May 19, 2022

5 People Died in Hot Air Balloon Crash; ‘It was rude of her’: Courtney Love Slams Olivia Rodrigo; F9: The Most Successful Box Office Opening Since 2019; 3 Killed in Metra Train-SUV Collision; 2 People Killed, 38 Injured in Weekend Shootings in Chicago

Five People Died in New Mexico Hot Air Balloon Crash

Five people were killed Saturday morning in Albuquerque, New Mexico, when a hot air balloon collided with a power line, severing the envelope and sending the basket plunging to the ground. The disaster is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board.

The pilot, Nicholas Meleski, 62, and the four passengers, Susan Montoya, 65; John Montoya, 61; Mary Martinez, 59; and Martin Martinez, 62, were identified by the New Mexico State Police on Sunday. Each of them was an Albuquerque resident.

According to Albuquerque Police, four victims died at the site, while another was taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition but died later.

According to witnesses, the balloon fell toward the ground at approximately 7:30 a.m. Saturday and collided with an overhead power wire. The basket broke from the envelope and dropped about 100 feet (30 meters), and crashed into a busy city street before catching on fire, authorities said.

“If you have ballooned, there are always things that can happen, whether it’s winds, whether it’s equipment,” Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller said at a press conference Saturday afternoon. “It’s something that our pilots always train for, but it’s always something that it can inherently sometimes occur.”

Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina said he had worked with Martinez when he first joined the department.

“There were officers on the scene who I know worked with this individual during the course of their career,” Medina said. “We did have to send a number of officers home because they were a little bit disturbed from what had occurred, and it took its toll on them.”

The accident knocked down electricity to more than 13,000 consumers in the area, KOB 4 reported. Later the following day, it was restored.

“I’m incredibly saddened to hear of this terrible tragedy in Albuquerque,” New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham tweeted. “My prayers are with the loved ones of those affected.”

In Albuquerque, hot-air ballooning is a popular recreational activity. Each autumn, the city’s International Balloon Fiesta attracts hundreds of balloons.

‘It was rude of her’: Courtney Love Slams Olivia Rodrigo for Copying Hole Album Cover

Courtney Love is accusing Olivia Rodrigo of allegedly imitating the cover of Hole’s 1994 album Live Through This for promotional purposes without crediting her.

The iconic cover depicts a prom queen wearing a tiara and carrying a bouquet of flowers, her mascara smudged beneath her eyes from tears. Rodrigo’s photograph has all similar elements.

“Spot the difference! #twinning! @oliviarodrigo,” Love shared across social media.

Comments flooded in from fans on both sides, with questions if Love was being passive-aggressive toward Rodrigo or actually supporting the young artist.

“She didn’t ask. So a bit of both. I dig manners,” Love told a fan.

In another message, Love expresses that Rodrigo should have sought permission from her or cover photographer Ellen von Unwerth to reproduce their cooperation.

“It was rude of her and Geffen not to ask myself or Ellen von Unwerth. It’s happened my whole career, so i.d.c. But manners is manners,” Love said of Rodrigo, who has a contract with Interscope and Geffen.

She continues with another remark, “Stealing an original idea and not asking permission is rude. There’s no way to be elegant about it. I’m not angry. It happens all the time to me. This was bad form. That’s not bullying or bomb-throwing. This person’s music has nothing to do with my life. Possibly never will. It was rude, and I have every right to stick up for my work.”

Love received a friendly response from Rodrigo, whom she tagged in her social media posts.

“love u and live through this sooooo much,” Rodrigo wrote.

“Olivia-you’re welcome. My favorite florist is in Notting Hill, London! Dm me for deets! I look forward to reading your note!” Love replied.

Additionally, Love chastised another admirer for questioning her idea’s originality.

“I doubt you did this first. I mean, nothing new under the sun and all that,” the fan wrote via Facebook. “Why not just take the nod and move on gracefully?”

Love responded, “don’t dare gatekeep me. I’m alive. And not in a c ship. It WAS IN FACT, AN ORIGINAL IDEA! No one had done ‘it’. I pride myself on having them.”

F9: The Most Successful Box Office Opening Since 2019, Expected to Earn $70 Million on Opening Weekend

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, movie theaters have been suffering an economic drought, but F9 has made it rain.

According to CNBC, the ninth installment of the Fast & Furious franchise is predicted to earn $70 million in its first weekend in the United States and Canada. This will be the most successful domestic debut since the COVID-19 epidemic began in March 2020.

Following its global release last month in South Korea, where it reportedly grossed $162.4 million, the blockbuster has since grossed more than $405 million worldwide.

F9 was released following A Quiet Place Part II, which opened to just under $50 million in ticket sales last month. Cruella premiered at $37.4 million on the same weekend, and Godzilla vs. Kong opened to $32.2 million in April.

F9’s opening weekend also coincided with the reversal of COVID-19 restrictions, with numerous movie theaters reopening. Comscore data indicates that 80% of North American theaters are open. F9 also has the biggest opening weekend since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker in 2019.

After multiple postponements, F9 is one of the few films to launch entirely in theaters since the epidemic began. However, many recent high-budget films have premiered simultaneously in theaters and on streaming platforms.

Aside from Vin Diesel, the F9 cast include Tyrese Gibson, Michelle Rodriguez, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Jordana Brewster, John Cena, Nathalie Emmanuel, Sung Kang, Kurt Russell, Michael Rooker, Helen Mirren, and Charlize Theron.

“F9 is the first true summer blockbuster released in over two years, and all eyes were on this performance to provide a glimpse into the future of the movie theater,” Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore, told CNBC. “And that future now looks very bright and bodes well for the big films now in the pipeline set for release in the coming weeks and months.”

The F9 launch fell short of 2017’s Fate of the Furious, which grossed $98 million in its opening weekend, but outperformed Hobbs & Shaw, which grossed $60 million in its opening weekend.

Three People Killed in Metra Train-SUV Collision in Beverly

Three people, including a minor, were killed Sunday evening when a Metra train headed toward downtown Chicago collided with a vehicle in the Beverly section of the city, authorities said.

Train 122, with 41 passengers onboard, operating on the transit agency’s Rock Island Line, collided with an SUV in the 10300 block of South Vincennes Avenue shortly before 5:30 p.m.

According to Michael Gillis, a spokesman for Metra, one train engineer suffered a leg injury, and a conductor had a back injury. Three passengers sustained injuries, with two requiring hospitalization. A third passenger opted out of receiving medical treatment.

Following the crash, Metra suspended inbound and outgoing train service around 103rd Street.

The train was scheduled to leave Joliet at 4:25 p.m. and arrive at Chicago’s LaSalle Street station at 5:25 p.m. According to the transit agency, the train was running as an express train heading downtown at the time of the crash, with a speed of around 79 miles per hour.

While Gillis stated that Metra is constantly working to improve railroad safety, the specifics surrounding the tragedy remained unknown late Sunday evening.

“At 107th, [the train] struck this SUV pick-up truck and dragged it here to 103rd,” Gillis said.

“There’s no indication the gates were malfunctioning,” he told reporters at a news briefing. “But I don’t know; I can’t say at this point what happened at the intersection.”

Metra authorities planned to review footage obtained by a camera mounted on the train in an attempt to determine what caused the collision. Roadways in the vicinity of 103rd and Vincennes are closed indefinitely pending the outcome of a collision investigation.

“It’s heart-rendering, gut-crunching. It’s the worst thing I’ve seen,” Gillis added.

Jamie Smith, a passenger, stated that the train was cruising along when he felt an abrupt jerk.

“The lights went off. You could hear screeching at first. It was like, ‘what’s going on?’ Then you could see smoke billowing past the windows,” Smith said. “You could smell it. We continued hearing that screeching and you could just tell something was not right.”

Two People Killed and at Least 38 Injured in Weekend Shootings in Chicago

According to official Chicago Police statistics, two people have been killed, and at least 38 have been injured in gunshots across the City this weekend.

At approximately 4:36 a.m. Saturday, the first fatal shooting of the weekend was reported. A 25-year-old guy was seen lying on a sidewalk in the 2600 block of West Thomas Street, police said. He had been shot in the torso. The individual was pronounced deceased at Stroger Hospital.

Another fatal shooting occurred less than an hour later in the 6100 Block of North McCormick. According to police, four guys were engaged in a verbal disagreement when one of the assailants opened fire at the group. A man, 35, hit in the chest and leg, was rushed to St. Francis Hospital, where he was pronounced dead later that night. The other three men were also wounded and sent to nearby hospitals. Their conditions had stabilized by Sunday morning.

The following are the remaining shootings reported in the City this weekend:

Six separate shooting events occurred throughout the City on Friday, inflicting non-life-threatening injuries. According to authorities, one incident occurred at approximately 11:48 p.m. in the 7000 Block of South Indiana. A group of folks were standing outside when a person on a red moped began firing at them. Three shots were fired at a 28-year-old lady who is in critical condition. A 31-year-old male suffered a gunshot wound to the head and is currently in critical condition. After being shot twice in the thigh, a 28-year-old woman’s condition has stabilized. Additionally, a 31-year-old guy was wounded in the thigh, but his condition has improved.

On Saturday, sixteen people were shot in various locations throughout Chicago but survived their injuries, which ranged from minor grazes to catastrophic headshots. One of the victims is a 14-year-old child who was shot in the hand while walking outside.

Between Sunday midnight and 3 a.m. on Monday, nine incidents of non-fatal shootings of adults transpired. The victims were treated in the nearby hospitals, but some victims were uncooperative with the authorities and refused to speak with officers about the circumstances surrounding the shooting.

No one has been arrested for any of the shootings, and the Area Three detectives are conducting an investigation.