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$4.1m payout for student abandoned in US cell

Daniel Chong agreed a $4.1 million settlement with the US government after he was abandoned in a cell. Credit: APTN

A 25-year-old college student has agreed a $4.1 million settlement with the US government after he was abandoned in a windowless cell for more than four days without food or water, his lawyer said.

Daniel Chong was taken into custody during a drugs raid in April 2012 and placed in a Drug Enforcement Administration cell by a San Diego police officer but was not charged.

Chong said he drank his own urine to stay alive, hallucinated and tried to carve a farewell message to his mother in his arm.

He said: "I didn't just sit there quietly. I was kicking the door yelling. I even put some shoestrings, shoelaces through the crack of the door for visual signs. I didn't stay still, no, I was screaming."

He was hospitalised for five days for dehydration, kidney failure, cramps and a perforated oesophagus following the incident.

Women accuse San Diego Mayor of sexual harassment

Four more women, including a retired US Navy admiral and a college dean, came forward on Thursday to publicly accuse San Diego Mayor Bob Filner of making unwanted sexual advances toward them, as local party leaders called on him to resign.

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner has now been accused by seven women of sexual harassment. Credit: Reuters

The latest allegations leveled at Filner during a group interview of the four women by public television station KPBS brought to seven the number of women who have come forth since earlier this week to accuse the 70-year-old Democrat and former congressman of sexual harassment.


Newlyweds' hot air balloon crashes after ceremony

A wedding ceremony aboard a hot air balloon got off to a bumpy start when strong winds forced the pilot to make a crash landing in the back garden of a family home.

San Diego Fire Rescue Department spokesman Maurice Luque said that one of the 14 people onboard suffered a minor back injury in the incident on Monday.

The marrying couple, Kerin and Jonathan Narcisse, told a local television station that the gust of wind caught the balloon just after they exchanged their vows, causing it to sway over a residential neighbourhood.

The lucky couple continued to their reception after the crash.

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