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Cory Monteith’s mom says he was on pain medication for dental work before overdose death

Corey Monteith’s mother revealed the “Glee” actor was taking pain medications for “massive” dental work before he died of a heroin overdose in 2013.

Ann McGregor told People she believes the pain medication derailed Monteith’s struggle with sobriety.

McGregor told People that Monteith checked into a rehab center in April 2013. Between the months of May and July, he had “massive’ dental work done, for which he was prescribed painkillers.

“He had little teeth and they were all capped. He had a lot of medication in his system, which was not good for his body coming out of rehab,” McGregor said in the interview published Wednesday. “He didn’t have enough drugs in his system to kill him, but for some reason it did because of his intolerance [built up by periods of intermittent sobriety].”

>> Read more trending news 

Monteith, 31, was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room in July 2013.

Authorities said he died of a lethal mix of heroin and alcohol. Traces of morphine and codeine were also found in his system.

He was known for his starring role as Finn Huck on Fox’s hit TV show, “Glee.”

McGregor told ABC News in 2014 that Monteith first began using drugs at age 15.

Close call: Woman finds venomous black widow spider crawling in grapes she and son were eating

A Connecticut woman is warning others about a close call she and her son had with a venomous black widow spider.

>> Read more trending news 

Laurie Fitzgerald, from Branford, told WVIT-TV that she and her son were eating the grapes Monday shortly after she bought them when they discovered the spider.

“It makes you nervous,” Fitzgerald said, according to WVIT. “It makes you wonder where they’re importing the grapes from.”

It turns out the grapes sold at the Branford Stop & Shop were shipped from a California company.

The store issued a statement about the incident.

“Stop & Shop and our grape growers take necessary measures to keep spiders out of the grapes that are sold. Despite that effort, it is possible for a spider to get into the bunches as they are a part of the natural, organic environment,” the retailer said.

>> Related: Reporter finds black widow spider nestled in Christmas tree at grocery store

The store also offered Fitzgerald double her money back on the grapes, the news station reported.

2 kids bitten in separate shark attacks off Long Island shore

Two young people were bitten by sharks Wednesday afternoon in two separate attacks, WABC reports.

A 13-year-old boy was apparently bitten by a shark off the Atlantique shoreline on Fire Island while boogie boarding, officials said.

>> Read more trending news 

Emergency crews found a tooth in the teen’s leg, according to WABC. Wildlife officials are trying to determine what kind of species of shark was involved.

A girl was also bitten by a shark at Sailor Harbor on Fire Island, officials said. She suffered a bite wound to one of her legs. 

“My daughter was not even 10 feet off the shore up to her waist. All of the sudden I see her panicking, and I could see something -- I couldn't tell what it was, but it was kind of flapping about,” Philip Polina, the girl's father, told WABC.

The attacks happened about 4.5 miles away from each other, WNBC reports.

Officials with the National Parks Service said the bite marks on both victims are “consistent with a large fish,” but there have been no sightings of a shark in the area and the incidents are not yet confirmed to be shark bites. 

All public beaches on Fire Island are closed while the investigation continues. 

Hot dogs, salami, other cured meats associated with manic episodes, scientists say

There are several genetic and environmental elements associated with mental health issues, and certain types of meat may be another factor, according to a new report. 

>> Read more trending news  

Researchers from John Hopkins Medicine recently conducted a study, published in the Molecular Psychiatry journal, to explore foods that could be linked with mania, a mental illness characterized by hyperactivity, euphoria and insomnia.

To do so, they examined the health records of more than 1,000 people, aged 18 to 65, with and without psychiatric disorders. Those with psychiatric disorders were patients from the Sheppard Pratt Health System in Baltimore, and those with no history of them were volunteers.

>> Related: Lab-grown meat could be in restaurants in 3 years

They found that people who were hospitalized for mania were about 3.5 times more likely to have had a history of eating cured meat before hospitalization, compared to the group without a psychiatric disorder. The meats they consumed were injected with nitrates, chemicals used to cure beef jerky, salami, hot dogs and other processed meat snacks. 

>> Related: Eat this meat twice a week to avoid heart attacks and strokes

“It's clear that mania is a complex neuropsychiatric state, and that both genetic vulnerabilities and environmental factors are likely involved in the emergence and severity of bipolar disorder and associated manic episodes,” co-author Seva Khambadkone said in a statement. “Our results suggest that nitrated cured meat could be one environmental player in mediating mania.”

The same researchers also experimented with rats, feeding them normal chow and a piece of store-bought, nitrate-prepared beef jerky. They discovered that the animals who ate the beef jerky showed mania-like hyperactivity after a few weeks, while the rodents who ate nitrate-free foods behaved normally.

Despite the findings, the team noted that it’s too early to make any clinical conclusions. They also said occasional consumption of cured meat is not likely to cause a manic episode in most of the population. 

However, they look forward to continuing their investigations. 

>> Related: There is a tick that causes red meat allergies

“Future work on this association,” study co-author Robert Yolken said, “could lead to dietary interventions to help reduce the risk of manic episodes in those who have bipolar disorder or who are otherwise vulnerable to mania.” 

White House: Trump didn't mean to say Russia no longer targeting US

White House officials denied that President Donald Trump expressed his disagreement Wednesday with U.S. intelligence officials who have said that the threat from Russia is ongoing.

>> Read more trending news

“Thank you very much. No,” Trump said after a reporter asked during a Cabinet meeting Wednesday if Russia was still targeting the U.S. The comment came one day after he corrected a separate statement in which he said he couldn’t see why Russia would have meddled in the election despite the consensus of American intelligence officials.

“We are doing very well, probably as well as anybody has ever done with Russia,” Trump said. “There's been no president ever as tough as I have been on Russia.”

Update 3:05 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at a news briefing Wednesday that Trump was misinterpreted.

She said the president was telling reporters that he did not plan to answer questions after the Cabinet meeting and not that he didn’t think Russia was continuing to target America.

“I had a chance to speak to the president after his comments and the president said, ‘Thank you very much,’ and (he) was saying, ‘No,’ to answering questions,” Huckabee Sanders said. “We believe that the threat still exists which is why we are taking steps to forget it.”

Original report: Trump’s comment came just days after National Intelligence Director Dan Coats said in a statement that intelligence officials “have been clear in our assessments of Russia meddling in the 2016 election” and the ongoing efforts to interfere in American politics.

>> From Cox Media Group’s Jamie Dupree: Trump again contradicts U.S. Intelligence on Russia

Wednesday’s comments marked the second time in less than a week that the president has contradicted his intelligence officials while talking about Russia. He told reporters on Tuesday that he “misspoke” one day earlier when, during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, he said that he didn’t see why Russia would have meddled in the election.

“In a key sentence in my remarks I said the word ‘would’ instead of ‘wouldn’t,’” Trump told reporters Tuesday. “The sentence should have been ‘I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be Russia.’ ... I accept our intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election took place.”

However, he added, it “could be other people also.”

>> Trump says he accepts that Russia meddled in 2016 election

The president reiterated that his campaign had no involvement in the election meddling. 

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller was tasked in May 2017 with investigating Russian election interference and its possible ties to Trump and his campaign officials. The special counsel investigation of Russian meddling has led to charges against 32 people accused of crimes ranging from money laundering and falsifying income tax returns to lying to FBI investigators. 

>> More on Robert Mueller's investigation 

Five people, including former White House National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, have pleaded guilty to charges in the investigation. The investigation is ongoing.

Woman warns of wild parsnip burns after she is sent to hospital with painful, large blisters

First it was giant hogsweed, now another plant could cause painful burns and blisters to humans who come in contact with it. 

Charlotte Murphy has learned how dangerous the small, delicate yellow flowers can be.

Murphy and her boss were driving near Bennington, Vermont, when they stopped at an area alongside the road that had been cleared and had picnic tables, WPTZ reported.

That’s where Murphy said she brushed up against the leaves of the wild parsnip. She didn’t know she had some of the plant’s sap on her skin. 

>> Read more trending news 

Days later, she had large, yellow blisters forming on her legs.

Experts say the sun when combined with sap can cause burn-like reactions.

“If your skin comes in contact with the sap or juice in the plant, your skin can develop almost a sunburn when your skin is out in the sun,” Sarah Vose, who is with the Vermont Department of Health, told WPTZ.

What can you do if you come in contact with the plant?

First, Vose told WPTZ, wash your skin as soon as you can. Then stay out of the sun for a few days. 

Murphy posted photos of what happened to her on social media in hopes of warning others and preventing them from having similar experiences. 

According to the Department of Environmental Conservation in New York, the plants are about 5 feet tall with hollow, grooved stems. They have small, yellow flowers in clusters. The plant is considered invasive and is common in the U.S. and Canada. 

CBS News reported that the plant is the most irritating while it has flowers.

Related: 

Back to school 2018: Here is where teachers can get discounts on supplies

They could be the three words that parents most love to hear: back to school.

>> Read more trending news

For many, August will see children heading back to classrooms for the start of a new school year. 

For teachers, it means getting a classroom stocked and ready as their students return. It can also mean a hit to a teacher’s wallet.

>>Target offering 15% off school supplies for teacher

A growing list of retailers are offering teachers some relief in the form of discounts and special offers. 

Below is a list of some deals from online and brick-and-mortar retailers. 

Note: Most deals require that a teacher’s identification be verified. 

Educator discounts:

  • Academic Superstore: With some exceptions, part- or full-time students, teachers or faculty members attending or employed by an accredited, degree-granting institution (K-12 or higher Ed), you are eligible for a discount on school supplies.
  • A.C. Moore: Get 15 percent off an entire purchase with a valid teacher identification.
  • Barnes & Noble: Get 20 percent off the publisher’s price for books purchased for the classroom. 
  • Bookmans: Get 20 percent off purchases when you sign up for the Project Educate program.
  • Costco Wholesale: Teachers who sign up for a new membership can get over $60 in savings. Teacher identification is required.
  • Container Store: Sign up for the Organized Teacher Discount Program, available until Dec. 31, 2018, and get email notice of sales and discounts.
  • DickBlick Art Supplies: Get school supply discounts and free lesson plans.
  • Discount School Supply: Get discounts on school supplies to U.S. educators.
  • Dollar Days: Get wholesale prices on school supplies. For information on additional discounts, call 877-837-9569 or email sales@dollardays.com.
  • First Book: Get 50-90 percent off retail book prices if you are in one of these groups.
  • GelPro: Get 25 percent off your online purchases. Teacher identification must be verified (source).
  • Half Price Books: Teachers get a 10 percent discount at Half Price Books when they sign up for an Educator Discount Card.
  • Hobby Lobby: Get a 10 percent discount on in-store purchases. You must pay with a check or bank card provided by the school.
  • Home Depot: Teachers in public schools can apply for a tax-free exemption on classroom purchases.
  • JoAnn Fabric: Get 15 percent off both in-store and online to U.S. teachers. You must show valid teacher identification.
  • K12 School Supplies: Get a 30-80 percent discount on closeout and clearance school supplies. Inventory is limited.
  • Kennelly Keys Music: Get a 20 percent discount on orders of books and sheet music made through the phone or in-store only. Call 425-771-7020 or email websales@kennellykeysmusic.com for more information. 
  • Kiwi Crate: Get discounts on bulk classroom orders.
  • LakeShore Learning: Join the Lakeshore Learning Teacher’s Club and get 15 percent off in-store purchases.
  • Michaels: Get a 15 percent discount on in-store purchases.
  • Naked Binder: Get special discounts on nontoxic, environmentally safe and 100 percent recyclable school products. Email info@nakedbinder.com or call 877-446-2533.
  • Oriental Trading: Get discounted teaching supplies. 
  • PBS: PB Learning Media offers teachers free access to digital curriculum-based resources.
  • Pencils.com: Get 10 percent off all orders. Valid teacher identification required. 
  • Quail Ridge Books: K-12 teachers can get a complimentary membership to the Readers’ Club which includes a 30 percent discount on The New York Times hardcover bestsellers, and a 10 percent discount on most items for personal purchase. You can also get a 21 percent discount on books for classroom use. 
  • Raymond Geddes School Supplies: Sign up for a Raymond Geddes School Supplies account and get 10 percent off your next order. 
  • Scholastic Teacher Store: Get special discounts and sales on books, software, curriculum programs, and teaching resources. 
  • Silhouette: Silhouette offers a discount to U.S. and Canadian teachers. Send your account address, school name and location, and teaching certificate to education@silhouetteamerica.com (source).
  • Timesavers for Teachers: Get 20 percent off purchases when you use the code “timesavers.”
  • Yoobi: Elementary schools that have more than 70 percent of students enrolled in the free or reduced-price lunch program can get free classroom packs.

Lay’s releases 8 new potato chip flavors inspired by ‘local cuisine’ of America

Lay’s is releasing 8 brand new potato chip flavors this month inspired by food favorites from across the United States.

Each flavor of the “Taste of America” collection is inspired by a regional favorite, based on customer feedback from different regions, a representative of Frito Lay told USA Today.

Starting July 30, the eight flavors will be available in the regional markets that are represented, through September 23.

Customers can also order all eight flavors online

>> Read more trending news 

Here is the Lay’s Taste of America summer collection and featured region as described on the Lay’s website:

1. Cajun Spice, Central Gulf

Inspired by the flavors of the Gulf Coast with a taste of garlic, paprika, onion and oregano.

2. Chesapeake Bay Crab Spice

Inspired by crab shacks along the Atlantic, here’s a taste of the Bay with custom-blended spices ready to savor.

3. Chili Con Queso

Inspired by legendary Tex-Mex of the Southwest, here’s a taste of velvety cheddar queso with a dash of spice.

4. Deep Dish Pizza

Inspired by the Giordano’s pizza recipe made famous in the Midwest, here’s a taste of their iconic stuffed deep-dish pizza.

5. Fried Pickles with Ranch

Inspired by a deep-fried favorite at Midwest state fairs, get a taste of fried pickles with ranch.

6. New England Lobster Roll

Inspired by lobster shacks of the Northeast, here’s a taste of fresh lobster served on a buttery grilled roll.

7. Pimento Cheese

Inspired by Sunday socials and Southern charm, here’s a taste of creamy sharp cheddar with a hint of cayenne pepper.

8. Thai Sweet Chili

Inspired by the food truck scene of the Pacific Northwest, get a taste of Thai sweet chili sauce with a hint of heat. 

Deputy loses dance-off after accidental 911 call turns into competition

An accidental call to 911 ended with a dance showdown near Los Angeles.

Vic Ekanem, a patrol deputy with the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, responded to the 911 call that turned out to be an accident.

The call could have been quick, but Ekanem was challenged by a young man at the home to a dance-off. 

According to the sheriff’s department, Ekanem, who works out of the Palmdale station, had the winning moves --t is, until it came to a popular dance called the Floss. That’s when the young man took the virtual dance trophy. 

The sheriff’s office did concede on its Facebook post that Ekanem wasn’t king of the dance, but said “it was very hot that day and that flashlight kinda threw off his balance.”

>> Read more trending news 

Ekanem is part of the department’s S.H.A.R.E. program. S.H.A.R.E. stands for Stop Hate and Respect Everyone and was started in 2008. The focus of the initiative is to connect with kids as they leave grade school and enter high school and to hopefully prevent kids from falling into “cliques which may practice very negative views such as hate and intolerance.”

The team of deputies works in the summer visiting community events to introduce the program to younger kids. 

Russian government accuses FBI of 'political put-up job' after suspected foreign agent indicted

The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs accused the FBI of “implementing a political put-up job” after authorities arrested a Russian national over the weekend on allegations that she illegally acted as an unregistered foreign agent.

>> Read more trending news

Authorities on Sunday arrested Mariia Butina, a 29-year-old Russian citizen living in Washington, D.C., on suspicion of “conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian Federation within the United States without prior notification to the Attorney General,” according to the Justice Department. In a criminal complaint released Monday, authorities accused Butina of failing to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

>> From Cox Media Group’s Jamie Dupree: Russian woman arrested, charged with illegal political activities in U.S.

In a pair of tweets attributed Wednesday to Maria Zakharova, director of the Information and Press Department for Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the foreign ministry wrote that officials were dismayed to learn of Butin’s arrest.

“We are dismayed by the reported arrest of Russian citizen Maria Butina in the US on July 15,” Zakharova said, using an alternative spelling of Butina’s first name. “It looks as if the FBI, instead of carrying out their responsibility of fighting crime, is implementing a political put-up job set to it by forces that are whipping up anti-Russia hysteria in the US.”

Justice Department officials allege that Butina schmoozed with influential people and organizations in the U.S. in order to advance the interests of Russia.

“From as early as 2015 and continuing through at least February 2017, Butina worked at the direction of a high-level official in the Russian government who was previously a member of the legislature of the Russian Federation and later became a top official at the Russian Central Bank,” Justice Department officials said Monday in a news release. 

>> Who is Mariia Butina, the woman charged with acting as a Russian agent in the US?

Authorities added that the unnamed official was among the 24 Russian oligarchs and senior Russian government officials sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury Department for profiting from the country’s illegal and subversive activities in the U.S. and abroad. 

Butina was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday for a hearing. Prosecutors are expected to argue that the 29-year-old should be held without bail ahead of trial because she is a flight risk, NPR reported.

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