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Updated: 2 hours 36 min ago

Major snowstorm churns through Midwest toward New England

3 hours 32 min ago
By Kevin Murphy KANSAS CITY (Reuters) - A major winter storm swept into the northern Plains on Sunday, threatening to bury Chicago under more than a foot of snow before tracking toward New England, a region still reeling from a powerful blizzard that struck only days earlier. The fresh snowfall and strong winds could complicate the plans of millions of Americans in the Midwest planning to travel to Super Bowl parties on Sunday. In Chicago's two major airports, about 1,400 flights were scratched. “We are right now ramping up into blizzard conditions,” said David Beachler, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Chicago.

Five found slain in Georgia house, police seek 26-year-old man

5 hours 30 min ago
By David Beasley ATLANTA (Reuters) - Georgia police were searching for a 26-year-old man on Sunday in the killings of five people whose bodies were discovered in a house the night before. The victims ranged in age from 16 to 60, Troup County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Stewart Smith told Reuters. Four of the five victims were related, Smith said. Lagrange, a town in Troup County near the Alabama border, is about 70 miles (110 km) southwest of Atlanta, “One of the victims had not been to work for a couple of days and their employer was concerned and called 911,” Smith said.

Toddler shoots father, pregnant mother at New Mexico motel

6 hours 12 min ago
(Reuters) - A 3-year-old boy shot and wounded his father and pregnant mother with a 9 mm handgun that he pulled out of the woman's purse while searching for an iPad, police in New Mexico said on Sunday. Both parents needed hospital treatment for non-life threatening injuries after the bullet went through his father's buttocks and into his mother's shoulder, Albuquerque Police Department Officer Simon Drobik said.

California suffers dry January, prolonging devastating drought

7 hours 40 min ago

By Alex Dobuzinskis LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California has experienced one of the driest Januarys on record, and the lack of rain during a time of year when the weather is usually wet indicates the state is likely headed for a fourth straight year of drought, officials said. A prolonged drought could portend further economic and environmental setbacks for the nation's most populous state, which has already lost both crops and jobs to the dry weather. The state's driest January on record was in 1984, when the 30-day average precipitation in the state reached 0.33 of an inch (0.84 cm), under one method used to gauge rainfall statewide, said National Weather Service meteorologist Jim Mathews. The low rainfall combined with warmer-than-average temperatures have resulted in a meager snow pack, the California Department of Water Resources said in a statement.


Djokovic wins 5th Australian Open title, denies Murray a 1st

9 hours 7 min ago

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Novak Djokovic won his fifth Australian Open title and his eighth career Grand Slam while extending Andy Murray's misery at Melbourne Park.


Exclusive: Some charities to refuse money from U.S. financier accused in sex case

9 hours 50 min ago
By David Ingram NEW YORK (Reuters) - Some charities that have received money from U.S. financier Jeffrey Epstein said they are reviewing their relationships with him or will decline to accept any future gifts from him in the wake of recent allegations he forced an underage girl to have sex with Britain's Prince Andrew and other powerful men. Epstein, 62, who pleaded guilty in 2008 to procuring an underage girl for prostitution and served a year in a Florida jail, has long burnished his reputation as a philanthropist through a series of foundations that he says have given millions of dollars to institutions ranging from Harvard University to a New York junior tennis league. The filing has also renewed questions about Epstein's once close links to former U.S. President Bill Clinton, though there are no allegations of any wrongdoing by Clinton.

In shock, Japan ponders its role in the world

12 hours 30 min ago

The Japanese, who inhabit one of the world's safest countries, have been brutally reminded of the dangers elsewhere.


Obama budget offers contrasts, long-shot deals with GOP

12 hours 45 min ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — With a blend of tax hikes and spending increases, President Barack Obama's budget spells out a policy agenda that will distinguish him from Republicans who now control Congress. It also will contain what amount to opening bids for some long-shot compromises.


Storm crawls into Midwest, threatens Northeast

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 23:09

CHICAGO (AP) — A storm that gathered steam over the southern Rockies moved into the Midwest early Sunday and is expected to dump more than a foot of snow as it moves toward New England, which is still recovering from a winter walloping it received just a few days ago.


Japan mourns slain hostage Goto as caring and courageous reporter

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 21:38

The story of the vulnerable, the children, and the poor drove the work of journalist Kenji Goto.


Deadline passes in U.S. refinery workers contract talks

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 20:08
HOUSTON (Reuters) - Contracts for unionized U.S. refinery workers began expiring at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time on Sunday (0401 GMT) without word from labor or refinery owners about the outcome of talks for a new national pact. The national agreement between the United Steelworkers union (USW) and oil companies, which covers workers at 63 refineries accounting for two-thirds of U.S. refining capacity, expires at 12:01 a.m. local time on Sunday in the time zone where each refinery is located. Negotiators for the USW and Royal Dutch Shell Plc, which represents U.S. ...

New Jersey Governor heads to UK for trade, politics, soccer

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 20:05

By Megan Davies and Hilary Russ NEW YORK (Reuters) - New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a likely 2016 Republican presidential contender, will be promoting his state's life sciences industry in a trip to the United Kingdom starting Sunday, where he is also scheduled to meet the Prime Minister and catch an Arsenal match. The UK is the third largest trading partner for New Jersey after Canada and Mexico, and the trip will focus on pursuing new opportunities for growth between UK and New Jersey in the field of life sciences, Christie told reporters on Friday in embargoed remarks. "One of the main objectives for the trip is to focus on the opportunities that exist between the UK and New Jersey and our country as a whole," said Christie.


Three climbers rescued after fall on Oregon's Mt. Hood

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 19:58
By Courtney Sherwood PORTLAND, Ore. (Reuters) - Two mountain climbers were rescued by helicopter on Saturday after they fell on Oregon's Mount Hood at an altitude of more than 10,000 feet (3,048 meters), and a third climber was helped down the mountain on foot, authorities said. The climbers, two men and one woman, were injured on the renowned peak when they fell in the Hog's Back region, the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office said in a statement. Authorities did not provide details on how far the climbers had fallen. Sheriff's deputies worked to reach the injured climbers in conjunction with Portland Mountain Rescue, who were in the area training at the time, and a team from the ambulance and helicopter rescue company AMR touched down to come to the climbers assistance within hours of their fall, officials said.

Scientist considered father of birth control pill dies

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 19:19

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Carl Djerassi, the chemist widely considered the father of the birth control pill, has died.


Whitney Houston's daughter revived after found unresponsive in tub

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 15:53

Bobbi Kristina Brown, the only daughter of the late pop star Whitney Houston and singer Bobby Brown, was found unresponsive in a bathtub at her Georgia home on Saturday, but she was revived and rushed to a hospital, police said. The incident comes nearly three years after Houston, a superstar who battled substance abuse, drowned in a bathtub in Beverly Hills, California, in February 2012. Brown, 21, was found in the bathtub at her suburban Atlanta home by her husband and a friend, said Lisa Holland, public information officer for the Roswell Police Department. Brown's husband, Nick Gordon, started CPR and police continued life-saving measures until an ambulance arrived and took her to the hospital.


U.S. regulators recall 2.1 million vehicles in new air bag issue

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 15:49

The auto industry's air bag troubles deepened on Saturday as U.S. federal safety regulators said three big automakers will recall about 2.1 million older vehicles to fix defects that could cause air bags to deploy when they are not supposed to. The vehicles involved in the recall announced by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are made by Toyota Motor Corp, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Honda Motor Co. There have been about 400 reported cases of inadvertent air bag deployments in the recalled vehicles, NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind said. The recall concerned a defective chip in air bag systems and the fix involved replacing the entire air bag module, including circuits manufactured by parts maker TRW Automotive Holdings, Rosekind said.


Video: IS beheads Japanese hostage

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 14:07

An online video purported to show the beheading of journalist Kenji Goto.


Winter storm threatens heavy snow, sleet from Midwest to East Coast

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 11:23
A winter snowstorm was expected to blanket a wide swath of the U.S. Midwest on Saturday before heading to the East Coast, bringing up to a foot (30 cm) of fresh accumulation to parts of New England, days after a blizzard slammed the region, forecasters said. Six to 12 inches of snow were predicted from Iowa to Massachusetts, with New York and New Jersey expected to bear the brunt of the storm when it blows in to the region on Monday, the National Weather Service said. The winter weather was also threatening a new round of travel delays after thousands of flights were canceled earlier this week when a blizzard pummeled parts of the East Coast but failed to deliver the record-setting wallop predicted in some areas.

Measles continues to spread as scientists urge parents to vaccinate children

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 10:46

More than 100 people in the United States have been infected with the highly contagious airborne measles virus.


Whitney Houston's daughter found unresponsive in tub

Sat, 01/31/2015 - 10:41

ATLANTA (AP) — The daughter of late singer and entertainer Whitney Houston was found unresponsive in a bathtub Saturday and taken to a hospital in the north Atlanta suburbs, police said.


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