Our network

National Spelling Bee Has A Winner

OXON HILL, Md. (WUSA9) -- Arms behind his back in his signature stance, Arvind Mahankali spells on his hand, looking up at the pronouncer as he correctly spells "tokonoma."

Spelling Bee Begins With 1st-Ever Vocabulary Test

OXON HILL, Md. (AP) - The 86th Scripps National Spelling Bee is under way, with 281 youngsters taking the first vocabulary test in the history of the competition.

Spellers arrived Tuesday morning to take a 45-minute computer test that probes their knowledge of both spelling and vocabulary. The results will be combined with Wednesday's on-stage round to determine which spellers will advance to the semifinals Thursday.

The finals take place Thursday night, with the winner taking home more than $30,000 in cash and prizes.

Organizers announced the addition of the vocabulary test last month, saying it reinforces the bee's mission to encourage students to improve their spelling and broaden their knowledge of the English language.

Spellers have mostly supported the change, although some say they wish they had learned about it sooner.

Two Killed In Crash With Tractor Trailer On Beltway In Oxon Hill

OXON HILL, Md. (WUSA9) -- Maryland State Police are investigating an early morning crash on the Outer Loop that has claimed the lives of two people in Oxon Hill.

MSP officials tell WUSA9 a car crashed into the back end of a tractor trailer on northbound I-495 at Saint Barnabas Road just before 1:00 Monday morning. Once police and rescue crews arrived at the scene they discovered two victims were in the passenger vehicle, both were pronounced dead at the scene.

Police say the driver of the car was a 39-year-old woman. Her passenger was a juvenile male, say police. Police have not identified them yet.

An accident reconstruction unit is on scene conducting the investigation, which is blocking the right lanes and the ramp from the Outer Loop to Saint Barnabas Road.

Stay tuned to WUSA9 and WUSA9.com for updates on this developing story.

DROP OFF DIAPERS and WIN ‘MOMMY and ME’ CUPCAKE DECORATING CLASS at OCCASIONALLY CAKE

DROP OFF DIAPERS and WIN ‘MOMMY and ME’ CUPCAKE DECORATING CLASS  at OCCASIONALLY CAKE

 

Occasionally Cake of Old Town Alexandria needs diapers as part of the Northern Virginia Family Service Diaper Drive. Customers can drop off diapers from Sat., May 4 through Mother’s Day, Sun., May 12, and be entered to win a Mommy and Me Cupcake Decorating Class, to be held on Tues., May 14 at 5 p.m. Three winners will be chosen from a raffle drawing.  Call (703) 647-9638 or visit www.occasionallycake.com for more information.

The Mommy and Me Cupcake decorating will be taught by owner, Sabrina Campbell, mom of two daughters and soon-to-be son. She will discuss cupcake decorating techniques, creativity and tips for parent and child.

Publisher, photographer probed over topless Kate photos

Publisher, photographer probed over topless Kate photos

PARIS (AP) - French prosecutors have placed the publisher and photographer of unauthorized topless snaps of Prince William's wife, Kate, under formal criminal investigation, they said Thursday.

Caroline Chassain, spokeswoman for the Nanterre prosecutor, said that Mondadori Magazines France and local photographer Valerie Suau were placed under investigation earlier this month over possible criminal exploitation of the images, which appeared in the French Closer magazine last September.

The photos showed the duchess of Cambridge relaxing at a private villa in Provence, in southern France, sometimes without her bikini top and, in one case, her suit bottom partially pulled down to apply sunscreen.

Chassain added that Suau's employer, local newspaper La Provence, was also placed under formal criminal investigation on Monday, but she did not elaborate.

The investigation will likely take months to complete.

Police Ask For Help In Robbery Investigation

Police Ask For Help In Robbery Investigation

Bethesda, Md. (WUSA9) -- An armed bank robbery in Montgomery County is still being investigated and with no new leads, detectives are turning to the public.

Police say a suspect wearing a "dark blue jacket, a light green button up, gloves and a Halloween mask" robbed M&T bank off of Seven Locks Road on December 22, 2012 in the early morning," police said in the news release. 

The suspect walked into the bank, intimidated the teller with a small black handgun and left with an "undisclosed amount of cash," police said.

The robber is described as an "unknown race male, over 6'0'' tall, with a medium build." Investigators are urging anyone who may have tips about this incident to come forward and contact the Robbery Section at 240-773-5100, police said.