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2 officers OK after Metro chopper crash downtown

photo credit: Twitter@blazeitfoo

 LAS VEGAS -- A Metro Police helicopter crashed in a Las Vegas neighborhood Wednesday afternoon injuring two officers, police said.

The crash occurred at 1:30 p.m. at Bonanza Road and 23rd Street. The helicopter went down in the street, according to Metro.

The officers were transported to University Medical Center, police said. The FAA reports that their injuries aren't life-threatening. No citizens were injured. 

"I would say it's some pretty good piloting skills in order not to hit houses, light police or anything else in the area," said Metro Deputy Chief Patrick Neville. "The pilots, from what we saw, did an outstanding job with getting that helicopter down with no injuries or damage to the neighborhood."

Motorists are advised to avoid the area. Bonanza Road is closed between Bruce Street and Eastern Avenue.

Clark County warming stations to open on Dec. 31

 LAS VEGAS -- Cold weather is prompting Clark County to open warming stations around the valley on Wednesday, Dec. 31.

The following locations will be open:

  • Black Mountain Recreation Center, 599 Greenway Road (at East Horizon Drive) Henderson 7 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Cambridge Recreation Center, 3930 Cambridge St., Las Vegas, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Dr. William Pearson Community Center, 1625 W. Carey Ave., Las Vegas 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Hollywood Recreation Center, 1650 S. Hollywood Blvd., Las Vegas 6 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Stupak Community Center, 251 W. Boston Ave., Las Vegas 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Walnut Recreation Center, 3075 N. Walnut Ave., Las Vegas 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

(Walnut, Pearson, Hollywood and Cambridge will accept people with their pets on a leash or in a carrier.)

Overnight shelter can be found at the following places:

3 Vegas tech companies spread holiday cheer

LAS VEGAS — Three Las Vegas tech companies are spreading Christmas cheer across the valley. And if you look around, you might just find a gift.

ItsOnMe, ShopWithMe, and Postmates spent Monday and Tuesday planting more than 1,000 little brown boxes around the valley. 

Inside you'll find gifts from the companies that range in price from $30 to $1,000.

"We wanted to give back to the community and wanted to share with everyone the idea of your ability to gift local and support local brick and mortar businesses during this holiday season," said CEO and Co-Founder of It's On Me David Leibner.

If you see one of those little boxes, snatch it up quick. The organizers say many of them have already been claimed. 

If you want a hint to where they're hiding, the people behind the campaign say they can be hidden anywhere from a park bench to next to your parking meter.

Police ID officer who shot man with knives

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Las Vegas Police say 30-year-old James Downing is the officer who shot and wounded a man holding a butcher knife in each hand after the man lunged toward officers.

Police released the officer's identity Tuesday and said Downing had been placed on routine paid leave during a review of the incident. Downing has been with Las Vegas Police since January 2007.

Police have said 46-year-old Paul Herron moved aggressively toward officers before he was shot Sunday afternoon. The shooting occurred on the lawn outside a condominium complex several blocks southeast of downtown Las Vegas.

Police say Herron's 72-year-old father told dispatchers his son was rampaging through his residence, threatening to kill him.

Herron underwent surgery at Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center after the shooting.

'Community policing' credited for bridging gap in neighborhoods

LAS VEGAS — The valley is no stranger to the shooting deaths of police. Earlier this year, two Metro Police officers were gunned down inside a CiCi's Pizza. 

As tensions between police and their communities appear to be increasing across the US, officers in Las Vegas say they've learned you can't arrest your way out of everything.

Darius Jackson has had many unexpected encounters with Metro Police.

"There have been quite a few times where cops have actually stopped me and harassed me, you know what I mean? They've actually checked up on me, like 'how are you doing? Do you need a ride home?' And I appreciate that," said Jackson. 

As a young African-American male, he can feel tensions running high between police and minorities across the country. But on Monday, he said he feels west Las Vegas is different.

Overnight fire displaces 9 children, 3 adults

LAS VEGAS --  An early morning fire displaced three adults and nine children Sunday. Las Vegas Fire and Rescue said the blaze started around 1:30 a.m. at an apartment complex on 22nd St. near Searles and Eastern avenues.

When fire crews arrived to the scene heavy smoke could be seen billowing from the unit, officials said.

Firefighters were able to get inside and quickly take control quickly of the fire.  Fire officials said the unit was vacant, but it looked like homeless people set up a shelter there.

No one was hurt, but the smokey conditions caused the neighbors to be displaced. The Red Cross is now assisting them.

The cause of the fire is unknown. The damage is estimated at $40,000.

Teacher arrested on drug charges released from custody

 LAS VEGAS -- An elementary school teacher arrested on drug charges appeared in Las Vegas Justice Court for her arraignment Friday morning.

Laura Droemer, a teacher at Rose Warren Elementary School,  was arrested Wednesday after allegedly selling marijuana to an undercover police officer.

Droemer was released from custody on her own recognizance. 

Her preliminary hearing is scheduled for Feb. 25, 2105.