A New York man accused of shooting a plainclothes police officer last month is due in court on Thursday, where prosecutors plan to add murder to the list of charges he faces following the officer's death. Demetrius Blackwell, 35, was arrested hours after he allegedly shot New York Police Department officer Brian Moore, 25, in the head after Moore attempted to question him in a middle-class section of the borough of Queens on May 2. Blackwell was initially charged with first-degree attempted murder, aggravated assault on a police officer, first-degree assault and weapons possession.
The hunt for two inmates who escaped from a New York maximum security prison expanded to neighboring Vermont on Wednesday as the pair set a record for the longest jailbreak in New York history, authorities said. More than 450 state, federal and local law enforcement agents were searching the area north of New York's rugged Adirondack Park on Wednesday, with the hunt extending into neighboring Vermont, New York State Police Superintendent Joseph D'Amico told reporters.
(Reuters) - Clean-up costs associated with a Californian oil pipeline rupture that dumped as much as 2,400 barrels of crude onto a pristine stretch of coastline and into the Pacific Ocean have exceeded $60 million, the Los Angeles Times reported on Wednesday. Plains All American Pipeline spokeswoman Meredith Mathews told the newspaper that expenses for restoring the affected area near Santa Barbara ran as high as $3 million a day. On Tuesday Santa Barbara County rejected Exxon Mobil Corp's emergency permit application to temporarily haul crude using tanker trucks following the spill.
(Reuters) - Rapper Rick Ross was arrested on Wednesday in Georgia for marijuana possession, according to the Fayette County Sheriff's Office. The 39-year-old Ross, whose legal name is William Leonard Roberts II, was pulled over at around 4 p.m. on Highway 279 in Georgia for a window tint violation, according to an official with the sheriff's office, who declined to be named. Deputies went to his car, smelled marijuana, and after searching the vehicle placed Ross under arrest for possession, the officer said.
The former girlfriend of Colorado cinema gunman James Holmes testified at his capital murder trial on Wednesday that the admitted shooter was quiet in public but was more outgoing when alone with her or their friends. The line of questioning appeared to focus on the personality of the man prosecutors say went on a killing spree just months after facing difficulties in graduate school and being rejected by his then-girlfriend, Gargi Datta, who said she met Holmes when they attended University of Colorado-Denver in 2011. Holmes, 27, has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to fatally shooting 12 moviegoers and wounding 70 more at a suburban Denver multiplex in July 2012.
A new trial for the former New York deli worker who confessed to strangling 6-year-old Etan Patz in a case that changed the way the U.S. responds to missing children will open in 2016, a judge said on Wednesday. A month after declaring a mistrial because of a hung jury, Judge Maxwell Wiley told Pedro Hernandez that a new jury would be picked as early as December to hear the kidnapping and murder case in state Supreme Court in Manhattan. Seven jurors from Hernandez' first murder trial, in which a single holdout declined to convict him in the 1979 killing, returned to court to hear the judge's decision.
The number of vehicles on U.S. roads with potentially defective Takata air bags appears to be less than half the 34 million initially estimated by federal regulators, according to a Reuters analysis of recall records submitted to the watchdog and confirmed by the car companies. About 16.2 million vehicles — roughly one out of every 16 cars on U.S. highways — may have one or two defective air bags supplied by Japan’s Takata Corp , vehicle manufacturers confirmed to Reuters. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Wednesday said it has not counted the absolute number of vehicles, but said it was aware of 30 million potentially defective Takata parts that need to be replaced.
U.S. auto safety regulators said on Wednesday that they are looking into a possible seventh death linked to defective Takata air bag inflators, a Louisiana woman who died after her 2005 Honda Civic hit a utility pole in the early hours of April 5. A lawsuit filed on Monday in U.S. District Court by the family of the victim, 22-year-old Kylan Rae Langlinais, claims the car's Takata driver-side air bag exploded on impact, sending shards of metal into the passenger compartment and severing the woman's carotid artery.
The Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday gave final approval to an ordinance raising the minimum wage in America's second-largest city to $15 an hour by 2020 from the current $9. Eric Garcetti, would require businesses with more than 25 employees to gradually increase wages to meet a $15 hourly pay level by 2020, while smaller businesses would have an extra year to comply with each step. Garcetti, a Democrat, has said that he would sign the wage hike into law, seen as a victory for labor and community groups that have successfully pushed for similar pay hikes in other major U.S. cities, including Seattle and San Francisco.