A convicted sex offender has been charged with the murder of two young Maryland sisters whose 1975 disappearance triggered one of the biggest police investigations in suburban Washington history, authorities said on Wednesday. Lloyd Lee Welch, a former drifter and carnival worker, has been the focus of the 40-year investigation for two years, Maryland and Virginia authorities said. Katherine and Sheila Lyon, ages 10 and 12, disappeared on March 25, 1975, when they walked to a mall in Wheaton, Maryland, and were never seen again.
FAO Schwarz will officially close the doors of its flagship Fifth Avenue toy store in New York City on Wednesday night to the dismay of shoppers charmed by the famous destination for childhood fun. The store, which has been the face of FAO Schwarz since 1986, is moving from its location on fashionable Fifth Avenue due to rising rent. The Fifth Avenue store famously included an oversized piano keyboard that actors Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia danced on in the 1988 movie "Big." It also included a 4,000-square-foot candy shop and real-life toy soldiers who greeted shoppers as they entered.
By Keith Coffman DENVER (Reuters) - Jurors in Colorado's movie massacre trial began deliberating on Wednesday on the fate of gunman James Holmes, who has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to multiple counts of murder and attempted murder stemming from the July 2012 rampage. Holmes, a 27-year-old former neuroscience graduate student from California, could face the death penalty if he is convicted of opening fire inside a midnight premiere of a Batman movie at a Denver area multiplex, killing 12 people and wounding 70. The defense case centered on two hired psychiatrists who reached a different conclusion: that Holmes is delusional and schizophrenic, and cannot be held legally accountable.
U.S. President Barack Obama is set to announce on Wednesday a pilot project to expand broadband access for people who live in public housing, in his administration's latest push to bridge the "digital divide" between the rich and poor. Working with mayors, internet service providers and other companies and nonprofits, the Department of Housing and Urban Development will make it cheaper and easier for more than 275,000 low-income households with almost 200,000 children to get home internet, the White House said in a statement on Wednesday. Obama is set to speak about the program in Durant, Oklahoma where the Choctaw Tribal Nation is working with four local providers to bring the internet to 425 homes.
By Marty Graham SAN DIEGO (Reuters) - An animal rights group said SeaWorld Entertainment Inc, known for its dolphin and killer whale performances, sent an employee on secret missions to infiltrate events organized by the group in an attempt to undermine its work. For years, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has campaigned against SeaWorld over its treatment of killer whales. In 2011, the group sued the company for violating the civil rights of a captive orca.
The family of Eric Garner, a black man who died after a white police officer put him in a chokehold a year ago, renewed calls to criminally charge the police officer on Tuesday, a day after the family reached a $5.9 million settlement with New York City. A grand jury in December declined to indict the officer Daniel Pantaleo, who placed Garner, 43, in the chokehold, a maneuver banned by the New York City Police Department. After the state grand jury declined to indict, then-U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in December promised a full investigation into Garner's death.
By Mark Hosenball WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Two months after discovering that sensitive personal information on 21.5 million Americans was compromised in a hack of government databanks, none of those affected has been officially notified, government officials said on Tuesday. The officials from multiple agencies, who are familiar with an investigation into the breach, said the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), which oversaw the data, is working with other agencies to set up a system to inform the victims. One official at OPM, who declined to be identified, said that because of the complicated nature of the data and the fact that government employees and contractors often move among different agencies, it would be weeks before a mechanism was in place.
(Reuters) - Planned Parenthood said on Tuesday a secretly recorded video that surfaced on the Internet falsely portrayed the reproductive health group's participation in the sale of tissue and body parts from aborted fetuses. The non-profit organization said the video had been heavily edited and recorded by a group that was established to damage its reputation. It said in a statement the video "falsely portrays Planned Parenthood's participation in tissue donation programs that support lifesaving scientific research." The video, which has gotten widespread exposure on the Internet, was produced by the California-based Center for Medical Progress, a self-described organization of citizen journalists dedicated to monitoring and reporting on medical ethics and advances.