National News: Baby Doe identified in Boston murder, House votes to block Planned Parenthood funding, Shooter in Phoenix freeway shootings identified


Baby Doe identified after months of investigating

The 3-year-old “Baby Doe,” whose body was found in June on the shore of Deer Island near Boston Harbor, has been identified as Bella Bond, according to CNN. The mother’s boyfriend, Michael McCarthy, 35, was charged with murder, and the child’s mother, Rachelle Bond, 40, was arrested for accessory to murder after the fact.

The nationwide search for the identity of the young girl was spurred after forensic artist Christi Andrews created a computer-rendered photograph of the girl, as the body was decayed beyond the point of identification. The remains were found in a black trash bag along with a pair of polka dot pants and a zebra blanket.

“For nearly three months, we have endeavored to speak for a true innocent who could not speak for herself,” state police Col. Richard McKeon said.


House votes to block Planned Parenthood funding for a year

The House of Representatives voted Sept. 18 to block federal funding for Planned Parenthood for a year and to limit certain abortion practices in response to the undercover videos exposing the organization’s illegal selling of aborted baby parts for scientific research. The bill passed with 241-187 vote. The Senate has yet to vote on the “de-fund” bill and will likely be vetoed by President Obama.

The bill would reallocate the $450 million dollars allotted to Planned Parenthood to thousands of government-backed community health centers, stated a Fox News article. Supporters of the bill believe this would still allow women access to healthcare, but opponents argue that the community health centers are usually overwhelmed and far from the women who need them.

“Anyone who watches those videos — they are horrific,” said House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. “Aborting live babies for profit — why would anybody want to spend tax dollars for that?”


Shooter in Phoenix freeway shootings identified


Leslie Allen Merritt was arrested Sept. 18 in relation to the 11 freeway shootings in Phoenix, Arizona, over the past few weeks. Merritt’s gun was linked to four attacks on Aug.29 and Aug. 30. Merritt, 21, was charged with four counts each of drive-by shooting and intentional acts of terrorism, according to Fox News. His additional charges include criminal endangerment, assault and unlawful discharge of a firearm. Police say that bullets that hit a tour bus, SUV and two cars on a stretch of Interstate 10 in Phoenix match those from Merritt’s firearm. His bail is set at $1 million cash.

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