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Man charged after flight diverts to Las Vegas

 LAS VEGAS -- A man accused of threatening his wife and a flight attendant and causing a plane to divert to Las Vegas has been formally charged.

According to the criminal complaint, Derrick Woodfin interfered with the flight crew on Spirit Airlines flight 2213 on Dec. 23.

Witnesses say Woodfin was upset that he couldn't pay for alcohol with cash and became belligerent. Woodfin was removed from the plane when it landed in Las Vegas. The flight then continued to Dallas.

Nevada Guard to be at Las Vegas airport during holiday

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) -- The Nevada National Guard says soldiers will be posted during the next two days at McCarran International Airport and other Las Vegas-area facilities as part of a New Year's Eve holiday contingency plan.

Public Affairs Sgt. Erick Studenicka said Tuesday that at least 65 guard members will take part through Thursday in what authorities are calling an annual exercise.

It includes military police and armored reconnaissance soldiers and helicopter crews.

Officials say the temporary stationing of soldiers and airmen isn't due to a specific threat, and is being conducted in conjunction with local police, sheriff and first response agencies.

Tourism officials expect up to 340,000 visitors for events including an outdoor holiday fireworks show on the Las Vegas Strip and downtown Fremont Street Experience casino mall.

McCarran helps travelers stay flu-free

LAS VEGAS — The flu season is now in full swing and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say it's not going to be a pretty one, especially in Nevada.

The state is now near "widespread flu status," meaning if you don't take precautions, especially during the busy holiday travel season, there's a chance you will get sick. 

And that's where McCarran International Airport comes in.

One of the busiest airports in the country is getting into the prevention game with a medical clinic that expanded its services over the summer to include not only a doctor visit, but also get a flu vaccine.

"It's a great service that we're able to provide and we are happy to help," said pharmacy technician Wendy Franco. 

Metro: Men allegedly robbed 18 places in 8 days

LAS VEGAS -- Nearly two dozen armed robberies in less than two weeks seems highly unlikely, but Metro Police said it happened and they're trying to figure out who the culprits are.

Officers said they think the same two men committed 18 armed robberies in eight days. The suspected thieves are said to be white men between the ages of 20 and 30, weighing 140 to 160 pounds.

According to police, the men are targeting stores in strip malls.

“We're talking from anywhere from the Rainbow corridor on the south side of the valley, all the way to Henderson and also north of Cheyenne,” said Sgt. Steve Candelas, Metro's robbery division.

Detectives said the two suspects would walk into establishments armed and demand money.  At times, the men have even gone as far as to say, “I need to feed my children," according to police.

Christmas tree recycling drop-off locations

LAS VEGAS - Several locations around the valley are accepting and recycling Christmas trees. It's estimated about 250,000 are sold in the Las Vegas valley, but only 15,000 were recycled last year. 

The recycled trees will be chipped into mulch which is used in public gardens and parks across the valley.

There is no fee to recycle a tree. Trees will be accepted from Dec. 26 to Jan. 15, 2015. Clark County residents are encouraged to drop off their trees at one of the locations listed below and find tips on preparing your tree for recycling.

Boulder City

· Bravo Ball Field parking lot (891 Avenue B)

North Las Vegas

· Aviary Park - 6650 Aviary Way & I-215
· Cheyenne Sports Complex - 3500 E. Cheyenne at Pecos
· Seastrand Park - 6330 Camino Eldorado near Centennial Parkway & I-215
· Lowe's - 2570 E. Craig Road
· Craig Ranch Golf Course - 628 W.















Starbucks near McCarran robbed, suspect on the run

LAS VEGAS -- Metro Police investigated a robbery at a south valley Starbucks Wednesday afternoon.

Authorities said the events unfolded around 3 p.m. when a man walked into the Starbucks located at 600 E. Warm Springs Road with a black semi-automatic handgun.

The suspect threatened several customers and employees as he “pulled the slide back" on his gun and demanded money, according to officers.

It's unclear if the man made off with any money, but police said he fled the scene in a tan four door sedan. He's described as a white man between 25-30 years old, about five feet nine inches tall, and 180 pounds.

No one was hurt. Metro believes this robbery is connected to several other armed robberies around the valley.

Signs of recovery seen in UNLV economic forecast

LAS VEGAS -- The Silver State is still on the mend since the recession, but University of Nevada, Las Vegas economists say they expect improvements in the next two years.

UNLV's Center for Business and Economic Growth released a financial outlook report on Monday.

Casino revenue and residential construction are still off from pre-recession levels, as are car sales. The state also has the highest percentage of homeowners owing more on mortgages than their houses are worth, but overall the economy is on the mend.

Roy VanGuilder made a living as a performer on the Las Vegas Strip and then the economy tanked and he found himself saddled with a home worth less than he paid for it.

"The bubble was just getting bigger and bigger.