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Updated: 2 hours 58 min ago

After four days, no verdict in ex-NFL star Hernandez's murder trial

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 09:10

The jury in the murder trial of former National Football League star Aaron Hernandez finished its fourth day of deliberations on Friday without a verdict. Hernandez, 25, a former tight end for the New England Patriots, is accused of fatally shooting semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd in an industrial park near Hernandez's Massachusetts home in June 2013. If convicted of first-degree murder, Hernandez would be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.


Radon levels increase in homes near Pennsylvania fracking sites: Study

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 08:53
Environmental scientists say that notably high levels of radon in Pennsylvania homes are linked to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

Obama, Castro speak by phone amid bid to restore Cuba ties

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 06:08

The call sets the stage for a historic encounter between the two leaders at a summit.


Ex-Blackwater guards seek new trial just days before sentencing for Iraq deaths

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 05:58
Last October, a U.S. federal jury convicted Paul Slough, Dustin Heard, and Evan Liberty of voluntary and attempted manslaughter and Nicholas Slatten of murder in relation to the deaths of Iraqis at a Baghdad traffic circle. The heavily armed four-truck Blackwater Worldwide convoy had been trying to clear a path for U.S. diplomats.

Hillary Clinton expected to announce presidential run this weekend

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 05:24

Hillary Clinton is expected on Sunday to announce, via video and social media, her intention to seek the Democratic presidential nomination, a party official told Reuters on Friday. Following the announcement, the former secretary of state will travel to the key primary states of Iowa and New Hampshire, said the source, who is close to Clinton. In her previous presidential run in 2008, Clinton lost to the current president, Barack Obama, in part because of the Obama campaign's clever use of social media to draw attention to his candidacy and raise huge sums through small donations. Her use of social media is also an appeal to young voters, whom Clinton needs to become American's first woman president.


Purple Hearts to be awarded for 2009 shooting survivors at Army post in Texas

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 03:22
By Jon Herskovitz AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - About 50 people who survived a 2009 shooting rampage at the Fort Hood U.S. Army base in central Texas are set to receive Purple Heart and Defense of Freedom medals on Friday after years of lobbying by politicians and lawyers. In February, the U.S. Army cleared the way for the military and civilian distinctions after the shooting was declared an act of international terrorism.. The awards will be handed out at the base. Then-Army Major Nidal Hasan, an American-born Muslim, opened fire on unarmed soldiers preparing for overseas deployment on Nov. 5, 2009, killing 13 people and wounding 32 others in what he later called retaliation for U.S. wars in the Muslim world. The Army had previously designated the shooting to be "workplace violence" on the grounds that Hasan was a fellow soldier, and there was no evidence that the attack was directed by a foreign enemy.

1 dead, homes destroyed in Illinois town after tornado

Fri, 04/10/2015 - 02:18

FAIRDALE, Ill. (AP) — A tornado hit the tiny northern Illinois town of Fairdale, killing one person, injuring seven and sweeping homes off their foundations as large storm system swept across a large swath of the country.


Kerry, Cuban minister see 'progress' in historic talks

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 21:55

US Secretary of State John Kerry and Cuba's foreign minister made progress as they held historic talks to restore diplomatic ties, a US official said before their presidents attend a landmark summit. Kerry and Cuban counterpart Bruno Rodriguez met in Panama City on the eve of the Summit of the Americas, the first meeting of this level since 1958, one year before Fidel Castro's revolution. The two agreed they made progress and that we would continue to work to resolve outstanding issues," a senior State Department official said on condition of anonymity. The US State Department's Twitter account published a picture of Kerry and Rodriguez looking at the camera with straight faces as they shake hands in a room with two chairs and a glass coffee table.


1 dead as tornado rips through Illinois

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 21:40

A fire official says "every single" structure in the tiny town of Fairdale has been damaged.


One dead as tornadoes sweep through northern Illinois

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 20:52
By Bob Chiarito ROCHELLE, Ill. (Reuters) - A dangerous storm system rolled through the Midwest on Thursday evening, killing at least one person and leveling houses and businesses northwest of Chicago, local officials said. One person was killed and at least seven people were injured in the tiny town of Fairdale, Illinois, located some 75 miles (120 km) from Chicago, according to local media, citing emergency officials. Les Bellah, village president of nearby Kirkland, said that there was "extensive damage" to Fairdale, which has about 300 people. Damage was also reported in and around Rochelle, Illinois, about 81 miles (130 km) west of Chicago, according to Rochelle Councilman Bill Hayes.

Police cruiser video shows moments before fatal shooting

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 15:28

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — The traffic stop starts like any other: an officer pulls over a motorist, walks up to the driver's side window and asks for license and registration. What happened minutes later appears to take place without any obvious sign of provocation or conflict: The driver opens the door and runs, and the officer chases after him.


New video shows South Carolina man fleeing traffic stop before shooting

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 15:06

By Harriet McLeod NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (Reuters) - A video captured by a South Carolina police cruiser's dashboard camera surfaced on Thursday showing a black man fleeing after what appears to be a routine traffic stop by a white officer who would eventually pursue and fatally shoot him in the back. The footage, released by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) and aired by CNN, was taken minutes before a bystander's video recorded North Charleston Patrolman Michael Slager gunning down 50-year-old Walter Scott as he ran. The new video clip, which lasts just four minutes, shows Slager, 33, approaching a black Mercedes-Benz and asking the driver, Scott, for his license and proof of insurance.


Obama moves to end conversion therapies for LGBT youth

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 13:38

In a move that further solidifies the White House’s stance on gay marriage and LGBTQ civil liberties, President Obama is calling for an end to what’s known as gay and transgender conversion therapies. This comes just a few months after a 17-year-old transgender teen, Lellah Alcorn, took her own life after writing an online suicide note, which included references to how religious therapists attempted to change her back to being a boy.


Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's mother: ‘My sons are innocent’

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 12:50

Zubeidat Tsarnaeva condemned the guilty verdict delivered by the jury in the Boston bombing trial.


Judge in ex-NFL star's murder trial warns of mistrial risk

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 08:33

By Scott Malone FALL RIVER, Mass. (Reuters) - The judge in former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez's murder trial on Thursday reprimanded a local television station after two jurors reported being followed by one of its trucks, warning the incident could have led to a mistrial. The jury has begun its third day of deliberations on whether Hernandez, 25, is guilty of murdering an associate, in the first of two murder trials he faces this year. After the jury in Fall River, Massachusetts, determines whether he killed semiprofessional football player Odin Lloyd, he will face a trial in Boston on charges of fatally shooting two Cape Verdean men outside a nightclub in 2012. Before deliberations began, Bristol County Superior Court Judge Susan Garsh said that two of the 15 jurors reported they had been followed by a van from WHDH television.


U.S. man accused of trying to support to Islamic State

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 06:39
By Lindsay Dunsmuir WASHINGTON (Reuters) - An American man has been charged with trying to provide support for the Islamic State militant group, the U.S Justice Department said on Thursday. Joshua Ray Van Haften, 34, of Madison, Wisconsin, intended to travel to Iraq or Syria to join the militant group, also known by the acronyms ISIL or ISIS, prosecutors said in a statement. Van Haften was due to make an initial appearance in federal court in Madison on Thursday. He was arrested at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport on Wednesday night after arriving on a flight back from Turkey.

TV crew's action leads to threat of mistrial in Aaron Hernandez case

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 06:37

Two jurors say a TV van suspiciously approached them Wednesday as they left court, a potential violation of Massachusetts law.


Witness to S.C. police shooting ‘thought about erasing the video’

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 06:09

The bystander who captured cellphone video says he feared other cops might retaliate against him.


Rand Paul up, Clinton down in 2016 presidential poll

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 05:39

Democrat Hillary Clinton has slipped against leading 2016 Republican candidates in Colorado, Iowa and Virginia, according to a poll released on Thursday that cited damage from the furor over the former secretary of state's emails. The Quinnipiac University Swing State Poll also showed Clinton in a close race with U.S. Senator Rand Paul, the Kentucky Republican who declared his candidacy on Tuesday.


Matt Bai: Two friends. Two principles. One answer on Iran.

Thu, 04/09/2015 - 03:59

If Barack Obama has a close friend in Congress, it’s Tim Kaine.


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