows Up House, Threatens Others

Michael Dupre, his wife and his daughter made it out of their Dunedin, Florida, house after noticing its screened-in room plunging into a pit in the ground.

His wedding ring did not.

As the family stood outside early Thursday, a firefighter buckled herself up, smashed a window, then snatched the ring from a desk in Dupre's office.

"And a few minutes later, the whole thing collapsed back down there," he said.

Sinkholes like this one in Dunedin, a city of about 35,000 people just north of Clearwater, are hardly rarities in Florida. Hundreds pop up in the Sunshine State each year, like the one in August that gobbled a condo building in the town of Clermont, CNN's John Zarrella reports.

Dupre not only knew of the dangers, but he also was doing something about them. After spotting "a few little hairline cracks," he contacted his insurance company and, after a lot of back-and-forth about what to do, had workers come to his western Florida house over the last few days to start stabilizing the ground.

"We were actually planning ..., when the whole repair was done, to put a pool in the backyard," he said, noting he'd already gotten estimates. "That (hope) is over.

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