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AM-Prep: Cooler Copy

September 25, 2018

WEIGHT WATCHERS - NAME CHANGE

NEW YORK (AP) — Weight Watchers is trimming its name to just two letters: WW.

The company says it is renaming itself to focus more on overall wellness and not just dieting. Its app, for example, will offer tips and meditation and give out rewards for tracking meals and exercise.

WW has seen a rise in subscribers, helped by a 2015 investment by Oprah Winfrey. The media mogul has appeared on commercials for the company, promoting her weight loss. WW had 4.5 million subscribers at the end of June, a 28 percent increase from the same period a year before.

The New York-based company says users will see changes to its app starting next week.

PHILADELPHIA FLYERS INTRODUCE NEW MASCOT

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Philadelphia Flyers have introduced an odd-looking new team mascot — a 7-foot fuzzy creature named Gritty with a wild, orange beard.

The character’s debut triggered an outpouring of comments online, including “Good luck sleeping tonight, Flyers fans” and comparisons to ZZ Top and the Muppets. Twitter users created memes with Gritty taking the place of horror-movie villains and splicing his head onto other disturbing images.

The cross-state rival Pittsburgh Penguins tweeted, “lol ok” — to which Gritty responded, “Sleep with one eye open tonight, bird.”

The reaction seemed to be exactly what the Flyers were going for. Gritty’s final tweet of the day included the message, “Goodnight, internet,” and a photo of the crazed-looking mascot squeezing what looked to be Champagne out of a squirt bottle.

NEW YORK KNIFE ATTACK

NEW YORK (AP) — A 52-year-old caregiver has been charged in the knife attack on five people, including three newborn babies, at a New York City home that was apparently being used as an unlicensed nursery for new mothers and their children.

Prosecutors say Yufen Wang, of Flushing, Queens, was arraigned yesterday on charges of attempted murder and criminal possession of a weapon. A message left with her lawyer wasn’t immediately returned.

Wang is accused of stabbing and slashing a father, a female worker and three newborn babies inside the three-story residence in Queens early Friday. All were hospitalized and are expected to survive.

Wang was apprehended in the building’s basement with self-inflicted wounds to her neck and wrist.

The motive for the attack is still unclear.

HOMELESS BEATINGS

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A man arrested on suspicion of bludgeoning a homeless man is being investigated in connection with at least six other attacks, three of them deadly.

Santa Monica police arrested 47-year-old Ramon Escobar yesterday on suspicion of bludgeoning a homeless man. It’s unclear if he has a lawyer.

Lt. Saul Rodriguez says investigators are trying to determine whether Escobar might also be the attacker who beat two homeless men in the coastal city earlier this month and killed another man who was found dead under the pier last week.

Police in Los Angeles say they suspect Escobar used a baseball bat to batter three homeless men as they slept on downtown streets on Sept. 16. Two died.

WOMAN CHARGED IN DOG’S DEATH

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. (AP) — Authorities say a Florida woman wrapped her small dog in a trash bag and left it to die in a trash bin behind an apartment complex.

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office says in a statement that 41-year-old Shawkimo Anderson was arrested Friday and charged with aggravated animal cruelty.

Deputies responded to the Winter Haven complex after two people heard the Chihuahua and pulled it from the bin. The dog’s microchip led deputies to Anderson, who initially told them she’d given Diamond away. The report says Anderson eventually acknowledged dumping the dog, which died shortly after being found.

The woman told deputies she could no longer afford caring for the dog, which she had for four years.

Anderson was released from jail on $1,000 bail.

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