10 Things to See: A gallery of lasting moments our editors think you should see
May 9, 2013 10:59 AM CDT
Here's your look at highlights from the weekly AP photo report, a gallery featuring a mix of front-page photography, the odd image you might have missed and lasting moments our editors think you should see. This week's collection includes mint juleps in the rain at the Kentucky Derby, wildfires in California, a light show in Warsaw, Floyd Mayweather Jr. landing a jab in Las Vegas and a Russian Orthodox Easter service in Moscow. ___ This gallery contains photos published May 2-9, 2013. Follow...
90-year-old NJ veteran reunited with dog tag he lost in southern France during World War II
May 9, 2013 10:58 AM CDT
Carol Wilkins leaned over the side of her father's wheelchair and handed him the small red box, a heart-shaped cutout revealing its contents: a weathered, bent silver dog tag. "Oh, Daddy, look," Wilkins exclaimed as her 90-year-old father opened it, his eyes beaming and smile wide. "They're back." Sixty-nine years after losing his dog tag on the battlefields of southern France, Willie Wilkins reclaimed it Wednesday after a trans-Atlantic effort to return it to him that started more than a decade...
3 relieved of command at NC's Camp Lejeune after Marine training accident that killed 7
May 9, 2013 10:22 AM CDT
Three Marine Corps officers at North Carolina's Camp Lejeune have been relieved of their command nearly two months after a training accident that killed seven Marines in Nevada. A battalion commander, a company commander and an infantry weapons officer have been relieved after a mortar tube exploded during a field exercise March 18 at Hawthorne Army Depot, the Marines said Wednesday. Seven Marines and a sailor also were wounded. The officers relieved were Lt. Col. Andrew McNulty, Capt. Kelby...
Police: 61-year-old NC woman charged with murder; police say 77-year-old husband was strangled
May 9, 2013 10:16 AM CDT
Investigators say a 61-year-old woman has been charged with murder after strangling her elderly husband at their home in North Carolina. Police said they were called to the home in Cary around 11 p.m. Wednesday by someone who said 77-year-old Sharad Amtey was unconscious. He died a short time later at the hospital. Authorities weren't releasing any other details about the case. Dottie Amtey was arrested after officers arrived at her home. She is being held in the Wake County jail, and it wasn't...
Cemetery commission says rapper's family cannot inscribe headstone with swear words
May 9, 2013 10:13 AM CDT
Commissioners at a Massachusetts cemetery have said no to profanity on headstones. Sonny Santiago, 23, was a rapper who died in a car crash in February. Commissioners at Pine Grove Cemetery in Lynn this week unanimously rejected his family's request to inscribe his gravestone with a song verse that included profanity. The commission became aware of the language when the company inscribing the 3-foot tall memorial submitted drawings to commissioners. Pine Grove Cemetery regulations posted online...
A production facility in Detroit has the American watchmaking industry ticking once again
May 9, 2013 9:46 AM CDT
Detroit has a long history of manufacturing _ cars, steel, even popcorn. Now, the city is home to a facility devoted to the production of an item not made at this scale in the U.S. for decades: the wristwatch. The Dallas-based Shinola Company is manufacturing its Shinola brand of watches in Detroit. Shinola officials say this year's watch production target is 45,000, to be sold online, at flagship stores in Detroit and New York and at fashion and jewelry retailers and department stores nationwide....
Federal jurors award $8.8 million to family of man shot by Culver City police officer
May 9, 2013 9:21 AM CDT
A jury has awarded $8.8 million to the family of a robber who was shot and killed by a police officer east of Los Angeles in Culver City. The Los Angeles Times ( http://lat.ms/YK7Vya ) says a federal jury issued the verdict on Wednesday. Twenty-seven-year-old Lejoy Grissom was killed three years ago after an officer pulled over his car in a parking lot because he suspected Grissom had robbed a local electronics store. Attorneys for the family say Grissom had robbed the store but posed no threat...
Father of Sandy Hook victim offered 30 days in jail in plea deal on criminal charges
May 9, 2013 7:12 AM CDT
The father of a child killed in December's shootings at Newtown's Sandy Hook Elementary School has been offered a 30-day sentence to resolve criminal charges he has faced since 2011. The News-Times of Danbury reports ( http://bit.ly/10umRGp ) that Neil Heslin has until July 9 to accept the plea deal. Heslin's case involves motor vehicle charges and allegations he issued bad checks to purchase building materials for his construction company. Judge Frank Iannotti on Wednesday noted that Heslin...
10 Things to Know for Today
May 9, 2013 6:25 AM CDT
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today: 1. EX- BUS DRIVER CHARGED WITH KIDNAPPING, RAPING THREE OHIO WOMEN Investigators say Ariel Castro, who is to appear in court today, only allowed the women outside a handful of times in disguise over a decade. 2. JODI ARIAS SAYS SHE PREFERS DEATH The penalty phase begins today for the Arizona waitress convicted of first-degree murder in the stabbing and shooting of her ex-boyfriend. 3. FIRE...
Ripple effect after fiery crash takes out only place to get gas, groceries, in Chugwater, Wyo.
May 9, 2013 4:35 AM CDT
It all began when a man with black shoe polish smeared all over his face exited Interstate 25 and barreled into town one evening last winter. A witness said John Barberini didn't brake before he crashed into the Horton's Corner convenience store Dec. 30, starting a fire that burned up his sport utility vehicle, burned down the store and caused a massive lingering headache for the 200 people of Chugwater, a prairie community nestled beneath sandstone bluffs in the southeastern corner of Wyoming....
'Barefoot Bandit' pleads guilty in Mount Vernon to burglary, sentenced to time served in jail
May 9, 2013 4:16 AM CDT
The young man known as the "Barefoot Bandit" pleaded guilty to burglary in a Washington county court, perhaps closing the lengthy saga involving a run from the law in stolen cars, boats and airplanes. Colton Harris-Moore, 22, acknowledged breaking into a small airport in Washington state in 2010 where he stole a plane during a two-year fugitive chase that ended in the Bahamas. The guilty plea Wednesday won't change the time Harris-Moore will spend in prison. As part of a plea deal with the Skagit...
Family demands answers, federal investigation in death of slain Mississippi mayoral candidate
May 9, 2013 3:04 AM CDT
Relatives of a slain Mississippi mayoral candidate are renewing their push for a federal investigation. Clarksdale mayoral candidate Marco McMillian's body was found Feb. 27. The case drew national attention after his campaign said he was the first viable, openly gay candidate for office in Mississippi. McMillian's sexuality wasn't a campaign issue, but because the 33-year-old was gay and black, some speculated his death might have been a hate crime. The suspect, who is in custody, also is black....
Quotations of the day
May 9, 2013 2:23 AM CDT
"Something must have clicked, and she saw an opportunity and she took that opportunity." _ Cleveland Police Deputy Chief Ed Tomba on the escape of Amanda Berry from a Cleveland home where police said Ariel Castro held her for a decade. ___ "She said, `No jury would convict me. Mark my words.' This jury convicted her. Luckily we had 12 smart jurors. They nailed it." _ Chris Hughes, a friend of Travis Alexander, after ex-girlfriend Jodi Arias was convicted of first-degree murder in his death....
Oakland police chief says he's on medical leave, taking steps toward retirement
May 8, 2013 11:38 PM CDT
After less than two years on the job, the chief of Oakland's embattled police department said Wednesday that he is stepping down for medical reasons. Chief Howard Jordan abruptly told his officers and the city administrator that effective immediately he is on medical leave and taking steps toward medical retirement. "Through my 24 years of wearing an OPD badge and uniform, I have emulated the department's core values: Honesty, respect and integrity _ values I observed in the men and women who...
Sheriff's officials: Rural N. California man shot wife and 2 girls, 4 and 8; is still on loose
May 8, 2013 11:36 PM CDT
Authorities across Northern California on Wednesday night were searching for a man, believed to be heavily armed, suspected of fatally shooting his wife and two young daughters at their home. Shane Franklin Miller, 45, remained on the loose, a day after the killings in Shingletown, Shasta County sheriff's officials said. "There is a manhunt for him right now," Lt. Dave Kent said. "He's a prime suspect. We're not looking for anybody else." Kent said deputies received a call from Miller's residence...
Small helicopter loses power, crashes on busy downtown Honolulu street; no major injuries
May 8, 2013 11:30 PM CDT
A small helicopter lost power and came crashing down on a busy downtown Honolulu street Wednesday afternoon, but no one was seriously injured, authorities said. "It's a pretty miraculous situation that no one was badly hurt by this," said Capt. Terry Seelig, a spokesman for the Honolulu Fire Department. "This is a pretty busy area." The helicopter was on a photography flight when it lost power, forcing a crash landing on Fort Street, which is home to a large apartment complex and Hawaii Pacific...
Fewer US homes entered foreclosure path or got repossessed in April; scheduled auctions rose
May 8, 2013 11:22 PM CDT
Fewer U.S. homes entered the foreclosure process or were repossessed by lenders last month, the latest indication that the nation's foreclosure woes are waning. Nationally, home repossessions fell 20 percent in April from the previous month and were down 32 percent from a year earlier, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday. Foreclosure starts, the initial step in the process that can eventually lead to a home being foreclosed upon, dipped 4 percent last month from March and tumble...
Even after jurors deliver verdict, Jodi Arias case could have many more twists, turns
May 8, 2013 10:47 PM CDT
A jury found Jodi Arias guilty of first-degree murder, but the case is far from over. Arias, 32, was convicted of first-degree murder in the June 4, 2008, death of her Travis Alexander, her one-time boyfriend, at his suburban Phoenix home. Testimony began in early January. Jurors reached a verdict Wednesday after deliberating for about 15 hours over four days. The trial will now move into a phase during which prosecutors will argue the killing was committed in an especially cruel, heinous and...
AP PHOTOS: Verdict in Jodi Arias murder trial
May 8, 2013 9:45 PM CDT
After four months, verdict day at the Jodi Arias trial brought a crowd to the courthouse to find out the jury's decision. Dozens of people lined up daily to try to get a seat in the courtroom, and others stood or sat outside. After it was announced Wednesday that a verdict had been reached, the crowd grew larger. Some chanted "Justice for Travis." As it drew closer to 1:30 p.m. and the verdict, people in the crowd urged others to "shhhh." At 1:49 p.m., the verdict came _ guilty of first-degree...
Texas judge rules for cheerleaders in lawsuit over Bible-themed football banners
May 8, 2013 9:45 PM CDT
A judge ruled Wednesday that cheerleaders at a Southeast Texas high school can display banners emblazoned with Bible verses at football games. But the ruling might not have settled the issue of whether the banners are protected free speech, according to an attorney for the cheerleaders' school district. State District Judge Steven Thomas determined the Kountze High School cheerleaders' banners are constitutionally permissible. In the ruling, Thomas determined that no law "prohibits cheerleaders...
Ga. man, girlfriend charged in killing of man's 78-year-old grandfather; body found in truck
May 8, 2013 9:26 PM CDT
Police in Georgia say a 78-year-old man who had been reported missing was found dead inside his truck outside Atlanta, and his grandson and the suspect's girlfriend now face charges in connection with his killing. Cobb County Sgt. Dana Pierce said Edward Smith of Lilburn was reported missing Sunday after not being seen since Thursday. Pierce says his body was found Tuesday night. Pierce told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution ( http://bit.ly/12XgQxK ) that Smith's grandson, 30-year-old Casey Ryan...
Jodi Arias convicted of first-degree murder, says she prefers death penalty
May 8, 2013 9:13 PM CDT
Jodi Arias spent 18 days on the stand sharing intimate, emotional and oftentimes X-rated details of her life before a rapt television and online audience. She had hoped it all might convince a jury that she killed her one-time boyfriend in self-defense. But the eight men and four women on the panel didn't buy it, convicting Arias of first-degree murder after only about 15 hours of deliberations. Jurors will return to court Thursday to begin the next phase of the trial that could set the stage...
Ex-Enron CEO Skilling's sentence could be reduced by a decade; restitution to start being paid
May 8, 2013 9:07 PM CDT
Convicted ex-Enron Corp. CEO Jeffrey Skilling's more than 24-year prison sentence for his role in the once mighty energy giant's collapse could be reduced by as many as 10 years if a federal judge approves an agreement reached Wednesday between prosecutors and defense attorneys. Under the agreement, which Justice Department officials say includes a previous court-ordered reduction of as much as nine years, Skilling's original sentence will be reduced to somewhere between 14 and 17.5 years. The...
Bodies on Kansas farm are those of missing mom, 2 men; search continues for missing toddler
May 8, 2013 8:55 PM CDT
Authorities on Wednesday identified two men and a woman found slain on an eastern Kansas farm and continued searching for the woman's 18-month-old daughter, who was last seen at the same property where the bodies were discovered. Franklin County Sheriff Jeffrey Richards said at a news conference Wednesday that law enforcement officials were questioning a person of interest they located in Emporia, about 50 miles southwest of the Ottawa farm where the bodies were found earlier this week. Richards...
10 Things to Know for Thursday
May 8, 2013 8:25 PM CDT
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Thursday: 1. JURY CONVICTS JODI ARIAS OF FIRST-DEGREE MURDER She says she prefers capital punishment over life in prison, explaining: "I believe death is the ultimate freedom." 2. CLEVELAND PROSECUTORS ZERO IN ON SINGLE SUSPECT Ariel Castro is charged with kidnapping and rape after allegedly holding three women captive for more than a decade. But no charges are brought against his two brothers....
Paid sick days plan passes NYC Council; seen as major step in push for the benefit around US
May 8, 2013 7:55 PM CDT
In a significant victory amid a push for paid sick time laws around the country, city lawmakers voted Wednesday to make businesses provide the benefit to an estimated 1 million workers who don't have it now. Saying they hoped that requiring sick leave in the nation's largest metropolis would set an example, City Council members positioned New York to become the most populous place to approve such a law during a campaign that has scored several victories but also a number of defeats. A mayoral...
Cheers outside courthouse, Arias fights back tears as jury convicts her of 1st-degree murder
May 8, 2013 7:54 PM CDT
The jury has found Jodi Arias guilty of first-degree murder in the death of her one-time boyfriend in Arizona. Arias initially denied involvement and later blamed the killing on masked intruders. Two years after her arrest, she said she killed Travis Alexander in self-defense. After a four-month trial that included graphic details of their sexual escapades and photos of Alexander just after his death, jurors began deliberating Friday afternoon. This is what AP reporters on the scene Wednesday...
Widow of Boston bomb suspect hires NY criminal lawyer, says she'll continue to meet with feds
May 8, 2013 7:49 PM CDT
The widow of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev has hired a prominent criminal lawyer with experience defending terrorism cases as she continues to face questions from federal authorities. Katherine Russell added New York lawyer Joshua Dratel to her legal team, her attorney Amato DeLuca said Wednesday. Dratel has represented a number of terrorism suspects in federal courts and military commissions, including Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detainee David Hicks, who attended an al-Qaida-linked...
Timeline of key events in the Jodi Arias murder case
May 8, 2013 7:26 PM CDT
The Jodi Arias murder trial has drawn international attention for its graphic tales of sex and lies. The following is a timeline of some of the key events in the case: _ September 2006: Arias and Travis Alexander meet at a work convention in Las Vegas and quickly enter into a stormy long-distance relationship. Arias, an aspiring saleswoman and photographer, lives in California and visits Alexander in the Phoenix suburb of Mesa. Alexander is a Mormon and works as a salesman and motivational...
Cleveland man charged with kidnapping, raping 3 women held in home; no charges for 2 brothers
May 8, 2013 7:19 PM CDT
A man suspected of keeping three women captive inside his decrepit house for a decade was charged Wednesday with kidnapping and rape, accused of holding them under conditions so oppressive they were allowed outside for only a few moments in disguise and never saw a chance to escape until this week. Investigators said the women apparently were bound with ropes and chains, and a city councilman briefed on the case said they were subjected to prolonged sexual and psychological abuse and suffered...
Defense for man arrested in alleged western Minn. terror plot says public has been misinformed
May 8, 2013 7:16 PM CDT
The defense attorney for a man arrested in what the FBI has called a thwarted terror plot in western Minnesota said Wednesday that authorities have given the public some misinformation about his client, while a local police chief said authorities continue to keep an eye on the anti-government militia group founded by his family. Buford Rogers, 24, of Montevideo appeared in U.S. District Court in St. Paul for a scheduled detention hearing Wednesday. But his attorney, Assistant Federal Defender...
Federal jury finds 83-year-old nun, 2 others guilty of intrusion into nuclear weapons facility
May 8, 2013 6:25 PM CDT
An 83-year-old nun and two fellow protesters were convicted Wednesday of interfering with national security when they broke into a nuclear weapons facility in Tennessee and defaced a uranium processing plant. It took a jury about 2 1/2 hours to find the three protesters guilty of a charge of sabotaging the plant and second charge of damaging federal property in July the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge in July. Defense attorneys said in closing arguments that federal prosecutors had...
Ark. governor says he didn't know of fugitive's health when he sought his return from Mich.
May 8, 2013 6:17 PM CDT
Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe on Wednesday defended his request to have a 63-year-old fugitive returned from Michigan, even though the convicted killer is in poor health. Beebe told The Associated Press he wasn't aware of Lester Stiggers' health issues when he sought to have him brought back to the Arkansas prison system he fled in 1970. "We can't pick and choose which laws that we like and which laws that we don't like," Beebe told the AP. "And once the Department of Correction was given information...
Discovery of 3 women in Cleveland leads authorities to look into other missing person
May 8, 2013 5:52 PM CDT
Law enforcement officials in Cleveland are investigating one other missing person case in the neighborhood where three women had been held captive for years. The aunt of a 14-year-old girl who disappeared in 2007 near the house where the missing women were found says the girl's mother has spoken with the FBI. But Cleveland Deputy Police Chief Ed Tomba said Wednesday that so far there is no new information linking that case to Castro. Debra Summers says her niece, Ashley Summers, was not the...
The block where 3 missing women found a friendly but careful neighborhood
May 8, 2013 5:49 PM CDT
The block where horror happened has many faces. On one end, magnificent stained-glass windows rise two stories up a handsome brick church. At the other end, truck bays open into a bleak warehouse. In between are about 20 houses, some tidy, some with boards or broken glass instead of windows. Back yards melt into a block-long cemetery filled with long grass and crooked tombstones. In the middle of the Seymour Avenue block stands the home where, authorities say, three young women who vanished a...
Governor OKs bill that could lead to Michigan becoming 6th state to authorize hunting wolves
May 8, 2013 5:38 PM CDT
Gov. Rick Snyder signed a bill Wednesday that clears the way to schedule Michigan's first gray wolf hunting season since the resurgent predator, reviled by some as a menace to farm animals and beloved by others as a symbol of untamed wildness, was driven to the brink of extinction in the lower 48 states a half-century ago. Michigan would become the sixth state to authorize hunting wolves since federal protections were removed over the past two years in the western Great Lakes and the Northern...
A look at the charges considered in the Jodi Arias murder trial
May 8, 2013 5:11 PM CDT
A jury of eight men and four women has found Jodi Arias guilty of first degree-murder. Jurors had several options as they considered four months of testimony and evidence in the case: first-degree murder, second-degree murder, manslaughter or acquittal. For first degree murder, jurors had to believe that Travis Alexander's June 2008 killing at his suburban Phoenix home was a premeditated act. This charge carries a possible death sentence or life in prison. Prosecutors say Arias began plotting...
Va. prosecutors to keep sex battery case against Air Force officer who led sexual assault unit
May 8, 2013 5:00 PM CDT
Arlington County prosecutors plan to keep jurisdiction in their sexual battery case against an airman who led the branch's sexual assault response unit, even though the Air Force asked to have the case moved to the military justice system. Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski, 41, of Arlington, is scheduled for arraignment Thursday in General District Court on a misdemeanor sexual battery charge. He is accused of groping a woman in a parking lot early Sunday in the county's Crystal City section. Krusinski...
Puppy survives for nearly a month while locked in impounded car in Kansas City tow lot
May 8, 2013 4:48 PM CDT
A Kansas City animal shelter is caring for a puppy that authorities say survived in a locked car that was impounded for nearly a month in a city lot. The 12-week-old puppy, which has been named Kia, apparently survived by eating trash left in the car. The terrier and schnauzer mix didn't have access to water. Toni Fugate, a spokeswoman for the city's animal shelter, says the puppy was dehydrated and malnourished but is expected to survive. Records show that the car was towed to the lot April...
Class-action US lawsuit threatens if UN won't own up to Haiti's cholera outbreak
May 8, 2013 4:47 PM CDT
A Boston-based human rights group said Wednesday it will sue the United Nations in 60 days if the world body does not agree to compensate Haitian cholera victims, apologize to the Caribbean nation for introducing the disease through its peacekeeping force, and launch a major effort to improve sanitation. Lawyers for the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti said they hoped to be able to settle with the United Nations but are ready to go to court in New York if that fails. The announcement...
Navy: Hazing at Rock Island, Ill., facility involved demeaning sailors with exercise
May 8, 2013 3:37 PM CDT
A commanding officer in Illinois was removed from the job after hazing three reservists by ordering them to exercise and yell "I do what I want" in front of other sailors because they missed physical training, a Navy report said. Lt. Cmdr. Jack O'Neill was relieved of command of Navy Operational Support Center Rock Island in Illinois on March 19. O'Neill was upset several sailors missed physical training during a drill weekend March 9, an investigative report released by Navy Reserve Forces Command...
Pa. jury reviews ex-staffer's testimony as it weighs murder charges against abortion doctor
May 8, 2013 3:37 PM CDT
Jurors weighing murder charges against a Philadelphia abortion provider have reviewed hours of testimony from a former clinic employee involved in two deaths. Dr. Kermit Gosnell is facing five counts of murder in the deaths of a patient and four babies allegedly born alive at his street-corner clinic in West Philadelphia. The jury deliberated for a sixth full day Wednesday without reaching a verdict. The panel spent much of the day listening to the trial testimony of medical assistant Lynda...
Couple who survived Colorado theater shootings to get married on 1st anniversary of tragedy
May 8, 2013 3:27 PM CDT
A young couple who survived the Aurora theater shootings have scheduled their wedding for the anniversary of the tragedy. Eugene Han and Kirstin Davis told KMGH-TV ( http://tinyurl.com/brtdddl ) in a story Tuesday that they decided to get married on July 20 to make it a happier day. Han was shot in the hip and knee, and Davis says she suffered minor scratches during the assault on the packed movie theater. Twelve people were killed and 70 injured. Davis says the wedding date was Han's idea....
Parents of Gina DeJesus, 1 of 3 missing Cleveland women, triumphant after daughter's return
May 8, 2013 3:15 PM CDT
The parents of one of three missing Cleveland women found safe after years of captivity raised their arms in triumph and had a message for communities everywhere: watch your children. Felix DeJesus (deh-HAY'-zoos) and Nancy Ruiz spoke to reporters after their daughter returned home Wednesday, pumping their fists in the air in celebration as they addressed reporters. The parents thanked law enforcement and urged people across the country to take responsibility for the children in their neighborhoods....
Feds probe allegations that nuclear parts supplier falsified quality assurance records
May 8, 2013 3:11 PM CDT
Federal regulators are investigating whether workers at a factory that supplies parts to nuclear plants broke quality control rules and falsified records, according to regulatory filings. A dozen workers at the Shaw Modular Solutions facility in Lake Charles, La., admitted to a manager that they sometimes entered the identification codes for other workers while recording who performed welds, according to the company's legal filings. The filings do not offer further details on the incident. The...
Hearing in Casey Anthony bankruptcy case postponed in Tampa federal court
May 8, 2013 2:39 PM CDT
A federal judge presiding over Casey Anthony's bankruptcy has postponed a hearing until later this month to allow time to look at issues surrounding two defamation suits against the central Florida woman. On Wednesday, Judge K. Rodney May heard from attorneys representing two people suing Anthony for defamation. The attorneys say that their suits should be exempt from the bankruptcy discharge; Anthony's attorneys say they should not. May hasn't decided whether the defamation suits should be resolved...
Suit against Colo shooting suspect's psychiatrist on hold to avoid conflict with criminal case
May 8, 2013 2:20 PM CDT
A lawsuit against a psychiatrist who treated Colorado theater shooting suspect James Holmes has been put on hold to avoid conflicts with the criminal case against him. The Denver Post reported Wednesday ( http://tinyurl.com/czosjfb ) a federal judge placed an administrative hold on the lawsuit at the request of both sides. The suit was filed by Chantel Blunk, whose husband was one of 12 killed. The suit claims Holmes told psychiatrist Lynne Fenton before the attack that he fantasized about killing...
Discarded natural gas 'scratch-and-sniff' cards prompt false alarms in Great Falls, Mont.
May 8, 2013 2:14 PM CDT
Those scratch-and-sniff cards the energy company sends to customers to teach them to recognize the artificial smell added to natural gas? Turns out they work pretty well. Energy West general manager Nick Bohr tells the Great Falls Tribune ( http://gftrib.com/18u3gYG ) that workers recently discarded several boxes of expired scratch-and-sniff cards in Great Falls. But when the garbage truck picked them up and compressed the load Bohr says "it was the same as if they had scratched them." The resulting...
NYC employees' pension fund divests from gun, ammunition companies
May 8, 2013 2:01 PM CDT
The pension fund for New York City employees has sold all stock it held in gun and ammunition companies. City Comptroller John Liu (loo) made the announcement about the New York City Employees' Retirement System on Wednesday. The move follows a similar one in February by the pension for city teachers. The decision to sell the stocks came after recent incidents of gun violence including the Connecticut school shooting that left 20 first-graders and six staffers dead. Liu said the fund divested...
Florida compounding pharmacy recalls sterile drugs due to contamination concerns raised by FDA
May 8, 2013 1:56 PM CDT
The Food and Drug Administration warned doctors and pharmacists Wednesday to avoid drugs made by a Florida specialty pharmacy called The Compounding Shop, due to potential safety problems uncovered by health inspectors. The St. Petersburg, Fla.-based pharmacy has agreed to recall all of its sterile drugs and is in the process of notifying customers, the FDA said in a statement. The agency said health care professionals should quarantine drugs from the company and not administer them to patients....
Fact sheet: 2013 Ford C-Max Energi
May 8, 2013 12:33 PM CDT
2013 Ford C-Max Energi SEL BASE PRICE: $33,345. PRICE AS TESTED: $38,610. TYPE: Front engine, front-wheel-drive, five-passenger, all-electric and all-gasoline, plug-in hatchback. ENGINE: 2-liter, double overhead cam, Atkinson cycle, inline four cylinder with dual iVCT, 88-kilowatt electric motor and 7.6-kilowatt lithium ion battery pack. MILEAGE: Equivalent to 108 mpg (city), 92 mpg (highway). ELECTRIC RANGE: Up to 21 miles from full battery charge after 2.5 hours at 240 volts. TOP SPEED:...
2013 Ford C-Max Energi takes on Volt, Prius
May 8, 2013 12:32 PM CDT
Ford's newest C-Max is the ultimate plug-in gasoline-electric hatchback for fuel- and environmentally conscious drivers yearning for something new. Introduced for 2013, the C-Max Energi is an electric plug-in, tall, five-seat car that has a four-cylinder, gasoline engine as a backup. A driver can typically travel for up to 21 miles on all-electric power before the gas engine seamlessly takes over. Or, the driver can push a button to select gas-engine propulsion only _ say, if he or she is headed...
Official: Planned repair for broken rods on new Bay Bridge span could cost $5M to $10M
May 8, 2013 12:29 PM CDT
A state transportation official says a planned repair for seismic safety rods that snapped on the new span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge could cost between $5 million to $10 million. California Transportation Commission Executive Director Andre Boutros released the estimate at a meeting of the Bay Area Toll Authority on Wednesday morning. He said officials are still hopeful they can open the bridge on schedule on Labor Day. The repair officials plan to go ahead with for the 32 rods...
2 Florida teens who are best friends help each other pay for expenses during cancer treatment
May 8, 2013 12:17 PM CDT
In a normal school setting, Tony Colton and Ashley Krueger probably wouldn't cross paths. He's 13. She's 18. He's short and outgoing. She's about 6 feet tall and serious. He's in middle school, she's thinking about college. But where they met _ All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg _ nothing is normal. Here, in the halls adorned with whimsical paintings and cheery colors and masked nurses, they both faced a deadly cancer diagnosis. "We make each other laugh, which is important," said Ashley....
Court chief: Libyan trials of top Gadhafi henchmen could be a new "Nuremberg moment"
May 8, 2013 11:12 AM CDT
If Libya can conduct fair trials of the top henchmen of the overthrown Gadhafi regime, it could be "Libya's Nuremberg moment," the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said Wednesday. Fatou Bensounda told the Security Council that her office is still investigating allegations of serious crimes committed by former Gadhafi officials, some of whom are now outside of Libya, and said the ICC plans to make a decision soon on a second major case and on more cases of Gadhafi regime officials...
Father of child killed in Newtown, Conn., school massacre due in court on larceny charges
May 8, 2013 11:03 AM CDT
A man whose 6-year-old son was among those killed in the Newtown, Conn., elementary school massacre was scheduled to appear in Connecticut Superior Court Wednesday on larceny and other charges. Neil Heslin, who has lobbied Congress and the Connecticut legislature for increased gun control in the wake of the shooting, had five separate cases listed on the docket in Milford Superior Court. The News-Times of Danbury reports Heslin faces charges that date back to July 2011, three of which involve...
American Eagle flight from Detroit lands safely at NYC's LaGuardia after 2 lightning strikes
May 8, 2013 10:57 AM CDT
An American Eagle flight from Detroit has landed safely at New York's LaGuardia Airport after being struck by lightning. American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller says American Eagle Flight 4563 was struck twice by lightning as it approached New York on Wednesday morning. Miller says the captain declared an emergency as a precaution. The plane landed safely at 10:41 a.m. The spokesman says a maintenance team is inspecting the aircraft. It was an Embraer 135 with 20 passengers and three crew members....
Kerry Lester named AP correspondent in Springfield, Ill., to focus on government and politics
May 8, 2013 10:41 AM CDT
Kerry Lester, an award-winning political reporter in Illinois, has been named Supervisory Correspondent for The Associated Press in Springfield, Ill. Lester, 30, joins the AP from the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. She will join a four-person team covering state government and politics in Illinois that includes investigative reporter John O'Connor in Springfield and political reporters Sara Burnett and Sophia Tareen in Chicago. The appointment was announced Wednesday by Central Region...
Southern Arizona climber found dead, covered with bee stings while hanging off cliff
May 8, 2013 10:29 AM CDT
A Tucson climber was found dead, hanging from a southern Arizona cliff in his climbing gear and covered with bee stings. The Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office says 55-year-old Steven Johnson was found in the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson late Monday. Cause of death hasn't been determined yet, but officials say Johnson was covered with stings when he was found. Johnson was last seen Friday when he went hiking, and friends became worried when he didn't go to work on Monday. Search and...
Federal officials conduct investigation in Texas-New Mexico border town of Anthony
May 8, 2013 10:18 AM CDT
A federal investigation is reportedly underway in the town of Anthony, which straddles New Mexico and Texas. The El Paso Times reports ( http://bit.ly/11j0tS1 ) several residents reported waking to the sound of loud bangs around 5 a.m. Wednesday. And at least two helicopters were seen flying over the town, with one shining a spotlight over some areas. A spokesman with the FBI in New Mexico told the newspaper there is a multi-agency operation being conducted in Anthony, N.M., and that more information...
Deputies: 3-year-old Fla. boy fatally shoots self with gun he found in uncle's backpack
May 8, 2013 10:02 AM CDT
Authorities say a 3-year-old Florida boy has died after shooting himself with a gun he found in his uncle's backpack. The shooting happened Tuesday night in a bedroom Jadarrius Speights shared with his uncle at an apartment complex in Tampa. Authorities say the uncle, 29-year-old Jeffrey D. Walker, has been charged with culpable negligence. It wasn't immediately clear whether Walker had an attorney. His phone number was not listed and jail records didn't give a lawyer for him. Police say he...
Man, 90, trapped in car for 3 days after breaking hip, wrist during supermarket trip
May 8, 2013 9:49 AM CDT
A man walking by a Pasco County home saw a hand waving to him from the window of a car parked in the garage. As he walked up the driveway, he heard a muffled voice. "I can't get out of my car," Justyn "Jay" Ambrozia, 90, called out. "Can you help me?" Tim Weidman called 911. Turns out Ambrozia had been stuck inside the car for three days, after falling during a shopping trip to Publix supermarket on April 30. Ambrozia fell as he rounded a corner that day, according to The Tampa Bay Times (...
Colleagues grieve for 5 nurses killed in Calif. limo fire: 'I thought it would get better'
May 8, 2013 8:32 AM CDT
From the privacy of their bedrooms to the public bustle of busy hospital wards, families and friends are struggling with the heartbreak of losing five loved ones, all nurses, killed Saturday in a burning limousine. Outside the Fruitvale HealthCare Center in Oakland, the medical center where all nine met and became fast friends, nurse Medhanit Kahassai ran sobbing out the door into the parking lot on Tuesday, overwhelmed with grief as flowers piled up in their break room. "It's hard today,"...
Once dubbed cold case, police arrest man suspected of killing girlfriend in Tucson in 1976
May 8, 2013 8:17 AM CDT
Investigators in Arizona have arrested a man suspected of killing a woman in Tucson more than 35 years ago. Tucson police say 66-year-old Bruce McCullough has been charged with first-degree murder in the March 1976 death of 20-year-old Donna Smith. Authorities say the two had been living together as a couple. Detectives reviewing cold cases were able to track McCullough to San Diego and arrested him at his home last week. They say he avoided law enforcement for decades by using a fake identity...
10 Things to Know for Today
May 8, 2013 5:17 AM CDT
1. SUSPECT IN WOMEN'S DISAPPEARANCE HELPED LOOK FOR THEM Neighbors say Ariel Castro handed out fliers with Gina Dejesus' picture on it years ago. The woman was found in his home and police say Castro kidnapped her years ago. 2. REPUBLICANS PUSH FOR MORE ANSWERS ON BENGHAZI Three State Department officials are testifying at a House hearing today exploring the White House's actions before and after the September 2012 attack. 3. AIR FORCE SIDELINES 17 NUCLEAR LAUNCH OFFICERS The AP obtains an...
For officers assigned to Golden Gate Bridge, stopping suicides come with the territory
May 8, 2013 4:29 AM CDT
As he shivered on a narrow iron bar 220 feet above San Francisco Bay, 22-year-old Kevin Berthia heard a voice. It did not belong to the old wounds, crushing worries and inner demons that had driven him to the Golden Gate Bridge. This voice, calm and kind, patient and reassuring, belonged to California Highway Patrol Officer Kevin Briggs. And it was all that stood between Berthia and all-but-certain death. For more than an hour, Briggs kept talking as the younger man poured out his troubles....
Same-sex couples in Delaware looking forward to July 1, when gay marriage law becomes official
May 8, 2013 3:57 AM CDT
Mikki Snyder-Hall married her partner, Claire, in California in 2008, and moved two years ago to Rehoboth, a gay-friendly Delaware beach town. Now they're looking forward to July 1, when Delaware officially becomes the 11th state in the nation to allow same-sex marriage after Gov. Jack Markell signed a gay marriage bill into law Tuesday. "As of July, we are considered married," said Snyder-Hall said. The couple said that while they don't intend to have another wedding ceremony, they may have...
Federal agency postpones all oil and gas lease auctions in California, citing budget problems
May 8, 2013 2:39 AM CDT
Federal land managers have cited the toll of environmental litigation _ as well as budget problems and low staffing _ in postponing all oil and gas lease auctions in California until October. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management recently announced it would put off an auction planned for later this month for leases to drill almost 1,300 acres of prime public lands near the Monterey Shale, home to one of the largest deposits of shale oil in the nation. Another auction for about 2,000 acres that had...
What's next for stocks? Experts weigh in after the Dow closes above 15,000 for the first time
May 8, 2013 2:36 AM CDT
The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 15,000 for the first time Tuesday. An improving outlook for the economy and record corporate earnings are persuading investors to buy stocks. Federal Reserve stimulus is also helping. The Dow has gained 15 percent this year. It has more than doubled since hitting a bottom at 6,547 on March 9, 2009 during the Great Recession. Now that stocks have scaled these heights, what's next? Four market experts give their views. THE BULL: James Paulsen, chief...
LA police: Couple tied up by rogue ex-cop Christopher Dorner to get most of $1 million reward
May 8, 2013 2:17 AM CDT
A panel of three judges has decided that the vast majority of the $1 million reward offered in the manhunt for rogue ex-cop Christopher Dorner will go to a couple he tied up in their Southern California mountain cabin. The Los Angeles Police Department posted a document on its website Tuesday detailing the payouts for the much-sought reward, and it said about $800,000 will go to James and Karen Reynolds. The judges wrote that they awarded the money according to the "comparative value of the...
5 Things to Know about renting limousines or party buses, as summer festivities beckon
May 8, 2013 2:12 AM CDT
As prom season, summer weddings and sunshine escapes beckon, here are some questions consumers may want to ask when picking a limousine company to chauffeur a special evening. Industry officials and regulators alike say there are guidelines to keep in mind when choosing among the nation's 109,300 chauffeured limousines, party buses, SUVs and other vehicles: 1. DON'T LET PRICE BE YOUR ONLY CONSIDERATION After shopping around for the best price, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration spokesman...
Quotations of the day
May 8, 2013 2:02 AM CDT
"Despite different points of view, committed partners can accomplish great things together when the world needs it. And this is one of those moments." _ Secretary of State John Kerry after the U.S. and Russia agreed to try to convene an international conference this month to come to a political solution to end the two-year Syrian civil war. ___ "I don't want just more speeches or awareness programs or training, or ultimately folks look the other way. We're going to have to not just step up our...
AP Interview: Ukraine's foreign minister expects country to sign cooperation agreement with EU
May 8, 2013 1:16 AM CDT
Ukraine's foreign minister said he expects his country to sign a cooperation agreement with the European Union later this year despite the EU's objections to the jailing of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Leonid Kozhara said in an interview Tuesday with The Associated Press that the government accepts that the Tymoshenko case is a problem in relations between Ukraine and the EU. But he said a single criminal case shouldn't be an obstacle to Ukraine signing an association agreement with...
Cleveland police face questions as 3 missing women rescued; neighbors say they had suspicions
May 7, 2013 10:50 PM CDT
One neighbor says a naked woman was seen crawling on her hands and knees in the backyard of the house a few years ago. Another heard pounding on the home's doors and noticed plastic bags over the windows. Both times, police showed up but never went inside, neighbors say. Police also paid a visit to the house in 2004, but no one answered the door. Now, after three women who vanished a decade ago were found captive Monday at the run-down house, Cleveland police are facing questions for...
Jury deliberating Jodi Arias' murder case concludes for day, will resume Wednesday
May 7, 2013 9:42 PM CDT
The jury in Jodi Arias' murder trial concluded its second full day of deliberations on Tuesday without reaching a verdict. Jurors adjourned late Tuesday afternoon and will resume Wednesday morning. They got the case Friday afternoon but only deliberated for about an hour. Arias, 32, is charged with first-degree murder in the June 4, 2008, death of her one-time boyfriend at his suburban Phoenix home. Authorities say she killed Travis Alexander in a jealous rage after he wanted to end their...
UN peacekeeper killed in attack on military convoy in eastern Congo
May 7, 2013 9:03 PM CDT
The United Nations says a U.N. peacekeeper was killed in an attack on a military convoy in eastern Congo. U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky said late Tuesday that the convoy was attacked by unidentified assailants in South Kivu. No other details were immediately available. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the attack killed a Pakistani peacekeeper and condemned it "in the strongest terms," Nesirky said. The secretary-general called on the Congolese government to bring the perpetrators to justice...
10 Things to Know for Wednesday
May 7, 2013 8:24 PM CDT
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Wednesday: 1. BENIGN PORTRAIT EMERGES OF CLEVELAND SUSPECT The man who owned the home where three missing women were found alive played bass guitar in salsa and merengue bands and gave children rides on his motorcycle. 2. THE BULL THAT ROARED The Dow closed above 15,000 for the first time, and has climbed almost 15 percent since Jan. 1. 3. WHAT SYRIA'S TEPID RESPONSE TO ISRAEL MEANS Tied down...
Neighbors: Ohio man who owned home where 3 women found alive went to vigil for missing
May 7, 2013 8:10 PM CDT
In the tight-knit neighborhood near downtown where many conversations are spoken in Spanish, it seems most everyone knew Ariel Castro. He played bass guitar in salsa and merengue bands. He parked his school bus on the street. He gave neighborhood children rides on his motorcycle. And when they gathered for a candlelight vigil to remember two girls who vanished years ago, Castro was there, too, comforting the mother of one of the missing, a neighbor said. Neighbors and friends were stunned...
Prosecution rests in case against 83-year-old nun, 2 others for weapons plant intrusion
May 7, 2013 7:34 PM CDT
Federal prosecutors rested their case Tuesday in the trial of an 83-year-old nun and two follow nuclear protesters accused of painting slogans and splattering human blood on a Tennessee weapons facility known as the "Fort Knox of uranium." Prosecutors argued the act was a serious security breach that continues to disrupt operations at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge. Attorneys for Sister Megan Rice and Michael Walli, both of Washington, D.C., and Greg Boertje-Obed of Duluth, Minn.,...
Investigators say man broke into Wis. farmhouse for warmth, killed 3 people as they came home
May 7, 2013 7:32 PM CDT
A man accused of killing three people in a Wisconsin farmhouse last month told investigators he broke into their house for warmth and then struck each of them with a fireplace poker as they returned home, according to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday. Jaren Michael Kuester, 31, was charged with three counts of first-degree intentional homicide, as well as single counts of burglary and driving a vehicle without the owner's consent. He's accused of killing 70-year-old Gary Thoreson; his 66-year-old...
Delaware becomes 11th state allowing same-sex marriage after state Senate vote
May 7, 2013 7:26 PM CDT
Delaware became the 11th state in the nation to allow same-sex marriage when Democratic Gov. Jack Markell signed a gay marriage bill into law just minutes after its passage by the state Senate on Tuesday. "I do not intend to make any of you wait one moment longer," a smiling Markell told about 200 jubilant supporters who erupted in cheers and applause following the 12-9 Senate vote barely half an hour earlier. "Delaware should be, is and will be a welcoming place to live and love and to raise...
Head of Boston Marathon compensation fund warns victims to lower their expectations
May 7, 2013 7:21 PM CDT
The administrator of a fund created to help Boston Marathon bombing victims has a blunt message for them: Lower your expectations. Attorney Kenneth Feinberg said at a public meeting Tuesday that the $28 million One Fund Boston won't pay out nearly enough to fully compensate the families of the three killed or the more than 260 injured, and may not pay much of anything to those with less serious injuries. "There isn't enough money to pay everybody who justifiably expects it or needs it,"...
Jury sentences man to death in fatal shooting of 79-year-old woman outside Texas courthouse
May 7, 2013 7:04 PM CDT
After disrupting his capital murder trial several times with profanity-filled outbursts, a Texas man erupted in one final chaotic fit when a jury sentenced him to death on Tuesday for killing a bystander while trying to shoot his daughter outside a courthouse. Bartholomew Granger's courtroom rants against his daughter, prosecutors and the judge had intensified since he was convicted last week of capital murder in the death of 79-year-old Minnie Ray Sebolt, who was walking outside the courthouse...
NY officials vow crackdown on phony debt-fixing companies like one that cheated 1,200 victims
May 7, 2013 6:47 PM CDT
Federal authorities announced a crackdown Tuesday on predatory businesses that cheat "desperate and vulnerable" people harmed by the 2008 financial crisis with phony promises to consolidate their debt. U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara told a news conference that charges were brought against the owner and three employees of a New York company that cheated over 1,200 customers nationwide after opening its doors in 2009. They were indicted on charges of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, along...
Court strikes at private school tuition voucher plan backed by La. Republican Gov Bobby Jindal
May 7, 2013 6:13 PM CDT
Louisiana's Supreme Court says the funding method for a private school tuition voucher program pushed through the Legislature last year by prominent Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal violates the state constitution. The voucher program was touted as a major achievement for Jindal, often mentioned as a potential presidential contender. It makes state-paid tuition available to students from low- to moderate-income families who otherwise would have to attend a poorly performing public school. Tuesday's...
Family members, friends struggle with heartbreak after 5 nurses die in California limo fire
May 7, 2013 6:11 PM CDT
From the privacy of their bedrooms to the public bustle of busy hospital wards, families and friends Tuesday struggled with the heartbreak of losing five loved ones, all nurses, who died Saturday in a burning limousine. Outside the Fruitvale HealthCare Center, the medical center where all nine met and became fast friends, nurse Medhanit Kahassai ran sobbing out the door into the parking lot on Tuesday, overwhelmed with grief as flowers piled up in their break room. "It's hard today," she...
Wyo., NC Air National Guard crews practice using specially fitted C-130s to fight wildfires
May 7, 2013 5:51 PM CDT
Two Air National Guard units that fly C-130 cargo planes against wildfires are taking part in annual training this week under new standards and procedures adopted since one of the specially equipped planes crashed last year. The changes include reassessing fire and weather conditions throughout the day and not primarily before the first flights each morning. "We're more focused on taking the time that's necessary to analyze each scenario," Maj. Jeremy Schaad, with the Wyoming Air National...
Mentally disabled NY newlyweds fight in court to live in same Long Island group home
May 7, 2013 5:45 PM CDT
With the beaming smiles of newlyweds, Paul Forziano and Hava Samuels hold hands, exchange adoring glances and complete each other's sentences. Their first wedding dance, he recalls, was to the song "Unchained ..." "Melody," she chimes in. They spend their days together in the performing arts education center where they met. But every night, they must part ways. Forziano goes to his group home. His wife goes to hers. The mentally disabled couple is not allowed to share a bedroom by the state-sanctioned...
Texas plant explosion probe continues, officials retrace lines of buildings in reconstruction
May 7, 2013 5:07 PM CDT
Almost a month into their review of the deadly blast at a Texas fertilizer plant, investigators are hoping to draw a picture from the air of how the plant looked before the explosion and compare it to the 93-foot-wide crater that's there now. They'll paint and mark off lines for the walls of each building at West Fertilizer, where an April 17 explosion killed at least 14 people. Then, they'll fly overhead to compare the lines to the crater. That process will occur as investigators try to reconstruct...
3 bodies found on farm in rural Kansas being investigated as homicides; mom, baby missing
May 7, 2013 4:58 PM CDT
Authorities on Tuesday were investigating the deaths of three people whose bodies were found on a rural property in eastern Kansas, a day after friends of the residents called police to report a foul smell at the site. Meanwhile, investigators in a nearby county were waiting to see if one of the bodies is a suburban Kansas City mother who has been missing with her 18-month-old baby since last week. The bodies of two adult men and one woman were found Monday on the farm west of Ottawa, which...
Soggy spring across Corn Belt brings troubling start to corn planting
May 7, 2013 4:39 PM CDT
John Reifsteck looks out at his muddy 1,800-acre central Illinois farm and wonders when he'll get to plant. Like so many other Midwest growers who were praying for rain during the recent drought, he's now pining for enough sunshine and heat to dry out his soggy fields as the deadline approaches for deciding what he can even plant this year. It's a troubling scenario playing out across America's breadbasket, where the U.S. Department of Agriculture says just 12 percent of the nation's cornfields...
Comments by NJ Gov. Chris Christie on his weight struggle, health, since first run for office
May 7, 2013 4:35 PM CDT
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has spoken out publicly about his struggle with weight on many occasions, starting when he first ran for the state's highest office in 2009. He has frequently joked about his size while also seeking to identify with other Americans struggling to shed pounds, though he has never said how much he weighs. Some comments Christie has made about his weight and other related developments: ___ OCTOBER 2009: A TV ad for Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine accuses Christie, his...
Ohio jury shown key video of paralyzed man blinking to identify his attacker before his death
May 7, 2013 4:29 PM CDT
Captivated jurors in a Cincinnati murder trial watched video Tuesday that prosecutors say shows a dying, paralyzed shooting victim who couldn't speak identifying a photo of his killer by blinking his eyes. Over the unsuccessful and repeated objections of defense attorneys, prosecutors showed the jury a 17-minute video of shooting victim David Chandler, 35, in which he answers detectives' questions by blinking twice to say "no" and three times for "yes." Ricardo Woods, 35, is charged with Chandler's...
Judge in RI says $500,000 penalty unjust for gas company, asks for ideas on another punishment
May 7, 2013 4:19 PM CDT
Apparently frustrated by a U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down an $18 million penalty for a Texas natural gas firm, a federal judge is taking the unusual step of asking the environmental community for suggestions on how to sentence the company in a way that will have "the broadest possible impact." U.S. District Judge William Smith in Providence said in a preliminary sentencing memorandum filed April 25 that the high court's decision means he is limited to fining Southern Union Co. $500,000...
San Francisco lawmaker drops proposal to rename airport for Harvey Milk, eyes terminal instead
May 7, 2013 3:32 PM CDT
A San Francisco lawmaker said Tuesday that he has abandoned a proposal to rename San Francisco International Airport after slain gay rights leader Harvey Milk and instead plans to pursue getting an airport terminal named in Milk's honor. Supervisor David Campos said he gave up on the idea of putting a question on the city ballot asking voters to approve the name change after the plan generated a fair amount of opposition, including from the city's daily newspaper and Mayor Edwin Lee. Some fellow...
Ex-Pa. Supreme Court Justice Melvin sentenced to house arrest, must send judges apologies
May 7, 2013 3:24 PM CDT
Former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin avoided prison time Tuesday for her campaign corruption conviction but was ordered to send written apologies to every judge in the state because she abused her office. Melvin and her sister and former aide Janine Orie each received house arrest for illegally using the judge's state-funded staff as part of her two campaigns for a seat on the state's highest court. Allegheny County Judge Lester Nauhaus chided Melvin for engaging in...
In Fla., signs outside homes warn of presence of sexual predators; some question new measure
May 7, 2013 3:02 PM CDT
Brian Speer thought he had completed all of his obligations when he registered in Bradford County as a convicted sex predator after serving an eight-year prison sentence for child molestation. But now, in addition to submitting to a public registry for sex offenders, he has a permanent reminder of his crime posted right in his front yard: a bright red sign reading, "Brian Speer is a convicted Sexual Predator and lives at this location." The sign is one of 18 the Bradford County Sheriff's Office...
Evidence challenged: Miss. high court blocks scheduled Tuesday execution of man in 2 killings
May 7, 2013 3:01 PM CDT
The Mississippi Supreme Court has indefinitely delayed Tuesday's scheduled execution of Willie Jerome Manning amid questions involving evidence in the case, intervening hours before he was set to die for the slayings of two college students. Manning, who had challenged errors involving evidence analysis, was originally set to receive a lethal injection at 6 p.m. CDT at the state prison in Parchman. But with mere hours remaining, the high court blocked the execution until it rules further in the...
Coca-Cola to invest $2 billion for 25,000 acres of new orange groves in Florida
May 7, 2013 2:31 PM CDT
The Coca-Cola Co. said Tuesday that it is spending $2 billion to support the planting of 25,000 acres of new orange groves in Florida, a move officials are lauding as a major investment in the Sunshine State's citrus industry. The announcement was made at a news conference at Coca-Cola's juice production plant in Auburndale. Coca-Cola will buy fruit from two growers: Peace River Citrus Products in Vero Beach and Cutrale Citrus, one of Brazil's top growers and juice processors. Cutrale Citrus'...
A week into deliberations, Philadelphia jury mulls abortion clinic deaths of 4 babies, patient
May 7, 2013 2:13 PM CDT
A jury weighing murder charges against a Philadelphia abortion provider will re-hear several hours of testimony before resuming deliberations. Dr. Kermit Gosnell is charged with killing a patient and four babies allegedly born alive. Prosecutors say the 72-year-old Gosnell routinely killed babies born alive. The jury is set to spend much of Wednesday reviewing the testimony of medical assistant Lynda Williams. One of the infant deaths Gosnell is charged with relates to Williams. She has testified...