May 19, 2022

Abbott Laboratories Releasing OTC COVID-19 Rapid Tests; Ex-American Idol Arrested For Burglary & Physical Abuse; Pat Sajak Reveals Puzzle Answer; Chicago Mayor on Rumors Of Her Resigning; Toddler Shot In Road Rage Incident Out Of ICU.  

Abbott Laboratories Plans To Release Over-The-Counter COVID-19 Rapid Tests To Pharmacies This Week


It looks like coronavirus test kits will soon be easy to access by the public. As revealed today, store shelves at pharmacies throughout the United States will soon be stocked with affordable, quick, at-home test kits for the coronavirus. 

On Monday, Abbott Laboratories started shipping a rapid COVID test kit called BinaxNOW to major pharmaceutical chains to be sold over the counter. The stores that will start selling these two-count packs for $23.99 include Walgreens, CVS, and Walmart. 

The distribution of these at-home test kits comes after the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave BinaxNOW an Emergency Use Authorization at the end of March. These tests can be administered on children as young as 2 years old. Samples can be collected by adults and for everyone aged 15 or older. 

According to Abbott, the test can be taken even if symptoms are absent. The best part about the at-home test is that it can deliver results in just 15 minutes. 

Abbott says they are capable of manufacturing tens of millions of these Self Tests every month. And depending on demand, they can further scale capacity.

The pharmaceutical company is ready to work with retailers so they can prioritize the distribution of these tests to areas of the country where there is an upsurge of cases.  

In the past year alone, the company was able to develop high-quality rapid testing and even invested in facilities to scale up manufacturing. This way, affordable testing can be made available to the masses. 

Right now, there are other over-the-counter rapid antigen tests that are available in the market. With BinaxNOW, this will be able to meet the demand for it at a time like this.  

BinaxNOW “is a major advance over what has been available,” says Dr. Michael Mina Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s assistant professor of epidemiology. 

Ex-American Idol Contestant Charged With Burglary And Physical Abuse


An American Idol contestant was arrested Saturday after allegedly breaking into the home of his ex-girlfriend. The contestant, Cecil Ray Baker, was eliminated from the ABC show last week. 

The Rockdale Police Department in Texas arrested the 20-year-old contestant after reports that he broke into the home of his ex, Mariah Lopez. Baker faces burglary of a habitation with intent to commit assault charges. 

On the same day of his arrest, the season 19 contender was released on a bond of $15,000. 

The arrest affidavit reveals that Baker broke into the home of his ex because she did not allow him to see her daughter. Baker believes that he is the father of the little girl. 

The affidavit also revealed that when Baker was able to enter her home, he pushed Lopez to the ground. He also allegedly “struck her in the face with a palm heel” right before he left. 

Baker’s sister was interviewed by the police after saying that she witnessed the incident. Her statement echoed most of the details that Lopez gave. 

On Sunday, Lopez turned to TikTok to share details of the abuse she experienced. She shared a few videos and said that she “had enough.”

In one video, she showed texts from other people who also witnessed the alleged abuse. She also showed her bruises, Baker’s threatening messages, and a photo of her door after the break-in. 

“This is why victims never come forward bc y’all try so hard to tear them down,” Lopez wrote in her caption.

“I know your family has seen your behavior and honestly it is disgusting that they are okay with it and trying to deny it,” shared Lopez. “There were times where it was hard to leave. You would keep reeling me back in.”

Baker’s mugshot and his booking information from the Milam County Sheriff’s Office were also shared by Lopez on the social media platform.  

“The truth will eventually come out.” 

Lopez hopes that Baker will “decide to do better” and that he will one day “change and hold yourself accountable” so he “change and flourish into the person that you need to be.”

Baker’s legal representative was not immediately identified. It is unclear whether he has entered a plea at the time of the report. 

Pat Sajak Accidentally Gives Answer To Wheel Of Fortune Puzzle


Mistakes can happen at any time and even though you’ve done something for years, it can still occur. Take the case of Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak who accidentally gave away the answer to the bonus round question during Thursday’s broadcast of the game show. 

Sajak, 74, accidentally said the answer aloud while he was talking to the contestant of the game show. The letters “_ _ _ TE _ RAN _ L _” were on the board. 

After 6 of the 12 letters of the puzzle were revealed, Sajak commented “Yikes. Well, I’d rather be standing here than there, quite frankly.”

It turns out that the correct answer to the puzzle was “Quite Frankly”. But it seems like the contestant wasn’t able to realize Sajak’s blunder and incorrectly guessed the puzzle before the timer ran out. 

After the episode, the producers of the show released a video where Sajak addressed his on-air blunder. The game show host told his co-host, Vanna White, 64, that he only realized his mistake the moment he said it. 

Sajak also said that he wonders how many people at home were able to catch the blunder. “There weren’t many letters up there and I said, ‘I’d rather be here than up there, quite frankly’ — which was the puzzle. But it goes to show you that people are concentrating and they’re not paying any attention to me.”

Even with his blunder, Sajak shared that there was “no reason” the contestant would have guessed the answer. 

“It’s funny what your … mouth will say when your brain says, ‘You shouldn’t do that,” Sajak said to the camera. He also ended by saying “quite frankly, see you next time.”

Sajak has been the host of the game show since 1982. It is the longest-running syndicated game show in the country. In the same year, White joined him as the letter turner of the show and has been together ever since. 

Mayor Lori Lightwood Says Rumors Of Her Resigning Are “Trash”


On Sunday, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot addressed the online rumors that she was planning to resign from her post. The mayor took to Twitter to express her disappointment over the rumors and called it “trash.”

“It’s shocking and disappointing to see some media members and verified Twitter handles are peddling this trash as truth,” the mayor wrote on her Twitter account. 

“I will continue to lead a group of the willing all across our city who are about doing the people’s work. The people of Chicago elected me mayor, and I will continue to serve today, tomorrow, and into the future. Back to work.”

The mayor also pointed out that the city “doesn’t have any time for homophobic, racist and misogynistic rumors, today or any day.” 

This is related to her personal life since she is married to Amy Eshleman. 

Former Chicago mayoral candidate and activist, Ja’Mal Green, has made an apology for doing his part in spreading the rumors without verifying the news first.

He took to Twitter on Sunday to write his apology and said:

“I know Lori is mad that folks have started rumors and I’m sorry I helped by saying she’s resigning but the reality is, we’ve been lied to since the beginning of this administration.”

Green also shared that “73% of Chicagoans think we’re on the wrong path” and that people have lost hope because of the lies.  

The rumors of the mayor’s resignation surfaced after she faced criticism for the way she handled the death of 13-year-old Adam Toledo, who was shot by Chicago police. The activists were unhappy when the mayor called for “calm” after the incident, which Lightfoot described as a “complicated and nuanced story.”

A day after Lightwood spoke to the public and asked for calm, protestors started chanting “Hey hey, ho ho, Lori Lightfoot’s got to go” at the rallies they held as they called for justice for the slain boy. 

Toddler Shot In Head In Road Rage Incident Now Out Of ICU


The toddler involved in a road rage incident in Chicago from a couple of weeks ago is now breathing by himself and has been released from intensive care. An official from the hospital confirmed to members of the media on Monday.

According to Dr. Marcelo Malakooti, the chief medical officer of Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, the toddler “is moving all of his extremities.” 

The doctor shares that he is “optimistic that he’s continuing to have a positive neurologic recovery.”

Malakooti shared that Kayden Swann has a good prognosis but will still need intense rehabilitation. The 21-month-old toddler “has a good road ahead.”

This is good news, considering Swann was shot in the head after a road rage incident from a couple of weeks ago. 

The incident took place on Lake Shore Drive on April 6th. The vehicle where the toddler was in was almost hit by a sport-utility vehicle that was merging in the road. According to court documents, the drivers from the two vehicles exchanged heated words, and that the driver of the SUV showed off his gun. 

The driver of the car where Kayden was in tried to get away. Unfortunately, the driver of the SUV started to open fire. This led to Swann sustaining a gunshot wound on his head. 

The driver of the SUV has not been arrested. 

Just days ago, another shooting incident claimed the life of a 7-year-old girl named Jaslyn Adams. 

Jaslyn and her father were waiting for their turn at a McDonald’s drive-through when they were suddenly shot inside their vehicle. The girl was transported to the hospital where she was pronounced dead. Her father is still at the same hospital and is in serious condition. 

Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice K. Jackson says that the recent shooting is “heartbreaking”. She also shared that they will be offering support to the family of the victim. 

“I’m sick of our kids not feeling safe in this city.”