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Updated: 34 min 57 sec ago

Minnesota finds third bird flu infection in commercial poultry

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 09:15
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Saturday confirmed the third infection of a virulent strain of avian flu in a commercial poultry flock in Minnesota, the nation's top turkey-producing state. A case of H5N2 flu was found in a flock of 39,000 turkeys in Stearns County, which is northwest of Minneapolis, according to a notice from USDA. Recent infections of avian flu in states stretching from Arkansas to Oregon have prompted overseas buyers to limit imports of U.S. poultry from companies such as Tyson Foods Inc, Pilgrim's Pride Corp and Sanderson Farms Inc. The USDA is developing a vaccine to protect poultry from new strains of avian flu, including H5N2, but has no plans to distribute it yet.

Angie's List halts expansion over Indiana law seen targeting gays

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 09:11
The company behind the Angie's List business-rating website on Saturday put on hold a planned expansion of its Indianapolis headquarters over a new Indiana law that opponents say could allow companies to deny services to gay people. The decision by Angie's List Inc comes amid criticism of the so-called Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was passed overwhelmingly by both champers of the Republican led-state legislature and signed into law on Thursday by Indiana Governor Mike Pence. Supporters say the legislation will keep the government from forcing business owners to act against strongly held religious beliefs. Opponents say it is discriminatory against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people and broader than other states' religious freedom laws.

Search continues for at least 2 after apparent NYC gas blast

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 08:51

NEW YORK (AP) — Emergency workers continued searching Saturday for at least two people still missing after an apparent gas line explosion leveled three Manhattan apartment buildings while investigators piece together what exactly caused the blast that injured 22.


Crash co-pilot's personality 'serious lead' but not only one: French investigator

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 06:18

"We have a certain number of elements which allow us to make progress on this lead, which is a serious lead but which can't be the only one," police chief Jean-Pierre Michel told AFP in the western German city of Duesseldorf. The investigation so far has not turned up a "particular element" in the life of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz which could explain his alleged action in the ill-fated Airbus plane, he added.


UN chief: Negotiations way to prevent long Yemen conflict

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 03:13

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt (AP) — U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said negotiations are the only way to prevent a long-term conflict in Yemen.


Defense moves into spotlight in Boston Marathon bombing trial

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 03:04

By Scott Malone BOSTON (Reuters) - The Boston Marathon bombing trial shifts sharply in tone next week when prosecutors rest their case against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and turn proceedings over to his lawyers, who have already admitted he planted explosives at the finish line in April 2013. One of Tsarnaev's lawyers, death penalty specialist Judy Clarke, opened the trial on March 4 with a blunt statement to the jury that "it was him" who killed three people and injured 264 in the attack. Clarke contended, however, that the 21-year-old played a secondary role to his older brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, in planning and executing the plot. Her goal: Persuade jurors in federal court in Boston that Tsarnaev deserves a sentence of life in prison rather than the death penalty.


Report: Alps crash pilot told ex 'everyone will know my name'

Sat, 03/28/2015 - 02:51

German prosecutors cite "medical documents that suggest an existing illness and appropriate medical treatment."


Arkansas Senate passes religion bill seen as targeting gays

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 20:06
The Arkansas Senate overwhelmingly approved on Friday a Republican-backed bill whose authors say is intended to protect religious freedoms but critics contend could allow businesses to refuse service to gay people. The bill advancing in the Republican-led Arkansas legislature says "governments should not substantially burden the free exercise of religion without compelling justification." Supporters say a business should not be forced to, for example, cater a same-sex wedding if doing so would violate the religious beliefs of the owner. Two of the most powerful companies in the United States, retailer Wal-Mart Stores Inc, which has its home office in Arkansas, and technology giant Apple Inc have criticized the measure. "We feel this legislation is counter to this core basic belief of respect for the individual and sends the wrong message about Arkansas, as well as the diverse environment which exists in the state," a Walmart spokesman said in a statement.

Boston police officer shot and critically wounded

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 17:28
(Reuters) - A Boston police officer was shot in the face and critically wounded on Friday during a traffic stop, and other officers killed the suspected gunman, police said. Police Commissioner William Evans told a news conference the suspect came out of a car during a traffic stop and shot the officer under the right eye. Evans did not identify the officer but said he was in critical condition at Boston Medical Center.

Jury clears Kleiner firm in Silicon Valley gender bias case

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 17:15

By Sarah McBride and Dan Levine SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A California jury on Friday cleared venture capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers of gender discrimination claims brought against it by a woman former partner, in a trial that transfixed Silicon Valley. After further deliberation, the jury also cleared Kleiner on a claim that the firm had retaliated against the former partner, Ellen Pao, by terminating her employment after she sued in 2012. Despite days of courtroom drama about affairs, books of erotic poetry and office flirting, juror Steve Sammut, who mostly voted for Kleiner, said the decision came down to Pao's effectiveness at her job. The verdict dashed Pao's hopes for personal vindication, but the trial revealed embarrassing disclosures about how Pao and other women were treated at Kleiner and Silicon Valley's corporate culture and its lack of diversity.


Student group that revealed racist SAE video causes change at Oklahoma

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 15:56

At a press conference announcing the findings of an investigation into a racist chant that prompted the shuttering of Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s Oklahoma University chapter and the expulsion of two fraternity members, OU President David Boren saluted the student activists of Unheard, who first brought the now widely viewed SAE video to light.


Ferguson grand jury wanted to make public statement, documents reveal

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 15:49

A week before the Ferguson grand jury chose not to charge police Officer Darren Wilson for killing Michael Brown, it was denied a request to make a public statement about the controversial case, court documents filed Friday reveal.


Amanda Knox murder conviction overturned

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 14:56

Italy's highest court rules in favor of the American and her ex-boyfriend.


Jury clears Kleiner of gender bias in Silicon Valley case

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 14:22

By Sarah McBride and Dan Levine SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A California jury on Friday cleared venture capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers of gender discrimination claims brought against it by a woman former partner in a trial that transfixed Silicon Valley. The jury also said it had cleared Kleiner on a claim that the firm had retaliated against former partner Ellen Pao by "teminating" her employment after she sued in 2012. At least nine jurors must agree to reach a verdict, the judge in California Superior Court said, sending jurors back for more deliberations. It is "extremely unlikely" that the judge would dismiss the decision on gender discrimination regardless of what happens on the retaliation claim, said San Francisco employment attorney Mark Schickman, who mostly represents companies, and was not involved in the Pao litigation.


Two new accusers say Bill Cosby drugged, sexually assaulted them

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 14:05

Two more women came forward on Friday accusing veteran comedian Bill Cosby of drugging and sexually assaulting them decades ago, when they were in their teens. Sunni Welles and Margie Shapiro joined the more than three dozen women who have accused the 77-year-old comedian of sexual assault, reading statements alongside celebrity attorney Gloria Allred. He was Bill Cosby and I buried it in my memory until all of these brave women began to come forward," said Welles, who sobbed during her statement. Best known for his "America's Dad" persona Dr. Cliff Huxtable on the top-rated "Cosby Show," Cosby has never been charged over any of the allegations.


Astronauts blast off for 1-year trip to space station

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 12:26

BAIKONUR, Kazakhstan (AP) — American astronaut Scott Kelly and his Russian counterpart Mikhail Kornienko blasted off early Saturday on a mission to spend an entire year away from the Earth.


Shopping center near Pentagon given 'all-clear' over bomb threat: police

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 11:26
Arlington County Police said in a tweet on Friday they gave the "all-clear" to a shopping center near the headquarters of the U.S. Defense Department, with business returning to normal and roads re-opening after bomb-sniffing dogs inspected the area. The stores had been evacuated after an anonymous bomb threat was made to the center on Friday afternoon, Arlington County Police Department spokesman Lt. Kip Malcolm said. Some roads in the area had also been closed, the police department said, while the entrance to the Metrorail station near the shopping center was closed, according to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority. The retail area, known as the Pentagon Centre, is located at 1201 South Hayes Street, less than a mile from the Pentagon.

Senate's Harry Reid announces he won't seek re-election

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 04:12

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid is announcing he will not seek re-election to another term.


White supremacist to be arraigned in Kansas Jewish center killings

Fri, 03/27/2015 - 04:06

By Kevin Murphy KANSAS CITY, Kan. (Reuters) - A Missouri white supremacist is scheduled to be arraigned on Friday afternoon on charges that he fatally shot three people outside two Jewish centers in a Kansas City suburb last April. Frazier Glenn Cross Jr., 74, is expected to enter a plea to three charges of capital murder and three charges of attempted murder in a shooting spree April 13 in Overland Park, Kansas. Cross, a former senior member of the Ku Klux Klan who had expressed a hatred for Jews, could face the death penalty if convicted on the capital murder charges.


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