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Updated: 1 hour 13 min ago

Congressman Aaron Schock resigns

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 10:32

The Illinois Republican has been under fire for lavish spending.

First gay group marches in NYC St. Patrick’s Day parade, protests seek more

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 08:19
By Sebastien Malo NEW YORK (Reuters) - Shamrocks and rainbow banners waved over the first openly gay group to march in New York City’s main St. Patrick’s Day parade on Tuesday, but gay rights advocates and elected officials called for greater inclusion in the event. Organizers of the city's 254th parade to celebrate Irish heritage shifted their policy this year for the first time to allow Out@NBCUniversal, an organization of gay employees of NBCUniversal, the parade broadcaster, to march in the procession up Fifth Avenue. "I will not be marching, but I look forward to progress in the future," said de Blasio, noting the parade, said by organizers to be the oldest and largest such event in the United States, was still not "open to folks who would like to participate who don't happen to work for NBC." Two dozen protesters, some waving signs reading "Who said St. Patrick was straight?", rallied on the sidelines of the parade led by Roman Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan, this year's grand marshal.

Boat owner details moment he found Tsarnaev hiding

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 07:46

David Henneberry testified that he "kept fixating" on a pool of blood that he discovered on the deck of his boat, the "Slipaway II," that was in his backyard. When he climbed a ladder, he "saw a body in the boat," Henneberry told the court, also describing Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's shoes, pants and hooded sweatshirt. Tsarnaev also scrawled a long message in pencil branded with the name of David Henneberry's stepson's company, according to the prosecution. Tsarnaev faces the death penalty for his role in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings that killed three people.

As Israel votes, Netanyahu takes swipe at Arabs

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 07:09

With his future in question, Israel's leader made a last-ditch appeal to hard-liners.

Violent passenger restrained by fellow flyers on United flight

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 05:50

A United Airlines flight had to return to Washington, D.C., after a passenger became violent and ran "toward the cockpit."

Republican budget aims to end deficits in 2024 with deep cuts

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 05:43
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House Republicans on Tuesday unveiled a budget that seeks to eliminate deficits by 2024 through deep cuts to social safety net programs, domestic spending and another attempt at repealing "Obamacare" health reforms. The plan from House Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price proposes $5.468 trillion in spending cuts and interest savings over 10 years compared to current tax and spending policies. To gain support in a divided Republican caucus, Price's plan nominally adheres to "sequester" spending caps next year. But it seeks to boost U.S. ...

Boston Marathon bombing trial to focus on suspect's arrest

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 03:29

The trial of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on Tuesday was expected to focus on the suspect's arrest following a daylong lockdown of much of the metropolitan area following the attack that killed three people and injured 264. Tsarnaev, 21, could be sentenced to death if he is convicted of charges that also include the fatal shooting of a police officer three days after prosecutors contend he and his older brother carried out the April 15, 2013, attack. They contend that 26-year-old Tamerlan Tsarnaev was the driving force behind the attacks, and that his younger sibling followed along out of a sense of subservience. In its first seven days of testimony, the trial at U.S. District Court in Boston has moved along at a blistering pace, with prosecutors working their way trough 58 witnesses and defense attorneys declining to cross-examine most who testified.

Alabama federal judge declines to lift gay marriage order

Tue, 03/17/2015 - 00:49

(Reuters) - The battle over gay marriage in Alabama heightened on Monday when a federal judge refused to stay her order to a county judge that he start issuing marriage licenses to gay couples. U.S. District Judge Callie Granade said in a five-page order that Mobile County Probate Court Judge Don Davis must comply with her previous ruling, which found the state's gay marriage ban to be unconstitutional. Alabama's all-Republican Supreme Court had contravened that ruling earlier this month.

Durst's letter helped prosecutors bring murder charge

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 23:15

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Robert Durst's mumblings about how he "killed them all" provided the dramatic kick to a documentary about the millionaire's troubled life and connection to three slayings, but it was words he penned that helped lead to his arrest on a murder charge, a law enforcement official said.

NYC tour bus firms agree to $7.5 million anti-trust settlement

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 22:33
Two New York City tour bus companies have agreed to pay $7.5 million and forfeit about 50 stops, including highly prized locations in Manhattan, to settle an anti-trust lawsuit brought by state and federal prosecutors, officials said on Monday. Coach USA Inc, City Sights LLC and their joint venture, Twin America LLC, which was created by the two former rivals in 2009, were accused of monopolizing the market, the U.S. Justice Department and New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said in a statement. "The largest operators of New York City's iconic double-decker tour buses were able to raise prices and deprive city visitors of the benefits of a free and fair market," Schneiderman said in the statement. Coach USA and City Sights both run open-topped, double-decker buses that ferry tourists around the city, but will have to give up stops at Times Square, the Empire State Building and elsewhere under the settlement, the statement said.

'King Bibi's' reign challenged in Israeli election

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 22:27

Benjamin Netanyahu's march toward becoming Israel's longest-serving leader could be halted.

Twenty-four hour Missouri standoff ends, police find three dead

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 22:12
(Reuters) - A 24-hour standoff at a Missouri apartment complex ended on Monday evening, when police broke into the home and found the dead bodies of a man and two of his children, officials said. The Springfield Police Department said in a statement that officers breached the apartment door and found 51-year-old William Williams, who appeared to have died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, and the bodies of his daughter and son, aged 2 and 4-years-old. A police spokeswoman could not be immediately reached to provide details.

Two Californians sentenced in plot to kill U.S. troops: newspaper

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 19:23
(Reuters) - Two California men accused of training to carry out attacks on U.S. military bases and personnel in Afghanistan were sentenced to federal prison on Monday, the Riverside Press-Enterprise newspaper reported. Miguel Alejandro Santana Vidriales was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison and Arifeen David Gojali was sentenced to five, the Press-Enterprise said. Vidriales and Gojali, both 24, also face a decade of supervised release after their sentences, the Press-Enterprise said. Two other men, Sohiel Omar Kabir and Ralph Deleon, had previously been convicted in connection with the plot.

Suspect in Ferguson, Missouri shooting of police bruised: lawyer

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 16:53

By Richard Valdmanis FERGUSON, Mo. (Reuters) - A lawyer for the man accused of wounding two policemen during a protest rally outside the Ferguson, Missouri, police headquarters last week said on Monday his client was beaten when he was taken into custody, an allegation police called "completely false." Jeffrey L. Williams, 20, had bruising across his back, on both shoulders and his neck, and a welt on his head and a mark on his face, attorney Jerryl Christmas said, adding that he met with him for two hours on Monday but could not take pictures. "He was beaten when he was taken into custody." Williams had appeared briefly in court Monday morning without counsel and did not enter a plea. The shooting was the latest violent incident in months of demonstrations in Ferguson, a St. Louis suburb, after a white police officer fatally shot unarmed black teen Michael Brown during a confrontation in August. "With regard to the allegations that Jeffrey Williams was 'beaten' by police, the St. Louis County Police Department calls these allegations completely false," spokesman Brian Schellman said in a statement.

Durst charged with murder, movie confession likely admissible

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 16:38

By Jonathan Kaminsky NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) - New York real estate scion and accused murderer Robert Durst's bathroom muttering that he "killed them all" would likely be admissible evidence in a murder trial, legal experts said on Monday. Durst, the subject of a six-part HBO documentary series called "The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst," was picked up by a filmmaker's microphone apparently acknowledging his crimes and admitting that he was "caught." He was formally charged on Monday in the first-degree murder of a longtime friend, writer Susan Berman, in a 15-year-old cold case. Also on Monday, Durst agreed to be extradited to Los Angeles County from New Orleans. He could face the death penalty in the case, which was filed by Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey with special circumstances.

Attorney: Ferguson shooting suspect didn't target officers

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 16:14

CLAYTON, Mo. (AP) — A man accused of shooting two officers last week in Ferguson was not targeting police or aiming at demonstrators at a late-night protest, his attorney said Monday as he countered an earlier police description of the crime.

Obama: care more about jobs, war and peace - less about weed

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 14:26

President Barack Obama has a stern message for the younger generation about their political priorities: care more about climate change, and less about legalizing marijuana. Obama, who has been open about smoking pot in high school, chided an interviewer from Vice News who suggested that young people would view legalizing marijuana as a top item when considering the president's legacy. "First of all, it shouldn't be young people's biggest priority," Obama said in the interview, posted at "Young people: I understand this is important to you, but as you be thinking about climate change, the economy and jobs, war and peace, maybe way at the bottom you should be thinking about marijuana," Obama said. Obama has long said he supports decriminalizing marijuana but not legalizing the drug.

Joe Biden announces federal funding to end rape kit backlog

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 13:38

At the Maryland State Police Forensic Science Laboratory on Monday, Vice President Joe Biden outlined how the government's $41 million plan to test existing rape kits and prevent future backlogs.

U.S. Ebola patient now in critical condition: NIH

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 11:17
An American being treated for Ebola was in critical condition Monday, the U.S. National Institutes of Health in Maryland said. The healthcare worker was evacuated from West Africa and arrived at the NIH clinical center on Friday. The clinician, who has not been identified, was working with Partners In Health at the medical aid group's Sierra Leone Ebola center. Partners in Health said in a statement that 10 of its clinicians in Sierra Leone came to the aid of their ailing colleague.

Suspect in Ferguson, Missouri shooting of police appears in court

Mon, 03/16/2015 - 11:15

By Richard Valdmanis FERGUSON, Mo. (Reuters) - The man accused of wounding two policemen during a protest rally outside the Ferguson, Missouri, police headquarters last week appeared in court on Monday briefly and did not enter a plea. The shooting was the latest violent incident in months of demonstrations in Ferguson, a St. Louis suburb, after a white police officer shot dead unarmed black teen Michael Brown during a confrontation in August. Jeffrey L. Williams, 20, has admitted to firing the shots that wounded the officers early Thursday and also told authorities he was not shooting at police, Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch said on Sunday after announcing the arrest. Williams did not give any statements on Monday during his brief appearance before Judge Joseph Dueker in St. Louis County Circuit Court.