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POSTED February 13, 2014 9:09 p.m.

uMAN IS ACCUSED OF CUTTING OFF DOG’S HEAD: PITTSBURGH (AP) — A Pittsburgh man is facing animal cruelty charges after he allegedly used a machete to decapitate his mother’s Chihuahua.

Authorities said they were called to the home Wednesday evening, and Matthew Ondo’s parents showed them the remains of the dog, named Izzy, along with a bloody machete and butcher knife.

According to a criminal complaint, Ondo, 30, at first denied killing the dog, then claimed the devil, Allah or “the Mexican” did it. Ondo’s parents told police their son is an unemployed drug addict who has emotional problems.

His mother, Debra Ondo, told police she was playing upstairs with the 14-month-old dog when she heard her son call for Izzy. Her husband later came home and began yelling when he discovered what had happened, according to the complaint.

uCOURT UPHOLDS CONVICTION FOR VIDEO OF NEIGHBOR : ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A western New York man who videotaped his neighbor after she got out of the shower on Christmas Eve 2008 had his so-called video voyeurism conviction upheld Thursday by the state’s highest court.

The Court of Appeals concluded David W. Schreier violated a 2003 state law against unlawful surveillance when he recorded the woman in her upstairs bathroom through a decorative window in the front door of her townhouse in Gates, outside Rochester.

The seven judges unanimously rejected Schreier’s argument that doing so wasn’t “surreptitious” as the law specifies. The court said his taping was done “by stealth,” the common meaning of that word, and someone’s own bathroom is a place they should expect privacy.

“To be sure, complainant did have the bathroom door open and, as it turned out, was videoed from the front step,” Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman wrote. “However, there is no indication that complainant had any inkling that she could be seen from outside or that she needed to take any measures to shield herself from view.”

It was 7:30 a.m. and still dark outside when the 6-foot-2 Schreier apparently held the camera over his head, used its zoom lens and adjusted its focus to record his neighbor after she opened the bathroom door, according to the court. When the woman realized she was being taped, noticing the camera’s red light when she happened to look in that direction, she shut the bathroom door and called police.

Officers followed footprints in the snow to Schreier’s home next door.

uSNOW CUSHIONS 120-FOOT FALL OF CAR ON VAIL PASS: VAIL, Colo. (AP) — All the new snow in Colorado’s mountains that has raised the avalanche danger likely helped save the lives of two people whose car plunged down Vail Pass.

Their Honda sedan hit a tanker truck and lost control on Interstate 70 Tuesday, going off the right edge of the road and over the guardrail. It fell 120 feet and landed upright on 8 feet of snow.

The passengers were seriously injured but remained conscious and able to communicate with emergency workers during the complicated rescue.

Fire Chief Mark Miller told the Vail Daily said the snow acted as a cushion, likely preventing even more serious injury or death.

uBOY, 4, SURVIVES BEING EJECTED FROM SUV ON FREEWAY: ANAHEIM  (AP) — The California Highway Patrol says a 4-year-old boy ejected from an SUV in a freeway crash survived after landing in a soft bed of plants.

The accident happened Wednesday night when the boy’s father swerved to avoid a tire tread on southbound Interstate 5 in Anaheim.

The driver lost control and smashed into a concrete wall.

Salas says the toddler was thrown out of his safety seat, though the rear window and onto the greenery about 20 feet away.

The boy was taken to a hospital as a precaution but was treated only for scratches and bruising.

uCALIF. MAN SAVED AFTER APPARENT SUICIDE ATTEMPT: THOUSAND OAKS  (AP) — Authorities say a quick-acting Ventura County deputy saved the life of an 18-year-old man who was apparently trying to kill himself by breathing carbon monoxide.

The  deputy noticed a suspicious vehicle parked at Wildwood Park in Thousand Oaks last week.

The vehicle was the only one in the parking lot. When the deputy pulled alongside, he noticed a green hose running from the exhaust pipe to a rear passenger window.

The deputy rushed to open the vehicle’s door and pull out the 18-year-old driver. Officials say the man appeared to be in distress from inhaling carbon monoxide fumes.

uPITTSBURGH ZOO REACHES SETTLEMENT OVER CHILD DEATH: PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium will pay the U.S. Department of Agriculture $4,550 as part of a settlement over an investigation into the death of a 2-year-old boy who was fatally mauled when he fell into an exhibit of wild African dogs.

The zoo said Thursday the settlement isn’t an admission of liability. It did not release any other details.

The settlement is not connected to the lawsuit filed by the boy’s parents. Jason and Elizabeth Derkosh are seeking unspecified damages in the Nov. 2012 death of their son, Maddox. The boy fell over a wooden railing after his mother lifted him up to get a better look at the dogs.

The zoo has moved the dogs to other zoos and now houses cheetahs in the exhibit.

2 HURT WHEN FIREWORKS EXPLODE IN TRUNK OF CAR: LAKE HAVASU CITY, Ariz. (AP) — Two men attending a fireworks industry event in Lake Havasu City were injured when fireworks exploded in the trunk of their car. The explosion and resulting fire gutted the car and scattered debris on a highway.

The fireworks began to explode Wednesday while the car was on State Route 95 and that the trunk’s contents blew up when the driver pulled off the highway.

Lake Havasu City police spokesman Sgt. Troy Stirling said a 59-year-old man who suffered burns to his torso remains hospitalized in critical but stable condition at a Nevada hospital.

Stirling said both men had just left a Western Pyrotechnics Association event, and an event organizer helped dispose of material at the scene.

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