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Navy hospital employee accused of mishandling newborn babies: 'Sorry for offending'

Employees at Florida's Naval Hospital Jacksonville who reportedly posted a viral video of newborn babies “dancing” will likely face criminal charges.

>> Watch the news report here

The newborns were referred as “mini Satans” by the employees. 

When the employees posted the pictures of the baby’s face, that alone is a violation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. 

>> On ActionNewsJax.com: Navy hospital apologizes for staff's 'inappropriate' photos of newborns

Action News Jax Law and Safety Expert Dale Carson says the employees could be charged with more than a HIPPA violation. Carson said he believes this is a case of child abuse.

In the video, rap music from 50 Cent can be heard in the background as a staff member from Naval Hospital Jacksonville is seen making a newborn baby dance to the music. 

>> Watch the clip here

The woman who sent Action News Jax the Snapchat video also sent text messages detailing a conversation between her and the U.S. Navy employee.

The employee said: "We were being stupid and bored. Sorry for offending.”

But some parents were angry over the video. 

>> Read more Floridoh! stories

“That baby could have been seriously injured … all because she wanted to be popular on social media,” parent Regina Wortmann said. 

A photo was also posted showing a staff member making an obscene hand gesture and saying that was how she felt about the “mini Satans.” 

"She'll receive demerits and be punished in some way," Carson said.

Naval Hospital Jacksonville posted an apology via Facebook, calling the posts “outrageous.” 

>> Navy hospital apologizes for staff's 'inappropriate' photos of newborns

“We have identified the staff members involved,” the hospital said. “They have removed from patient care and they will be handled by the legal system and military justice.” 

Carson says the incident could be very costly. 

>> Read more trending news

“It’s clearly a HIPPA violation and probably the U.S. Navy and their medical system at NAS Jax can be sued over this,” Carson said. 

Action News Jax contacted the hospital for more information. Officials sent the station an email saying the public information officer is “attempting to respond to all requests in a timely matter.” 

>> Watch another news report here

Football players under 12 at high risk of brain injury, study finds

A new Boston University study published Tuesday found a single season of youth football can change a child's brain.

>> Watch the news report here

The findings focused on children 12 and under and, according to the study, those first 12 years of a child's life are critical to brain development.

That’s why any damage – no matter how small – could mean health concerns years later.

Youth football is a family tradition for many, but this new study out of BU has found the longer a child waits to play football, the better it is for their brain.

“There's really something specific about hitting your head over and over again at a young age and it is disrupting normal brain development,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Michael Alosco, said. 

>> On Boston25News.com: One youth football game results in five concussions

Researchers examined 214 amateur and professional football players and found those who started playing football before they were 12 years old were at higher risk for behavioral and cognitive problems.

“That's a critical period of brain development, especially in males,” said Alosco. 

According to the study, the risks for behavioral problems doubled and the risk for elevated depression tripled.

>> Read more trending news

Alosco told WFXT that their findings revealed any injury to a child's brain could result in permanent damage.

“We're talking about those tiny hits to the head, over and over repeatedly that don't necessarily result in symptoms, but we think are enough to cause injury to the brain,” he explained. 

Just earlier this summer, WFXT investigated the growing trend of youth flag football as many are families opting out of regular football because of health concerns.

“I just think it's a little too dangerous at their young age. They're so fragile,” parent Jeanine Hetzel said. 

>> On Boston25News.com: Despite new helmets, doctors warn of concussion risk for football players

WFXT asked Alosco whether he would recommend parents not let their child play youth football. He said more research needs to be done, but he did say one thing. 

“You just have to ask yourself: Do you really want your young kid to go out there and start hitting their head at such a young age – not even just football – in anything?” said Alosco. 

Dad challenges school dress code after 13-year-old daughter punished for 'distracting boys'

The father of a California middle school girl is standing up for his daughter after she was cited for violating her school’s controversial dress code.

>> Watch the news report here

According to KTVU, officials at Fisher Middle School in Los Gatos, near San Jose, informed 13-year-old Demetra Alarcon that the romper she wore to school recently was distracting to boys. Her father, Tony, brought her a change of clothes — jean shorts and a tank top — but school officials determined that outfit was inappropriate as well. Luckily, the father found a pair of leggings in the car as backup, but says the dress code unfairly targets girls.

>> On Rare.us: High school boys ticked about girls getting dress coded are raising eyebrows with their protest

“I mean, today it’s 90 degrees outside, and she’s wearing leggings because she doesn’t want to be dress-coded for wearing shorts. And it’s not OK. It needs to change,” Tony Alarcon told CBS News.

>> Read more trending news

He told the Mercury News: “Demetra isn’t alone. Just sit in Fisher’s parking lot, and you’ll see that. I’ve heard from multiple girls that they just want to be comfortable, but they feel like they’re being pushed into wearing leggings in 100-degree heat. I was told by an administrator that the girls’ clothes are a distraction to the boys. That shouldn’t be a concern.”

While Alarcon agrees students should be dressed appropriately for school, he doesn’t agree tank tops in extreme heat are inappropriate. He also added that it’s difficult to find girls’ shorts that meet the school’s 4-inch length requirement in most stores. He finds the regulations on girls’ clothing to be discriminatory, so he’s fighting back, saying, “You have to stand up for what’s right and that’s what I’m doing.”

>> On Rare.us: A Catholic high school is under fire for its prom dress code, which appears to body shame female students

The school district met last week to discuss the dress code but has not announced any changes. Fisher Principal Lisa Fraser defended the code in a statement that read, “There has always been a dress code. These are standards for reasonable decorum. I do reserve the right to set guidelines for the school, but I want to lead with the pulse of the community and reflect the community’s core values.”

Heartbroken dad shares viral message after 'horrific' bullying of special-needs son

A heartbroken dad is speaking out against bullying after his 7-year-old son with special needs told him what was going on at school.

Dan Bezzant of Idaho posted a now-viral plea on Facebook asking parents to educate their children. His son, Jackson, 7, was born with Treacher Collins syndrome. The condition affects the development of his bones and facial tissue. It has also left him deaf and has affected his eyesight, Inside Edition reports.

>> See the Facebook post here

He said kids at his son’s school bully him relentlessly because he’s different.

>> On HotTopics.TV: Teen notices classmates bullying student, goes out of his way to cheer him up 

“My heart is in pieces right now … my soul feels like it’s ripping from my chest,” Bezzant wrote on Facebook. “This beautiful young man my son Jackson has to endure a constant barrage of derogatory comments and ignorance like I’ve never witnessed.”

Bezzant told Inside Edition he sat in his car and cried after his son told him about what other kids did to him at school.

“He is called ugly and freak and monster on a daily basis by his peers at school. He talks about suicide…he’s not quite 8! He says he has no friends and everyone hates him. Kids throw rocks at him and push him shouting these horrific words,” Bezzant wrote.

>> Read more trending news

He asked parents to teach their kids about children with special needs.

Bezzant wrote, “Talk to them about compassion and love for our fellow man. … [Jackson has] endured horrific surgery and has several more in the coming years.”

Bezzant’s post went viral and has been shared more than 51,000 times. He hopes attitudes change toward people who look different.

“This shouldn’t be happening … to anyone,” wrote Bezzant.

Pediatrician to parents: Treat conversations about tattoos, piercings like ‘the sex talk’

An Atlanta pediatrician says conversations about tattoos and piercings should be taken seriously and urges parents to consider treating the discussions like “the sex talk.”

>> Read more trending news 

Dr. Cora Breuner, an adolescent medicine specialist at Seattle Children's Hospital, and Dr. David Levine, a general pediatrician and professor at Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, published a study Monday about health risks of tattooing and piercing in adolescents and young adults, a group that is showing an increasing interest in the body modifications, Breuner said. 

Some of the consequences include potential for keloids and infections such as hepatitis and tetanus and long-term regret or discomfort revealing tattoos in professional settings.

“Adolescents may overestimate the effectiveness of tattoo removal when having one placed and should be instructed that tattoo placement is permanent, and it is expensive and sometimes difficult to remove them,” the report reads.

Breuner told CNN she went with her daughter to get her navel pierced on her 18th birthday and she held the teenager’s hand while the piercer did his work. 

“I did my usual Dr. Mom thing and found out the person doing it had been a surgical tech before he decided to do piercings, and I watched him,” Breuner said. “I’m not saying everybody should do that, but at least for me, my sense of this whole world is that it’s changing right in front of us, and we can either have our eyes open and be supportive and help our children make informed decisions when they’re young adults, or ignore it and hope it goes away.”

Levine said conversations about tattoos and piercings are serious and important. 

“The big thing is that parents really should bring this up, to talk with their children intentionally, because the teenagers are likely thinking, ‘My parents will kill me, so I either have to hide (the tattoo or piercing), or I’ll just actually abide by my parents’ rules and get it when I’m 18.’

“Even then, 18-year-olds are still fairly impulsive. It still would be good for them to have had a discussion with their parents ...

“It’s very similar when we talk to parents about the time to do the sex talk is at age 11, before they actually need it ... Even if it's not right at that moment, it will open up the conversation and keep the communication open on these issues as kids negotiate adolescence,” he told CNN.

“It’s really our mission and our job to promote safety and healthy living for our children as our children go into adulthood,” Breuner told CNN.

Levine’s advice on when to get your child’s earlobes pierced? Wait until the child says he or she wants it.

“My biggest advice to the parents, unless this is a cultural issue where everybody in the culture gets their kids’ ears pierced in early childhood, I’d like the kid to actually want it,” he said.

Read more at American Academy of Pediatrics and CNN.

Meghan Markle likely to attend Prince Harry's Invictus Games amid engagement rumors, report says

Prince Harry will be kicking off his annual Invictus Games this month, and girlfriend Meghan Markle will likely be there to show her support, People reports.

>> PHOTOS: Prince Harry through the years

The Games will take place in Markle’s adopted hometown of Toronto next week, and she’s expected to be there in an unofficial capacity, possibly cheering from the sidelines as she did for one of Prince Harry’s recent polo matches, People reported. If she attends, the event will mark the second time the couple has appeared in public together.

>> On Rare.us: Meghan Markle opens up for the first time about being 'in love' with Prince Harry

The news comes after reports that Prince Harry and Markle reportedly vacationed together in Africa last month and took a short trip to Queen Elizabeth’s Scottish highlands estate for the royal’s birthday. Royal fans are now wondering whether the actress met the queen, an important step toward a royal engagement. 

>> On Rare.us: As their vacation nears its end, Prince Harry has a romantic surprise for Meghan Markle

Prince Harry created the Paralympic-style Invictus Games aimed at giving wounded service members around the world the opportunity to compete in a variety physical activities. The first Games took place in London in 2014, followed by the 2016 event in Orlando. Next year’s event is set to occur in Sydney, Australia.

>> Read more trending news

Read more here.

Engaged couple seeking sponsorships to pay for dream wedding

Planning the perfect wedding is serious business for Jason Mielke and his fiancée, Rebecca Winter Hansen.

That's why the Canadian groom and bride-to-be are looking for sponsors to fund their Nov. 25 wedding.

According to the Moose Jaw Times Herald, Mielke lost his job in January, shortly after he asked Hansen to marry him.

Eloping or getting married at the courthouse isn't an option for the Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, couple, Mielke said. He also didn't want to ask family members for money, so he decided to seek sponsors for their special day.

"I've always been good at marketing, forming relationships in the community, sponsorship, stuff like that," he told the Times Herald. "I thought maybe I could do something here."

>> See their wedding website here

According to the CBC, Mielke and Hansen are "asking individual community members to donate money in return for a seat at their winter wedding reception." They're also hoping companies will pay for a red carpet, spa services, a gluten-free wedding cake and other items.

But Mielke and Hansen have some lines they won't cross.

>> Read more trending news

"I Googled some pictures, and some brides have the logos of the companies on their dress, and I don't know if we're going that far," Mielke told the Times Herald.

Hansen said contributing to the couple's happy moment would lead to a "long-lasting and double-fold reciprocal return," the CBC reported.

"The power of giving always moves everyone toward greatness and making the impossible possible," she told the CBC.

Read more here or here.

WATCH: Nurses won't let Hurricane Irma ruin birthday for 3-year-old with leukemia

A 3-year-old Florida girl nearly had her birthday celebration ruined.

>> Watch the news report here

>> Read more trending news

She was diagnosed with leukemia on Sept. 8, just two days before her birthday — and the day Hurricane Irma was poised to strike her home.

>> See the photos here

>> Key West suffers as rays of hope emerge after Hurricane Irma

Willow Stine, who lives in Wesley Chapel, rode out the storm with her mother at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, but because of Irma it meant no birthday celebration for Willow — or so her mother thought, according to CNN

>> On PalmBeachPost.com: Deputy calms elderly woman’s nerves during Hurricane Irma with a dance

“I was like, I don't know how much more I can take,” Willow's mother, Jennifer Stine, told CNN. “My baby's turning 3 and has cancer and on top of that, my 4-year-old daughter and husband are an hour and a half away in a hurricane. I'm just trying to process all this.” 

>> Watch the video clip here

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news

But then nurses from the hospital surprised Willow with a birthday party. They wrapped up newly donated toys and got Willow a cake, CNN reported. 

>> More Irma coverage from WFTVAction News Jax and the Palm Beach Post

“The nurses were amazing. They're so wonderful,” Stine told CNN. “[Willow] got to be a toddler again.”

>> On PalmBeachPost.com: Tim Tebow visits those impacted by Hurricane Irma

Read more at CNN

Study finds bald men are perceived as more attractive, confident and dominant

Men who are worried about being bald or going bald have little to fear following a study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania.

>> Read more trending news 

Researchers conducted three tests to assess male and female students’ perceptions of bald men and shared the results in a study called “Shorn Scalps and Perceptions of Male Dominance.” The students were asked to rate pictures of bald men, some digitally altered to add or take away hair, in terms of attractiveness, confidence and dominance. Bald men received high ratings in all three categories.

There’s also good news for men who aren’t going bald: The study also showed that men who willingly shaved their hair despite social norms were seen as more appealing.

“Instead of spending billions each year trying to reverse or cure their hair loss, the counter-intuitive prescription of this research to men experiencing male pattern baldness is to shave their heads,” the study reported.

Nearly 1,500 sea turtle hatchlings displaced by hurricanes to be released

Nearly 1,500 sea turtle hatchlings displaced by Hurricane Irma and Jose were set for release back into the ocean Friday.

>> Read more trending news

The newly hatched green and loggerhead turtles -- along with numerous young turtles washed back onto the beach after swimming off shore called “washbacks” -- have been turned over to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, according to a Brevard Zoo release.

After Hurricane Irma: What to do if you find a sea turtle nest

The zoo said staff and volunteers from the Melbourne area began dropping off the turtles at Brevard Zoo on Monday, before the animals were taken to Gumbo Limbo Nature Center in Boca Raton. The FWC was to put the turtles on seaweed mats off shore Friday.

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