5 things you need to know Wednesday, November 29

1. Suspected Tampa serial killer was born in Charlotte

The Tampa Police Department on Wednesday morning booked a man who authorities believe is responsible for a string of murders in the Seminole Heights neighborhood.

Howell Emanuel Donaldson III, 24, is charged with four counts of first-degree murder in the killings of Benjamin Edward Mitchell on Oct. 9, Monica Caridad Hoffa on Oct. 11, Anthony Naiboa on Oct. 19 and Ronald Felton on Nov. 14 in southeast Seminole Heights. Authorities are holding Donaldson at the Hillsborough County jail without bond.

The affidavit states Donaldson was born in Charlotte, North Carolina. Click here for more information.

2. Matt Lauer fired from NBC News after allegation of inappropriate sexual behavior

Longtime NBC News anchor Matt Lauer has been fired, the network confirmed. The news was announced at the top of the "Today Show" Wednesday morning. 

Lauer's former co-host Savannah Guthrie made the announcement alongside Hoda Kotb saying NBC received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate behavior in the workplace by Lauer.

"As a result, we've decided to terminate his employment." This is a developing story. For the latest information, click here.

3. Is it Mariah? FBI asking for help identifying woman & child in surveillance photos

The FBI released new photos that picture a woman with a child from Walmart surveillance. Authorities are trying to determine whether or not the child is missing 3-year-old Mariah Woods.

The photos were captured by a Walmart surveillance camera in Morehead City around 9:30 a.m. Monday. The three photos appear to show an adult woman with a young child walking around the store.

The Onslow County Sheriff's Office and FBI said they were attempting to determine whether the child depicted in the images is Mariah and are asking for the public's assistance in identifying the adult and child.

"No information is too small or insignificant when looking for a missing child," authorities said in a press release. Anyone with information on the woman and child pictured is asked to call the Onslow County Sheriff's Office at 910-455-3313. Click here to see newly released photos.

4. Tensions rise after North Korea fires another ballistic missile

The United Nations Security Council will convene for an emergency meeting Wednesday following North Korea's latest missile launch. The reclusive nation claimed it achieved its goal of becoming a nuclear state after launching an intercontinental ballistic missile it says is capable of striking “the whole mainland of the U.S."  

According to an expert, the missile — which landed inside Japan's Economic Exclusion Zone — would have had a range of 8,100 miles had it flown in a flat trajectory, making it capable of reaching Washington, D.C. President Trump spoke with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe following the launch, the White House said, adding that both leaders: "reaffirmed their commitment to combat the North Korean threat."

5. Officials warn of Christmas tree fire hazards

The National Institute of Standards and Technology just released a shocking side-by-side videodemonstrating how easily a dry tree can catch fire.

Local fire officials said they respond to Christmas tree fire calls every year. 

“We've seen it in person how fast a fire can destroy a Christmas tree and how quickly it can extend into the house,” Charlotte Fire Battalion Chief Matt Westover said. “The most important thing is to water the tree regularly. Make sure the cords aren’t frayed at all, that there are no exposed wires. Don't use extension cords, and use surge protectors. Unplug your lights when you leave the house, when you're sleeping turn them off.”

© 2017 WCNC.COM


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